October 17th, 2006


Are You Tired of Genre Definition Debates?

If you really want to kill SF as a genre, go right ahead and tell people what is and what isn’t really SF, and don’t forget to exclude people whose work borrows from and expands on the central themes and tropes of the genre simply because they forgot to include a heroic narrative or some other tick mark that meets the approval of the Guardians of the True Quill.

--Paul McAuley.

What a cool little quote, hey? I dig that. So, there's the link. McAuley doesn't actually say much in the post, just sort of says, 'You're all idiots,' but that's okay some of the time. Strange about the copyright notice in his biography information, though.

Evolution of a Story


In July, went and saw Fourplay. During the opening act, have sudden thought, wherein both story and title of a story appear. Quickly pull out mobile and type it out and save message.


(A conversation with Deborah Layne (deborahlive))

I'm calling it 'All My Friends Used to Listen to Fourplay.'


That's funny.

What? I'm serious. I'll use the real albums and interweave them through the narrative.

You've not thought this through, have you?

Well. Not. Like, fully.


Fourplay, yeah.

I think you should say it aloud.

Fourplay, Fourplay, Fourplay, Four--

Aw, shit.



Find new band.

Eventually, settle upon Bluebottle Kiss. The album titles for the band are Fear of Girls, Patient, Revenge is Slow, Come Across, and Doubt Seeds. You can do a lot with those titles. Especially that third one. What a great title. Lets hope that album is about revenge.

Some time later, after hearing the album, realise that it is not.

Realise that the title is probably a reference to the band's not terribly successful first two albums, in which most people thought that they would disappear. Still, that isn't hugely problematic. You know the trick to writing good criticism? You take a thread of the work, and you use it to make your own conclusions, your own meanings. You apply the meaning to it. If it works, all good.

I can do the same thing with a bunch of albums, right?


(A Conversation with Kathryn Linge (kathrynlinge))

I wanna split the page in half. How do I do that in word?

With columns.

Yeah, but the columns drag everything over. I want to run reviews on one side of the page, and fiction on the other, but I don't want them going over.

I don't think you can do that in word.


Why not?


Well, I don't know. No good reason? Who wants to do what you want to do anyway?

I do!

No one cares about you.

Can you help me or not?!

Sure, I have a program that can do it.


Neat. Can that be done by the end of the week?

Sure. Send it in two files, okay?

No one cares about you though.

Why do keep saying that?



Realise that using a real band sucks as an idea. Why, you ask? Because shockingly, the band did not write their albums to suit the narrative structure of the story, which, by the way, no longer suits the title. In fact, the narrative and the reviews want to be about the same people, which is something that I'm entirely comfortable with. It's one thing to subvert an artist's work for your purpose, but their personal life?


Tennessee Nights is now the band name. Come up with it while staring at copy of the collected Tennessee Williams plays, 1937 to 1955. Good book, by the by. Recommended. It is also midnight as I stare at it, wondering whose stupid idea it was to use a real band, and that's how the night part got there.

It's simply, but works. Groove.

Still, it also sounds vaguely familiar--is it a band already?

Quick web search reveals that it was a movie in the late eighties and who remembers the eighties?


Wake up this morning. Realise most of what is written is now useless. How wonderful. Must have story ready by end of week. Hmm. How fast can I write? How much sleep do I need? Why is it that I can't write in the morning? Maybe if I ask someone else to write it for me?

No. That won't work. They'll want money.

Fucking writers.

(Conversations have been dramatised and might not have occurred like this.)
  • Current Music