January 18, 2006



Diary of an author, waiting. Part 2

The duration of a year, between sending in his book, the Fate of the Artist, and seeing it released, is enough time for the author to create in his imagination a completely different version of the work from the one he’s eventually going to have to live with. This author was still making changes and additions and subtractions right up until the moment the editor said it’s too late it’s gone to the printer, and it didn’t arbitrarily stop there. It must always have been so. Picture some second rate crime writer on the phone to his editor: “I’ve had a better idea: the butler didn’t do it!” Picture an editor pulling his hair out.

But there’s little point in telling his readers about that other mythical book, as it will never be seen, and anyway will continue to be replaced ad infinitum in his restless sleep. Life must proceed. There are other jobs to be done. However the author wants to share with you a quotation he found after it was too late use it on his frontispiece and thus give the impression that his title was quoting a noble source:

“Often he who has chosen the fate of the artist because he felt himself to be different, soon realizes that he can maintain neither his art nor his difference unless he admits that he is like the others. The artist forges himself through a continuous to-and-fro between himself and the others, midway between the beauty he cannot do without and the community he cannot tear himself away from." Albert Camus

And while I have your attention, check out the new issue of Comics Journal this week (no 273). The author gets the cover-featured interview. It was some five hours of blather, much of it about The Fate of the Artist. You can see the cover showing the author with a dagger in his back at http://www.tcj.com/. An editor is helping police with their inquiries.


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