February 12th, 2007

comics invisibles king mob

more horrible troof

[00:52] matociquala: okay, should I be creeped out that I can make a fairly convincing conspiracy theory case that the TV show I have been pimping to all and sundry is FBI public safety propaganda?
[00:53] katallen: hee
[00:53] matociquala: Although man, it would have to be the smartest propaganda ever.
[00:54] matociquala: But I gotta tell you, I bet this show has 90% of its viewers checking their locks, changing their passwords, and putting stickies over their webcams
[00:54] leahbobet: heee.
[00:54] katallen: ::grins::
[00:54] matociquala: And then there's the public education aspect.
[00:54] matociquala: "No, actually, THIS is what most Satanists are like."
[00:54] matociquala: "And they're pretty harmless."
[00:55] matociquala: "Also, the monsters live next door and look just like you, and the cops rarely arrive in time."
[00:55] matociquala: "Furthermore, please don't fuck up your children so severely that they grow up to be cannibals and we have to put them down."
[00:55] matociquala: "Love, the BAU."
[00:56] matociquala: P.S.
[00:56] katallen: ::sniggering out loud::
[00:56] matociquala: We here at the FBI are better and smarter and faster than you are.
[00:56] matociquala: We're watching.
[00:56] matociquala: So don't.
[00:56] matociquala: P.P.S.
[00:56] matociquala: THIS MEANS YOU, CIA.
[00:57] katallen: hee
[00:58] katallen: okay, that was even an entire episode
[00:58] matociquala: Two episodes
[00:58] katallen: you're right
[00:58] katallen: ::giggles::
[00:58] matociquala: It's FBI propaganda.
[00:58] matociquala: Media manipulation
[00:58] matociquala: ...I approve.
[00:58] katallen: shush... see that's what I mean by breaking it
writing whiskey devil

Stage five of page proofs: resignation

Apparently, we are doing these out of order.

In any case, I just cracked myself the heck up. I had forgotten the scene where Christian shows up for the costume party in Hell dressed up as...


(I wonder how many people will notice, since I didn't actually name the character...)

It's nice when a throwaway bit in a book still works to make you happy two years later. And it worked extra good, because I had forgotten, so I had to pause and figure out, what the heck is he supposed to be dressed as? And the penny dropped, and then I laughed and laughed.

Page 245. And they said that Rock would never die....

Also, the book really does get evil* at about page 230. I wonder if I will ever learn a plotting style that isn't reliant on 200 pages of careful domino placing before the landslide at the end? Because really, the beginning of this thing could be pacier. Even after three revisions, trying to punch it up, the beginning could be pacier.

But it's as pacy as I could get it, being me.

I guess becoming accepting of one's flaws as a writer is just one of those things that comes with mature wisdom.** I still don't have to like it, though. Maybe I'll figure that out, one of these lifetimes.

In other news, the morning sunbeam has reached my working chair. (aka THE BIG CHAIR.) Can't... give... up. Can't... pass... out.

*In a good way.

**It's a... feature. And I can offer you a good deal on this bridge....
bear by san

to be an artist means never to avert one's eyes

They're all talking about urban fantasy, othering, marginalization, liminal spaces, and all kinds of interesting things.

And I'm working on the page proofs for Whiskey & Water, which is an urban fantasy dealing with, among other things, othering, marginalization, liminal spaces, and...

...but that would be telling.

Holly's point, linked above, that the liminal spaces are where the magic lies is very well made. And specifically, interestingly, fantasy has often been about transformation, and about journeys outside the mundane. Personally, I'm not fond of the romanticization of anything--the romanticization of "normalcy" inevitably leads either to hypocrisy or exclusion/oppression. Because normalcy isn't, of course. And the romanticization of trauma leads to...


We all know that guy.

Exhausting, isn't he?

But the thing is, by tradition, magic is the liminal. It is the numinous, the transcendent. It is the thing that is not a part of our everyday existence. if it was, we wouldn't call it magic. And urban fantasy is often the narrative of the disconnect, the intrusion of the numinous or liminal into everyday existence.

It's comforting, of course, to imagine that this transformative experience will be positive. Traditionally, this has not always been so. These days, we've transferred that original narrative, the one in which the intrusion is a negatively transformative experience, to the horror genre. The monster comes upon us, and so we are destroyed.

But the other experience, the exalting one--frequently, in our modern narratives, that falls upon someone marginalized.

I think is some ways this is a reaction to societal disempowering of such persons--art is about inversion, after all. The mighty brought low, the humble raised high. And in some ways because it's easy to plot an upward arc for somebody who starts in the gutter.

And to be frank, there is a romance there. Freedom from responsibility. I mean god, this get up go to work pay the bills thing is a grind. And of course it's nice to subvert the dominant paradigm. The valium fifties is still out there. Lurking. And the counterculture is a necessary thing.

But, on the other hand... the counterculture, for all its romance, is not the whole world either.

On the other kind, there's a homely kind of magic, too. The magic of stew pots and heart fires. I think the best street-people magic book I have ever read is Megan Lindholm's Wizard of the Pigeons, which is more subtle and honest than most... and is aware of this distinction, and inclusive of it.

And of course, no one book can do all things.

No verdict.

Just some thinking.