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Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Bad Writing Makes Good Examples

In order to really appreciate fine foods, you sometimes need to sink your teeth into a really awful, greasy hamburger drenched in ketchup.

In order to really enjoy fine writing (but what is fine writing? I'll get back to that), you sometimes need to read a real turkey.

Read Nick Lowe's hilarious article "The Well-Tempered Plot Device" for an explanation of how bad fiction uses plotting (and pick up a few desperate tricks, in case your plot gets stuck).

And you must read these equally hilarious quotes from the books of Lionel Fanthorpe, the Ed Wood of science-fiction literature. He's not merely bad; he elevates Bad into an artform. (CAUTION: Do not drink anything while reading the quotes!)

2 comments:

Mark said...

Love the Lowe article. I kind of get the feeling he doesn't like Samuel R. Donaldson too much.

A.R.Yngve said...

Yeah. Lowe seems to be saying -- with a wink to the reader -- that plots are more important than characters, realism or even internal logic. He's onto something which I'll write about in a future posting.

-A.R.Yngve