Saturday, September 4, 2010
People of the Land
The novel I just finished (in about six months of writing, six months of editing) came together quickly, but had behind it a great deal of germination time. There was energy stored away for this work, and when it came out, it was very well formed in my mind how the story should go.
First, the character, Yasha Schulevitz, is as familiar to me as the contents of my sock drawer. I wrote an entire novel about him in the present universe, from World War I until the conclusion of World War II. So I had a definite biography of this man, a Hebrew poet and European, one of the last of his kind.
Since I liked him so much as a character, since there was so much more to mine, I decided to write some short fiction about him and pass them around. "And Moses Made a Serpent of Brass" taken by OUR STORIES in 2008, is a Yasha piece. "Memorial Year" taken by ARCH in 2009 is as well. So, I had written about Yasha in the novel in real world form, then created yet another Yasha, similar but different, in the short pieces. Then it was time for round three.
Putting this character in a created world, in an alternate history, gave him elements that I did not see before in the two previous incarnations of his existence. Yasha was Yasha but he was also different.
So, for a writer's project, it was a great learning experience. It was also tremendous fun.