Tag Archives: stories

Getting down with downloads

In my recent interview with author/artist Uvi Poznansky (see below), we talked about my writing habits.  I mentioned how, when writing fiction, I receive what I call “downloads” from the universe.  These moments of inspiration often arrive whole, and I’m given an entire scene in my mind, complete with plot, setting and dialogue, all at once as I’m working at the keyboard.  I received several of them as I wrote my latest novel, The 26th Game.

The compelling facet of these downloads, other than their arriving in totality, is that they are most often scenes of which I had no prior thoughts.  Not even an inkling.  As I work my way through a piece of fiction, many of the scenes have been planned ahead of time.  I’ve made notes on setting, scribbled snippets of dialogue, developed plot points, usually in longhand in a small notebook or on a legal pad.  But as I stir these into a readable stew, invariably, ideas that had never crossed my mind appear in the work.  This occurs in real time, as if I am merely recording them from wherever they’d already been written, out there in the ether.  I have composed numerous sentences, paragraphs and scenes, word for word, out of thin air, without ever having previously contemplated the particular idea.

How is this possible?  Some metaphysicians have said that all books are already written, and the author becomes connected to the place where these works are “stored,” at some kind of “celestial archive.”  The author merely transcribes the text, acting as a conduit from the archive to the paper or Word document.  Since I know this process happens, having experienced it countless times, for me this explanation is as good as any.  Because I truly don’t know how it works.  I only know that it is real.

The late Robert James Waller told me he wrote The Bridges of Madison County in ten days.  He was quoted as saying, “The universe just gave it to me.”  While Bob might have used different words to explain the source of his fiction, I am certain he was describing the same download process as I have.  No doubt, many other authors can attest to having experienced this spontaneous creativity.  It is part of the beautiful mystery of creation, and every author owes a debt of gratitude to the Muse, Celestial Archive, Source, Universe, or whatever name he or she chooses to call it.

Out from the shadows: An Eternal Melody

By Paul James Zack

Stories and scenes come alive in the time shadows of our minds.  An elusive fragment of late afternoon rests on your thoughts . . . the ephemeral light of an ancient evening embraces the land . . . the bonds of physical reality float away in the vastness of the night.

Time shadows.  Where you have been.  And where you never were.  A person you loved, once upon a season, long ago, but still today.  Do they remember?  Did they ever know?

Always the stories.  The stories remain, after the parting, after the dust disappears on the wind.  The stories allow us to live, and live again.  Can we ask for anything more?

An Eternal Melody is the story of cowboy singer Casey Beckett and western artist Victoria Ames.  Casey, fast approaching the middle of his life, is a man out of place in a world run by clocks and computers.  Bonded to the land with his Wyoming roots, yet driven by restlessness he can only vaguely understand, he travels the country to sing and recite cowboy poetry.  Victoria, middle-aged and separated from her husband, is struggling to follow her dreams.  She yearns to live in the infinite vistas of the western landscapes she creates on canvas, but wonders if her desires can ever be attained in a life where her every step forward has been matched by retreat.

When Casey walks into Victoria’s art gallery on a hot June day, their lives are forever changed as they begin a passionate romance transcending the boundaries of time and place.  Written in poetic prose, An Eternal Melody is an unforgettable tapestry of tenderness and yearning, defining what it means to dance to the music within one’s heart.  Set in harmony with the lyrical soul of the land, this love story reminds us that hope can exist even at the darkest hours, at the final curtain, and that with courage and affirmation, a man and a woman together can fulfill their shared destiny.  An Eternal Melody will speak to your spirit and haunt you with its passion.

This book is now available on Amazon Kindle (please click on the link below).  Exploring the pages of this site, you will find photographs from scenes in the book, poetry from Casey Beckett, and the first chapter of the story.  Read, imagine, experience.  Find a place in the time shadows of your mind.  And your heart.

To purchase an e-book copy of this book from Amazon Kindle, please click on the title: An Eternal Melody   Thank you!