In Which Our Heroine Fusses About Plotlines, Poplars, and Wrinkle

11 May 2004

I watched the TV movie of "A Wrinkle in Time" last night. I'm waffling between saying, "It could have been worse" and saying, "No, really, it could not have." I think they ruined important enough points about what It was and why It was menacing and horrible and why It was appealing that anything else they screwed up would have just been icing on the horrible, horrible cake. Perhaps sprinkles on the icing. Still a horrible, horrible cake.

There were some gratuitously sucky details -- the female Dr. Murry not knowing what a tesseract was, for example -- and there were some major things that were just terribly, terribly wrong. They tacked on pointless this-world exposition at the beginning (great idea, folks: take a book that starts with action and move the action scene three or four scenes back in the movie, then pad the beginning with stuff nobody has any reason to care about!) and then had to balance it out with pointless wire-work action scenes. I was disgusted, appalled, horrified.


I'm still reading The Briar King, though I'm far enough in that I think I'll finish it in time to give back to Stella tonight. I'm having a problem with it that I often have with multiple-viewpoint-character novels: I do not give the proverbial tinker's damn about some of the point-of-view characters. The equally proverbial sparrow's fart in a windstorm: also not given. Some POV characters are of interest to me. Others not so much. I do this -- not often, but often enough. I also do it with books that have two timelines with the same characters. Rare is the Margaret Atwood book for which I am not acively hostile towards one of the two plotline.

This worries me when I think about my own books. The other place series has three POV characters in Fortress of Thorns (Charlotte, Miri, and Nate) and adds Sam for a fourth POV character in The Grey Road and beyond. And Thermionic Night and Sampo alternate between Edward's and Ansa's POVs. What if people hate one of them? What if people are reading along going, "Blah blah blah, get back to the plot I care about?" I hate doing that myself, but sometimes it's a reaction I just can't stifle. And I don't know how to make it not happen that way.

Except, of course, to make sure that none of my POV characters or plotlines suck. Okay. Well then. I suppose that's a goal.

I pulled up hundreds of weeds yesterday morning, and there are hundreds more yet to go. I made the mistake of glancing at the south side of the house. Oof. There's no lawn on the south, just a loose riverstone pathway and some trees. And when I looked, I saw that the poplar babies were growing merrily among the stones. Hell. So now I have another batch of weeding to do. But not today; today is for writing and baking and cooking, mostly, and for seeing people: Rachel for lunch, and Pamela, David, Lydy, Stella, Roo, and maybe Mike for dinner. Social as all get-out. Then I'll get to be hermit again for tomorrow and Thursday and most of Friday.

Lots to do today. Melvin The Laundry Monster was behaving in a threatening manner, so I've started the attack on him this morning. Have also started the beef chili; the vegan chili will wait until closer to dinnertime. I also need to make the rosemary buns and the cobbler in the afternoon, and I need to get the place into some semblance of order, which shouldn't be too hard, as we haven't had any major projects spreading out over the living areas since my family left. And, of course, there's contract work and Sampo yet to deal with. I've been mostly working on one character's scenes, so I'll end up devoting myself to the other's later in the process, I guess. That's fine. It's not that I don't like Ansa's stuff or am not interested in her plots, just that Edward has been more accessible lately. We'll get there.

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