Very unsure about my developing ‘realism’
A room with a view: my working place in Camelot Castle.
At 17 I was heavily influenced by movies of the Italian director Lucio Fulci.
Erik Menno van Os (Netherlands 1965)
Visual artist & storyteller. Another mortal watching the moon sneaking over walls and ceilings, trying to lick dusk out of rooms, inviting all kinds of ‘old folks’ visible yet unseen, dressed in lights and noises and all that.
Years ago I lived in an ancient farm at the Waal river in Beuningen, a small village near Nijmegen. As the house is built outside the dike, parts of the area will get flooded in wintertime, so there is no human activity or farming or building whatsoever and nights are pitchblack.
One stormy night, March 8, 1996, I was visited by a nightmare so gruesome, I woke up instantly to write it down. No inconsistent, abstractions or symbols but a clear and classic storyline. I could remember every detail of it, except for the name of the dark-eyed female protagonist. The story kept haunting me. With intervals I worked on it to compose a full-fledged novel.
In 2000 I moved to the city of Utrecht, got involved in internet and music business and lost sight of the concept. In 2007 I picked it up again and stayed in a Cornwall castle for a while where the howling wind inspired me to write the more haunting parts of the story.
In 2009 I forgot about the whole project again, until, out of the blue, I had a dream which provided me with the name of the female protagonist! How much more encouragement could one need?
It took me another year to finish the novel, but as a comic artist the 222 page manuscript did not satisfy me at all, so I had to turn it into a graphic novel.
July 2012 (Half way) I had to move from Utrecht with unknown destiny. This manor needing vacant property management saved me and guess what? It happened to be located only a few yards away from the old farmhouse where this strange story started 17 years ago.