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The Book of Lost Memories

Those of you who've been around here a while know that I'm a big fan of the Silent Hill franchise. Well, the first three games, to be exact. The movie wasn't terrible. It wasn't great, what with including miners and Pyramid Head where he doesn't belong, a whole bunch of people in what's supposed to be a mostly empty town.... but I digress. I was first drawn to these games because they looked like my nightmares. I could finally examine with waking eyes the environments I had to try to survive almost every night. After getting to know them, though, I began to enjoy them more for their own stories. And so, an obsession was born!

See the colors here? Same in the book I found.
 Knowing that, it should come as no surprise whatsoever that when I was in Powell's Bookstore in Portland a couple weekends ago and found a journal in the rare book room that looked for all the world straight out of Silent Hill 3, I had to buy it. In Silent Hill, there are basically three different planes of existence: the normal world, foggy world, and the Otherworld. The normal world is exactly what it sounds like. Other people are around, nothing is out of the ordinary. In the foggy world, almost everyone is gone and a few suspicious things are littered around, like significant newpapers and items for the protagonist. There are also a few monsters in evidence. ("Monsters? They look like monsters to you?") The Otherworld is what people think of when they think of Silent Hill. It's a dark, gritty place with a goodly number of creatures out of nightmares and an aesthetic that can be best described by combining rust, blood and black pits. This is what most resembled my nightmares, and what I found fascinating. Click for larger pictures below.

To me, with the exception of the flowers on the spine and the decorative gilding (both of which I also like), this book almost completely captures the feel of the Otherworld (although to be fair there isn't any blood on it, which is just as well). Accordingly, I decided to fill it up with my nightmares, snippets of writing I found here and there, art that makes me feel open to dreams, etc. I had better never lose this, since I'm sure that any person who doesn't know what's going on with it will think its author quite insane. Everything that isn't a dream or art is writing either from other crazy people or from games with crazy people in them, me when I was either depressed or manic, and so on.

I've been trying to compile items that I think will help me with my ongoing quest to write songs, and I had an idea for an album based around my dreams. I have all this material, collected over more than three decades, and I might as well use it. This project is not going to be done any time soon. I have only just begun studying songwriting and harmony, scoring, and so forth. I still have many pages left to compile of memories before I even try to begin crafting songs out of them. I expect it will be a multi-year project, so don't get your hopes up for anything in the near future.

I wanted to give my book of inspiration an appropriate name, so I thought of Silent Hill and remembered the Book of Lost Memories, which is one of four items needed to attain the Rebirth ending for Silent Hill 2: Restless Dreams (the others are the Tome of Crimson Ceremony, the White Chrism, and the Obsidian Goblet). How very fitting...the Book of Lost Memories it is.
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