The Diary of a Despairing . . . I Mean, Aspiring Author: Part 2

I recently started writing my first book entitled: How I Killed Nietzsche and Became the New Übermensch.  These are the chronicles of my journey through this intense project . .

Part 2:  In many ways I feel more like a method actor than an author right now:  obsessively gathering materials to create a psychological profile for my character, attempting, as much as possible, to step inside the identity of my new creation, and occasionally slipping into character at inappropriate times.  My goal: realism . . . no, authenticity.  I want the reader to have an authentic experience of somebody else’s experience–it is in this sense that my novel is a work in existential literature.  I want my readers to feel as if they are inside the narrator’s head as he wrestles with Nietzsche’s ghost.  To accomplish this I’ve drawn from a diverse range of sources to construct a psychological history for my protagonist.  A lot of the primary elements of his character are derived from close friends of mine, who have suffered terribly from hypocritical Christian parents and parishioners and who have wrestled with feelings of guilt, self-loathing, and doubt themselves.  Some of them are still wrestling.  Many of the unfortunate circumstances the protagonist, and narrator of the book, experienced in his childhood reflect, however dimly, some of my father’s experiences dealing with an abusive father growing up.  In all of this, however, I have tried to input as much from my own experiences and emotions as possible.  I have spent hours plumbing the depths of my soul; reflecting upon my own sins and doubts and have inserted these elements inside the book whenever possible.  The reason for this is, again, authenticity.  I know I will lose my readers if they find my lead character’s thoughts and inner angst unbelievable or if it comes off sounding trite.  The succes of my book hinges, almost entirely, upon how real my character is.  So . . . yeah, I’m a little bit nervous. I’ve written far more non-fiction than fiction and I’m worried that I wont be able to pull it off.  Nevertheless, I shall continue to write.  This project must be finished.


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