David Mitchell

Recommended Posts

I'm actually reading Black Swan Green at the moment, and I'm glad to hear that it all comes together. I didn't really expect it to, but I didn't have a problem with that. I'm about a third of the way through and I enjoy how he's just slowly building tension, but you can't really tell for what.

Well - it might not be as huge a thing as you're expecting, but I suddenly became swept away pretty much from when the ruler snaps (you'll see) to the final word. The control there is incredible.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
I find that a weird thing to be disappointed about. The thing that is important is that he shaped the story that way, with an idea that will likely have taken months to distil and get right. That the actual, physical implementation of that idea takes only a few minutes is irrelevant. On top of that, it would've been very hard and annoying to not write the stories in one go: finding the right tone again after a long break is a pain in the ass, not to mention losing all the countless minutiae when you're juggling a world in your head.

Oh, I'm not saying you should write from cover to cover, in linear order. I guess what I was disappointed by is that the break-point in the tales is, essentially, completely arbitrary. The overlaps in theme and narrative between them are all carefully structured, planned in, absolutely - that's the whole point. But the actual point in the story where that page gives up and becomes a new tale (before unravelling later)... was basically just a case of snipping the individual stories in two, wherever. Again, I just felt there were perhaps more interesting structural things to do - even though, of course, a lot of the overlaps are much longer-running within the texts. (But; I would say this, because that's the sort of thing I like; insert banging on about BS Johnson here).

It's not a major criticism; it was just disappointing to feel like he seemed a bit uninterested in that structural flourish.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now