Thursday, March 29, 2012

The Sculthorpe Earth-Cry

Interesting take by one of my favourite writers – Christopher Priest – on the Clarke Award short list. (My novel ‘Nemonymous Night’ was on the original list of sixty): http://www.christopher-priest.co.uk/journal/1077/hull-0-scunthorpe-3/

Thinking about it further on a personal level: I’d be happy with any resultant shortlist if I thought all those creating the shortlist had read thoroughly the sixty novels on the original long list. Mr Priest, too, when criticising the short list.
As to ‘Nemonymous Night’ – this is Jules Vernian-SF – and I’d be happy if it had several fair but bad reviews. Then I’d know where it stood. No fault of anyone, but it has only had a few reviews: (linked from here: http://nemonymousnight.wordpress.com/reviews/ for reference), the first being a 5 star Amazon review from a respected Amazon reviewer. One of the others was tentative at worst, the other three fairly enthusiastic at best.
But very few people seem to have actually read it. I hope I’m not tempting fate, but, with this comment, I hereby encourage into the public domain all those fair but bad reviews harbouring in readers’ or critics’ hearts, rather than just a handful of fairly good reviews it has received so far.
Revie(w)’s Leeds United 0 Colchester United 4.
Meanwhile, I admire Priest’s Hull/Scunthorpe article. I know he didn’t write it for this reason; but his work is a league above all of us.
My own take on his ‘The Islanders’ last September:
http://nullimmortalis.wordpress.com/2011/09/24/the-lslanders-by-christopher-priest/

‘Admiration’ at the overall article is however not the same as agreement with the caricatural mini-reviews embodied in the article.

Earth Cry (Sculthorpe):

14 comments:

Weirdmonger said...

On all the public pronouncements I've ever seen showing the sixty novels on the original Clarke Award list, the title of my novel is wrong. And still is wrong. Assuming they had a copy of the book to consider, they didn't look at it, it seems.

Weirdmonger said...

http://yuki-onna.livejournal.com/674762.html

Weirdmonger said...

If you do a search on Sculthorpe (Scunthorpe/Hull?) you will see his music's connections with Islands and Islanders, eg his latest: Shining Island.

Weirdmonger said...

Cf: an earlier theory: LIFE ON MARS / THE AFFIRMATION: HERE

Rhys said...

Superb blog post this, Des!

Weirdmonger said...

Thanks, Rhys.
The above blog was intended as a self-referential meditation on Priest's Scunthorpe-Hull article, but the more I looked into Sculthorpe's music (I knew some of it already), I see it is heavily connected with Oceania and other Islandy matters: and, if there was ever a film of Priest's work: Dream of Wessex, Infinite Summer, Islanders and other 'Dream Archipelago' connections, then Sculpthorpe (who I believe, according to today's Wikipedia, is still alive in his 80s) would be the ideal candidate to compose its music.

Weirdmonger said...

String Quartet No 13 (Island Dreaming) (1996) for mezzo-soprano and string quartet (Text: Torres Strait Island) [11:00]
FP: 3.12.96, France, Cité de la Musique, Paris: Anne Sofie von Otter/Brodsky Quartet
"From beginning to end a near-wordless rhapsody on the morning star and the waking of the day. The drifting voice, full of mezzo colour above a hypnotic web of instrumental pattern, conveyed a mood of quietly natural ecstasy. At one point, an episode of trios and duets between singer, viola and cello offered a reflective pause for thought. Yet the flow remained seamless, painting a continuum of experience to be enjoyed, without thought, through the senses and the feelings." - Nicholas Williams, The Independent [UK] (10 December 1996)

Weirdmonger said...

Christopher Priest withdraws his comments about Mark Billingham:
HERE

Weirdmonger said...

HERE.
The Call of the Silly – ‘crazy’ after all. April First.

Weirdmonger said...

Chomu Press have written today an interesting comment about the Christopher Priest controversy on their Facebook page.

I made it no secret in various places over the last few weeks in public that I considered their publication of HERE COMES THE NICE by Jeremy Reed as the novel that should win.
In fact, before I knew it was on the Clarke Awards longlist, I publicly listed it as my favourite novel of 2011.

Weirdmonger said...

Lavie Tidhar's first proper sale was 'The Ballerina' in 2003 to "Nemonymous." As he says here. I am very proud of this.
Others started or were early in their career there, too, whom I shall feature soon on my proud list.

Weirdmonger said...

http://nullimmortalis.wordpress.com/2012/04/01/clarke-award-2/#comment-3558

Weirdmonger said...

I've bought Island dreaming today to go with my Earth Cry cd I've had for some years.

Nemonymous said...

My views on THE GRADUAL (2016) - https://dflewisreviews.wordpress.com/2016/10/25/the-gradual-by-christopher-priest/