Everything cycles into itself in Only Revolutions. The change of seasons is yet another cycle used by Mark Z. Danielewski to mark time passing, but not really passing. The seasons play a role in the novel, but they’re not evenly spread. Given the following information from Vizor and Katherine Hayles’ site, I’ll go over summer, spring, and winter. Autumn only had two mentions throughout the novel, and searching for “fall” didn’t bring any results that dealt with the season.


Summer is seen as the prime time of the year, the most fun and adventurous time, and this mentality rings true for the narrators. For Sam and Hailey, Summer is first mentioned on H5, but then not mentioned again until H59 and S59. This time seems to extend until H130/S130 (71 days). For the most part, Sam and Hailey are in agreement of what time is summer, even matching lines on page 59 line 9 and page 122 line 4. This part of the novel is mostly development of the characters and their relationship, and the season seems to match up until they know each other well.



Winter, first mentioned on page 37 for both Sam and Hailey in promises (I promise her all the falling snows of Winter and I wish him the falling snows of Winter, respectively). In this reference, given that the time happens before the official start of summer, winter is the farthest away season, and must seems eons away from them. Winter then is mentioned on pages 338, 346, and 356 of both narratives (18 days). Hailey and Sam may be in agreement of the time, but they don’t match lines as well as they did for summer. Are they growing apart? I’ll be thinking of this when we reach that point of the novel.



Arguably the first and last season of the book, spring appears on the first page in Hailey’s narrative. However, Sam doesn’t mention spring until page 25 (20 days). Overall, the beginning of the story has less of an echo effect of declaring seasons, with Hailey giving many more references (it’s Spring baby, Avalanche Lillies glee my Spring). Spring is once again mentioned on page 360 of both, and while it’s a similar line for each, it isn’t identical like before. In this instance, spring seems to show the joining of the stories, but also their divergence. More symbolism of growth and renewal?


Even accounting for the two mentions of Autumn (pages 239 and 302 of both), we can only assign seasons to 171 days out of 365. I don’t see this as a shortcoming on Danielewski’s part though, but a shortcoming on the analysis method. For a book that’s so strangely descriptive, the change of seasons can’t be boiled down to the stop and go that Vizor and Hayles break it into.