Then I woke one day, and a line came to me. It didn’t slip away this time but stayed put. I followed it, like a path. It led to another, then another. Soon, pieces started lining up in my head, like cabs idling curbside, ready to go where I wanted to take them.
I like this as a description of how it feels when a new project starts to find its form and shape.
“Well-designed products make us feel that someone has been thinking about us, that a nice person took care of the little things for us”
To lay the foundation of human-machine interaction you need to put thought into things and that requires that you put things into thought. This is why most interfaces suck, and most interfaces will continue to suck. No model, method, or tool will change that. Thinking is painful. (…)
Well-designed products do not just save us time, they make us enjoy the time we spend with them. They make us feel that someone has been thinking about us, that a nice person took care of the little things for us.
” I agree with you about the spelling of poo, etc.”
Our early conversations and the revisions Roald made had to do with the shape of the story, the major characters, how the story began, how it ended, and what was missing. One significant change involved two chapters about problems the hero had at school. They were good stories, but I didn’t think they belonged in this book. Roald disagreed, strongly, and we argued about it. That was not fun. Eventually he agreed and the two chapters disappeared, but not forever.
“There isn’t a single, definitive Doctor Who, but a whole bunch of mutually contradictory, but mutually-reflecting, continuities”
It’s only really when [Doctor Who] returns in 2005 that a singular narrative is imposed again. The effect is rather like the way that, after a mass extinction (in this case the extinction of the TV programme), very quickly whole new ecological niches will open up and biodiversity will increase rapidly, before (as in this case) a new apex predator (the new series) comes along and causes another wave of extinctions.
“Consider the near-miss universe where Doctor Who’s spinoff is instead the downright alarming show Hot Cow Rod“
Torchwood itself is a parodic mirror of Doctor Who – its original function was as a decoy name for shipping film of Doctor Who, the name an anagram of ‘Doctor Who’. […] The idea that Torchwood mirrors Doctor Who is telling, as Torchwood is tacitly presented as the answer to the question ‘what happens when the Doctor doesn’t show up.’ They are defenders of Britain, and, like the Doctor, quintessentially Britain, stemming out of a long British tradition and particularly from the iconography of the Victorian era. But where the Doctor is the eccentric gentleman inventor and the old man guarding the gates to fairy, Torchwood is the militaristic ambition of glorious empire.
“The rental period for ‘Barbie – In A Mermaid Tale’ has ended”
“The most interesting part of writing a book is the how of telling that story…”
What is most real is the process, not the written representation, but the writer’s attention to the process of writing. That is what gives a work its vitality, and what gives the reader a heightened awareness, an experience of life.
(On Community) we did this thing (we called) ‘spit drafting’, which was basically (that) you’re writing a script, you have the outline, you know what’s supposed to happen in the scene, but you’re having a hard time actually writing out those scenes, you’re having a hard time getting the jokes…
So instead of writing dialogue, you type it out and say… ‘I am in a fight with you right now’… ‘I have a response to you fighting’… ‘Well, I think you’re a jerk because you wanted to eat a pastrami sandwich and I didn’t.’ You’re getting the shape of the scene and you’d write it about to the length of how much that scene would take up in your script.
Sounds like a fun way of breaking through first draft paralysis. Also, Ganz admits that the Community writers used to swear in their spit drafts ‘like crazy’, which sounds fun too.
(George) Lucas and his crew left the Lars Homestead set to rot after (filming on Star Wars) wrapped more than 35 years ago. In that time, the domed shell of the homestead sat unprotected from the desert winds, its location known to only a few locals. That is, until recently, when Luke’s erstwhile home was rediscovered by New York-based photographer Rä di Martino.
Imagine how excited we’ll be in 35 years time when a hard disk archivist discovers the digital remains of Jar Jar Binks.
“The first time looking at my website in Internet Explorer”
My micro life
My micro life: 6:24pm, 10 May 2013
My daughter has brought home a school reader called Mum At Work — an admirable documentary piece which is pleasingly recognisable to us, featuring as it does a main character who works hard, solves problems, and has the rightful respect of her colleagues.
I now feel obliged to write a companion volume, Dad Writes Books At Home — less a documentary, more in the manner of an exposé, featuring as it does a main character who deletes and retypes the same sentence all day, often in his underpants, and who is mental.
“The first televised (Doctor Who) story since ‘The Web Planet’ to feature no humanoid characters other than the regulars”
Fundamentally, a bunch of aliens milling about to ‘Tainted Love’ just isn’t that strange a sight for a 2005 television audience.
“The story of the book as technology must be told honestly, without triumphalism or defeatism”
Selling a book, print or digital, turns out to be far from the only way to generate revenue from all the remarkable cultural activity that goes into the creation and dissemination of literature and ideas.