Notes from New Sodom

... rantings, ravings and ramblings of strange fiction writer, THE.... Sodomite Hal Duncan!!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Busy Busy Busy

While I beaver away on Assault! On Heaven! and leave this blog with tumbleweed rolling through it, it's perhaps ironic that this whistling emptiness is one of the things for which I'm nominated for a Last Bird Drink Head Award, for Gentle Advocacy (to which at least one comment has been, "Gentle?!") Anyway, yes, that's swellegant news (albeit last week's) so yay! And congrats to all the other nominees too, of course.

In other news, anyone who liked the "Rules for New Writers" posts (I'll try and get some of the other rules covered properly when I can, I swear,) may well be interested in this interview I just did over at Creative Writing Now:

Actually, I don't think of them as rules for writers to follow so much as rules of how it all works that you want to get your head round. Like, "POV [Point of View] is not a communal steadicam," is really a summation of the inherent differences between written and cinematic/televisual media, and the differences within written narratives between the omniscient narrator and multiple third person limited, the problems that emerge when you muddle them.

So, rules five to seven basically set out a series of relationships between these aspects of narrative – voice, character, action and setting – that it will stand you in good stead to understand. As I put it: voice makes character; character makes action; action makes setting. That's not to say that voice is required to create character, mind, or that you can't effectively conjure setting with pure description in which nothing happens, in which the nearest you come to activity is the movement of an omniscient narrator's roving eye. What I mean is simply that imbuing a narrative with voice automatically conjures the POV character via that voice, that action will read more effectively as action the more it is presented not just as activity but as activity that has import for your characters, and that setting really comes alive when it's presented to the reader through that activity, when the character is engaging with it...

That is all. For now.

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Wednesday, September 08, 2010

New BSC Review Column

I’m not sure I’m the most logical person to invite to speak at an arts festival in Tallinn on the theme of “Would you love a robot?” But the invite came in, and I’m game for anything, so what the fuck, I figured; I’m sure I can think of something to say. And never one to let my opinionation dissipate into the ether, I thought I might as well share it with you all too...


Tuesday, September 07, 2010

From Bar to Bar Interview

But as the swirl caused by the change of reality settled down, I saw myself at a desolate scene. The trees were so tall and tightened it was impossible to tell whether there was a sky above them or not. Thorny bushes fought for space with trunks and roots. And there were howls, snarls and roars not too far away.

I was looking for Hal Duncan, but I was afraid to call him. I feared my shouting would draw the attention of the savage animals that were fighting for space close by.

I rubbed my arms, trying to drive off the shivering. The air was heavy, hot and dense. There was no smoke, but I could feel it, tenuous, in the air. I controlled the looming fear and moved on, trying not to stumble and fall.

I walked no more than three meters.

In the middle of a dense foliage I was trying to overcome, there was a man with a crazy look and bearing a club. He lifted it above his head and was about to strike a powerful blow on me when he froze. We stood there, static. Facing each other.

It was Hal Duncan, for Heaven’s sake.