(OTish) Re: Q. about Fanfiction

Sally Odgers sodgers at hotnet.net.au
Mon Apr 16 13:42:38 EDT 2001

 it's like
>trying to consolidate a recurring dream that is being presented to me in
>parts; parts that, I suspect, will never make a whole.

That's exactly it! Melissa and Jacob and others on this list often put
something in words I hadn't thought of, but which ring very loud bells for
me. This is another of those bellringing times. I find something new and
more complex in DWJ's best books every time I reread them, and it's a quite
different experience from rereading other old favourites. I think its
because DWJ distils the elements she borrows, and blends them seamlessly.
Other authors who borrow use ideas that juxtapose awkwardly together leading
to a distorting effect. It's like certain books that use talking animals
without absorbing the way animals *are*. Even sizes distort when you
consider the relative sizes of a mouse and a horse. CS Lewis got around this
by including a creation scene (MN) in which small animals such as mice grew
larger while elephants etc grew smaller.  He also reflected animal nature
quite nicely in the tones of voice he gave the different creatures.

DWJ doesn't go in for talking animals (except Derk's) but she does reflect
the way animals *are* without distortion.

The Shifters series is another set of books where talking animals retain
their essential nature without being used in a satirical way.

Has this got anything to do with the discussion on hand? Probably not. After
all, it's 3.41 a.m. and I'm meant to be finding copyright details for songs
of WW2


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