Monday, March 30, 2009

There is always an exception

Jetlagged and zomboid I'm back from the US and Lunacon. Cons are a poor excercise in marketing and a great one in networking. I've been clearing my inbox and following - on one of the lists I am part of - the ardent efforts of some sensible writers to persuade an ardent young man that, really, publishing isn't interested in another novelization of a rpg, with a sort of write by numbers set of 'powers'. Trust me on this: it's probably the least likely thing to please an agent or publisher.



Yet...



Yet...



I happen to be an admirer of Australian writer Chris McMahon's work. I was sitting in the audience at Lunacon when he sat on a panel with a couple of editors and an experienced author, when someone asked where he got his ideas from. I watched how the jaws fell open (mine too) when he said 'it started as an RPG'.



I've read that book. It's really, really good. I would never have guessed that source in a 1000 years. It's complex, deep, well motivated.

Someone on the panel summed it up when they said that because one extremely skilled writer could do it, it wasn't going to work for most.

But there is always an exception. And a new look and good writing can make the oldest trope in the book seem new and exciting.

5 comments:

Rowena Cory Daniells said...

Go Chris!

I saw him at the Aurealis Awards.

When will we be seeing you at Australian events, Dave????

Dave Freer said...

If I knew, I would tell you all. I think this is a kind of stress testing...

Rowena Cory Daniells said...

LOL, Dave.

I tell my kids suffering is good for their character.

My daughter said, she'd had enough character development!

John Lambshead said...

The problem with RPG games' writers isn't usualy the games but the writers. :)

You can spot 'em immediately.

John
(who plays a lot of strange games - see www.johnstoysoldiers.blogspot.com)

onyxhawke said...

I didn't guess the source...