The official website of Scottish Author David F Porteous
Almost every word you ever read was a coward. You write enough words and you get to know them for what they are; their character. Words are pliable, twisty, squirmy little bastards you can’t play chess with. Some are glass fragile, facetted, intriguing and pointing in a dozen different directions. The worst of them are smoke, holding shape and meaning for a second, but changeling like a perjurer’s testimony.
A good word means only one thing and means it only once – he is focussed in one direction and means to expend himself in one purpose. A good word is a punch and should carry all your weight; the lean, the step-in – elbow up!
A good word is something better than fearless: a good word is brave.
Vasily Smyslov, the Soviet Grandmaster, used to twist his chess pieces after moving them, screwing them into the board, daring his opponent to take them; putting up a palisade of oblique bishops and cardinal rooks. And the ambition of anyone who would call themselves a writer must be to put words down with equal conviction. To dare time – our enemy – to take their meaning.
But the brave words perish first. The unexpected. The portmanteau. The found sound. Time melts their faces. And the ones that remain are the reworked words, like train timetables – all gloss and promises that won’t be kept in this country. Survivors, with all the guilt of the colaborator.
Almost every word you ever read was a coward.
Where Am I?
dfpiii.com is the official website of David F Porteous. Use the tabs to learn more about David, his books: Singular and The Death of Jack Nylund, or read his blog.
(<<< The blog is over there).