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of clockwork men

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 few mornings, rather than structure and formal elements.

(Students! Always put your bibliography at the end, and include full publication details, like I’m not doing here..)

anovelexperiment started in some ways as a means of exploring the language of storytelling that William Gibson describes in ‘Pattern Recognition’. Footage, seeded online and distributed in no particular order. There are traces of that intention in the project still, but the first thing I noticed when I started thinking about this entry is how far I’d moved from that initial intention. I’ll revisit it at some stage.

Importantly, it’s worth pointing out that what Gibson described was what might have become the Alternate Reality Game movement. For my money, he didn’t predict them, or shape their origins, rather he put something into the aether that was picked up and run with, in largely a completely different direction (something that has happened with his work before).

What else?

I’ve covered B S Johnson and Mark Danielewski elsewhere, so let’s leave it as read that they’re in the mix. Denis Wheatley too.

Last Year at Marienbad’. Alain Resnais and Alain Robbe-Grillet. If you think the reading experience in this project was weird, and difficult, then don’t go near Marienbad. It’s stunning though, and well worth a look if you want to see cinema (and the screenplay) in a completely new way.

La Jetée’. Chris Marker. Which is pretty evident, when you get the to the sections that take place on the pier, but it’s done in a slightly different way here, and has a completely different meaning.

Wyndham Lewis’ ‘The Childermas’. An odd thing to throw into the pot, but I read it for the first time while I was writing an earlier draft, and the notion of ‘where we go when we die’ stayed with me, and found it’s way into Daniel’s memories of in-between.

Steven Hall’s ‘The Raw Shark Texts’. Because it’s clever and beautifully written, and I wish I’d had the idea of unchapters first. The detail that went into the distribution of those pieces, and the impact they have on the novel is staggering, and exactly what I’m talking about when I suggest publishers have to think out of the box. That’s why Steven got sent a print, and an SD card. Hi Steven.

John Clute’s ‘The Darkening Garden’. Which is a collection of essays, but if anyone wants to learn how to think about horror in a new way, then beg or borrow a copy. It’s out of print, sadly. Or email Clute and tell him it’s wonderful and that he should find a way to make it available again.

Jorge Luis Borges’ ‘Tlön, Uqbar, Orbis Tertius’. Much more important than ’The Garden of Forking Paths’ to interactive narrative, in my humble, but quite well informed opinion.

And the rest?

David Lynch’s ‘INLAND EMPIRE’ (he insists on it being in capitals), Chuck Palahnuik’s ‘Rant’, Ballard’s ‘The Atrocity Exhibition’, Shields’ ‘Reality Hunger’ and more. Loads more, but the above are the books and films that stayed in my head.

Tomorrow, I might take a break. Or I might not, we’ll see.


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