I figured it out … I think (Blog 12)

The Lamentable Journey if Omaha Bigelow has been bugging me since the first time “I” appeared. Then the “I,” which identifies himself as Vega, annoyingly takes over much of the novel and intrudes every other line with his general thoughts and spoilers. The “I” is Vega the real person and author of this story, and I can prove it. Because the thing bothering me most about the story was my confusion about who was telling the story. Is it a third-person narrative with first-person authorial inputs? Is the author a character or the author himself? This is where it gets confusing, but after several hard-fought days I believe (still got forty pages left, but I don’t imagine it will change) I’ve figured out the story’s narratological structure:

1. “I”: The I is the real author Vega, who is the omni-whatever that overlooks the whole story and narrates the whole thing—able to switch from character to character and see into their minds and present their thoughts. You have to remember that this story is something that’s already occurred: “The night that Omaha Bigelow’s life changed forever …” (9). When the “I” gives his thoughts and tells you about story elements, he’s writing at a later time than the events of the story takes place.

2. Even though Omaha and all the other characters’ storylines are taking place on what would be known as the primary storyline, they occur on a different level than the “I” commentary. There are multiple levels that branch off this (the play, lots of stories being told by other characters).

3. The tricky part is what to do with the author M calls throughout the book, because he is referred to as “he” and not “I” in those segments. This “he” is the author Vega—but because of the overlord that is “I,” this “he” Vega is a charter version of himself in the lower level while the upper Vega, the “I,” is a real person—blurring the lines between fiction and nonfiction in this book.

It’s confusing, but it looks something like this:

–Story Viewing Deck: Real Vega, “I,” Narrator; fiction/nonfiction

–Primary Storyline: Omaha, Winifred, Vega (author): all characters; fiction

CORRECTION: “I” (real Vega)—->he (character/author Vega)—-> Everyone else.

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