Northern Brights

The Princess Bride; a strange book, but extremely witty and comedic.

The story is told as if written by an S. Morgenstern of an equally fictional land, which Goldman has ‘edited’ for the good parts. Those who’ve seen the film will be familiar with the premise – a father reading to bedbound son (editing for excitement) a tale of excitement and miracles.

Goldman works over a lot of thinking amid his hilarity. The concepts of happy endings, narrative imperative, exaggeration, love, skill and time. If its fairytale preachy, it does it with style, and ultimately comes out like Voltaire’s Candide: the concept that the fast must get old, good looks fade, arguments must arise among lovers and we all must, in time, tend our own gardens.

In other lit interest, after listening to the podiobook Ancestor by Scott Sigler I’ve been listening to some of his other works. I have listened to Earthcore, am listening to Rookie, will listen to Infected and am eagerly awaiting Earthcore 2 : Mt. Fitzroy.

Much like J C Hutchins, he has a talent for seizing on the known, the unknown, the barely conceivable and entirely inconceivable. Also, there is a lot of death, blood, bloody death, deathy blood, all of which coming from the blindspot. Kicking it Stephen King style, the violence is debilitatingly detialed and unpredictable, which is where the real horror comes from.

I’m liking Rookie so far. Its different to Earthcore and Ancestor ( which were monster killers chasing widowers who worked for corporations ) and, quite scarily, nobody has died in 12 episodes. Given that Sigler usually gets in a slaughter or explosion in by chapter 2, this is unsettling. There can only be a massacre on the horizon.

Its still quite violent of course. Its Sigler. And it is about football.

Its the American kind, but on other worlds, played by their inhabitants. I know that sounds terrible, but Sigler seems to be making it not only work, but bloom. Think Remember the Titans meets Star Trek. Usually trying to follow football terms makes me want to gnaw of my own arm, and thats when I can see them on screen. Sigler, however, has succeeded thus far at making come alive as a sport, rather than the usual thing of necessity, happy incident, a montage of the team winning, a bad incident, a montage of the team losing, a near victory, then a hooray.

As with all podcasters, he uses tech to spread the word – blogs, second life, podsafe bands, bonus shows, cross promotion, facebook, etc. The print transition continues, the books becoming available as Sigler has seized a highly loyal fanbase. Much like Mur Lafferty’s impending publicated Playing for Keeps and Matthew Wayne Selznick’s Brave Men Run, a podcasted work doesn’t seem to compromise the print work, but rather creates a fanbase waiting for it such as when Sigler’s print Ancestor came out on April 1st and reached 7th on Amazon’s top bought on that day, by co-ordinated fan power. As with all podcasters, fans become street team promoters, creators of original/complimentary content in the visual and tech arenas. The tight fan community is mirrored in the creator community with seemingly every podcaster reading ‘previously on rookie’, interviewing sigler, doing promos and playing a first chapter or two in their shows.

. . . .

Go Ionath Krakens!


2 Responses to Northern Brights

  1. Revenant says:

    hmmm, Podcasts….

    Many times I’ve been recommended various podcasts and videocasts by various friends of mine. Both real friends and internet friends.

    However, I have never had the patience to subscribe to a podcast, or indeed, listen to many the whole way through. Even ones I’ve somewhat enjoyed. The whole ordeal just doesn’t interest me like it seems to do many other people.

    Of course, there is the exception of my weekly Zero Punctuation fix. Although the style and content of it are so alien to every other podcast and videocast I’ve been exposed too, I can’t really think of it as one.

  2. flannelcrat says:

    I’d recommend something with a mixture of tech/game/science/geek/tv/film/anime/comic/manga news, followed by a thematic roundtable discussion of some general concept from one of the above topics.

    There a lot of podcasts that do that – for you I would recommend only one or two at any one time, at the most, and that you should look through their archives briefly to see if they have anything in the episode titles that you’d be interested in – a review of the ‘Melancholy of Haruhi Suzimiya’, an interview with the author of Diamond Dogs, an advice column on computer building, etc.

    To be honest, I wouldn’t worry about not having the patience with podcasts – you can’t really get invested in them. They’ll disappear, not publish for months, change hands, change purpose, whine, get stars in their eyes, overpublish, crossover, mix, flame each other, etc. Just find a single show, or podcast novel of use to you and you’ll have done well.

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