Friday, November 14, 2008


Author's apology, at the end of a text or drama, an apology would sometimes happen. It was a traditional part of old time etiquette.
Sometimes the apology could get out of control, for example, when Gogol burned the manuscript of part two of Dead Souls. His great novel remains incomplete because a priest told him his writing was sinful so Gogol destroyed it.
Kafka gave instructions to have a friend destroy his writing and so on and so on, authors apologizing, feeling bad or uncomfortable about the writing. Beckett's later writing became stripped to the minimum, for example the short novel, Worstword Ho, is written in terse, short sentences with sometimes no more than one word at a time. It's like the narrator would like to erase each word immediately after writing it down.
Even the average Joe blog writer, like myself, might feel an urge to apologize, for example, please don't take anything on this site seriously. It's just psycho-babble of a guy squeezed in the machine, doing the process of life, without understanding what it's all about. I have no idea why existence is happening. I look at this the writing day later and think: what a waste of time, to write such nonsense. I did a web search about blog and read in one place how most blogs have less than five readers, but the process is beneficial, therapeutic, even to the point of boosting the immune system and making the writer feel better. My only defence, against the urge to apologize, is to say, even when I destroy the writing, I end up writing it again, over and over. A few times, during moments of despair, I filled garbage bags with sacks of writing and put them out for garbage. Years worth of diary and random scribble, thousands of sheets of loose-leaf, went out with the trash. I have no regret. There's plenty more where that came from. It's also therapeutic to let go and destroy. It's a way of letting go of the past, especially after a divorce. Suddenly, everything felt worthless. I would have put myself out for trash, were that possible. Despair. Most people know what that means. Fortunately, those moments don't last. It's like water under the bridge. The wheel keeps turning.
Anyway, no need to apologize. It is what it is, no big deal. The ego in me sure gets neurotic sometimes.

1 comment:

Sylvain Lamoureux said...

I hope that you are apologizing for having destroyed some of your writings and not for the writings themselves. Never be sorry that.