Wriggly hair and geese (was Re: Zinka and Deep Secret)
mechagodscylla at hotmail.com
Sat May 3 13:35:06 EDT 2003
> > Will has bushy hair that wriggles -- I just found that, looking to see
>if he had parents. Was that a DS reference to "wriggly hair" you had in
>Yes, and Dakros' hair as well. I first noticed it in Hexwood, so I'm not
>sure of examples in her other books.
I've always seen the wriggly hair as a dwj touch that comes from her own
hair. Not to say that she is doing that thing where she is her character -
somehow I can't find words for it today... You know when you are reading and
suddenly you realize that the character is the author glorified? I'm trying
to think of examples of this and I think I've usually come across it in
those mainstream bestsellers like Patricia Cornwell books, Mary Higgins
Clark...who else? My husband assures me this is also the case with Tom
Clancy books. (Feeling conscious that I have just betrayed our unfastidious
reading habits - lol! But that's another subject, isn't it?) But I don't
think it is that simple in dwj - or should I say - she seems so much more
self-aware than that, as she doesn't seem to fall into the same pitfalls
that those others I've mentioned do. So I look on it more as a 'touch.'
Adding to the wriggly hair list - Roddy (surely that isn't a spoiler?), the
North people in Dalemark... I looked at my shelf of dwj, but it didn't
further jog my memory.
Maybe I just really like the way DWJ writes waterfowl. Growing up I ran the
dairy and egg industries on our farm (my sister had the pigs and made
considerably more money). The leathery-winged avians in Dark Lord act just
like real geese (I am prejudiced here, I inherited the geese from the people
who leased our property while we were living in Brisbane and they were
evil-minded brutes: geese, not people).
She does fantastic waterfowl doesn't she? I enjoyed your post greatly and
find your growing up experiences fascinating - thank you for sharing that.
:) Her geese (and avians), are so perfect and they have led to long
discussions and tale sharing in our house. When I was very little (2-4),
there was a pond with a bridge down the hill from where we lived, and our
parents liked to take evening walks there. I dreaded it absolutely, because
of the geese. They were terrifying and they always bullied me. I would
cling to my parents legs as the geese hissed and threatened me and my
parents would laugh (stupid adults - completely oblivious = early sling and
arrow of outrageous fortune), but the geese would try to cut me off from
them and chase me. Yuk! While I've never menaced a goose in revenge, it is
ever reassuring to me that I am now much larger than they are. Of course, I
am fooling myself.
Because, as my husband's anecdote revealed to me - size does not matter with
geese. One day he was driving down a country road in an SUV (err, 4-wheel
drive truck) with friends and they came upon a goose sitting right in the
lane. They stopped the car. They honked the horn. The goose rose up, hissed
at them, and settled back down. It wouldn't move for anything. They had to
wait it out until the goose had proved its point and finally moved off to
discover its next victim. Geese! Just last week a bellicose goose
confronted him as he left work and sought to chase him around the parking
lot. Affronted though not unamused by the absurdity of his situation, he
walked deliberately to his car tailed by the hissing beastie. So we've had
further cause to reflect recently on how well dwj writes geese - and I like
that she puts them in because life is like that, but who else writes it??
>As I said before, I find it all very thrilling, and it also relates to the
>sensation of being made to look up and outwards that I mentioned in an
>earlier post. The book is complete in and unto itself, and yet it isn't
>confined by the official 'story'. It reaches out in every other direction -
>there is so much out there, so much to see and know, so many other stories
>going on besides the one(s) you (as reader or character or person) are
>intimately involved with.
Yes! And I enjoyed that other post a lot as well. :) It reminded me of
something I haven't thought of in a long time (such evocative postings you
write). I once tried to come up with a metaphor that would work for me about
what makes some art really better. I thought that art is like, perhaps, a
building. With lesser art, it is a building that less people can get into,
and perhaps fewer rooms with less of interest to be seen there - though
still, much art fascinates some. With better art - it's really accessible
and fascinating and no matter who you are and where you are coming from, you
can go in there and take away something from the experience of being there.
I was thinking in terms of the reader/viewer/listener, but there's another
level, which it seems to me is what you are talking about, where within
dwj's books - the same process seems to be going on inside the work. Ah, so
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