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Old July 14 2008, 03:38 AM   #118
Geoff Thorne
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Re: Sword of Damocles -- comments & opinions ****SPOILERS*****

historypeats wrote: View Post
Finally got around to this! (Thus concluding my two-week Titan bender - woo!)

1) The writing style was fascinating. It almost felt insane at times, as though the writing was intended to be aggressively abstract - not in terms of head-spinning scientific jargon, but in terms of sentence structure, tone, etc. I loved it - the style reflected both the chaos of the region surrounding Titan and the idea that everything is being held together - or suspended - by the thinnest of threads. The prose almost feels like it's tense enough to break, and I wanted to congratulate you, Geoff, on your ability to adapt your voice to your content so well.

2) In a similar vein, I loved the fact that the "outside narrator" perspective that's so common in Trek Lit throughout the decades (although the voice is ultimately determined by the author, and many authors establish their own "voices" quite distinctively) changes flavors with each scene, and does so in response to the players on the scene (versus, say, reflecting an author's inability to control said tone).

I love reading TrekLit, but most of it reads fairly conventionally from a mechanical standpoint - there's not a lot of Woolf-esque free-form, Gertrude-Stein-like linguistic deconstruction, etc., etc. When the narrative style shifts, it's usually in response to an alien presence (ex. the wonderful interactions between the astrocoelenterates in Christopher's Orion's Hounds), and rarely in response to characters we already "know." I'm not sure if you set out to establish yourself as a "complicated" stylist, Geoff, but I loved unwrapping the language almost as much as I enjoyed the story.

Having said all that, I'd appreciate it if interested parties could clear up a couple areas of confusion for me, either via the thread or PM:

1) I must have missed Ra-Havreii's return - I thought he had been "lost in the seas of time," sacrificing himself to preserve the Luna-class vessel responsible for dredging up so much of his tormented past. How did he get back, and when?

2) Who made up the final unnamed pair???

Congratulations on a nice debut, Geoff.
Thank-you. Sincerely. I'm not sure I deserve such high praise but I'll take it when I can get it because I'm a greedy bastard.

I wouldn't say I was going for complexity, per se. I think i just wanted to do what I could to put the reader into the story. Since it was a time travel story, that means jumping around.

Also, I think it was easier for me to focus on more of the quirks of some of the characters because the work done by M&M and CB made a lot of the getting-to-know-you stuff unnecessary.

As for the prose style, I wasn't trying to be complex or obscure. I just wanted to get at the idea that memory is a form of time travel too. Stories are mostly linear and we pretend that life is but really we're ping-ponging between Then and Now pretty much all the time. At least that's how life feels to me.

1) Ra-Havreii returns when Orisha returns to normal space. While the others had to get to TITAN to effect the proper counter-pulse to that which was being generated by the veil network, Ra-Havreii was shutting the network itself down. Once it was down, the planet returned to normal space and the distortions vanished along with the "eye." I suppose, in retrospect, it might have been interesting to show things from Ra-Havreii's POV as well but I wanted to focus on TITAN at that point.

2) I'll get back to you on that as I don't have the MS in front of me and don't recall in what order I placed the unnamed couples. However, if the last pair are who I think, several clues have been dropped about them since TAKING WING. I wanted to push the pairing but still keep the mystery going.

I am REALLY looking forward to the next two books. TITAN is my favorite ship/crew now. And not because I got to write them for a bit. I'm dying to see more of Lavena and I think we're going to to get a shot at that soon.

I pray Bralik gets some more face time. And, of course, I hope Modan gets to stick around.
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