Wednesday, October 13, 2004


I wrote into another discomfort zone today. It's that place in your head behind bank vault doors welded shut and bound by several thousand yards of titanium chains, buried under a thousand pound bundle of unstable TNT, and spiked with pressure-sensitive vials filled with the ebola virus.

Okay, maybe not in your head.

The first time I used pry bars to get inside that place and use what was inside for my writing, I wrote what I presently consider the best scene of any book I've ever written. When it was done, I went and threw up and couldn't sleep for three days.

The scene isn't gory or controversial or something anyone might consider even mildly offensive. It's simply a conversation between two people, a child and an adult. People who have read it have commented that the scene makes them feel teary-eyed, particularly for the positive note on which it ends.

Only I know how it was, and how it really ended. That is the part you don't use. Sometimes it goes back into the vault a little easier than the first time you stuffed it in there. Sometimes you have to beat it with the pry bars, and weld it in, and bind it with chains and dynamite and plague vials.

Until the next time you need something.

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