"You can call yourself anything you want -- an artist, a writer, a craftsman, but unless you have the words to back you up, you're nothing," Eleanor says. "You should pay close attention to Mr. Faulkner. It's not your talent that's at question, but your work ethic, and your diligence, and what you will do you get the job done."
Eleanor likes to spar with me. I'm used to it by now. I don't really feel like fighting today, though. Listening is fine enough.
"I need you," she says. "And I'll say whatever's necessary to get you take the biggest risk of all -- opening your heart, from the inside-out, so the truth can escape. Without me, you're less of a human being. You created me. You've allowed me to live inside you for 18 years. You need me, as much as I need you."
"Yes, Eleanor," I say. She's correct, of course.
"But I'm not like Frankenstein's monster," Eleanor says quickly. "I can bleed just like you. I can hurt just like you. I can be made whole -- just like you can be made whole again. And I can love, just as you can. All of the good things come with the truth. First we need to get past the pain."
"At one time I thought the most important thing was talent. I think now that the young man or the young woman must possess or teach himself, training himself, in infinite patience, which is to try and to try until it comes right. He must train himself in ruthless intolerance--that is to throw away anything that is false no matter how much he might love that page or that paragraph. The most important thing is insight, that is to be--curiosity--to wonder, to mull, and to muse why it is that man does what he does, and if you have that, then I don't think the talent makes much difference, whether you've got it or not."
-- William Faulkner
To Reach The Green Light At The End Of The Pier
FOR AS LONG AS IT TAKES: "We are saving ourselves through the words," says Eleanor, the leading lady of a novel-in-progress. This exploration into the creative process -- which includes plenty of distractions/tangents /thoughts & rants by Eleanor, her Biographer, and selected guest artists -- will continue until Eleanor is certain her story is "right." (But we dare not jump ahead of ourselves.)
There will be the occasional typo (as Eleanor points out), and much of this is intended to be "original draft" -- what comes out of our mouths (heads) first, and then set down in that order. Not all of it will be included in the novel, but all of it is happening in real time.
ELEANOR says: "Please turn the page. Keep reading."
For more of Eleanor and her Biographer -- as well as the work of our many guest artists -- check out the older postings. "Everything is part of the process, and the process is the journey," Eleanor says.