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Ray Bradbury
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Yet another example of why literature and I were a poor match in High School (maybe still are). I only remember trudging through Dandelion Wine and thinking it a poor man's To Kill A Mockingbird. It's like how Brave New World and Handmaid's Tale were ruined for me by 1984.

*Heavy sigh* It was all about what the books were "about" back then. Another book about a bleak future, another book about coming of age in the summer in a small town. I swear I haven't broken all the way out of that yet.

I'm persuaded that I need to give Bradbury another shot.

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Posts: 3347 | Location: Sidhe | Registered: December 09, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Alrighty, here it is:

My theory on Rice and Bradbury's likenesses:

DiD - You know too much about each of the two authors in actual life. That taints the viewpoint, in my mind.

I mean, if you just looked at the books, and didn't know anything about either of them...I mean, just the flow and rhythm of the words, the powerful imagery, the presence of magic and the supernatural.

Ya'll are looking at this whole thing far too literally. When you deal with me, don't look at anything in BLACK and WHITE. Think in colors nobody's ever seen before, ones that only exist inside your own head, and then we'll understand each other a little better.

I mean, forget sentence structure and adjectives. It's analyzing literature like that that destroys its essence. Poetry and books just need to exist for their own sake. If you have to jutisfy them, all the beauty and freedom's gone and away before you can blink.

Yes, I know I'm rambling. But maybe that'll help. If not, screw it - I'm so tired I actually went onto our terrace and was really confused about why my computer was not out there. Seriously - I am a wreck right now. Gimme a night's rest, and maybe I'll be able to post something a little more coherent. Probably not - I'm always hard to understand - but maybe.

No snide comments, thanks.

-Xeno
*The Sleepy Dwarf Dork*

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Posts: 32 | Location: Texas | Registered: May 06, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Okay, I specifically mentioned the rhythm of words and the flow of sentences.

Rice: Elizabethan/Victorian. Poetic, yes, but in a very Alexander Pope kind of way.

Bradbury: Bradbury. Postmodern jazz funk bizarre mudluscious word combinations, his whole own bag baby.

If you can see similarities in the rhythms of these authors, more power to you, and, barkeep, give me two of what Xenocide Isis is having, but these are two very different authors.

"You think there are the good people and the bad people. You're wrong, of course. There are, always and only, the bad people. But some of them are on different sides."
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Posts: 48716 | Location: Concord, NH, USA | Registered: July 20, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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And I'm sick to death of people saying that analyzing literature is a bad thing. Analyzing literature badly, that's a crime, but when you read a book, you're analyzing it. That's the nature of the word "analyze." That I, or someone else, might have the vocabulary to speak of particular aspects of that analysis, or that I allow biography to inform that analysis, doesn't mean that the analysis is a bad thing.

So, Bradbury and Rice aren't alike in theme, background, content, word rhythm, writing style, process or mileu. That's not analysis, that's just the plain facts, ma'am.

"You think there are the good people and the bad people. You're wrong, of course. There are, always and only, the bad people. But some of them are on different sides."
- Lord Vetinari
 
Posts: 48716 | Location: Concord, NH, USA | Registered: July 20, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by Dweller in Darkness:
And I'm sick to death of people saying that analyzing literature is a bad thing. Analyzing literature _badly_, that's a crime, but when you read a book, you're analyzing it. That's the nature of the word "analyze." That I, or someone else, might have the vocabulary to speak of particular aspects of that analysis, or that I allow biography to inform that analysis, doesn't mean that the analysis is a bad thing.

So, Bradbury and Rice aren't alike in theme, background, content, word rhythm, writing style, process or mileu. That's not analysis, that's just the plain facts, ma'am.

"You think there are the good people and the bad people. You're wrong, of course. There are, always and only, the bad people. But some of them are on different sides."
- Lord Vetinari


I enjoyed the first three (I think they were the first three: Interview, LeState, Queen) as interesting stories.

I think we can (most of us) agree that it isn't bad to analyze literature. But it also isn't bad to enjoy a story, whatever complexity, subtlety or cleverness is or isn't in the telling (or inherent to the tale).

George R R Martin is another. He doesn't write so well - and knows nothing of subtlety, certainly, at least not in terms of style - but he spins a good yarn.

I guess I'm not disagreeing with anyone, which is sort of dull. I don't remember how Bradbury writes at all. But I'm sure I've said this to people, at least about movies: You're over-analyzing. Which really is to say, "If you analyze this much you won't enjoy the movie. If you stop analyzing you might. This is not to be analyzed, just enjoyed." (This, most recently, in response to some joyless sod who was explaining that the Blade movies weren't good films! Smile )

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Posts: 3347 | Location: Sidhe | Registered: December 09, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Xenocide Isis made an empirical statement: Bradbury and Rice are comparable. I approached the statement empirically. Was there something wrong with that?

"You think there are the good people and the bad people. You're wrong, of course. There are, always and only, the bad people. But some of them are on different sides."
- Lord Vetinari
 
Posts: 48716 | Location: Concord, NH, USA | Registered: July 20, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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No. Nothing in my post was intended to dispute anything in your post. As I said, I have no idea how similar the two authors are, I'm not saying peep about that. I was responding to your general frustration with people poo-pooing analysis by suggesting that sometimes we enjoy things that don't stand up to it, as it goes with my personal feelings toward the three Anne Rice novels mentioned. I suppose when something trite is dear to us, we tend to react with horror when someone starts to deconstruct it.

Not to put words in anyone's mouth. XI doesn't seem to consider Anne Rice trite. And I don't have strong enough feelings to react with horror to anything said about her. But start to break down Tolkien's prose and I'm running away as fast as possible. Smile

Did I just say "poo-pooing", by the way?

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*smiles* Yes, you did.

That's what I meant when I talked about analyzing literature properly. Just reading a book is analyzing it. Not necessarily breaking it down into bits and evaluating, but in the sense of "to study or determine the nature and relationship of the parts of by analysis." That is, your analysis might only consist of, "Do I enjoy this story?" but that's still analysis.

"You think there are the good people and the bad people. You're wrong, of course. There are, always and only, the bad people. But some of them are on different sides."
- Lord Vetinari
 
Posts: 48716 | Location: Concord, NH, USA | Registered: July 20, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by Cuchullain:
Yet another example of why literature and I were a poor match in High School (maybe still are). I only remember trudging through Dandelion Wine and thinking it a poor man's To Kill A Mockingbird.


Ehhh... Tequila Mockingbird was okay, but I can't understand why everyone likes it-- too normal. Dandelion Wine, which I read first, is how childhood should be, darn it.
And I read F 451 before reading 1984, which I read long before reading Brave New World. Each is a very different dystopia in tone and content-- Bradbury is making a cultural point and presupposes some escape, Orwell is giving us a picture of "perfect" facism, and Huxly was making some semi-coherent technological points.

One note about F451: though its unique in style, the actual plot shows up in lots of other Bradbury stories, often ones that are much more fantastic. I like one where all the old horror characters make a last stand on the Moon... (or was it Mars?)...

See you, space cowboy.

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"Shared pain is lessened, shared joy is increased, and thus do we refute entropy."-- Spider Robinson

http://lon.blogspot.com -- Its a slightly less eloquent me.

Until Joel Schumacher directs Spider-Man 3, Make Mine Marvel!
 
Posts: 16135 | Location: Sydney, Australia | Registered: June 26, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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As for the whole Anne Rice thing, Xenocide said something about "anaylzing literature." Only half of what DiD did was an attempt to analyze literature.
The other half was about Anne Rice books.

/snarky comment

thank you. I'll be here all night, and let me say that, speaking personally, not only do I agree with DiD but my reaction to a comparison between Anne Rice and Ray Bradbury is... well... imagine walking up to a big Beatles fan and pointing out that both the Beatles and the Backstreet Boys are bands made of boys who often sing about love.

Except that's a false analogy, because it only takes into account quality. Another would be saying that Bob Dylan is just like a great electronica artist because they both use music to create a mood. Sure, they do, but the way in which they do is completly different on all but the most abstract levels...

(Is tempted to actually start a thread in the Flame Wars about this)

See you, space cowboy.

~~~~~~~~~

"Shared pain is lessened, shared joy is increased, and thus do we refute entropy."-- Spider Robinson

http://lon.blogspot.com -- Its a slightly less eloquent me.

Until Joel Schumacher directs Spider-Man 3, Make Mine Marvel!
 
Posts: 16135 | Location: Sydney, Australia | Registered: June 26, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by Xenocide Isis:
Alrighty, here it is:

My theory on Rice and Bradbury's likenesses:


I mean, if you just looked at the books, and didn't know anything about either of them...I mean, just the flow and rhythm of the words, the powerful imagery, the presence of magic and the supernatural.



Ya know, I missed the part in "Dandelion Wine" where Douglas Spaulding talked about his desire to have metaphorical sex with his mother and then mope for 400 years. And I'm really not remembering that bit in "The Vampire Lestat" where where Lestat goes into a long string of abjectives trying to describe some indescribable mood.

Hmm... come to think of it, that last bit may have happened, but its been so long since i've read any Anne Rice... and I don't feel like digging them up. No pun intended.

See you, space cowboy.

~~~~~~~~~

"Shared pain is lessened, shared joy is increased, and thus do we refute entropy."-- Spider Robinson

http://lon.blogspot.com -- Its a slightly less eloquent me.

Until Joel Schumacher directs Spider-Man 3, Make Mine Marvel!
 
Posts: 16135 | Location: Sydney, Australia | Registered: June 26, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by Cuchullain:
[QUOTE]Originally posted by Dweller in Darkness:


I guess I'm not disagreeing with anyone, which is sort of dull. I don't remember how Bradbury writes at all.


Good God, man, reread some of his stories! To forget how he writes is to forget one of the greatest gifts America has given mankind.

quote:


But I'm sure I've said this to people, at least about movies: You're over-analyzing. Which really is to say, "If you analyze this much you won't enjoy the movie. If you stop analyzing you might. This is not to be analyzed, just enjoyed." (This, most recently, in response to some joyless sod who was explaining that the Blade movies weren't good films! Smile )




I think you need to distinguish between good films and enjoyable films. I was having this discussion with my friend. He's strictly critical, and won't watch moovies that meet his standards unless he wants some dumb fun. I was talking about how X2, though not a great movie, was competently shot, acted, and directed. It did, as my playwriting teacher says, what it set out to do. Not great, not something with higher quality, but a good superhero movie.
Likewise, Blade isn't a good movie. It dosen't have much depth, and much of it is improbable, silly, or plain illogical. However, if you're looking for a stylish movie about a dude who kills vampires, its not a bad choice. I enjoy it, but I won't say its a good movie.
Same goes with books. Assuming I go back to reading and enjoying Anne Rice, I won't labor under the assumption that its "literature," though it sometimes aspires to that. I'll enjoy the story. Some incredible books aren't fun to read, and many great stories have no higher quality. You need to seperate enjoyment from quality.

Bradbury, though, is a gifted writer who can tell a good story, though sometimes he choses to go for really cool word tricks. His stories usually mean something or show you the world in a different way. Even if they don't, well, they're damn good stories.

See you, space cowboy.

~~~~~~~~~

"Shared pain is lessened, shared joy is increased, and thus do we refute entropy."-- Spider Robinson

http://lon.blogspot.com -- Its a slightly less eloquent me.

Until Joel Schumacher directs Spider-Man 3, Make Mine Marvel!
 
Posts: 16135 | Location: Sydney, Australia | Registered: June 26, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by The Lord of Nothings:
Good God, man, reread some of his stories! To forget how he writes is to forget one of the greatest gifts America has given mankind.



Ray Bradbury: Author, Thinker, Father, Husband, Tallest Midget

Anyway, I will. Reread some of his stories.

quote:

I think you need to distinguish between good films and enjoyable films.



No!

There's a thread about this (eventually, for a period, after and before it's about other things, as it goes) somewheres around here, started by GMZoe, titled something along the lines of reading books we know aren't good, or seeing movies we know aren't good, or eating the last chocolates left in the box even though we strongly suspect they're filled with something odd, or whatever.

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Posts: 3347 | Location: Sidhe | Registered: December 09, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by Cuchullain:
There's a thread about this (eventually, for a period, after and before it's about other things, as it goes) somewheres around here, started by GMZoe, titled something along the lines of reading books we know aren't good, or seeing movies we know aren't good, or eating the last chocolates left in the box even though we strongly suspect they're filled with something odd, or whatever.


here
 
Posts: 13129 | Location: Tucson | Registered: June 19, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by GMZoe:
quote:
Originally posted by Cuchullain:
There's a thread about this (eventually, for a period, after and before it's about other things, as it goes) somewheres around here, started by GMZoe, titled something along the lines of reading books we know aren't good, or seeing movies we know aren't good, or eating the last chocolates left in the box even though we strongly suspect they're filled with something odd, or whatever.


http://www.neilgaimanboard.com/groupee/forums?a=tpc&s=733605825&f=963601826&m=5486025692<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

*punches stopwatch, looks at it*

A new record for secondary forums! Welldone.

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Posts: 3347 | Location: Sidhe | Registered: December 09, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by Xenocide Isis:

I mean, if you just looked at the books, and didn't know anything about either of them...I mean, just the flow and rhythm of the words, the powerful imagery, the presence of magic and the supernatural.



Tolkien too then?
Bram Stoker?
Toni Morrison?
Shakespeare?

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Posts: 16373 | Registered: December 22, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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A copywriter from Barney's?
Bill the Cat?

"You think there are the good people and the bad people. You're wrong, of course. There are, always and only, the bad people. But some of them are on different sides."
- Lord Vetinari
 
Posts: 48716 | Location: Concord, NH, USA | Registered: July 20, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Originally posted by Dweller in Darkness:
Bill the Cat?


I made my vote count. I wish Bloom County were still around - I'd love to see a George W/Bill debate
 
Posts: 13129 | Location: Tucson | Registered: June 19, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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That would be a fair debate, too. Both creatures are equally articulate off the cuff.

"You think there are the good people and the bad people. You're wrong, of course. There are, always and only, the bad people. But some of them are on different sides."
- Lord Vetinari
 
Posts: 48716 | Location: Concord, NH, USA | Registered: July 20, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Wow... i posted a shitload of flamebait on this thread, and nobody took it. Good job, everybody.

See you, space cowboy.

~~~~~~~~~

"Shared pain is lessened, shared joy is increased, and thus do we refute entropy."-- Spider Robinson

http://lon.blogspot.com -- Its a slightly less eloquent me.

Until Joel Schumacher directs Spider-Man 3, Make Mine Marvel!
 
Posts: 16135 | Location: Sydney, Australia | Registered: June 26, 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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