My Failed Novel: First Episode


Kurt Vonnegut once wrote a book titled “Timequake”. In it, he describes that a better title for the book would be Timequake 2, since this was the second time he tried to write Timequake, but ultimately abandoned it. Timequake 2 ended up being a book about his failed efforts to write Timequake, and was ultimately filled with Vonnegutian brain-droppings. I didn’t like the book very much, but as I wrote this book, I began to see a similarity between the two. Initially, I was going to write a novel about a Japanese man, named Tsumotu, or Tsutomu, I still don’t know which one it is, which is based off a true story of just such a Japanese man who survived both 1945 nuclear bomb attacks. Since the second world war was a favourite topic of Vonnnegut’s (since he survived the Dresden bombings), I again am reminded of that great author. Thus, I started writing my book with the intention that it took place in 1945 Japan. The problem, though, that quickly became very apparent to me, was that I knew nothing about Japanese culture, nor about the state of the world in 1945. I wanted my book to have cell phones, and girls with red hair (not that I think women didn’t have red-hair in 1945, I just didn’t know how to put one in Hiroshima in 1945). I also wanted my Tsu to be younger then the age of the real Tsu who was thirty-something when he was bombed. I knew nothing about thirty year olds… So ultimately, instead of going back and re-writing everything, I just decided to let it go, and to change it as I wrote. Thus, at some points, this book is about a Japanese man in his 30s, in 1945, in Japan. At other times (the majority of the time), it’s about a twenty-something guy who, in some place in the world, in the present day (2010), gets bombed, by some country, while in some country, for some reason or other (some sort of war). I wanted to write about his religious interpretation, and his miserable yet charming relationship with this girl who he falls in love with. I didn’t care about the trivial details…like countries and politics, and all that mumbo jumbo. Hell no. I wanted human emotions, religious expereriences, fears of going insane, falling in love, sex, drugs, explosions, dreams, alternate realities, zaniness…and other stuff that came into my head as I desperately attempted to write ~1,666 words a day for thirty days. So that’s what you hold in your (digital?) hand. A ridiculously, unfettered lazy attempt at writing what I want to write, without being bogged down by ‘logic’ or ‘reasonable plot structure / details’.


About dontdontoperate

28 year old originally from Barrie, Ontario, Canada. H.B.Sc. from UofT with a major in chemistry and a double minor in philosophy and math. M.Sc. from UofT in physiology and neuroscience. Finished my Ph.D. in biomedical engineering at McMaster in the fall of 2013.
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