Outbound, a story about Jack

Taylor-Jones, D. (2020) Outbound, a story about Jack. Masters thesis, University of Chichester.

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Abstract

This dissertation opens with the first chapters from my novel Outbound, book one in a trilogy of travel novels about a young Englishman called Jack. The trilogy covers Jack’s backpacking trips around South East Asia and the Americas in the mid-1990s. Synopses for the trilogy and for Outbound are included within the appendices. The novel is a tragic romance that explores the ways that our relationship with ourselves can be influenced by the perceptions that others have of us. To get inside the perceptions that others have of Jack, the novel is written from the point of view of a number of different characters, all of whom are connected with Jack. At the beginning, Jack is yet to be born and we see the family that he will come in to. When we first meet Jack, he is going by his given name of Jonathan, but is determined to recreate himself. As he sets out on his trip, he becomes Jack. The heart of Outbound is written from the perspective of Jack’s Swedish girlfriend, Christina.
The commentary discusses my interest in this story and some of my motivations for writing it. These include my fascination in the ways we can be shaped by our relationships, and my wondering about what it means to be a man in the early twenty-first century. I explore some texts that guided me through the dissertation, in particular Donald Maass’s The Emotional Craft of Fiction (2016), Joan Silber’s The Art of Time in Fiction (2009), and Jane Alison’s Meander, Spiral, Explode (2019). I also look at some of the books that have inspired me during the writing of this piece including, David Szalay’s All That Man Is (2006), Lucia Berlin’s Manual for Cleaning Women (2015), and Tommy Orange’s There There (2018). The commentary concludes with some reflections on my process of writing this dissertation and the novels it has generated.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Additional Information: MA Creative Writing
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General)
Divisions: Departments > English and Creative Writing
Depositing User: Wendy Ellison
Date Deposited: 23 Mar 2021 08:37
Last Modified: 23 Mar 2021 08:37
URI: http://eprints.chi.ac.uk/id/eprint/5672

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