Sunday, December 4, 2011

Shattered Minds

I said I would keep this blog up on a regular basis but the people at Career are working me so hard that I'm finding it difficult to get anywhere near them! Seriously, I am really up to my eyes in work.

The Lovecraft book A Haunted Mind which will be out next year is a lot of fun but it's also a lot of work if you want to get it right. This means I have to read very quickly through a lot of Lovecraft fiction as well as biographies of the man, commentaries on his work and role playing games. There are people out there who must live and breathe Lovecraft and who must own nearly everything he has ever written or that others in the Mythos have written or what has been written about him.

I'm nowhere near that league which I think is a good thing as it gives a bit of distance and objectivity to the project. So whilst my work may not be as intense as some of the stuff I'm reading I hope it will give a balanced view of his work. Don't be expecting a fan's view because whilst I enjoy his work I'm certainly not one of those all or nothing fans. In fact the one thing I've learned about Lovecraft is that I don 't think he's the sort of person you could have sat down with and had a friendly chat about football or something like that!

And as I argue in the book, perhaps that was one of his strengths as it gave a greater intensity to his vision. But doing this research - and trying to actually get inside the mind of Lovecraft - is quite a task in itself. But I hope that I'm doing it justice.

I'm also trying to finish off the American Vampires book as well. We're looking at it on a kind of geographical basis - although not exactly state by state - and we've decided we need a few more areas. So I'm momentarily concentrating on the swamps and bayous of Louisiana which is a fascinating place. Especially as I've been there.

One night we were driving back through the swamps between a couple of the bayou villages. It was pitch dark and suddenly the car headlights picked out something white moving along the side of the road. One of the guys in the car suggested that it was a haunt but as we drew closer we saw that it was a huge black man, wearing a white shirt and walking along with his arms wide, oblivious to our car.

I would have stopped to see if he was all right but the guys in the car, who came from the area, said not to -they spoke of a group in the swamps called Le Cochon Gris or the Grey Pig, which was a name for human flesh. These were voodoo people who were also cannibals and the man in the white shirt could be one of their numberr. A scarey moment on a back road in 1970s Louisiana. I'm beginning to scare myself so I'll end here and get a rest.

Talk about a haunted mind - mine's shattered. But thanks to Gina who has been reading over the material at New Page. I'm not sure what I'd do without her for an editor. Off to get something to eat. Where has the year gone?

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