I wrote a few novel-like books in Italian, my native language, and for some reason they never found their way to publication, even though it went very close (one of them is on amazon kindle, btw). One of the reasons why the book that I love more, The Sense of Things, was rejected in a publication contest where contenders had to submit their pieces anonymously, was that “it’s clear that though the main character is a woman, this book is written by a man, so it feels like a falsification of femininity”. That gave me a long breathless-pause moment. And prevented me for trying and get published for a while. Why should I bother to write for a world, or in a world, where femininity cannot ride the glorious and epic adventure of being a free individual, a player of life, looking for meaning till the moment she creates meaning rather than finding it, without being labeled as “male writer”. And we’re talking about falsification? What is falser than a soul in a female body that cannot dare to be divinely independent from god? Godless and yet godly? Why certain things must be predominance of the souls that happen to be born in male bodies? Like freedom, like sex, like adventure, like searching, like love, like spirit, all mixed together (with a madness and a method to them). It seems like the same ol’ devil to me… Prejudice. Like when girls had and have to pose like boys to do certain things… even only by being tomboys!
I did feel offended, and outraged, as a woman. And more in general as a human being.
Lately I have been offered to be part of a literary duet and asked to impersonate a man while the other half is a man impersonating a woman. The experience of exchanging ideas and written pieces with my counterpart has been significant, and it opened in me a deep deep reflection that is either a suspect and a question: “Isn’t the need of a God a typical male thing?”.
The answer is an open one, I guess, liable of not being found.
Nevertheless today, as a contemporary woman, a human being in a female body, I officially declare,
“I don’t want God!”!
And to elaborate, I quote from the work in progress meta-writings, “I woke up and my first thoughts went to Margareth and to the horror of her experience. Horror because there is a deus ex machina, a counterfeiting, a poltergeist. It’s fantasy at best, (but then I want elves and war, or at least heroes, and I just want to read about it, not write it). I don’t see myself in there. It’s as if, all of a sudden, Celie and Leo are trapped in necessity, in a deterministic bubble that takes away the significance of me being part of it (already Celie was a little bit too needy and neurotic, but I could bear it). But this leaves me breathless, not in a good way.
I don’t give a damn about God because it takes away all significance.
But there is more – and I am only discovering it right now thanks to you: unlike others, including you, I do not want it to be there, for the very same reason – it would take away the sense, the freedom, the zest. I cannot live in a world where a God – ex machina or not – pretends to exist. And I’m talking about life, not just about this book, so it’s an unacceptable compromise for me.
When I said “magic” I did not mean an imposition from above, a willpower that is external to Margareth and that manipulates her reality in order to force her to live. I would rather like her to be free even to die without having lived! Be awakened by the scent of life, not terrified into it.
When I said “magic” I really meant it…
And magic is synchronicity but also freedom.
It is like the station clock in ‘The Strange Case of Benjamin Button’, or the riverbank in the ‘White nights’; there is no artifice nor counterfeiting, only the holographic and fractal infinity that expresses every possible possibility and draws love stories as it was on sand…
There is no one who cares about waking us up, who is plotting for us. There is no a priori meaning. I’d remove as friends those who write on fb “everything happens for a reason” or “rip” when someone dies.
It doesn’t bother me that for you there is an a priori meaning, and it could even be interesting if our different visions would be confronted in the book.
But now I feel forced to enter yours and it’s too narrow.
I want the endless sky with all its possibilities.
And I’d like Celie to reply to Leo. And everything to go back to planet Earth, to existence. And I want an infinite palette to dip my hands into…”.