kethni: (Bullshit)
take a course and then bitch about the tutor :P

In addition the activities in the text book, the additional activities per week, AND the 'writing gym', my tutor has also added this as a tutorial:

1) I want you to stage ROMEO & JULIET in the round, on a proscemium stage, on a thrust stage as a promenade. How do you think it changes the play.

2) NOW, take a favourite film of yours and select a dramatic scene in which something important is revealed. Use a split stage technique in the round or promenade. How does it change the script? How does it effect the dialogue?

Is it me or do both of those sound far more complicated and time consuming than can be justified by the possible learning? Plus, this is a writing course, not a theatre course. (Bearing in mind this is the tutor who told me that drama is not a "genre". Plato would disagree).

Anyway, goodness knows how much time this man thinks people have. I HAVE plenty of time generally but there's no way I have enough to keep up with the tidal wave of activities, even the ones I can see the point of.

Oh dear

Oct. 12th, 2011 02:55 pm
kethni: (Books)
My Advanced Creative writing course started at the weekend and people have started posting things for comment. So far there have been two short extracts, both of which have already been commented on, and one full (short) story which has none.

Possibly because it's awful. The formatting is shot, it makes no sense, and there are completely random chunks of exposition. Gah. It's just awful. Plus the writer already ticked me off by prefacing warning for 'some strong language, (sorry ladies)'.

Sorry ladies? Excuse me while I slip a quid in the swear jar and call you a number of choice epithets.

Anyway, it's terrible. If I start leaving a helpful comment I don't think I'll be able to stop. GAH.

OT: The fact that I can list 'predatory' as a mood gives me the giggles. I don't think I've ever felt 'predatory'. I'm missing out here!
kethni: (Default)

As part of my Children's Literature course I just watched a very brief documentary on a kind of production-line writing of kid's books. A team of people brainstorm an idea for a series (no individual books here apparently) and eventually produce a summary of the plot, the characters, and the themes. The guidance they produce is generally around half the length of the book to be written. So for a 60,000 word book they're getting 30,000 words of guidelines.  Thirty thousand words! That must specify pretty much every character beat and description, every plot point, and probably most of the descriptors.They then have half a dozen writers on their list submit a couple of chapters based on the guidelines and pick one with an 'interesting voice' to write the book.

This is the point I started laughing because, really, now you want your book to have some kind of individual voice? They're written pretty much by committee and the poor writer has zero input into characters, names, plot, or anything other than the mechanics of which words to choose. The guy in charge even admitted that the 'author' of the books is the company, not the person actually writing the words.

Anyway, my course material asked if I was 'shocked' now I'd seen the film and if this would affect my purchasing decisions?

Well, I'm not shocked since children's serials are notoriously formulaic and I already knew of at least one serial where the so-called 'author' is actually a pen name for a dozen or more actual writers. I do find it a little depressing to think of those poor writers who are basically working on a kind of literary production line. Not that creative production lines aren't without precedent, I'm told that a lot of the Italian renaissance paintings had students and employees doing to the background while the master concentrated on the more important parts. But those paintings at least had a controlling mind, a genuinely gifted painter, guiding the work. These committee written books don't even have that.

Would it affect my purchasing decisions? I don't have any children but if I did I suspect I'd be much less likely to buy this kind of thing, purely because I'd snobbishly assume it wouldn't be as good as some book that a children's author has worked and slaved over to perfect.

But, honestly, I'd probably simply be happy to have my child reading SOMETHING. Not every book can be a classic and not every meal is cordon bleu. I'm sure I read masses and masses of trashy books when I was a kid. In fact I'm sure I did. I read all of the  Star Trek: Original Series and Star Trek: Next Generation novels (around 300 or so), as a kid and none of them is any kind of a work of genius I'm sure. Hell when I was a kid I practically inhaled books and particularly series; Discworld, Miss Marple, Hercule Poirot, Sherlock Holmes, Chronicles of Narnia, The Chronicles of Prydain, Lloyd Alexander, and every TV novelisation I could findI wasn't remotely choosy about the quality of books I read and maybe that's where kids score over adults. I read anything that looked a) science fiction, b) fantasy, c) detetective fiction, and when I was a bit older d) a little bit naughty (or even better, a LOT naughty).

Now I don't read nearly as much as I like and I um and ah ridiculously over what I do read. Why? I have no idea. I'm certainly missing out on all sorts of great stuff because I'm finicky. I have a pile of novels to read and what have I been looking at this weekend? Faulkes on Fiction. A non-fiction book about all kinds of interesting fiction books and characters.

So while production line writing isn't likely to produce any classics, and makes me feel bad for children's authors generally, maybe it's not such a bad thing for the children. It's feeding their desire to read and if what they read isn't good quality then it isn't likely to hang around in their imaginations. Junk books win over junk food because they only bloat your bookshelves, not your waist line.


kethni: (Books)

I'm just finishing off my Peter Pan assignment and I'm looking forward to see what my next assignment will be. I've got the following choices: 


In the red corner )


In the blue corner )

I'm thinking of going with option 2, which is about Enid Blyton's work and the importance (or unimportance) of awards.

The essay it mentions, the defence of Enid Blyton, admits that her work isn't generally one that kids keep reading as they grow older. I know I certainly didn't. So I'm wondering if people read Enid Blyton books and if so which ones? I read the Famous Five and the the other kid detective books (even as a child I thought it was weird there were SO many femae characters who desperately want to be boys) along with a few things like the Faraway Tree, and my sister was a hug fan on the Mallory Towers books.

kethni: (Help)
Yup, here I am again banging my head against a brick wall. If anyone could offer any suggestions, thoughts, or point out typos I'd be very grateful.

The question is:

"The fairy tale has become totally institutionalized in Western Society" - Investigate and evaluate this claim with particular reference to Little Red Riding Hood.


Little Red Riding Hood, you a dirty girl )






kethni: (Default)
Hi All.

Thanks so much for all the ideas for my assessment. Some of them I'm thinking might work well as fic :D

This is my assessment for my Creative Writing course. It's the final assignment and worth 50% of my marks. (Next module I'd studying Children's Literature.) 

I'm marked on:

Language - Both clarity and precision of language and to it's creative use: adjectives, metaphors, stylistic flourishes and rhetorical devices. (Rhetorical devices is a catchall for all sorts of things like allusions, analogies, hyperbole, and understatement)

Voice - The creation and sustaining of author's style which might include tone, point of view, dialogue, and observation.

Structure (which I always have trouble with) - Effective organisation of the writing. Balance of showing and telling and appropriate development of the story arc or plot.

Ideas - The content of theme.

Presentation - (another weakness!) Correct spelling and grammar as well as sound editing.

If anyone could offer any thoughts, suggestions, point out typo's or anything else on the following I'd be very grateful!

(I don't have a name yet. I hate names. )


Read more... )
kethni: (Help)

(I finally got an icon for 'help!' since I ask for help so much)

I have my end of course assessment to do and it's 50% of my marks. I need to get started ASAP and for the life of me I cannot think of a single idea.

I only have 2500 words so I can't do anything particularly complicated or with lots of characters.

I'm thinking something about the relationship between a couple of people or possibly a day in the life type thing. But I can't think of any scenarios or themes. If anyone has any ideas for characters, themes, or scenarios I'd be very grateful. [ profile] boudecia7  suggested a clone story which I like the idea of but I'm not sure where to go with it.

Thanks <333


May. 9th, 2010 02:39 pm
kethni: (Default)
My tutor has just reminded us that our end of course assignment, which is due in June 4th, is FIFTY PERCENT of our overall score.

I hadn't realised this! I haven't done any work on it yet! ARGGGGGH!

Also it has to be hand written and sent in the post, which means being posted off around the 1st of June. SHIT!

I am so screwed.

Also, I thought the end of course assignment was 4000 words, but it's only 2500 :( I know it sounds like less is better but not when it comes to writing a complete story.

Waah! Woe is me!
kethni: (Butt)

This is my penultimate assignment for my evvvil Lit course. If anyone has any thoughts, suggestions, typo alerts, or anything else I would be very grateful.



Read more... )



Apr. 18th, 2010 11:40 am
kethni: (Default)

I'm nearing the end of my Creative Writing module and I'm currently doing a chapter on "editing." As part of the activity I'm doing I have to ask a friendly critic or critical friend (critical friend sounds like the worse kind of friend, no?) to read a piece of fiction and comment on it. It can be comments about the grammar, the composition, the dilaogue, character portrayals, pretty much anything. The idea is then that I go back to the piece and use what comments I can to improve the writing.

So below is a piece of fic that I started writing and never completed. I'd really appreciate any comments, but please be gentle :) 

Read more... )
kethni: (Default)

So, one of my activities in my current module is keeping a diary for two weeks. I have to write an entry every day of 100 – 200 words.

But I’m not a diary person,my life if not exciting or clever or interesting. It’s not even especially funny. I can’t really write 100-200 words every day for two weeks on what I had for tea or what I watched on the telly.


Quite why writing a diary if some kind of a creative act I don’t know, especially since fibbing is strictly verboten. (For some reason spellchecker has no trouble with “verboten” despite it being a German word. At least I think it is.)

Can you guys help me out? Ask me about news or movies or SOMETHING. Because I’m all written out.

K <333


kethni: (Default)
Read more... )
kethni: (Default)
For my course homework over the next week, I have to develop 3 or 4 characters 'in depth' with as much detail and as three dimensionally as possible.

I'd really like to be able to use the characters I work on in my fic, so are there any charactersin ongoing serials that you'd really like to see explored more/expanded on? Or other characters introduced? For instance Hiro's Adam in Toy 'Verse or Matt in Echolalia. Or another character in something completely different. 

And, since I'm being really cheeky already, what information is interesting and useful and what's just boring and distracting?

Thank you! <3
kethni: (Default)

Read more... )
kethni: (Default)
A bit of context: part of my exam in October is on theatre and plays. I've had a look at past exam questions and one that keeps popping up is about interpretation ie reimaginings, changing time period, gender of characters, how characters are presented. For instance Shylock in The Merchant of Venice now if often portrayed quite sympathetically but in Shakespeare's time he was a boo hiss villain. In order to get my head around this I'm looking for some viewpoints on how things can be reinterpreted.

So here are my questions, if you were 'remaking' Heroes and could change anything EXCEPT the general plot lines what would you do and why?
Would you change the time period, the tone - make it a sex comedy or a mystery perhaps - would you change the slant on some characters, would you change the race/age/gender of some of the characters? Would  you do something else completely?

What effect do you think those changes would make? If Sylar was a woman would they have shown 'her' going after Molly? If Maya had been a man would 'his' power have been crying? 

I'd really appreciate any thoughts anyone has.  

Thanks <333
kethni: (Default)
Quote from my text book - discussing Pip in Great Expectations:

'...and Pip as deeply connected with both Joe and Miss Haversham in his secret sado-masochistic urges...'

Say what now? I'm the first person to read kinky stuff where it probably shouldn't be but Great Expectations as a book of deep S&M passions wherein Pip is in a love triangle with Joe and Miss Haversham I really can't see.



kethni: (Default)

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