Sunday, 12 September 2010

Its almost 11.30pm on Sunday night

and we have just said our goodbyes to the last guest at our party which began this afternoon at 3pm...loads of good company, the catering went off well and the weather was kind so we all spilled out into the garden.

My Friday Tutorial went really well - Emma's so helpful - with the monthly check ins and sending in advance new material the project now seems definately achievable withing the next 6months, not sure how near to finihing I'll be by christmas though. The issue cam eup about publishers not being so happy about a white man writing about a black man - I may check in with atleast one of the agents whove expressed interst but I am not kean at this point to rewrite the R character as white and frankly why the hell should I. He is so shaped now in my head that it'd be tantamount to commiting a murder - I dont think I can do that!

No writing done over the weekend becuase of guests satying over from Berlin(and we are heading to their Schoneberg flat on Thursday) and we've been doing some of the E17 Arts Trail - really good this year. Invited one of the artists we visited to our party and he and his party turned up. Chatted with him about things creative - intersting take on what sparks the creative process and we discussed how it works for him as a painter and muyself as a writer. He is a fan of Aimee and Janguar - also of Stephan Schweig - esp Beware of Pity - so full marks in my books!


  1. Apologies for missing your party, sounds like you had a great time.

    Emma's comments on the white man writing about a black man are very interesting. I'm sure she's being honest about the possible views of publishers -- and, in turn, perhaps reviewers and opinion formers. However, it's not a very progressive attitude.

    I had a similar discussion with Alison about my novel as I wanted Kim to be some sort of outsider in a new community and I'd considered writing her as a character from an ethnic minority. I got a clear impression from Alison that this wasn't a Good Idea and we made her German instead -- which has been good in another way as it's enabled me to make a lot of use of my own 9 years of frequent travel to Germany. The concepts of being an outsider are still there but I think that decision might lead my novel to say less about life in contemporary Britain than it perhaps would have done.

    I do think it's odd that it seems fine for you to write about an immigrant from a different culture and religion who happens to be ethnically European yet publishers might discourage you from writing about someone who's been born and bred in this country just because he's black.

    I would say you should trust your insincts on this one.

  2. I talked to one of the agents who expressed an interst in my novel after the reading - their opinion is its FINE providing the characterisation is convincing, avoids cliche and stereotyping. I also discussed it with a black gay mate of mine with Jamaican parentage - he had no issue with it - and has agreed to proff read it.