A time that wasn’t

“nothing’s gonna change the world”  (MM)


I seem to remember a time that I thought my writing was okay.  Not brilliant perhaps – I was never going to be a literary genius – but at least I was readable, even entertaining.  I used to say I was either a groundbreaking or utterly crap.  And for a long, long time, I really thought I was a groundbreaking writer.  I thought I was doing something different.  I thought I was disconnected enough from the world to be able to see it how it really is.  I thought I had a privileged viewpoint.  I thought my work was, frankly, just fucking amazing.

How old do you have to be to realise how utterly wrong you are?  Do most people realise in their thirties that they’re really rather ordinary, do they put away their childish ideals, do they happily content themselves with day to day life rather than magic?  When the fuck does the magic die and for me, why did it TAKE SO LONG?  Because the older you are, the more it hurts.

Reading Transference is like sticking hot needles in my eyes.  My eyes actually hurt when I’ve done a few chapters.  Now that I’ve stopped laughing at the jokes (because there aren’t any more?) I’ve begun to see it as it really is.  I used to love Gomenzi, my main character.  I thought he was the best thing I’d ever created.  I thought he was fabulously cruel and sexy and I used to have to think of ways of bringing him back from the dead.  I cried when I had to destroy him.  (Yes, yes, plot spoilers, but whose ever going to read this so who gives a fuck, basically).

I was wrong.  Gomenzi is awful.  He’s a creep.  Just because he can fuck a girl half to death doesn’t make him sexy.

Worst of all, this is all a reflection of me.  My writing is me, which I think is half the reason why I’ve gone so wrong.  Who I am is not worth writing about.

Does this mean I’m not actually a writer at all, just some lazy fucker who didn’t want to get a proper job?

I’m in knots.  This is beyond the usual self-doubt and general negativity and black thoughts and all those ordinary things a writer feels about his own work (along with cringing embarrassment).  This is something else.  It’s like finding out you are a black hole and worse still, an inactive black hole, not even sucking anything up, just empty empty empty.

If my writing is a reflection of my inner soul, then my ideas are as empty as I am.

How am I going to change the world if no one gives a shit about immortality.

Why am I the last person on the precipice to realise this?

How did I get to be so removed from what other people call life?

How did I get so spend so much of my life looking inward only to find out now that there was nothing to look at except that inactive black hole??!!




About susannahjbell

I am a writer of science fiction and other strange and surreal works. I mostly write novels and the occasional novelette. My published works include A Doorway into Ultra, the Fleet Quintet and the Exodus Sequence. I live in London in an attic flat but really want to live in a tree. I wanted to be an astrophysicist but would settle for an alien abduction. I write because I don’t know what to read.
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