Sunday, June 2, 2013

Dear Daniel

Dear Daniel,

I played alto saxophone for seven years. Sat first chair for six of them. And had I wanted to I could’ve gone to a Performing Arts School. But as good as I was, and as much as I loved playing music, I found it wasn’t my passion. So when it came time to choose which school to go to, I was accepted into all of the schools I applied to, I chose a legal magnet high school. My mother’s exact words were, “go ahead, break my heart”.
I never became the professional musician she wanted me to become. But to this day I love music. All kinds. Classical to rap to punk to country to rock.

Music I’ve found speaks directly to the heart. It’s pure emotion, and at its best it is both personal and universal. The best art always is.

That’s why for me SKYFALL became like this beacon that kept me from going off the rails while making my way through Gemini’s War. The tragedy and pain laced throughout that song is at once powerful and breathtaking. And the rebirth and strength and defiance to be bent down for too long. The song is tragedy and triumph and Adele, well, Adele was Adele. She’s fucking brilliant every time out and if anything all the song did was cement her iconic status.

The idea of a flawed yet heroic heroine and hero could face the worst and still come out on top was born out of that. The assassin and the reluctant assassin finding their way to one another to find their happily ever after. (Gemini’s War) Someone always dies in the Bond films. And to be honest, I like it that way. It gives Bond a tragic quality that I think serves the story well.

Whenever I was anxious or doubted I could finish the story I listened to it and I found my footing, I found my way into the novel. And wrote to be honest, the best book I’ve written to date.

Of course, I learned lessons on that book. And I write now hoping I’m writing better on those projects. At the moment I’m struggling through Gemini’s Legacy, the end of the book is always harder than the beginning of it.

But the song was the birthplace of it all. The visuals it conjured swept me up in fast frenzy of 10 pages. I hope to have an autographed copy to send you in July.

What I find so powerful about the song is that it makes me feel not so alone. It gives me a voice where so often I feel voiceless. I think the best music always makes you feel that way. As a writer it inspires me to do my best work. When people read my stuff I want them to feel like they have a voice. That they’re not alone. That they too, if they wanted to, could write an original story.

I know there’s a whole world of fan fiction out there. And I’m aware of the fact people write it. I’ve tried my hand at it and I simply can’t bring myself to write in someone else’s territory. Not very well anyway. I like writing my own stuff. And making money doing it. I suppose I’m just selfish that way.

I’ve got seventy-two pages left to write on the second book in the GEMINI RISING trilogy. And I find myself listening to SKYFALL to write the final push to. And admittedly my hero, Aidan Wells, bears a striking physical resemblance to you lol. But the truth is it’s my imagination at working on the character itself.
But the trilogy is told from Gemini’s POV. Her life is a study in tragedy. But she refuses to give up and the end of this book I know what I have to do but I don’t really want to do it. But then it serves the story best.
I write short, 50K-60K, sometimes even shorter. I have about 15K to go in Gemini’s Legacy and I really need to start. So I’ve listened to SKYFALL many times, so it’s time to go write the end of my story.


Amy McCorkle

1 comment:

  1. Good luck with finishing the end of your story, Amy. I need to write the last 15,000 words or so of my book, too, and your post really struck a chord. I love your great looking blog, and love the premise of the letters. I understand the anxiety you talk of, but you seem to me a really strong person. I'm sure those words will come for you. Good luck