Thursday, March 24, 2005

A Love Story about…

Vampire Society is a Love Story About Values…

Those words were the magic key that fit the lock and all the tumblers fell into place. For 15-20 minutes, at least, the world was perfect, everything was as it should be, and…

Let's stop here for a second. Pay close attention. The minute you feel like the world is perfect and everything is as it should be, that's a clear sign that you should be VERY AFRAID. Watch out. You're about to get hit.

… and I'd be able to finish this book now with no problems, no hesitation, no worries at all. Because it made so much sense. Of course, it's a love story about values. That's what it always has been and always was supposed to be! I'm only a few thousand words away from the end. Time to dive in!

And I dived.

And someone had drained the pool…

I swear, it felt just like that. I felt just like a nightmare where you run down the diving board, take a big leap, and notice there's no water in the pool.

I could feel my mind crashing into itself.

And that's when the Kens came out. They come out some times. They came out when I was heading for the Grand Canyon. They poked their heads out at the Russian funeral. Now, I was downstairs having a smoke - oh, I ran down there quick! - and they strolled out, cocky.

"Book's always been a love story, ain't it?" one asked.

"Always been! Always been!" ranted another.

"Except when you started," accused the third. "That's when it was supposed to be a philosophical statement. Remember? Remember when you said it was going to propose a social revolution as opposed to Marx's revolution of labor? Where's your revolution now? Eh, smart guy?"

I took a drag. "Well, I can still do it… I just…"

"You can't! You can't!" ranted the ranter.

"Now you're writing a love story," reminded the first.

"The minute you decided to juggle romance and philosophy, you slit your throat. What were you thinking? Both things spring from two different organs!"

"The heart and the mind can be reconciled," I insisted, through a cloud of smoke.

"I was talking about the genitals and the liver," the third replied.


"Cause philosophers tend to drink!"

"And anyway," the third snapped, snatching up my shirt collar and lifting. "How do you throw an essay into the end of a love story? Huh? How do you?"

"You don't!"

"You don't!"

"You don't!" The other two chanted, circling around.

"I could, um, well, I could…" I didn't even have the cigarette anymore. I was babbling.

"You can't and you know it! Throw an essay at the end of a romance? You think people are going to want to read an essay after that?"

"Actually, it could be a…"

"Call it what you will," said the third.

"A sermon!"

"A rant!"

"A dissertation!"

"You're still stuck with a book that ends pedantically and a story that goes no where because philosophers don't read romance novels and horny women don't read philosophy."

"What about horny men?" asked the second.

"It depends upon the pictures," replied the first.

Every idea I'd had about the book had crumbled. I'd written my way into a brick wall… and had crashed right into it.

Now, I had mental whiplash.

"Buck up, kid," one of the Ken's said, sitting me in a stool by the side of the ring and taking out my mouth guard.

Another gave me a sip of water. "You'll finish it, kid. I know you. You'll finish it."

The third held a bucket. "Spit, nimrod," he told me. I spat. "You just need some time to rest. To reflect. To figure it out. Look, you could surrender to the love story aspect and simply plug the essay into the book - you know, like it was there all along. Or, you could build up the story a little so the essay makes more sense. You'll figure it out."

"Right," I said, hitting my gloves together. "I need to think about this."

"That's right. Take your time."

A bell rang. The first Ken grabbed me and pushed me up. "Now, get back out there again."

Any ideas from anyone out there? Is the essay idea doomed? Should it be worked into the book? Am I missing something?

I'd love to hear your take on it.

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