William Faulkner – As I Lay Dying

I recently read this remarkable story. Faulkner’s use of basic verbiage mixed with philosophical inner thoughts from character to character was amazing. I noticed Faulkner was using words of his creation, which I’m a fan of doing myself. It’s a trick of sorts. It’s as if the word(s) exists and has every right to live within the story. Because it does.

But none of the above is the reason for this post. I’m writing this post to make aware (anyone who’s interested) in something I read within the editors notes.

Editors Notes:

He wrote As I Lay Dying at the University of Mississippi power plant, where he was employed as a fireman and night watchman, mostly in the early morning, after everybody had gone to bed and power needs had diminished.

For me this is massively relevant. Without boring any of you with my personal details, I think it’s safe to say that many of you are currently working in a field that has nothing to do with your writing goals. I had assumed Faulkner was a writer and had been nothing other than a writer.

I often say, ‘Read on, it’s good for the brain.’ But in this case it’s ‘Write on, it’s good for the brain.’

William Faulkner – Wrote What?

I’m reading ‘As I lay Dying’ by William Faulkner and out of his pages comes this paragraph smashing me.

‘In a strange room you must empty yourself for sleep. And before you are emptied for sleep, what are you. And when you are emptied for sleep, you are not. And when you are filled with sleep, you never were. I dont know what I am.’

That stopped me in my tracks.

And the ‘dont’ was written exactly that way.