fictional: (academic)
So, I think about fanfiction a lot, y'all may have noticed. And serial fiction. And the whole act of making fiction "real". What is it in a narrative that makes us think -- after the door is shut, after the windows are pushed down, after the covers are closed -- that the story goes on, before the first page, and after the last?

If you think of a single-author book as a window, or a doorway, you realize that even through you can only see a small portion of the world (i.e. what's framed by the aperture), there must be so much more just out of frame. If there isn't this sense, then the story is flat, two dimensional -- it doesn't encourage wandering. But in a good story, you don't think that the small, squared off picture is all that's real. Because if the thing is three-dimensional, it has solidity. You can pick it up and turn it around. It still exists when you look at it from another side.

Think about mythforms. Superheros. They all exist and the more people use them, carve another perspective onto them, the more solid they actually get.

From Henry James's preface to Portrait of a Lady (a little wordy; James never used one word where fifty would do) :

The house of fiction has in short not one window, but a million-- a number of possible windows not to be reckoned, rather; every one of which has been pierced, or is still pierceable, in its vast front, by the need of the individual vision and by the pressure of the individual will. These apertures, of dissimilar shape and size, hang so, all together, over the human scene that we might have expected of them a greater sameness of report than we find. They are but windows at the best, mere holes in a dead wall, disconnected, perched aloft; they are not hinged doors opening straight upon life. But they have this mark of their own that at each of them stands a figure with a pair of eyes, or at least with a field-glass, which forms, again and again, for observation, a unique instrument, insuring to the person making use of it an impression distinct from every other. He and his neighbours are watching the same show, but one seeing more where the other sees less, one seeing black where the other sees white, one seeing big where the other sees small, one seeing coarse where the other sees fine. And so on, and so on; there is fortunately no saying on what, for the particular pair of eyes, the window may NOT open; "fortunately" by reason, precisely, of this incalculability of range. The spreading field, the human scene, is the "choice of subject"; the pierced aperture, either broad or balconied or slit-like and low-browed, is the "literary form"; but they are, singly or together, as nothing without the posted presence of the watcher--without, in other words, the consciousness of the artist.

Now, apply this not just to fiction in general, but to a single story. Isn't this the act of fanfic? To make things real?

D. and I argue about this all the time. He thinks that contradictory/differing versions make things less real. I think they make them more so -- just like multiple eye witness accounts differ, if they're true. When they're identical -- that's when you begin to think people are lying.

What d'you think?

I wonder about this a lot.

On a not entirely unrelated note, remember the Paul Cornell thing? Here is my version, the lovely [ profile] magnetgirl's version, the dulcet tones of [ profile] rm's recap...and Paul Cornell's account of same.

Kind of funny, no? We loom so large in our own minds. For everyone else, we're all just sidekicks and extras. Sometimes we're the cool best friend, or the romantic interest. But protagonists? We're all our own. As it should be.

I almost called my thesis "Windows on the World" but then decided the WTC/9-11 allusion was not quite... what I was going for. Fucking terrorists.

Time Warp

Aug. 8th, 2008 04:02 pm
fictional: (Default)
Time Warp Wives.

What do you lot think of this? I am at a loss. I never know what to make of these people. On the one hand, I admire their dedication to detail. For another, I am really into vanished worlds as well. (Hello, cosplay! Dressing up is awesome. Recreating lost worlds, equally so.) In addition, it's nice to live in a time, where people can be this weird, and not get, y'know, stoned to death or whatever. I support people's constructed, fictional lives, no matter what fashion, as long as they're not hurting anyone, - and it's great that they've been able to find people of like mind to live with etc.

BUT. They are crazy. tin. hats. Like, I get the desire, but not the 24/7 of it all, you know. Obsession can be taken too far.

Here's the other thing. It's like the male-dom thing in bdsm. Like, I've been known to find it really hot. BUT. in sex! Not in real life, right? Politically I find it to be repugnant and stupid. (Femme-dom too, for that matter, but you know what I mean.) For me, the great thing about recreation of these vanished times, means that we can keep the things we like for play, and lose the things we don't. Also I like running water, the internet, eyeglasses & contact lenses, etc etc.

I just don't know.

fictional: (Default)
You know, it takes a certain amount of chutzpah to call a playhouse The Theatre. There's a certain audacity to the definite article that is unparalleled by lesser determiners.

Anyway, in case you've not heard, what once was lost has now been found. It's really pretty exciting at least for those of us who are Shakespeare geeks. Richard & James Burbage! Will Shakespeare! They demolished it [The Theatre] in the middle of the night, so that they could steal the boards and reuse them to make the Globe - the first English playhouse owned by a company of players. I bet you could write a pretty phenomenal story or play based on the events of that particular evening. They hauled the boards themselves, claiming later that the landlord might own the lease, but, by gum, the theatre itself was theirs!

I love that it's going to still be a working theatre. That is freakin' awesome. The show must go on.

Geek Help

Dec. 11th, 2007 07:47 pm
fictional: (Default)
Hi! As if this week wasn't fucked enough (insurance people think I don't exist! Medical assistants are rude and classist! there's FAKE GRAVITY pulling me in weird directions! I HAVE TWO PAPERS DUE and apparently I need an MRI...) - I seem to have picked up a weird Trojan! I know, I know, those filthy corners of the internet that you have to frequent in order to get the skinny on Satan...

So, I ask for assistance, Oh Ye Mighty Powers of Flist!

When I open IE, I get infinite amounts of popups; at first they were for porn; they have now devolved into ebay ads, verizon ads etc. Then the browser closes by itself for no reason. I have installed IE 7; this did nothing to help. I'm using Firefox now, which seems free of the popups, still has the occasional popup though with much less frequency, but I am concerned about infection in the innards of the machine.

Thoughts? Advice? I am poor and un-techsavvy, and would much appreciate any pearls of wisdom you lot might have to offer...

ETA: Thanks so much to anyone who offered help & advice, especially visitors from [ profile] rm's flist. New Problem: The virus/trojans/malware is preventing me from running any of the setups for the spyware/virus scan etc. that I'm trying to downlad. It's just stopping in the middle. Also, it's giving me fake alerts about spyware that purport to be from Windows, but aren't. I'm beginning to think I'm truly screwed.
fictional: (Default)
off to see Lord of the Rings, for the third time. eep.
damn, i love that movie.

on a different note, sometimes i wish i could just jack this journal into my head, so that i could record all my thoughts when i think them, instead of storing them up and waiting for a convenient time. my brain storage capacity is obviously far too small. i must look into upgrading, because the chances that i'll get my money back are kind of slim.


Jan. 29th, 2002 11:40 am
fictional: (Default)
i have just gotten an evil e-mail worm entitled "my party". grr. the computer tells me that it's been quarantined, and i have visions of the worm locked up, barricaded by sector walls, banging aginst the hard drive prison trying to get out. hey, i never said i was good with computers. or understood them. anyway, i think the problem should be fixed. this is a work computer anyway, but it's still quite annoying.

last night was fun, i had plans to sit down and do my homework and whatnot (why does the phrase "homework" always sound so kindergarten? we didn't even have homework then!)but instead i went down the hill to accompany the Dandelion-Head furniture-store-ward. naturally, it being us, we never made it to the furniture store. or the grocery store. instead, we watched many episodes of buffy the vampire slayer, and ate really good (if expensive) food that we really couldn't afford. i had artichoke soup and chicken satay over wild rice. and ginger beer. mmm. and sour cream deep dish apple pie. ate way too much.
it was great except for the fact that the waitress was tweaking, hard and was thus a little frightening. she kept looking at the Dandelion as if she was going to either devour him, or snort him whole. she could have too, her nostrils were certainly large enough.

anyway it was a pretty good night. which entails that i spend this evening locked in my house doing work. possibly pausing intermittently for cleaning-house breaks.

woo hoo!


fictional: (Default)

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