Saturday, April 23, 2011

Stop Making Sense!

Or start.  One way or the other.

I've been reading some women's fiction (?)/chicklit (?) by Jill Mansell over the past week on Mr Nook.  She comes up with some cute situations.  The books are quite long.  Are how many pages a reader claims the same as in real life?  There are always so many characters with their own story going on I'm dismayed to say I have difficulty telling them apart.  Wait who's Chloe?  I thought that was Pru.

Obviously I'm in the minority because Jill Mansell is enormously popular.

When I was in daytime television, sometimes you'd get into a predicament storytelling-wise.  Things stopped making sense and you'd be trying to get back onto firm ground but you couldn't get there.  My "Michelle" (the character in Sweeps) would say "Just assign it!"  What she meant is state it clearly, then so mote it be.  So Dr. Cutiepie is a genius in microsurgery which the last writer/producer wanted, but you need someone in ER.  Just say Dr. C wanted the excitement of a Trauma Center and play that from now on.  You don't have a lot of choices in daytime.  You still have to churn out a complete show every day, 5 days a week, until the end of time.

Is writing a novel any different?  Hey, Cassie is now in love with Jake.  Play that.  But why is she in love with Jake?  She just is.  Shut up about it.  "If it ain't on the page, it ain't on the stage" doo-wop-doo-wop-doo-wop.
Stop singing and just suspend your disbelief!  Don't we need to see some kind of reasons why they're in this...what's it called again...uh love?  It's freaking chemistry, you dolt!!

Sorry I need more than he has gold flecked eyes and she has long legs.

In one of these books I thought we were actually going to see Jill Mansell go into the reason, a reason.  Miss Blue Hair worked in London and on the street outside of the hair salon where she worked was a bum.  She wasn't paid well but shared her lunch with the bum and got him some warm clothes. (Cute situation)  I thought oh finally, a character who isn't hopelessly self-centered and is worthy of being loved.  errrrrrrkkkk, come screeching to a halt.  She went on to sleep with a guy she barely knew, acted a prat and finally did wind up with the bum who was actually a journalist (same thing AFAIC).  I sort of can fill in the blanks and know why he would "love" her but I would have preferred to see this relationship happen instead of it being assigned.

Let's be honest about it.  That may be what people want, it may be what we're all about now, but this is life lite. There is actually another way to live.

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