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Monday, October 10, 2011

In the Morning

Gloom descends to stuff imagination in a confusion of unseeing, muted colors, stasis, dying life. Here, all that is left is the knowing that has come before. With withered roots giants may fall but their imprint is kept by the ground were miles of plant and animal and invisible have felt their thundering end, regretted it, wondered if there must have been more that was beyond their understanding but that they might know later when Gloom has lifted. It is coming now. A rising blanket of cloud moving to another hovel or silent street or pond to remind them of their mortality.

This weekend we watched The Wire--one of those stunning HBO series that I have just been introduced to but that Jaye has been having an affair with for several years. If you are a storyteller and can tolerate protracted hours of the hopeless debacles of, gang wars, prostitution, government bureaucracy, and human selfishness, its a phenomenal thing to watch as a writer. Mostly, the scope of the story is what has struck me, now at the end of Season 2 with three more to go. It is huge. There are approximately fifteen characters that carry over from season one, which focused on drug trade. Add fifteen to an entire community of dock workers fighting for their union, and a new crime syndicate, season two tracks the stories of at least thirty people effortlessly. By the end of the season I cared about what happened to these characters, I couldn't necessarily remember all their names, but there was this feeling that they were all trapped within this world, nothing existed for any of them outside of Baltimore.

Knowing that the show was written by a former police reporter who spent years experiencing firsthand the stories captured in The Wire, lends the show an incredibly gritty, realistic tone. It doesn't shmaltz and poke bad one liners like CSI. It doesn't excuse the faults of its characters. They are at least to say the least incredibly real.

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