What I like best about bus stations, train stations and airports is the indeterminacy of them. The fact you’re not at home, but you’ve not arrived yet either. I have never quite got over the strangeness of almost living at Manchester Piccadilly for the few days that we were performing the Station Stories project last year. Whenever I pass through the station now, it’s the place where David dropped his birthday cards – where Tom scared us by making us see a Masonic Temple where there wasn’t one before.
These places of indeterminacy – of inbetween-ness (Edgelands is the word I am wanting to use – after reading Paul Farley and Michael Symmon Roberts’ book of the same name recently) is important to Cold Light too. There’s the bus-station, the nature reserve, the park – all the wild and at the same time not-wild places – locations but not destinations – that Carl and his girls hang out in. And the most edgelands-ish place of all – adolescence – where the rules of childhood don’t apply (you know they don’t really all live happily ever after by now, don’t you) but the ‘wisdom’ and freedom of adulthood hasn’t yet arrived. If female adolesence was a place, it would be nomansland – and just as dangerous.
Here’s an article from Sabotage Times about Preston Bus Station – one of my muses for Cold Light (you can see a bit of it in the Cold Light trailer too).
Here is one of the most detailed and thoughful reviews of Cold Light that I’ve ever received (courtesy of Libraries of Babel) – a piece of writing that, appropriately, is in a kind of edgelands of itself – not quite a review, not quite a personal essay, and something better and more interesting than either of the two. It shows how the place where we read a book (in this case, on a night bus) can colour our view of it and what we bring to it.