I’ve spent the last year reconstructing my writing style, word by word, line by line.
I began this work of reconstruction, last year, in my (currently unpublished) literary series.
I began by stripping back my prose to the basics – observation, description, precision. I was producing sketches in which I concentrated on the act of seeing and the act of saying, on lines of sight, on lines of text that represented lines of sight. This was a clean, efficient, minimalist prose. Then, slowly, as the sketches began to pile up, as I continued producing these sketches, extending the series, and then as I completed the first series and began the second, I also began to extend the prose style itself.
I’ve continued this reconstruction in all my work since. It is evident in my various fragments, my (unpublished) works that are presented as notes, as sketches, as sonatas and elsewhere. These are pieces that now range in length from mere sentences to tens of thousands of words, from imagist to novelist.
I’m now working on texts in my new style every day. This style concentrates on the controlled elaboration of key images, on extended metaphors and acts of self-representation. It is attentive to the rhythms of sentences and thoughts. It is unfussy even when it unfurls a thought in one sentence over a paragraph.
I’m now finally happy with my writing style. It’s now time to write.
© James Holden 2014