The Chronicles of a Dreamer Part 2: The Journey

What I’m about to share is over a year old and some things have changed, but I thought it was worth revisiting =)

I began writing in a notebook—a Mead Composition notebook—all paper. The first entry on the first page reads:

10-10-2002

Pilgrim’s Progress part 3: Chapter 1

Narrator – “As I walked through the wilderness of this world, I came* to* a familiar place where was a den; and as I layed me down to sleep, I dreamed again a dream. I dreamed and behold I saw three boys who were named *David, Peter, and Jaron. My attention was soon drawn to a sign on the wall which said, the House of the Interpreter. John was speaking to Paul about something, and I captured the last part.”

(“Thaddeus was pacing back and forth.”)

John – “So you see, Paul, my sermon here, I put together for Marianna.”

Paul – “Oh are we going to Stupidity sometime?

**alighted upon

*Thaddeus, John, and Paul.

True to character, I included myself and friends David and Peter in the story, renaming us. I used that technique because it was comfortable for me as I had done so with Dangers at Stormy Mountain—a smaller production which had been completed earlier that year. Later on, I entered my notes into the computer. It’s interesting to note that at this time I was paranoid about saving things because they would take up space on the computer, so I printed them. Funny, huh? I now know that Word documents (.doc back then and .docx nowadays for those interested) take up very little space and it would have been more efficient if I had saved them. Be that as it may, the first three pages of my first typed entry read as follows:

Narrator – “As I walked through the wilderness of this world, I alighted upon a familiar place where was a den; and as I layed me down to sleep, I dreamed again a dream. I dreamed and behold I saw three boys who were named, Thaddeus, John, and Paul. My attention was soon drawn to a sight on the wall which said, the House of the Interpreter. John was talking to Paul about something, and I caught the last part. {Thaddeus, also in the room, was pacing back and forth.”}

John – “So you see Paul, this sermon here, I put together for Marianna.”

Paul – “Oh, are we going to Stupidity today?”

John – “Aye.”

Paul – “To Marianna’s Inn no less.”

John – “Aye, again. But I won’t preach at her house.”

Paul – “You’re going to the cathedral then?”

John – “Aye.”

Paul – “Thaddeus you look preoccupied.”

John – “Does that mean you won’t…?”

Thad – “Of course not. I’ll go and get the horses read to leave in ten minutes.” {voice fading}

John – “I wonder why Thad was pacing back and forth; Paul do you know?

Narrator – “While they were preparing to leave, Paul explained to John, that it had been six years since Great-heart had supposedly died at Vanity Fair. And although Great-heart was not there, Thaddeus had taken Great-heart’s mission, {which was to convince Marianna to go on pilgrimage,} on himself. So they set out for Stupidity.

 

I was very specific in what I did—I wanted the text to look like my hand written entries—or at the very least, as close to them as possible. So the font I used is just as you see above Times New Roman with Italic turned on. The only difference is that I uh had them twice that size—I used size 24 font back then to be easier on my eyes. I now use size 12 (as above) or 11. It was important to me at this point to begin the story in a slightly different place than the other two parts. In both part 1 and part 2 the story opened with them moaning and groaning and desirous of finding a way out of the miseries of sin. No problem with that, you understand, I just wanted something else. This was partially due to my original approach of incorporating myself and friends into the story, but also to the response of one friend I had shared PP2 with. He thought the moaning and groaning was a bit much. And from a certain point of view I could understand. So I set out to make Marianna different. After a time, however, I decided to return to the elements that made Pilgrim’s Progress great in the first place. But to do so in a different way You’ll see what I mean in a moment. But now I’d like to take you to another one of my rewrites where I went back to the main idea doing an almost exact copy of Christiana.

Pilgrim’s Progress Part III

Chapter One

Dark Horizons

(Pil Pro original Soundtrack 1)

Narrator:   “‘As I walked through the wilderness of this world, I lighted on a familiar place where was a den; and as I laid me down in that place to sleep, I dreamed again a dream. I dreamed and behold I saw a woman’ clothed in a humble garb, ‘standing in the door of her home.’ Her face was turned away from her house, and she ‘looked with great longing across a distant wide, wide field. And as she looked, she wept and trembled.’”

Nearly an exact lift of the opening narration from the PP2 audios. It goes on:

Marianna:   “Oh, my husband! My poor dear Stand-fast. How I have broken thy heart with my stubborn refusal to thy merciful invitation to join thee in the way. And how I have treated thee in a manner most vile. Oh, that I had accepted thy tender entreaties to go on pilgrimage. But now, I must bear the results of my evil actions. This city is surely sentenced to destruction. Moreover my hands are stained with the blood of my little ones who might have gone on with their father, had it not been for my example.”

Narrator:   “Now as she stood staring with wet eyes across the swirling black clouds that hovered in the sky obscuring her view of the horizon, her five children came to her.”

Rachel:   “Mother, Are you all right?”

Marianna:   “I was just thinking. A…about your father.”

Amos:   “‘Mother, father hath been gone of a long time.’ Why can’t we rid ourselves of this sense of dreadful loss, as with others who have lost a lovedone?”

Marianna:   “‘Because I have sinned him away by my’ wretched behavior toward him. ‘For such as I the’ sorrow only grows with the passage ‘of time.’”

Asahel:   “Oh, Mother. Is there nothing we can say to comfort you?”

Marianna:   “‘Nothing. He is gone.’ And that which makes my mind even more distressed is that I not only stayed behind, but also kept you, my children from going. Your blood is upon my hands!”

Micah:   “I don’t see any blood, Mother.”

Esther:   “Me neither.”

Amos:   “It’s proverbial blood.”

Micah & Esther:   “Prah-verby what?”

Amos:   Proverbial. The blood on Mother’s hands is emblematic in character.

Esther:   “What?”

Marianna:   “It means that I’m held accountable you’re remaining here.”

Micah:   “Oh.”

Rachel:   “But Mother, isn’t there a chance that we might follow after father?”

Marianna:   “I wish there might be.”

Amos:   But Mother, Is there hope?”

Marianna:   “I don’t know.”

Children:   “Oh.”

I changed the words around a bit, replacing some of them, but it’s essentially the same scene as Christiana. You’ll also notice that my style has changed a bit; while I still enclose the characters statements in “ ” I discovered that that space dash space thing was quite time consuming so I changed to : and three spaces followed by quotation marks. Another thing I started doing here was giving my chapters titles—it helped me to better construct them. I continued with this approach for a while, but it just wasn’t working! I wasn’t getting what I wanted; and worse still, I didn’t know what i wanted! I even tried another approach of going back to Stand-fast before he went on pilgrimage and chronicling a little bit of that before transitioning to Marianna and continuing the story from there. That attempt went as follows:

Narrator:   As I walked through the wilderness of this world, I lighted upon a familiar place where was a den. And as I laid me down in that place to sleep I dreamed again a dream. I dreamed, and behold I saw a man clothed in rags, standing in the door of his home. His face was turned away from his own house, and his eyes look with great distress at the western horizon, (which was beginning to gather blackness). And, as he looked, he spoke gloomily to himself.

Lethargy:   How shall I escape the evils of drinking? In this place it is considered the only way to have fun. And indeed on the one hand it seems to bring me pleasure, but on the other it leaves my life in ruins, and causes me to hurt my loved ones. Is this all there is to life? Have fun for a little while and then wake up to the realization of where I really am? (Sigh)

Narrator:   As he was thus musing to himself, his brother Steadfast approached.

Steadfast:   Greetings Stand-fast. (Cheerful)

Lethargy:   Greetings. (Gloomily)

Steadfast:   Why the gloominess, my brother? (Concern)

Lethargy:   Because in this town of Stupidity, I see nothing but empty pleasures and death. (Depressed)

Steadfast:   A-h-h-h. (Understanding)

Lethargy:   But pray tell, Indifference, why did you address me as Stand-fast? You know my name is Lethargy. (Puzzled)

As usual I have drawn on my entire pilgrim’s progress knowledge base to construct this scene—which is as far as my idea for this approach went. As you can see, I have again changed my writing method, this time with emotion guides inserted in parenthesis. Also I have omitted the “ ” marks from the dialogue. This was necessary to save both time and space. You will also notice that I have adjusted to the standard non-italicized way. I also at this time began using size 12 font. And while this approach didn’t last long enough for me to finish the scene, it did play a part in what my final approach would be. I think it was about this time that I acquired the Pilgrim’s Progress 2 book by Mr. Pappas. This opened up a whole new world for me as I learned the answers to some of my questions which had been generated by the audio. And as it was my intention to continue as seamlessly from the end of PP2 as possible story wise, I studied all the information I could find in the book on Marianna—and was I in for some surprises! First I discovered that Marianna was the Duchess of Stupidity (Stupidity being the town in which she dwelt) and her husband the Duke. Aha! This was going to be different; I had seen her as a poor widow who had set up an Inn to support herself in her husband’s absence. I now saw her as a high class woman (an aristocrat, if you will) who enjoyed all the trappings of wealth, luxury and power. It was a very different story, but I decided to change to meet this new image for the above mentioned reasons.

Note: I’m not sure the font sizes are the same as mentioned in this entry. But I’m sure the styles are the same.

Up next: The Chronicles of a Dreamer Part 3: The Method

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