From the sublime to the…uh…

Public-service announcement: Having a Dickens novel direct-downloaded into your brain – via iTunes audiobook – every day, pretty much all day, for a week now, can do very odd things to your sensibilities. Even if that novel is only Little Dorrit, which recently edged out David Copperfield as my Most Favourite Dickens Novel Ever (yes, I’m that kind of killjoy. I also like Mansfield Park better than Emma.)

Seriously. Besides developing the most extraordinary lilting edge to your heretofore flat Canadian accents (“Oh, I say, really, eh?”)  your thought process starts to lilt dangerously as well. All Victorian fiction has that effect on me, actually. After a bit you’re going round your humdrum daily routine in a fever dream of a better and brighter world, spouting off the most amazingly eccentric speeches out of a sort of heroic allegiance to high colour.

As longtime readers especially can be in no doubt, this all has a very bad effect on my already flourishing (or more likely Flora-ing) prose style. With great anxiety I anticipate the day when these journal entries will be so ‘entirely convoluted’ as to seem ‘positively incomprehensible’. “Oh, I hardly think,” that’s another winner. A regular sprightly young Barnacle, that’s me.

Which brings us round – in a sort of spiral, like those kiddie slides – to the whole ‘reprinting the novel here this week’ thingy. I am still working on it behind-the-scenes, honest. In fact, I’m actually excited about it all over again – another Dickensian side-effect; the most inconsequential of obsessions suddenly take on charm and colour when filtered through his worldview.
The thing is, in between ‘doses’, I’ve also been following the budding literary career of my friend
[info]rj_anderson, a pastime I highly recommend if you haven’t taken it up already, and among other good things have noticed that she keeps her chapters safely tucked up behind a friends-only facade. This had not struck me previously, but after some thought is now recommending itself as a comfortable idea. Poor and flakey as my efforts may be, they’re mine, and I’d rather they stay that way.

So here’s my alternate concept: if the readership is interested, as demonstrated by comments to that effect, I’ll investigate a similar setup to Syn’s. Meanwhile, I’ll putter along putting that outline together…and picking up tips from the master. I think I already have a great new way to handle requests from random supervisors, if only in my imagination: “Look here! Upon my soul, you mustn’t come into the place saying you want to know, you know!”


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