Sunday, December 10, 2006

the lure of cheap fiction

Let's see... from reading many messages and links, I've learned that while there is an equestrian penknife with a hoof cleaner on it, the thing on Swiss Army knives that most people thought were hoof picks were probably actually leather punches, awls or marlin spikes. Just thought you should know that, because lots of people thought that I should know that too.

Hey Neil.You just linked to the 'Stardust teen paperback edition' on, and I was wondering: Is it just a repackaging of the original book, or an adaptation of the film? Thanks Joel

It's a repackaging of the original book... there won't be a novelisation of Stardust. Titan Books are going to do a Making of Stardust, written by Stephen Jones (which will also include the script).

There will be an Art of Beowulf book coming out, along with a novelisation of Beowulf by Caitlin R. Kiernan, and a Beowulf Script book, which should chart the evolution of the Beowulf film from the earliest scripts by Roger Avary and me, all the way through to the shooting script.

Stardust" the opera
The amazon pic looks more like a poster for a production at the Metropolitan Opera than a movie poster
Something you're not telling us...?

Probably mostly because it's not a movie poster, it's just a still from the movie being used as a temporary cover for a book. It probably won't be the final image for the book, either.

As for a Stardust opera, I'd love to see one, but suspect that it's probably one of those things that can't happen for a certain number of years because of the movie.

Hello Neil,
There's an interesting article in the LA Times, (Posted on Screenwriter John August's website) describing the difficulties arising when the author of a novel being adapted for a feature, is given too much creative control.
Is this why you decided to write your own screenplays? Have you been happy with the adaptations of your work so far?
What are your thoughts about this case, the actions of the Producer's, Cussler?
With very best regards,
Greg L.

Mostly I don't write my own screenplays, if you mean that in the sense of adapt my own work. I've done it once or twice, but didn't really enjoy it. These days if it's a matter of making something I wrote into a film I'd rather help pick someone whose work I respect and let them get on with it, and for me as a screenplay, I'd either write original screenplays or adapt things I like and respect but with a willingness to do whatever's needed to turn them into good films. A film isn't a book.

(If it's something based on something I've written that I'm going to direct, I'd rather write my own script, though. At that point I actually have a chance of making the thing in my head.)

The only moment in the article I found myself sympathising with the otherwise-impossible-to-sympathise-with Mr Cussler was over his "Dirk Pitts has black hair" thing, which left me wondering what the Constantine movie would have been like if someone with power could have graven in stone, "Remember John Constantine is English and blond".


I love this story --,,1969258,00.html. I think I love it most because it reads like the start of a classic detective story. Was the Bishop of Southwark drunk, or mugged, or something more sinister? Why was he seen 'sitting in the back of a Mercedes chucking children's toys out of the window and announcing: "I'm the Bishop of Southwark. It's what I do."'?

As the story stands right now the Bishop 'who earlier in the week told a congregation that he could not get his mitre on because of the lump on his head - told the Guardian he could not recollect what had happened. Police were informed the following day that his briefcase, spectacles, a mobile phone and papers were missing.'

I trust that the mystery will be solved by an elderly spinster who has a knack for solving mysteries, and will eventually be found either to hinge on the nature of the toys he was chucking out of the window, or to be part of the Russian spy Polonium poisoning case...

And I am beginning to suspect that whoever is currently writing the world, or at least the English bit of it, is starting to plunder cheap fiction for ideas.


In the Dec. 6 post (, Neil mentioned a Gothic Archies ringtone. Where did he get it? Can others buy it?

Best -- C.

I just use a phone (Nokia N-80) that can play MP3s, and can take an MP3 as a ring tone.


I just checked out the map facility and updated it from the last time I filled one of them in. Every time I think I've seen a lot of the world a map like this reminds me how much I still have left to see...

(I don't count it if I've only seen the place from a train window or sat on the tarmac or stopped somewhere to refuel.)

create your personalized map of europe

create your own personalized map of the USA

create your own visited country map