To write a novel, you begin with what you can see and then you add what came before and what came after.
You must understand that when you are writing a novel you are not making anything up. It’s all there and you just have to find it.
—Thomas Harris, “Foreword to a Fatal Interview,” Red Dragon
As I struggle to complete one novel, embark on revising another, and look forward to taking a fiction class in the fall for the MFA to help untangle everything I’m doing wrong, I therefore read the emptiness as the expanse where before and after exist, and the space to figure how to map this terrain in words.