It’s not far off the 10 year anniversary of Banishment Pictures. It was written in a bad place full of pain and hurting. For a decade it’s been gathering dust, a manuscript printed in bits and bobs in libraries on inkjet printers and bound in Staples some five or six years afterwards for £2.50. It’s the kind of bad egg you lay and dump in the drawer under the bed, underneath whatever you already keep in the drawer under the bed. Tried reading it 2 summers ago and bailed halfway thru. Banishment Pictures is a dark book. It was born from a bitter state of mind, and it stayed on course for the 44,000 word journey without coming up for air. For years it was forgotten, labelled as harsh and cringe worthy, but now it’s out there and packing a punch. Packing a punch because it ain’t no joke book. This is a serious endeavour with very few wry smiles along the way, if any at all. There ain’t no werewolves, wizards or witches (nothing against ‘em, mind, that’s what the www dot before every web address stands for).
The quest is to reach others who have been in, or are in, a dark place, who will recognise and understand. The goal was never to entertain, like a fast-paced generic thriller whose outlines, character bios and story arcs take longer than the writing itself (although admittedly several pages of notes were made, including an index in tiny neurotic handwritten scrawl...) The idea, as always so far, is to clear the old head out and see what’s what while somewhere along the way dressing it up as a story. Nod and say “Yes Piebald” if you know what I’m talking about.
You think getting read was a possibility, 10 years ago? Think again. It took a monumental effort to make one copy in print (Today, a page of black and white in the library costs 15p. You’re talking 45 bangers for a 300 page manuscript if you bother to double-space it. What, you decry, no printer! Ahem, fraid so. Buying a printer is investing in stress.) Back then, it meant catching buses before the I.T suite shut at the college where one wasn’t even a student anymore. It meant getting it down in some kind of hard copy format for future use. This was rescued from a FLOPPY DISK, after being handwritten, as standard ;-)
And a decade on we have Amazon Kindle. Nice one, Amazon Kindle. Never gunna get one, but sure do love ya.