On the whole, good and great fiction is not written by beautiful people who feel successful. It’s written by the person who is most overlooked, all their life, and who understands things about the human condition which is very different from that of the experience of the twenty-five year old part-time model. Every author has a professional deformity – club feet, an uncomfortable religious inheritance, short stature, or incurable alcoholism, take your pick. Writers are always outsiders, and our nearest kindred isn’t someone in Hollywood but the bag-lady who rootles through dustbins muttering to herself.
Marcus woke to find himself flat on the filthy cement floor, his head in a pool of warm blood that he somehow knew was not his own.
A quick inventory told him all he needed to know: Legs? Broken. Eyes? Not yet adjusted to the darkness. Arms? Exhausted, but likely able to lift himself. Ears? Full of blood, but working well enough to hear the skritching noises in the blackness; the rats would be coming soon.
I should have figured it out far sooner, Marcus thought as he tried hauling his limp frame through the sticky gore. It smelled of copper and sugar and dirt. Laughing grimly at his own naiveté, he recalled a lyric from an old Nick Cave song:
You’re one microscopic cog
in his catastrophic plan,
designed and directed
by his red right hand
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