Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Feeling Better: not so depressed/still writing "great literature"

FINALLY the fog of "depression"/whatever you wanna call it (feeling unamused + sleeping 12-16 hours per day EVERY day... yes THAT is lifting. O and when I did get up "early" (eg 8am) thinking how well I was doing, not only did I feel absolute stygian gloom, barely able to function at all, but I'd flop down on the sofa, maybe a couple of hours later, after I'd done all I had to do for the day ~ getting methadone, buying shopping in etc, so the rest of the day was comparitively "optional" then BAM!! straight to sleep and catching up on every single hour "lost" plus EVEN MORE! ~ meaning I just couldn't win. I told my GPs (both of them) and they nodded understandingly. They certainly didn't try and imply if only I had more mettle and forced myself to stay awake I'd somehow be all right because I wasn't all right. The less sleep the LOWER my mood went. It was horrible. ANYWAY this is all finished now and I'm currently on 9 hours. My mood today has actually gone UP. I'm really excited because I found some yummy blue soft cheese (Cambazola) to put in my French baguettes, which I eat nearly every day. Or is it because I'm busily writing the most amazing children's book of all time? I don't know!

Ukh. As for my brilliant writerly idea... I REALLY need a good "literary agent" with whom to discuss this stuff. My family are good, but really just as clueless as me when it comes to the wherewithalls of publishing. I haven't the faintest idea how that industry works and I need someone I can bounce ideas off who is NOT my publisher, because I feel I should produce (and hence publish) my stuff in a certain way, in a certain order of appearance. Maybe I'm sounding a bit mysterious here: what I mean is, I have so very many ideas for stories it'd take me at least the next five years to write them all. That's if I took up writing full-time. Currently I'm only writing ~ really ~ part-time I haven't the physical energy to scribble away at this hobby of mine full-time.

(Most of the time when I'm "writing" I'm actually watching True Movies 2 on Freesat!)

I was watching French television last night (as you do when you're supposedly writing an intellectual novel) and this brilliant prison drama came on called Unité 9 ~ far better than the present-day rehash of Prisoner Cell Block H they're calling Wentworth. I also saw a good courtroom-cum-prison drama Anybody's Nightmare, starring Patricia Routledge (Hyacinth Bucket) on True Entertainment. The real-life story of Sheila Bowler, a middle-aged, middle-class music teacher falsely accused and then convicted of the murder of her frail and elderly aunt. That was really good too.

You know as I'm getting older and becoming an accomplished intellectual novelist, I can watch TV drama and think "no that's a cheap shot; they should have focused more on that character, added an establishing scene here, rejiggled a bit there, done it this other way". + when I read other people's books I'm constantly blue-pencilling other writers' prose  (I do it enough to my own). I got Sharon Osbourne's latest memoir Unbreakable from Morrisons for £10 (Binky thinks this is the biggest self-indulgence, spending £10 on A book!) ~ no ghostwriter is credited, but some of the prose, at its best is top-drawer. Paul Burrel's book A Royal Duty doesn't credit a ghostwriter either and that's amazingly well done, considering the lengthy, convoluted story he had to tell and, in the words of her brother, Earl Spencer: a woman I am so proud to be able to call my sister, the unique, the complex, the extraordinary and irreplaceable Diana whose beauty, both internal and external, will never be extinguished from our minds

I once tried penning my own memoir ~ a "misery memoir" as my own tale would be labelled ~ and I can tell you it is NOT easy ~ not just recalling your own life in brutal close-up, but detailing precisely HOW and why one thing led to another, what was said by whom and how it made you feel. The misery of my own memoiring made me so depressed that  I gave up in favour of fiction. Then I gave up writing for grown-ups because I was so fed up of the shitty world I would have to portray (+ too uninspired to write anything approaching a full-length book), and, in the end didn't even want to feel obliged to reproduce swear-words in print, that I finally gravitated to children's fiction, perhaps the one single arena of innocence left in this dark and nasty world ...

Ukh, every time I post I seem to be writing the same thing. Yes I'm writing a story. By £1 shop pen, on WH Smiths lined refill paper. But I can't tell you what it's about! It's not finished.

OK I've got to go now. Hope you're all OK. Take care y'all...

Illustrated: (upper) WH Smith's "wide-ruled refill pad" ~ what I use for the composition of great literature..! (middle) Cambazola ~ soft and spreadable blue cheese (lower) Dave Pelzer's A Child Called It, to date, the most successful "misery memoir" of all time...

Most successful author of all time with agglommerated sales of (allegedly) 2,000,000,000(!!!)
Her detectives Poirot and Miss Marple are still on British TV every single week. Mistress of the "whodunnit"! Her books seem incredibly "creaky" by today's standards but she's very popular on television. Her detectives Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple can be seen on British screens every week, and new productions based on her 66 mystery novels  are still being made.
Her play The Mousetrap is the longest-running stage production in recorded history. Opening in 1952, it's STILL GOING after SIXTY-ONE YEARS!!!

She was the most successful children's author of all time and one of my favourites. When I want "inspiration" I read her Famous Five books, which are delightfully PI (politically incorrect!)
Her prose might be rather plain, but it's really readable.
Americans seem not to have heard of her, but she's a pillar of British culture. Very famous indeed within these shores!

Barbara Cartland is supposedly the second-bestselling British writer of ALL TIME
(Have YOU ever read one of her books? I haven't!)
In her final years she was knocking out one slim historical romance per fortnight ~ publishing 24 titles per year, each of which would sell a million copies around the world. Frequently appeared on British TV extolling the virtues of vitamins and reprimanding the modern proclivity to sex before marriage!


Liz said...

Apparently Enid Blyton was a horrid mother though. I think I watched a drama about her.

Anyway I think misery memoirs must have had their day surely. There are so many of them. Far better to stick with your masterpiece.

Yes, I tried hundreds of literary agents - okay, maybe about 25 - and got so fed up I gave up - and then eventually self-published. It's very easy but, of course, the marketing and promotion is the hugely difficult bit.

Most publishers won't consider you unless you have an agent. there are places you can pay to have your manuscript assessed and the better ones are good but expensive. It's a big investment.

I've just read a book called a Note of Madness by Tabitha Suzuma. It's about a brilliant music student who develops bipolar disorder and describes just what you describe. Look in the library for it. It's in the Young Adult section.

Akelamalu said...

Glad to hear your mood is better. x

Gledwood said...

LIZ: is it really so difficult. Ukh. So I might possibly get in print by 2020, assuming I've finished by Xmas. And bailiffs haven't taken away the laptop that doesn't work...

Akelamalu: aye I feel far better. Except for fucking legalistic bailiff utterly unwarranted bullshit fart-n-guff crap!!!

Eyelick said...

9 hours is fabulous, that's typical for me right now.

Eye can relate to the thing about bringing up bad memories (memoir.) Eye didn't even want to read the unsent letters to m'eye dead friend before putting them aside to be burnt a Burning Man. Eye did read them though, and just as eye thought - tons of funny stuff, but such a level of misery that eye almost put them down several times. That particular time, six months or so, were frequently shitty and dramatic.