01 January 2004

'Tis the season for top ten lists. The top five reasons I'm not doing any top ten lists are:

  • The top ten books I read this year were not published in 2003. Well, one might have been. I could go and look but I'm too lazy.
  • The top ten comics I read this year were mostly collected editions of stuff not published in 2003. Except 1602, but it's not finished yet, so how can I comment?
  • The top ten songs I listened to were not released in 2003. In fact, I don't think any of them were even released in this decade. Shows you how well I keep up with pop culture.
  • I didn't watch ten new TV shows in 2003, or even ten TV shows that had new episodes in 2003.
  • I can't think of anything else that would make a remotely interesting top ten list.

    I will, however, make a few resolutions.

  • This year, I will revise The Secret Common-Wealth (that's January's project).
  • I will finish writing White Foxes, Full Moon.
  • I will finish writing Vinland Stories.
  • I will complete at least three more issues of Fey.
  • I will send out more stories.
  • I will revise Fox Point Dragon and send it to publishers.
  • I will revise Jenny's Troll and send it to publishers.
  • I will work very hard on Three Sisters.
  • I will look for an agent.
  • I will occasionally go outside to remind myself that there is a world.

    I think that's enough for one year. Check back at the end of 2004 and see how I did.

    Meanwhile, in reading land, I am enjoying Sherlock Holmes immensely. I finished The Sign of Four. Like in A Study in Scarlet, Doyle takes great pains to explain his culprit's motivations. Also, the culprit was wronged and seeking revenge, though this time he was already a murderer and a thief when he was double-crossed. I'm now in the thick of the short stories in The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes. Did you know Holmes was outsmarted by a woman? I get the impression that Doyle had a rather higher opinion of women that many men of his day (but I could be reading things that aren't there).

    ". . . for strange effects and extraordinary combinations we must go to life itself, which is always far more daring than any effort of the imagination." ~Holmes to Watson in "The Red-headed League"

    Truth is stranger than fiction, in other words. This same idea is repeated later in the story, in a more complex manner. This is one thing I've always tried to impress on my students when I get the chance to teach (and one thing they often don't believe right away). I even wrote an article on it.
    I trust that I am not more dense than my neighbours, but I was always oppressed with a sense of my own stupidity in my dealings with Sherlock Holmes. Here I had heard what he had heard, I had seen what he had seen, and yet from his words it was evident that he saw clearly not only what had happened but what was about to happen, while to me the whole business was still confused and grotesque. ~Dr Watson in "The Red-headed League"
  • No comments: