picturesque and lurid


The Eruption of Vesuvius, John Martin 

55,387. The title’s a reference to my dreams lately. No work on Silk River this week. Pendrifter’s been silent; I’ve been busy thinking and writing. Yesterday morning had a great session with pen and paper, finally continued that scene between Aloli and Lazaretia Tataneia, her late father’s mistress. Took time to sketch my take on these two women, got myself focused, and the dialogue progressed. I use dialogue to circle in on  characters. Having to think about what one character will say to another during the back and forth in a particular situation forces personality into being, the way geologic pressure forces a diamond into being. My dialogue wasn’t all that–but the stress of thought and visualization, me staring at that blank yellow page, brought Aloli and Lazaretia into focus. Their words introduced me to their personalities and I finally got what Aloli felt about Lazaretia as well as Lazaretia’s perspective. The scene moved. Not finished, but it acquired a directiion. This weekend I’ll type it in and see where I’m at.

Thursday night’s movie was 28 Weeks Later. I’d rented 28 Days Later last year and it frightened me pretty good. I’m not a fan of zombie films; they give me nightmares. So why would I see such a movie? ‘Cause I’m perverse. (But I won’t view any of the Night of the Living Dead movies for love or money.) The suspense in 28 Days Later made me gnaw my fingers and bury my face in the pillow. I watched the sequel with mild interest (although it did manage to make me jump once–so guess my interest wasn’t quite that mild). The movie is not for the faint-hearted. When I got home, I washed my brain out with a viewing of a Mission Impossible (the 1960s series) episode, and had a peaceful sleep and picturesque dreams. (But I know my subconscious; it’s going to get me one of these nights when I least expect it.)