Saturday, January 26, 2008

lost in translation

Angouleme/Paris:

i am beginning to enjoy the feeling of being on sound mute. no one understands what i am saying. i understand no one. i can read a little bit of french ('read' a stackful of Voici in French last evening - the language of crass tabloids is universal!), but not have conversations. when people are awake and relatively stressfree, they translate headlines of the conversation for me. when they are tired, distracted or preoccupied i fade into being an exotic backdrop. liberating. and necessarily solitary.

Kari's experience is the same, but a little worse. her visual language is impermeable and too foreign for most. 'too classical' said one publisher. 'too many shifts in style' said another. 'too many words' said the third. since no one here is reading the text, Kari's fate almost entirely hangs by the perilous thread of face-value. and that is a battle she isn't going to win. not here. the sensibility here is clean cut, stylized, minimal, and ironic. Kari is messy food eaten with the fingers, there is drip and there is lick. not everyone likes.

anyway. if, indeed, i want more people to access the writing ('the' writing; not 'my' writing - it is not a one-person effort anymore) - i need to figure out how. 'try to make the book more consistant' a good gentleman suggested wrt Parva/The Epic. consistancy is such an alien virtue. i must gather my skirts and chase it accross the lawns ;)

6 comments:

Alka said...

That is quite ok. Diff. cultures have diff.languages and expressions.This is your first step and you have all the freedom to choose roads to be taken.

Anonymous said...

the west is not any expert on anything. it just a naive kindergarten experiment.
especially the froggy amphibians (frenchies). eating stuff rotting for 40 days (cheese, wine) does have an effect lol

josh nigam said...

As an author, i wud say that every act in this world is governed by two principles. First of emotions and other of economics.
Since as authors, we try to dig deeper in everything to bring the right emotions, but then if we can think so beautifully, then a part of our time should also go in thinking as how to market and project the real image that our work deserves.
Sometimes thinking economically is not a bad hobby to pursuit....

Anonymous said...

I hope you didn't go there to win approval for your efforts. Neither, I hope, did you fear disapproval. Perhaps you were there for just the 'thereness'. A taste of the otherness. A restoration of context, even if alien, to the supremely selfish journey that an author must undertake. Kari may have bought your ticket for this journey, yet you must travel alone.

Quite on another subject, your hair looks beautiful on camera.

Apurva said...

I remember reading a review on Sarnath Banerjee's Corridors on an on line graphic novel site which said the very same things about the work being not streamlined enough and too varied but that perspective comes from years of exposure to graphic novels and various artists in what is now a pretty well defined market across Europe & USA
The Indian Graphic Novel is just in its embryonic state and will further develop as more publishing houses finally publish other artists such as you....

Personally I liked Corridors very much and thought that his second book Barn Owls was him maturing as a graphic novelist finally comfortable in his garb and start to define his own style which is uniquely Indian and I see glimpses of that Indian flavor in your work too. ..

Beginnings are more often than not always hesitant, like putting your toe end into ice cold water followed by the almost reflexive leap back but one gets used to it after braving through the first dip

Once you take that plunge (as you have with the publishing of this book) what follows will be the slow ascent of the body to the surface as it discovers its own buoyancy & then the tug of the moon's gravity which pulls it to the shore...

Congratulations on the book. Hope to see many more
Cheers
Apurva.

sengemo said...

I just bought your novel today and have gone through some pages (can't read right now, i am at work). I really like it and have already become a fan of graphic novels. I am an Osamu Tezuka fan (i don't think u guys r in the same category). Keep up the gud work...all the best :)