I have wanted to write more experimental works for ages, both in an attempt to find something completely new that may work and as a way of stretching my wings for more “conventional” works. The problem was that I knew most of what I would do would have absolutely zero commercial viability. Hell, I didn’t even want to write with commercial viability in mind. That was pretty much the point. So last night I started to have a vision of this story that started with a table in the middle of the woods. This rotting wooden picnic table. I saw a pack of cigarettes on top of the table, and the questions started to come – who had left them there, who would discover them. Those answers started to create more questions.
The problem that arose was that all of the answers were symbolic. This happens to me more often than you’d think: images suggest themselves that tell a story that, on the surface, make very little sense, but with the proper key everything falls in place. I tend to either disregard these concepts or tame them down with enough exposition that a reader can follow what’s going on there. It’s not so much that I think my reader(s) might not be smart enough, just that these symbols are often highly personal in nature.
Last night, however, I decided what the hell, why not? One of my own personal heroes, David Lynch, puts his inner symbolism out there without offering a key, and he’s done well enough. Now, I wouldn’t begin to say that I’m anywhere near Lynch’s caliber, but I also know that nothing in writing happens without at least making some damned attempt to make it work – we fail, we fail, and we fail again, only then can we succeed, so why the hell not? Why not go down the rabbit hole and see where it leads?
Where all this comes back to the reader is that I plan to publish these experiments – both successful and failure – as Kindle singles, free of charge, at least until I start to feel I have a solid basis from which to work and these possibly present themselves as viable commercial endeavors. By that I mean, I don’t promise that these will always be free, or that the line itself will always be free, but I’m also not sure anyone would pay for any of this work anyway.
As for the question of whether to sell work or not…we’ll leave that for another entry. I definitely have some feelings on it, but I’ve written enough for now.