// archives

of clockwork men

This category contains 27 posts

The Centre

I can’t talk about Jo without giving the game away, so beware, spoilers follow. She defies easy classification and compression into a simple set of paragraphs. She was the second character to appear in the first draft, sketched out years ago, and she’s largely unchanged since those first lines.
Jo is amnesia. She’s the moments we’d [...]

Character studies

Trying to avoid spoilers. Really.
It was suggested last week that I talk a little about the three (or two) characters at the heart of the story. I’ve spent a good few days thinking my way through overarching structures, devices and storytelling motifs, and have, truth be told, not dwelt on the core of the story [...]

A working bibliography

An easy one, as I’m out of the house today at 7.30, so this is going to be written quickly. This is not the last entry in this sequence, but it is a useful place to pause, take stock of where this project came from, and start to think about the creative process for a [...]

Why nothing connects anymore

In another of his comments (I think it might be the same one, but I’m not going to check right now) Baldur asked about hypertexts and digital writing. I half-addressed that yesterday morning, with the Tinderbox remark, but there’s more to my decision not to run with hyperlinks than that.
(Hedging My Bets Moment. I may [...]

We call upon the author to explain

Thoughts on size, and whether it matters.
I’m gong to cheat here, ever so slightly, and not necessarily address comments as they come in. Instead, as there’s an order to these short entries (insofar as they’re written out as titles and notes in a file here) I’m going to address points from comments as they come [...]

Writing backwards, and upside-down

A novel is not a novel when it’s published online, for free and in bits. I’m not being pejorative here, but it isn’t. It’s a new thing. It might behave like a novel, and even be conceived as one, but there are some grammars of writing that, in my experience (see, I have experience now), [...]

Film, Text and Cut-Ups

Here’s a thing. After spending four days (and most of four nights) shooting digital video sequences that were integral to understanding aspects of the story (you need to see Daniel move and talk, for example, or the nature of who he is, which is never really addressed in the text, is completely missing), editing them [...]

Reading, and Digital Literacy

One of the most interesting aspects of the un-Launch on the 16th was the presence of a reading audience in the same room as me. I wrote this with a solitary reader in mind, trying to replicate the reading experience I had with, for example, Gene Wolfe’s Book of the New Sun (although I’m nowhere [...]

Form, Content and Shape

It’s a quarter past six in the morning, and I have a cup of strong coffee. As that’s how a good deal of this project was written, it seemed appropriate to start thinking about the overall shape and structure that way too. I’ve discussed the form and content connection at some length, although I suppose [...]

A Novel Experiment, and a Tube Mystery

It’s been a while since I used this blog regularly, which has been entirely due to Secret Project #1, which officially finished last night at the Wellcome Trust in London. I’m still a little wiped from the last few days and the drive back, and my head is buzzing with ideas and possibilities. I’m going [...]