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From: "Tony Ellis" 
Subject: Re: (urth) 5HC: Shadow Children in the Lupiverse?
Date: Mon, 6 May 2002 17:20:15 +0100

Adam Stephanides wrote:
>reading the Long Sun books as fictions by Horn
>is obviously a sterile reading, while the same is not true for reading "A
>Story" as a fiction.

No? :-) I find the idea of 'A Story' as fiction incredibly sterile. Saying
that Victor was trying to "know himself" may tell us why Victor wrote it,
but it doesn't tell us why Wolfe did. Why waste his time and ours encoding
all that information about which was the indigenous race and which the
alien, and keep coming back to it and coming back to it throughout the
story, and make us work so hard to piece it all together, if we're not
supposed to take it seriously? There are better and easier ways to pad out
two novellas to paperback size.

>>The picture of Croix\Anne as a backwater colony hardly needs reinforcing.
>>And why reinforce it with a fact that by a million-to-one chance just
>>happens to reinforce a key incident in 'A Story'?
>Why a million-to-one chance? It's one of the facts Victor has incorporated
>into his story.

A million-to-one chance because if all Wolfe wanted to do was reinforce the
idea of the colony as a backwater -- which, as I say, is redundant anyway --
there were any number of ways to do it. Yet he chose one which implies that
a key moment in 'A Story' actually happened.

And it's not Victor incorporating these external facts into 'A Story', it's
Wolfe. He's the one actually choosing what words go in and what words are
left out. And I can't believe he would put in elements that suggest 'A Story
' really happened if we weren't supposed to entertain that idea - not when
it's such a large part of the book, with so much important stuff said in it.


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