Thursday, 20 August 2009

Boredom and Delusions


Truly now I know why people get jobs, it’s not for the money, social benefits or even valuable life experience... it’s to give people something to F***ING TO DO! AHHH!

There’s this voice in my head going “You know James, this is the perfect opportunity to start on some of those book ideas... cause you and me know that your gonna have to start writing alot” and then I sit in a corner telling it to shut up and leave me alone... I appreciate the company but ever since the voice that told me to burn things left it’s never been the same...

But yeah maybe I should write down some notes, but you know what? It’s hard... and I’m really lazy. GAHH! Damn this paradox!... I’m pretty sure that word applies here...

I blame my friends of course, since naturally everything wrong in the world can be blamed solely on the people I know. I blame them mostly because I’ve moved back to the flat... and no one else is here...



Lately I’ve been reading some books of authors I admire and this time I’m actually looking at their techniques rather than just enjoying their writing, because as it turns out writing and reading at actually two very different skills... The best writers can do both, I imagine on the fly, but I don’t think I have any reading skills so I have to focus pretty hard. Anyway one of the most important things in writing is your tales beginning because you could very well be judged on your very first sentence... if you past that mark they might even go to read the next three paragraphs ( Which is apparently all a professional reader needs before learning if you suck or not).

The basic gist of the first sentence is that it has to be gripping, right off the bat you need to go to your reader and give them a reason they should carry on. An interesting thing however is that famous writers or sequel writers don’t tend to need to worry about this, because the reader already knows how good they are. To test this out I started reading the fourth book in a very good series and had a long good look at the first sentence.


MOTHER F*****!

It’s brilliant! Gah! We already know he’s good but... but... He does it anyway cause he’s a brilliant writer! Gah! That’s so annoying! Talent angers me! I should eat his flesh and gain his powers! ARRH!

First bloody sentence he gives us not only the staple for a first sentence, dead bodies and thus intrigue but he also gives a description and location! AHHHH! It’s like your some amateur painter new on the streets, you’re about to pick up your pen and paint that moon shine when that f***** Leonardo next to you paints the f***ing Mona Lisa! How the hell are you supposed to contend with that? Only murder comes to mind!


I suppose what I’m getting at is writing is a pretty intimidating career to be looking at. Honestly when you look up how long some of the best took to actually get their book published let alone written it can be pretty terrifying.

There’s also no reason you should have faith in my writing skills... read my stories for god sake... No! Really read them... ok.... God their awful aren’t they? I like to say this is because they are all first drafts... I’ve just written them up with barely any correction... but still their terrible.

I have no end of idea’s, that’s never been a problem... Some of them are pretty shallow but a lot of them could be easily taken and expanded into something fitting of a Norse legend or something. It’s just... I have the idea’s but none of the execution... that’s the bit I really need to work on.

Oh god... then there are the visuals in my head... Reader did you know I wanted to be an artist for a little bit? If only to get these things out of my head so I could actually show someone what’s going on up here... But that fell by the way side...

This is getting depressing isn’t it? Let’s move into funny time.

OK I was watching this new fantasy series on sci-fi (I’m not calling it by its stupid new name) and it was awful, but in that sort of good way cause it’s funny. However when I looked up the information on it I had to take a double take... turns out its actually based on a very good book I’ve read and as the show went on I could see it really was.

Now the reason this struck me is because the show portrayed the characters, but most of all the locations, in a very different light then I had imagined them.

Now the book is the wizards first rule by Terry Goodkind, the first one in an eleven book series (I’ve only read the first one) so it’s easy to see why someone would have a crack at making it a tv series. Before we carry on mind let me just say... Damn Terry... you into bondage much? If you ever read this book you’ll know the bit I’m talking about... hahaha.

Anyway the tv show has the three main characters running through the woods until they reach this giant wall of magic that separates these two countries... their trying to get through to stop the mad tyrant blah blah blah. Now reader... this is where I got a bit confused.... The hero was... well.... too young, I generally got the idea that he was a tried and tested woodsmen... the sort of man a young boy looks up to as an awesome role model... yet this guy was that young boy and I was like, the hell? The old man was fine I guess... he was old and a man... But it was the girl that struck me the most.

Reader... She was white?

I have honestly no idea when it happened... but the instant her character was introduced I imaged a brown skinned women from around central Asia... since this was a fantasy book lets say the sort of women you’d expect to meet during an Arabian night. Didn’t end there though reader, when it switched to the bad guy he was... a white guy in a very dull grey castle in some kind of English country side...

What the hell? That’s not what he looked like?... Was it?

I’ve had to actually go back and look up some things about the book and reader... I’m not even sure the places or characters were even described as the way I imagined them. I know its a cheap budget tv series but... but if the book had described the places and people as I imagined then... surely they would have at least left some of that intact?

Here’s a good test, here’s the cover... Does that girl look suspiciously white to you?

God, shows how much I pay attention to cover art doesn’t it?

Its just that... I imagined the main characters home to be that sort of scenic English green... my small castle in it may have been a bit more... prettier than the one they came up with... but the land and people beyond the barrier... I imagined them as being truly different... their cultural heritage and even their mannerisms completely alien and foreign for the main character, and so it was truly a journey to the unknown...

The tv show is just awful and is cancer for the imagination... and now I can’t help thinking... Did I read it right, or without knowing did I just ignore the actual description and make up my own, better one?

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