The Labyrinth (or yet another book I failed)

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I tried so hard to get through The Labyrinth by Kate Mosse (no, not the model) by I utterly failed. This is another book that belongs on the pile somewhere near Ulysses, or The Female Eunuch. To be fair to the author, it really wasn’t her fault. The idea was wonderful, the prose was beautiful, the characters mostly interesting. I started to wonder, why can’t I do this? Then I felt like I was a sham of a reader. Then, I thought about it and came up with the following reasons  (in no particular order):

1. When you start a reading challenge at over 500 pages, there’s the same feeling as when faced with a massive bowl of porridge and told we have to eat it one day of every week. The stomach tightens and we are half full without eating a mouthful. Yuck!

2. The secondary plot was set in the time of the Cathars in 1200 and something. How do you relate to a story and characters who don’t have a lot of relevance to the world we live in? I thinks I run with the idea that if they are probably dead by now, then there’s no need to eleborate too much on the past. That’s just my preference. I don’t read historical fiction.

3. When you love one story or character but it’s interrupted by a less interesting story / character, it’s tempting to flick to the next instant with your beloved  (which I did many times).

4. Lastly, everyone in the industry raves about this book. Maybe their revenge for having to have read the thing is trick others into suffering the same misery.

All the above make up why I put down the book and watched the mini series instead. Warning – mini series does not explain the book very well. It’s terribly made and answered few of the questions the first 300 pages asked.

So now I have reached the end of that journey and I ll chalk it up as a literary disaster. I need to go read some Agatha Christie’s Poirot now to dilute the sour taste in my soul.

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Guest post by David Wright – Serialization: A Timely Return for the Digital Age?

I’m serialy (ha) thinking about this. It’s an exciting possibility.

David Gaughran

One of the most exciting aspects of the indie revolution is seeing writers moving beyond straitjacketed definitions of what a story or book should be.

We have seen a resurgence in short stories, a rebirth of the novella, and, as you will see below, some fascinating experiments with serialized fiction.

All of these forms were held back by the economics of print and the risk-averse nature of publishers and agents.

Self-publishers, of course, are free to publish whatever they like.

Today, I have an excellent guest post from one half of a writing duo that is doing just that – with great results. Here’s David Wright:

“To be continued…”

I first discovered these three magical words in the pages of comic books as a child, and I instantly I fell in love with the concept of serialized fiction. 

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