Tuesday, July 25, 2006

A Little Musing, and then News 2 Use

A Little Musing...

Over at Romancing The Blog, there's a discussion of the Fear of Being Derivative. Which prompted me to ponder the difference between ripping off, and paying homage to, favorite works. Which led to me making a list of the books that most influence my writing style.

For an aspiring romance author, they're pretty weird. Weird enough to make me wonder what genre I really do fit in.

The two novels that have most influenced my style and goals as an author are

  • Imagica by Clive Barker

  • Hannibal by Thomas Harris
  • .

    Which cheered me up, because how many romance readers are also Clive Barker readers? Man, I can derive from him all day long and no one will notice. Mwah ha ha.

    I'm interested in finding out who influences you, and whether those influence fall in the genre you write.

    NEWS 2 USE!

    What's Our Response to Take Me To Your Leader?

    Exopoliticians create strategies for how to deal with potential extraterrestrial contact. The discipline of exopolitics is maligned in the UFO researcher community -- unfairly maligned, according to UFOlogist R. Lee.

    Without a plan to meet ETs, our reaction might be chaotic, disjointed and dangerously uncoordinated. "Which will either cause them [ETs] to be disappointed in us, and we’ll lose out on technology and other wondrous things, or at least, experiencing the thrill of interacting with aliens from outer space. Either that, or it will make it easier for them to eat us for lunch."

    Oh boy, something else I'd like to be, if I ever grow up!

    Potential Exopoliticians Take Note of This!

    The Astrophysics and Space Science Journal has published research purporting to show that the "blood rain" experienced by provinces in Southern India during 2001 contain living microbes from outer space. The microbes reproduce without DNA and in conditions known to be hostile to life on Earth.

    If further research confirms the early hypothesis, the theory of panspermia may get a boost as extraterrestrial life is at last confirmed.

    Neat and all, but might the consequences be? Read on…

    Take Over the World for A Half Million and Care/Feeding of Grad Student

    Current official assessments suggest that bioterrorism would only be possible with the backing of state-level entities. Technology writer Paul Boutin headed into the lab to see just how expensive and difficult it would be to synthesize and spread a deadly virus.

    His findings: "Every hands-on gene hacker I polled during my project estimated they could synthesize smallpox in a month or two. I remember that game from my engineering days, so I mentally scale their estimates using the old software manager's formula: Double the length, then move up to the next increment of time. That gives us two to four years—assuming no one has already started working."

    And think what they might be able to do with alien microbes? Or are the alien microbes the first salvo from an unfriendly ET?


    Christine said...

    Influences? Boba Fett. A fair amount of music across a broad spectrum. The pictures on video game magazines (They're intense!). Things like the Venture Brothers, Supernatural, ancient magical systems and myths. Books? So many. I think it's a question of head space. Where am I, and what's influencing me at that moment in time. When I'm writing, different things contribute based on the work. Now, it's all the books I ever read with a solitary, reckless, intelligent/bookish hero who was wronged but party to that wrong, who exists on the edge looking in. Talk about derivitive: Raistlin in The D&D books (Can't recall the names); Boba Fett; Rochester from Jayne Eyre. I was reading some of the controversy: it seemed to get hung up on names and conventions of naming things. There's nothing new under the sun, or any ten given suns of your choice: what's new is what spin you place. What I find dirivitive in romance is the spin is virtually the same with some authors and books, or so it seems lately.

    Christine said...

    Oh, just read that and it sounds like I'm bashing romance. I meant to say what I find dirivitive in SOME romance I've read lately. I'm a romance junky and love the genre.

    SpecRom Joyce said...

    Christine --

    It isn't bashing to note a weakness and hope to improve upon it. I concur with your observation, as I've had trouble finding anything lately published that's powerful and moving, and not just in the specrom genres.

    I've really hit a reading low lately, and the subject at Romancing the Blog really resonated.