It’s been almost six years since I wrote Jazz. It took me two weeks to write. Listening to the same song over and over again, not bothering to eat days on end, I wrote it with nothing else in mind but to get it all out of my head. Like a dream. It was no longer safe behind my eyelids.
But then I got it published and… well… people have all sort of ideas about what it is and what it all means and stuff like that. This is what this post is about, actually.
Because there are some people who think Jazz is an unrequited love story. They say it with the same kind of sympathy one has for Romeo and Juliet. As if cynicism has evaporated from the universe and my main character is simply unlucky and unloved – as if there’s some sort of beauty to be found in this predicament.
Maybe there is.
Most probably, there isn’t.
What I am trying to say is this: any love story that breaks your heart is not a love story. It is a side of reality that we often find ourselves being unable to accommodate into our lives. When we become reflective to the point of being removed from the realities of life, we also find ourselves trapped by this burning exhaustion: it is too much and we can’t possibly handle it.
That’s what Chris Sommers stands for. The man who is at the crossing between what he understands of reality and what he doesn’t want to. He cannot forge himself the reality that would suit him best, but he cannot exist in the reality that is presented to him. And, yet.. yet… he does what he can to achieve what he lacks.
A micro-novel at best, Jazz isn’t long enough for us to see the transformation, the way an idealist become a cynic. There’s but one phrase, toward the very end, used to describe the woman he has always been so much in love with. A sacrilege.