Mark Z. Danielewski’s novel Only Revolutions is full of all kinds of words that range from common nouns to crazy onomatopoeias. Some words I do not know may be slang from the time period of the chronology for the page, or they could be simply made up by the author. Using Vizor, I searched the prevalence of three texture words I chose. The first word I found in the novel that appears textured is “Creep.” This word actually appears as a different “texture” from most other words in the novel because it is often printed in purple in reference to The Creep. When I usually hear this word, I think of somebody sneaking in the dark or doing something so strange that it bothers me. However, in this novel, The Creep seems to be an evil villain who is, of course, creepy. References to “Creep” appear approximately 62 times, and 54 occur in lines that are parallel between the two narratives. There are 44 uses of Creep as a noun in the case of The Creep. It is also used less often as a verb such as “creeping” and as an adjective such as “creepy.” It is also used twice in Hailey’s narrative in reference to Virginia Creepers, the plant, and parallel in Sam’s narrative in reference to Eastern Creepers, the animal. These particular references are found on pages 68 and 293 of Sam and Hailey’s narratives. On page 68, Hailey says “Virginia Creepers spill” and then on page 293, she says “Virginia Creepers gone.” Similarly, Sam says “Eastern Creepers bite” on page 68 and “Eastern Creepers limp,” on page 293. Pages 68 and 293 fall on the same page, just flipped for the opposite narrator. Therefore, Eastern and Virginia Creepers are both mentioned on the same page twice. This may show how the pace, emotions, or luck of the characters may fade or worsen towards the end of the novel. Or perhaps this shows nothing except an example of one of the many patterns Danielewski hides throughout the book.
Sex definitely plays a huge role for the characters in this novel, so I chose “sex” as the next textured word. Hailey and Sam seem to engage in sex frequently throughout the novel, but their encounters are mostly described in metaphors or given in vague descriptions rather than explicitly. For example, during a scene I was reading towards the beginning of the novel, I couldn’t figure out if Sam was riding a horse, chasing a bad guy, or engaging in sexual activity. When I used Vizor to search for “sex,” I was surprised by how few results I was given. Sex was used as an adjective as in “sexy” and “sexydexy” once each in Hailey’s narrative, and also used once as a noun in the phrase “sex charries,” also by Hailey. I did have the impression while reading that Hailey seemed to be thinking more about sex than Sam. However, on page 134, line 11, in both Hailey and Sam’s narratives, the phrase “it’s not all just sex” and “it’s not all about sex” are used in parallel. This stood out to me because at times this book seemed a little perverse, but then I had to remember to step back and look at not necessarily what is being written, but rather how the entire novel as a whole is written. Sex also appears in the word “homosexuality” 7 times in Hailey’s chronology and only once in Sam’s. This makes sense since many more historical events and legislation concerning homosexuals occurred during Hailey’s time period compared to Sam’s.
The final texture word I looked up in Vizor is “allone.” This word is particularly unique because the author intentionally misspells it with two l’s rather than one. This trend is done in other words as well, such as “allways,” and the author may be using this spelling to connect to the circle and two lines at the beginning of both narratives that resembles a pause button. Hailey’s narrative uses “allone” 47 times and Sam’s uses it 43 times, with about 33 of those occasions occurring on parallel lines. Interestingly, Sam’s chronology uses “allone” 5 more times, but Hailey’s chronology does not. Throughout the novel, the characters are both feeling lonely, then happy to be alone, wishing they were alone, then desperately wanting to be alone, then wanting to be alone, but together. This series of emotions seems to cycle for each character.