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Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Kubik's boxes

Chapter 4 of 12 is where I am at. One third (almost) of a completed novel. Yet the first three chapters have taken me around a year to complete. Can I take another 4 years to complete this? And what if it doesn't get published? The terror of every writer. We hate publishers yet recognise them as our ultimate goal. This week I watched a Jon Ronson documentary called 'Stanley Kubrik's boxes' - it concerned the thousands of boxes of research information that Kubrik had gathered over the years for his (not so many) films that he made. I think he made nine in total. Yet the point of the documentary was the amount of detail that he considered within each film that he made (and not always made available to the public). For 'Eyes Wide Shut' Kubrik hired a consultant to photograph possible locations for potential scenes. Ronson was bemused to discover that his own neighbourhood in Islington had been considered for the scene labelled as the 'door of a prostitute'. The scene was eventually shot within a studio. Yet this consultant had taken a year out of his life to take photographs of possible locations for this one film. Another Kubrik project involved a further two years of preparation - photographs, locations etc - it was to be a film covering Poland and the Holocaust - yet in the time that it took Kubrik to research (and consider if the film was worth making) - Spielberg had made 'Schindler's List' - so Kubrik abandoned the idea. And placed all evidence within a box (or two), It made me think about art and detail and how most brilliant art involves a massive consideration of detail. It is not obvious - it never is - yet the best films, the best music, the best writing - it all has elements of genius applied to the details. So, I'm going to breathe. take my time. Treat my writing like whittling a piece of wood. There will be plenty of Spielberg's who will overtake me, publish, re-publish. I'm going to keep on reading the best - the Paul Auster's and the Graham Greene's - hope that some of it stays in my head. Hope that Chapter 4 gets written.

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