Falaise (Mailles sanguines)

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Living your symbols — 2018/02/17

My weekends are a long succession of small households, garbage bins. Too many objects and papers that only fill the space of an apartment too big for me. While searching through my folders, I took a break to explore my old astrological records.

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I remember — 2017/02/12

This weekend, I went to see my parents. Since I don't have a car, because I don't really like to drive and also "because I'm a guy" to giggle at my sister Dominique who accompanied me, I don't often go to Sainte-Croix, the village of my childhood.

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280 — 2016/02/27

Two hundred and eighty copies sold. I write it in full, it seems more important that way. In one year, one could say despite the good reviews, I only sold this small pile of Falaise. What more can I say?

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Launch — 2015/02/01

t was the big night, as they say. The book is already in the memory of others. For a few weeks, I had been asked if I was nervous, people were exclaiming in front of this feat of writing, wishing me success in bookshops, interviews and, why not, the making of a film of the story.

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Final corrections — 2014/12/01

Final meeting of corrections with my editor. I'm setting foot for the first time at VLB. It is a building that does not look like a building, a rectangle of grey stucco topped with a sign worthy of a convenience store.

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Falaise, phase 3 — 2014/11/02

I spent the whole week revising the novel. This text is like croissant dough. It is stretched, flattened, added butter, folded. Everything becomes uniform and, in the end, we hope that it will swell, will be appetizing.

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Over the seasons — 2014/10/24

I will have to go through the season(s) before my text is finally published. I believe I have gone beyond the point of impatience to the point of becoming insensitive to time. It's not that the project is not progressing.

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Submission of the manuscript — 2014/09/22

I returned the manuscript this morning to my editor. It has now been twelve days since I spent most of my free time reviewing not one manuscript, but two.

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It will go like the wind, I hope. — 2014/09/10

It will go like the wind, I hope, this book, this Falaise. This afternoon I met my publisher, Annie Goulet. She wanted to give me the revised manuscript. Countless small corrections, little things are, in reality, for the most part, only the subtle imperfections of a text that has been read and reworked many times.

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Falaise — 2014/08/23

Les Mailles sanguines will not be published. At least not under this title. This week, my editor offered me another title: Falaise (The Cliff).

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The rain of time — 2014/07/27

Time does not stop. It is empty at the moment and full at the same time. Empty because it does not seem to indicate the direction of my life, full because, obviously, without my making an effort, without me being able, in any case, to fight against this fact, time is running out between my fingers.

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On Acne and other soul pains — 2014/06/28

Another season again. Already half a year accumulated behind the tie. Spring has finally delivered us summer and things are going well for me. Intensely so too. I had contradictory emotions in my heart as if happiness was the result of a series of interchangeable thoughts and actions.

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Translate? — 2014/04/12

I was discussing my novel last night with a chorister, waiting to go on stage with Ganymede. Being an anglophone, this friend asked me why I wasn't having my novels translated; I would probably have a better chance of getting some success or money.

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Eighty — 2014/03/22

I'm done here. And faster than expected. I had told my editor that I would give her the manuscript at the very end of March. I was still telling a friend yesterday about my fear of not being able to keep my promise. I was in chapter sixty-nine. My novel contains eighty of them.

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Without a home — 2014/02/23

It's 9:00 in the morning. Spring patiently licks its new land. I noticed last Friday, as I left the office, that the day was now coming out later in the night. Although winter is far from over, you can feel, both in the wind and in your mind, the loosening of its grip. We can't wait for spring, I want more calm.

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A jellyfish is... — 2014/01/05

My first ex asked me a few days ago to look at his astrological chart. Although he is a university graduate, and that he will only give it one officially discreet ear, his heart urges him to enter the shaman's tent.

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Let's do it again. — 2013/12/29

On the writer's weaving loom, seven, eight, a hundred times hand in your art.

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News from Mailles sanguines — 2013/11/09

On the loom, constantly hand over your work. A spider doesn't have to be asked, it sews, reinvents, waits, catches, repairs, like an aerial fisherman. The same applies to blood mesh.

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Reworking the days — 2013/10/03

I am already finishing almost two weeks with my new employer. It is easy to imagine the change of rhythm, the new time colors. I also had to finish, in the evening, the work of my former clients. They were understanding and I was able to complete the projects.

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Daring high sounds — 2013/05/24

I have to constantly travel in the symmetry of the octaves during my singing lessons. After having tamed a little bit the low sounds, I the whisperer, my teacher is telling me to attack the A-flat, B-flat, B-flat, etc. He seems to know where he's going and I'm letting myself be led frighteningly.

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Coda and ministry — 2013/05/04

Le sort en est jeté, comme aurait dit l’autre. Le manuscrit final est entre les mains de VLB, le tout envoyé vendredi matin, par courriel. J’ai cherché les bonnes phrases, le bon ton pour décrire ce que j’avais fait, rassuré l’éditrice que je n’avais pas bousculé le texte, mais seulement passé l’émeri… lui expliquer que cette démarche avait été entreprise avec l’aide de Périg avant que je reçoive leur accord, qu’à partir de maintenant, je n’interviendrais sur le texte qu’à leur seule demande, etc.

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The archer — 2013/04/20

Writing and singing, singing, or writing. It's all the same to me. I'm reviewing Les Mailles sanguines, learning a new melody. In both cases, it requires me to be meticulous, intense.

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Fifty percent — 2013/04/07

This morning I passed the fifty percent revision mark. Les Mailles sanguines contains 81 chapters or scenes varying from one to ten pages. Always provided with the pages revised by Perig, who gives me his corrections every Tuesday, when we meet as a choir, I open Scrivener, reread the passages, and focus primarily on the elements noted by Perig.

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VLB Éditeur — 2013/04/06

I will undoubtedly calm down eventually. Yesterday I received the VLB Publisher contract. I was asked to initial all the pages of the agreement in blue ink and then sign the last one.

A publisher says "yes" — 2013/03/14

The answer finally came. Some people, who read many manuscripts, decided that mine was worth it. The contract is not signed, I do not immediately reveal the name of the publishing house; let us call it superstition. Anyway, I can tell the story of a bottle of sparkling wine waiting for its time in the bottom of my refrigerator.

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The drawers — 2013/03/06

Spring is coming, the air is soft, the light more generous. I dreamed of witches, dangers, complicated situations like only dreams can invent.

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Words — 2013/02/23

I'm reviewing Les Mailles sanguines in small steps, in short words. Despite a neck pain close to a stiff neck, despite tired eyes, despite the boredom of a Saturday, I dive into my mind, probably for the last time.

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Put these tough words back into the soup — 2013/02/13

My friend Perig has already reviewed 70 pages of Les Mailles sanguines. I have the pages in front of me, took a look at them last night when the choir returned.

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I'm moving forward. — 2013/02/01

I'm certainly moving forward. I am less sure of this when I arrive at night and go to bed. If I close my eyes too quickly, my body and heart fight for the last moments of consciousness.

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The richness of the moment — 2012/12/13

I keep singing, went out last night, happy with my class. I don't know if I'm really making progress, but this learning is in the air of my time, fitting very well in this season of my life.

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Of the cicada and the ant — 2012/11/29

I spent part of the afternoon singing, trying, at least, to sing. I feel like I'm moving forward as much as I'm moving back. Sometimes the high notes seem to me to be well placed, sometimes they sound like whale song moaning. As for the low notes, I seem to lose them suddenly. And if my teacher were at my side, he would probably only see sounds and no music.

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My barometer skin — 2012/11/27

In our busy daily lives, our minds are at the helm of a distracting and challenging universe. It is therefore fortunate that, on the lower floors, people are discreetly activated, on the lookout for their emotions, carrying out their wishes, as a sound machine that only complains at mealtimes, when the bins are full or when the batteries need to be recharged.

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Asking Germaine — 2012/11/21

Why don't you ask Germaine? — Excuse me? My sister Marie smiled at me. — Yes, ask Germaine!

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The calm slate — 2012/11/01

My days are tinged with tiny contrasts, with ripples licking the hourly beach as if nothing was going to happen, as if everything had to be done. It's not dawn or dusk, it's nothing, and it's all there.

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On my balcony — 2012/07/23

Je me suis acheté une chaise longue. Ça et l'achat de ma planche à repasser il y a deux semaines, cela semble être le signal que je commence à m'installer vraiment dans ma maison, après quatre ans et demie...

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I'm not a summer reading — 2012/07/18

I mailed five copies of Les Mailles sanguines, the first one to Les Éditions..., whose reading committee suggested that I propose a second version. Two other copies were sent by e-mail to more "younger" Quebec houses. Another copy, by mail, to a large and former Quebec publishing house. Finally, one last text, tonight, at a French publisher.

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With me, your name disappears. — 2012/06/23

I wrote the following text more than two years ago. It was a request for a 'forum-of-ideas' to be created on the Internet. I was paid to write it. The theme: family. The angle asked: my vision of it as a homosexual. I was allowed 800 words (in French).

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The void — 2012/06/14

My novel is being read by benevolent souls. I'm taking my time to be patient. I have enough to do with a busy job, and I also have some other projects, including making my apartment a pleasant place to live. I'm even reading again. Not content with my reading left out (History of Pi too verbose), I turned to Sophie's World.

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Third refusal — 2012/04/05

The refusal came on Monday, by a terse email.

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The calm writing — 2012/03/15

The seasons roll on a bumpy path. That will not change tomorrow. Many people already dream of relaxing on the terraces, but winter still continues to pour its snow from time to time, which, in theory, is legal until spring arrives. Then we can cry, but for now, let's endure it!

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Feverish truths — 2012/03/09

I don't walk around anymore. I'm sorry about that, still overwhelmed by small and large tasks. Nevertheless, spring continued its early advance over Montreal. We have not had, so to speak, a winter here. I just used the shovel to clear the stairs. Fortunately, we also did not experience endless rains even though the sky was, it seems to me, greyer than usual during this season.

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Finding your words again — 2012/03/07

I completed the reading of the Le Gardien du feu and immediately immersed myself in Letters to a young poet from Rilke. At the same time, I continue in parallel, the review of Les Mailles sanguines. The comparison of writing breaths is inevitable even if criticism, as Rilke suggests in his first letter, is unnecessary.

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Pikaia — 2012/03/06

Last night, I went back to review Les Mailles sanguines. I wrote to this reader's committee at the publishing house, which, without closing the door completely, did not open it much. I wanted to tell them that I'm not discouraged. But it's no use. This job belongs to me.

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Second refusal — 2012/02/27

A major Quebec publishing house sent me its letter of refusal, for Les Mailles sanguines. However, it includes a comment from a literary advisor.

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The ship novel — 2012/02/06

I expect an answer like a woman her sailor. It has already been three months since the boat left and, although there were some fears, there is nothing to weaken hope. In the meantime, you have to work, live your days. In any case, when the news comes in, or when the ship docks, work will resume, the days will become days again.

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Recovered manuscript — 2012/01/22

My former publisher returned my manuscript to me, annotated it. The package was damaged, inserted in a Canada Post envelope, which mechanically apologized in the flattest possible way. Twenty percent of the pages are still missing. The package visibly dropped, the envelope used by my publisher, which was not designed for such a large number of pages, opened and some of the contents vanished. It took me a good half hour to order what could be retrieved.

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Locked in sleep — 2012/01/12

I slept most of the day, knocked out by a cold. I probably dreamed a lot, because my sheets were, when I woke up, kneaded and undone between my legs. However, I have no recollection of it. Only the warmth of my skin could claim to have known voluptuous and greedy seas.

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First refusal — 2012/01/11

This morning, I received my first refusal from Paris. The publishing house is small, apologizes for publishing only ten titles a year and that, inevitably, they are very strict.

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Winter has arrived. Time to count. The waiting. — 2011/12/27

It's always like that, winter comes roughly during the holidays. There will certainly be a thaw, but in the minds of many, this period marks the end of recreation. January and February we will give them a taste of their medicine, but it won't be any worse.

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Like at the station — 2011/12/14

Sometimes we feel on days like there is nothing else to do but wait for the next ones, that what could happen the next day would be better than the current grey of the rising sun.

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Nervousness and impatience — 2011/10/24

The end of the writing of the novel certainly did not calm me down, quite the opposite. The feeling of accomplishment quickly turned to stage fright and impatience, not to mention the doubt and inevitable bubbling of comparisons and jealousy.

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Modesty — 2011/10/23

Ai mis rapidement en pages le roman. Il ressemble déjà à un livre, fait ainsi 216 pages, ce qui pourrait se traduire en un livre de 350 pages. Vu comme ça, tout apparaît si peu. Les pages sortaient de l'imprimante et je glissais mon regard sur les mots. J'en avais un certain malaise et vertige. Extraire ainsi des phrases n'a pas de sens, mon écriture n'aime pas les courants d'air.

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The fragility of the end — 2011/10/17

I accomplished what I imposed on myself two months ago, which was to reread and recompose the entire novel... before moving on to the last chapter. The end has long been thought and rethought. I still had to go around the garden again to keep in mind all the unifying elements.

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The horizon reached — 2011/10/16

For a few days, I had to work and rework a chapter, the one described vaguely in the previous post. The ice jam is broken now, the water is released and takes me with it.

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Taking the floor again — 2011/10/09

Since yesterday, I've been reviewing a poorly written chapter. Les Mailles sanguines will consist of 81 sections, each occupying a maximum of two pages. The latter, however, are longer. This text has been in my head for seven years. It has undoubtedly matured nicely, just as I have reached the age to want to do things right.

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Doing it again — 2011/10/08

Recommencer, comme s'il n'y avait que cela à faire. Je termine bientôt un sixième roman,Les Mailles sanguines.

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