Monday, 11 July 2011

World-Building Reviews: A Serial

This is just sort of a quick update style of thing wherein I lay out a future project that I am ponderating on running on this here blog what I am attempting to maintain in a live and updated form, don'tcherknow.

Alright, so...

What I am fixin' to set out to do is write a series of reviews of books and films, both within and without the wider genre of speculative fiction (sci-fi, fantasy, et cetera), centred around world-building. That is, rather than endeavour to write traditional literary reviews I am going to pen a few where I take a scalpel and a hatchet to the particular "setting" of a given piece, both in terms of its physical reality and in a more abstract, thematic sense. This approach will of course prove most fruitful with regard to the abovementioned speculative fiction genres, where "world-building" is a very concrete and readily distinguished aspect of the form. However, I think it may well prove interesting to employ the same method of analysis to, for instance, Tolkien's Middle-Earth and the "world" created by the fabulous set of events that constitute Thomas Pynchon's The Crying of Lot 49. Anyhow, this is just to alert people to the impending calamity that is the first part in this proposed review serial.

The first literary entity I am going to have a stab at world-buildingly critiquing and reviewing is that of the first instalment in China Miéville's celebrated Bas-Lag series, namely the steampunk/weird fiction book Perdido Street Station. So, there's something to look forward to in the coming days!

Your faithful servant,
Charlie O. Johansson

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