Brevity. Soul. Wit.
Thus answered (with apologies to the Bard) to my own question: what makes writing interesting?
I have spent a great portion of the past 8 years reading, but not writing. Mike recently started an email salon, whose current topic is orbiting around what Bill Readings has referred to as The University in Ruins. One of the many problems with our system of higher education is that it leaves so many of its graduates still unable to express themselves about anything but a sliver of their own opinion, and often that opinion is attached to a topic about which most people know nothing – and care for only a little bit less.
In my case, despite a ‘minor’ and two years of something else, 120% of the credits I was supposed to earn has left me most capable of telling you how one might prove that Kepler’s formulas describing the elliptical orbit of bodies around a gravitational centre (not quite true when there’s more than two bodies) can be derived from Newton’s simple formulas describing the scale of the force exerted by gravity (less true near the speed of light). Yet I am far less able to express even the most basic of half-truths I have been gathering about the desperation of human life or the dizziness of our relations to one another from magazines, blogs, films, books, or best yet, the overflowing of conversation that have each in their share soaked up my ‘spare’ moments for the past 8 years.
So, here it is. The first shot over the bow of a planned 109 600 words. I have given myself three years at 100 words a day to learn how to half-express myself in digital ink. To become a writer who, at least when not travelling near the speed of light, hits somewhere near the truth. To shorten, sharpen, and swing a little more in my words, while I aim for sweet, sensible expression, out here among the multitude of bodies.
If I don’t trip up, I’ll try and stumble on something worth talking about, too.