Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Been a tough go

It's been awhile. Again. That's because I got sick of it again.

Most people stop reading. I was once sort of like that. You had to read the whole thing even if you were hating it. Maybe it got better. Even after three hundred pages, maybe it gets better. But if you give a book three hundred pages...

One wise friend of mine once said that there were too many good books out there to waste your time with one you can't stand.

I was reading at a good pace for awhile there. There was a really good chapter about the whale hunt, an actual action chapter that furthered the story.

Then there was Chapter 60 "The Line." I kid you not, it is a four page treatise on the type of rope that is used. You get so fed up! Are you reading an encyclopedia or a novel? Is this Dickipedia? (Get it--like Wikipedia?)

I know that there are necessary hints and foreshadows dropped in these little summations of information. Like in Chapter 63 "The Crotch" about a piece of the whaleboat. It does become necessary because it talks about the tangle of the ropes and such. That will become important when we learn about Ahab's final fate. Even Melville admits, "All these particulars are faithfully narrated here, as they will not fail to elucidate several most important, however, intricate passages, in scenes hereafter to be painted."

But couldn't the good writer or novelist somehow bring this into the narrative? I do not think it should be a separate chapter. It should be brought in and tied together.

So that's where I am stuck right now. I will begin Chapter 64 the next time I open it.

I will get this done. While the summer has come and gone, I persist. This book is my Moby Dick, my white whale. When I finish this, I will bury that part of my past and move on. I may realize how a book should not be, and that may be better than understanding a good book. I will also have to uncover some of that research on how this became a resurrected American classic in the 1920s.

1 comment:

Steve Whitt said...

I think these chapters on whaling tech are important because they show how amazingly creative people can be. Despite Job, we did figure out how to spear Leviathan. Pretty amazing feat.