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I head out of Euston on the 07:35, whipping past my flat before slingshotting around Alexandra Palace and escaping London’s orbit. The train’s route treats me to rolling vistas of terraced houses and foggy fields for a couple of hours before reaching Leeds, City of Comics.
I only know Leeds because of Thought Bubble. I’ve made the journey up the last few Novembers, and as a result I assume that even in April the town centre is filled with Christmas lights and small-press illustrators desperately seeking a Nando’s. I’m not sure this week is going to dispel that.
Kristyna and I started our residency yesterday, exploring the library for inspiration before meandering out to a few second hand shops. It’s a well-known fact that both of these places contain time and space-shattering portals; in the latter you’ll find a dozen routes to Narnia and more rooms than appears possible. In the former you have L-Space.
L-Space is Terry Pratchett’s name for a thing that has always existed. It’s the route the books let you take, connecting all libraries to one another, whether real or imagined. That’s why, from a certain angle, all library staircases lead to Hogwarts.
Our residency takes place somewhere in L-Space. My notes from our scribbling sessions are varied, things like
* Club of Queer Trades – Chesterton (?)
* Bird Bomb
* Heraldry, tropes, imagery associated with places – poses and gestures and meanings.
* Radios, spaces toys, “tin anything”
On another page I wrote “Lon Chaney – Buster Keaton” so passionately the ink appears to have bleed through the thick paper of my notebook.
Delightfully I’ve no idea where any of this may lead. Although I’ve published Kristyna in Paper Science a few times our conversations have only ever taken place in snippets at conventions. Yesterday was a tremendous ice-breaker that will help swing my writing into focus over the next couple of days.
That or we’ll get lost somewhere between Foreign Languages and Art History.
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