Yes, DANNY 3, the final (complete) volume is coming to you at the end of August 2012 – hopefully. God willing.
What will you all (i.e. me) do without it? Sigh………
My terror of the unknown aside – HOORAY, freedommmmmmmmmmmmmm! – to quote the evil Jew-hating, misogynistic, wife-beating, drunken, really, REALLY evil – did I already say he was EVIL? – Mel Gibson.
I will pass the halfway mark of the first major edit this evening. Those of you who have been with me from the start will know this is the nasty edit, the one that is covered in more bruises than one of Mel Gibson’s wives (bear with me, I’m jumping on a bandwagon here). It is covered in virtual highlighter, sneering remarks, weary Essays to Myself and, finally, in desperation, notes that just read “NO!!!”
But the second edit is always easier, and kinder. Then you start to see it shape up, and the worst excesses, repetitions and good old-fashioned I-must-keep-writing-no-matter-how-bad-it-is passages all start to melt away and the gold starts glimmering through.
What can I tell you about Volume 3?
Well, it’s name would be good, but unfortunately, I don’t know that yet. It’s a toss-up between The Changeling and ‘Tis Pity He’s a Whore. But The Changeling is winning currently. Feel free to bombard me with comments if you have a preference. Which I will ignore.
It used to be working titled The Serpent’s Tail and/or The End of the Beginning. This is because the book is cyclical; it stops where it begins, as it were. (Volume One’s very first title was The Beginning of the End, which I’ve always liked – still do.) You could, technically – and I’ve always imagined this to be true – finish reading Volume 3 and go straight to read Volume 1 and suddenly it all would be perfectly understandable. All those people who found DANNY 1 unbearably baffling would now be filled with enlightenment.
However, I have never put this to the test. Ever. And I’m scared to. So if anyone takes on the experiment after reading 3 please do put me out my misery and tell me if it works.
Or don’t. If it doesn’t. I’d rather keep my (delusions) illusions.
The book is being externally proofread, the pedants and Grammar Queens among you will be glad to know. One of its fans, Angelika, herself a writer, is proofreading the volume for me (see her masterwork here: Angelika Ranger – Hallowmere Fantasy Series, so hopefully she’ll pick up what I miss, and there will be a drastic reduction in floating “, missing ,,,,,,, and totally absent ……..
Not to mention hilariously awful errors such as the doozy from Road Movie: “knocked the sir out of him.” (It should have been air, in case that’s still baffling you. Little helpful note – if you can’t fathom what some fuck-up is supposed to be, just look at a keyboard. S sits right next to A, for example. Yes, Spike Milligna and I owe a lot of our success as comedians to the keyboard.)
So, volume 3. Well, let’s just tell you one thing about it and we’ll leave the rest of it for you to discover yourself.
When I was writing it, I intended it to finally tell the truth. Not so much to reveal the family’s true history (which you never discover – sorry), but to let you witness all the events that are related second-hand in all the other books. However (you knew that was coming, didn’t you?) I found that although I set out with the best of intentions, the boys had other ideas, and they insisted on telling me different stories, dragging me off to scenes I hadn’t witnessed, made me voyeur to things I had no idea had occurred. This gave me terrible bother.
Terrible, terrible bother. For a start, there was a constant worry of ‘How does this mesh with the facts?’, then there was the anxiety of timelines – did they match? Hell, no. Then there was the fretting about not covering things that needed to be covered, and events that were memorable, and that people would expect to read about, simply not being there. Then I just got tired of the bitching moaning and said, “Oh, fucking shut up and let me have peace to write.” And so I just told the story. In other words, I obeyed the writer’s first law, I got out my own way.
Afterwards, I had to go through it all again, amplified by being able to see concretely in front of me the ‘shortcomings’ of it as a comparative document. It just didn’t match.
It’s taken me many years since then, and many soul-searching hours in the dead of night wondering if I needed to rewrite it, to realise it’s deliberate, and exactly what should have happened. In the first volume they tell you DANNY – as umbrella for the Jackson Moore Story – as they want themselves to be. In the second volume, they confess DANNY as they know it sometimes was, but more often as their hearts nostalgically remember, and, finally, in the shape of Ian, and through Ian’s memory, they let all of that go and let their hidden voices rise to the surface. It may still be lies, but they are heartfelt lies.
But in Volume 3 you see it as it was. No, not the same events perhaps, but the events that actually mattered, the events wherein the truth was shaped, before it was hidden by lies and deceit and manipulative shenanigans. In fact, even their manipulative shenanigans (and that’s very much ‘their’, not ‘Ian’s’) are shown for what they really are – as often as not, lonely, sad, hurt, angry and just trying to survive.
Yes, it is finally August…….
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