Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Finn Harvor and the screen-novel

Well, well. Finn Harvor has an interesting take on the crisis (Crisis? What crisis?) which afflicts literary publishing.

Finn has a blog (No! Oh yes.) and its title is The Screenplay-Novel Manifestos. Like many a literary type, Finn goes in for metaphors, and the one he chooses here is Katrina. So, in part one of the specific posts entitled the Screen-novel Manifestos, he (I assume Finn is a he) sets out his response to the crisis: it is develop new ways of thinking, and, possibly, new -- or newish -- art forms:
We will try to anticipate the next storm! Why not new forms, new techniques? Perhaps the levees and break-waters can be strengthened! And so we will do our best, we writers of a literature that seems impractical! We will attempt to be -- well, we attempt to be novel! We will write books that read like screen-plays! We will use pictures, drawings, unveiled autobiography! But please, please ... listen to us as we speak: a moment of indulgence... a small gesture of understanding....
We are not nobodies! We want to build another house to live in!
We want to keep living!!!
Well, this is all very intriguing, if not 100% per cent original. (Don't ask me who it reminds me of, because the old memory is not what it was, but I know I've seen similar stuff somewhere -- proposals for a mulitmedia novel or some such.) And it will be interesting to see what emerges.

My only comments so far are that the blog still has a few technical teething problems. The excerpts from the screenplay-novel 'The Runner' don't come out right in Internet Explorer -- they show the html. And although the script looked OK in Mozilla at first, it also slipped back into html mode when I clicked back and forth on various posts. So something ain't right somewhere (I suspect). And then there are a couple of Stills without Scripts (i.e. photographs) which just haven't come out right at all. The tonal values are all wrong. Unless, of course, one of the revolutionary aspects of this new art form is that you're not supposed to make out what it's all about.

However, early days no doubt. All revolutions need an oil-can at the start.

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