Wednesday, July 27, 2005
DAY OF THE DOCTOROW, PART II
Hamlet Linden: Some members of the Book Club wonder what inspired Someone Comes to Town. Actually, they wonder what kind of drugs you were on when you came up with it, but I'm guessing they're looking for tips beyond the pharmaceutical kind.
Cory Doctorow: Heh. As befits drugs, I'm pretty dull. I'm a near-teetotaller, I've given up narcotics of all kind, I eschew caffeine, and don't even partake of carbs. However, I am generally massively sleep-deprived and I have a pathological need to be connected to the Internet nearly always.
As to what inspired it, I dunno -- nothing and everything. Writing is how I figure out what's going on in my own head. I started SCTTSLT in a hotel during an Xmas holiday weekend a couple years back. Wrote 10,000 words all in one gulp. Then worked on it for 6 months, took some time off and went back to it. Got right up to the ending and realized I wasn't going to be able to finish it the way I'd planned. So I thought up a different ending and wrote it, thinking I'd have to go back and rewrite the whole book to make the ending work. And when I went back, I discovered that I'd foreshadowed the "new" ending on the very first page, written two years before, in one gush in a hotel-room. It had been there all along, but it had taken me years to find that out.
HL: Related to that, [book club member] Crackorphan Shortbread wonders what autobiographical elements helped spawned the novel.
CD: Well, there are several. I had many friends who lived in group houses in Kensington Market. And my pal Darren Atkinson is a career dumpster diver who really does get all kinds of amazing crap out of suburban Toronto dumpsters.
I had a terrible experience with the WiFi in Geneva [like a Someone character did.]
And my grandfather had nine brothers. I only knew a few of them, and once, one came to visit from Russia, and he really did look like he could nest inside my grandfather like a Matrioshka. He had lost an arm fighting with the partisan guerrillas in Poland. But apart from that, he was basically an XL to my grandfather's XXL.
HL: [Club member] Sean Gorham asks, "What's the deal with the whole 'son of a mountain and a washing machine' bit? Maybe I'm missing something obvious."
CD: It's just a way of making the story more and less real. It sets out a story that is at once absurd and fraught with peril. Plus it's cool.
HL [laughs]: It had meaning to me at the point when the hero is asked by his girlfriend to meet his family, and he's like, "Uh, well, my family is very strange." But then, we all feel that way, even if our dad isn't a mountain etc.
CD: Well sure -- I have a huge, brawling, happy, bizarre family myself. Both of my grandfathers had nine siblings who lived to adulthood. I have a great uncle who committed murder in Palestine and fled to Uruguay and founded a branch of the family in Montevideo that we've had no contact with for decades. My mother's dad grew up in a notoriously toxic part of Toronto and she and her siblings and cousins have all these weird congenital illnesses. And my grandfathers' siblings have these bizarre 1930s Yiddish nicknames that make them sound like the Marx Brothers: Nutsy, Voomy, Schmool.
HL: To me it captures that feeling of loving your family but feeling for certain the outside world will never understand it the way you do.
CD: Yeah, that's for certain. There's enough second and third marriages and so forth in my family that I don't even know which people at the weddings are actually related to me. I usually grab someone who's new to the bunch and drag them around and say, "This is my friend ________" and wait for the possibly-relative to say, "Oh, I'm Cory's third cousin's wife."
Posted at 12:05 AM | Permalink
TrackBack URL for this entry:
Listed below are links to weblogs that reference DAY OF THE DOCTOROW, PART II:
» How "Daddy" affects your job: psychologist
from or failures of
be traced to what kind of father they had, a psychologist argues in a new book. [Read More]
Tracked on May 18, 2006 9:55:57 PM
Tracked on May 28, 2006 5:12:33 PM
Tracked on May 29, 2006 7:12:58 PM
Tracked on May 30, 2006 1:58:22 AM
Tracked on Jun 4, 2006 4:20:27 PM
Tracked on Jun 5, 2006 9:32:48 AM
Tracked on Jun 10, 2006 12:34:10 AM
» Parlano Names Jay McGlynn Senior Vice President of Worldwide Sales from of persistent
the use of persistent group chat and enterprise instant messaging in financial services. [Read More]
Tracked on Jun 16, 2006 6:03:16 PM
Tracked on Jun 28, 2006 6:17:54 AM
Tracked on Jul 1, 2006 2:33:06 AM
Tracked on Jul 20, 2006 1:00:55 PM
Tracked on Jul 25, 2006 6:01:55 PM
» 2 Canadian soldiers killed, 8 wounded in Afghanistan from in a suicide
were killed and eight others were wounded Saturday in a suicide bomb attack in Afghanistan near the coalition [Read More]
Tracked on Jul 27, 2006 8:15:06 AM
Tracked on Aug 2, 2006 3:31:59 AM
Tracked on Aug 5, 2006 5:22:08 AM
» burberry from Burberry Perfume
Buy Burberry perfumes and aftershaves from the best UK shops online. Click on one of the products listed below to compare prices to find the best price to ... [Read More]
Tracked on Aug 5, 2006 5:59:02 AM
Tracked on Aug 16, 2006 1:07:02 AM
My mind is like a void, not that it matters. I've more or less been doing nothing to speak of. I've just been sitting around not getting anything done, but so it goes. Not much on my mind worth mentioning. I've just been letting everything happen without me lately, but it's not important.
Posted by: amazon student visa at Aug 29, 2007 9:58:45 AM
Rivalry is the life of trade, and the death of the trader.
forex trading [url=http://mysite.orange.co.uk/maxinfo/page6.html]forex trading[/url]
Posted by: lmpyovrd at Aug 30, 2007 10:19:53 PM