It has been a long, stressful year, editing/re-writing Almost Surely (out in one week!)
I’m struggling to find enjoyment in what I’m doing, so I’m putting all of my writing projects on hold until I learn to love it again.
In the meantime, I’m going to take a Scrooge McDuck-style dive into research. Here’s my current research pile:
What do you take away from that? Read on, and let me know in the comments.
Each book on that pile has a different purpose. Some are obvious, if you know what I’m working on, some: not so much. These books are representative of four separate projects that I have either finished, and want to fact-check/cross-check some stuff for, or those I intend to work on. Reminder, this image/list is incomplete.
What have we got?
1, Room to Dream, by David Lynch and Kristine McKenna. (Purpose: Classified)
2, Anansi Boys, by Neil Gaiman (Purpose: see the comments, below)
3, Encyclopedia of the Unexplained, by Reuben Stone (Purpose: Classified)
4, Fortean Times, Issues 1-15 (Purpose: Classified)
5, A Brief History of Seven Killings, by Marlon James (Purpose: see the comments, below)
6, Bill Hicks: Agent of Evolution, by Kevin Booth and Michael Bertin (Purpose: Classified)
7, World War Z, by Max Brooks (Purpose: Classified)
8, Man and his Symbols, by Carl Jung (Purpose: Classified)
9, Communion, by Whitley Strieber (Purpose: Classified)
10, Ancient Aliens, season one and two (Purpose: Classified)
11, The Goonies (Purpose: Classified)
I can’t speak for some writers, and why they use certain books/media for research, but I’ll tell you why I’m using these two novels: Anansi Boys, by Neil Gaiman, and A Brief History of Seven Killings, by Marlon James. At first glance you may think, ‘well, there’s little that connects the two.’ At first glance, you may be right. One is the semi-sequel to an extremely popular fantasy novel, (American Gods) the other is a brutal, Tarrantino-esque, Man Booker Prize winning novel about the attempts on Bob Marley’s life. The similarities here are not the subjects, no, I’m using these two novels as reference for their use of language.
Specifically: I have written a novel where one of the characters talks with a strong Jamaican accent/Patois.
Why these two novels? Well, one was written by a Jamaican man, and one was not. One I know is written in Jamaican Patois, and the other: the audiobook was narrated by a man (Lenny Henry) who is incredibly proud of his heritage. Considering the fact that I am incredibly white, but married into a Caribbean family, I want to ensure that my character’s dialogue is both accurate, and written with respect. My intention is to compare the texts, and see what is deemed ‘acceptable,’ for a white author to write.
Also, I really want to read them.