Thursday, August 24, 2006

The Perfect Novel

I have come up with an idea for the perfect novel. Of course, I have no recollection of the particulars of said novel. Did I mention that I had this moment of creative genius while I was in the hospital? And that this spark of writerly brilliance occurred over the course of my worst night? Yeah, so feverish delirium + percocet + morphine + fenergan + antibiotics = savant.

Seriously, I remember piecing together a novel in the semi-conscious breaks during my one night in med/surg (where I was at my least lucid). But I have absolutely no memory of any details that would help me write said novel such as characters, plot, theme, you name it. As far as I know now, the idea went something like this:
I introduce this character, someone flawed yet sympathetic. Then I totally put her in some serious trouble, something that hasn't been done before. As she's fighting to put things to right, she royally screws up and probably has a dark moment in which she questions everything. But eventually she finds a way to fix things, and she's grown and learned something along the way.

I really wouldn't be surprised if that's what I came up with. Not so much the perfect novel as it is a recipe for your basic novel.

Regardless of what the idea was, it carried me through the next day and made the transition from med/surg to the ICU less scary. I often came back to the thought of my perfect novel that day, telling myself that when I got out of the hospital, I was going to write the pants off that thing. By the next day, during my Adventures on Ambien, I realized that I didn't have any clue as to the specifics of the idea anymore, if I ever did, and I think that's what made that day particularly rough fro me.

Maybe one day I'll reconnect with this perfect book. Maybe I won't. But I will say that a nebulous, flawless novel is a bit better for a drug-induced flight of fancy than having Captain Malcolm Reynolds of the spaceship Serenity tell me to get up and pump my breasts. Note to self: always mix percocet with morphine, never take alone.


Dad said...

Here's a fitting suggestion:

A black woman with 17 kids, 28 grandkids, a glass eye and a wooden leg petitions the Navy to be a fighter pilot so she can drop bombs on Paris. She loses all the paperwork and makes dozens of phone calls in an effort to make it happen, but is rejected. In desperation she sells herself for enough money to buy passage on a tramp freighter to West Africa in hopes she can fullfil her deep nationalism by joining a rogue mercenary flying operation so she can learn to fly, load a plane with bombs, steal the plane, fly to Paris and complete her mission. Two days out of West Africa she realizes the depths of her folly and vows to correct her defective patriotism as the ship slowly sinks in the worst hurricane to ever form that far East in the Atlantic.

That help?



Kellie said...

Very uplifting, Dad. Throw in a few of those kids of hers dying and I think I could make it the next great literary novel.