Friday, April 24, 2009

Dial M for murder: My thousandth post

This is my 1,000th post since I started Detectives Beyond Borders on Sept 21, 2006. I'd like to thank Maxine Clarke of Petrona, who left this blog's first comment. Among other things, the comments on that debut post introduced me to the excellent Peter Temple, so I'd say I got off to a good start.

Now it's your turn. What are your favorite novels or stories with the word or number thousand or any slang terms therefor in the title? Doesn't matter how many thousands, as long as the word or number thousand or some term for it is part of the name.

A thousand thanks!

© Peter Rozovsky MMIX

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102 Comments:

Blogger seanag said...

Congratulations, Peter! That's an impressive number. And it represents a whole archive of material too, which makes it not only impressive but a resource for the rest of us.

Your question, though, is a bit of a gimme, isn't it? How many people here are going to want to post Adrian McKinty's Fifty Grand, as a favorite 'thousand' title, only to find I have beaten them to the punch? The release date is actually this coming Tuesday, so there may be some in these parts who haven't heard about it, but if they haven't, they haven't been as attentive to your blog as they should have been.

What should we wish for you? Another thousand posts, or something more lucrative? Well, to cover all bases, here's wishing you both.

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Thanks. I needed a hook for this post, and I could not offer to give away a thousand books because postage costs would be prohibitive. Fifty Grand and another title gave me the idea to ask the question that I did. I have no objection if anyone else wants to cite it.

Maybe I can offer book prizes to readers who suggest titles I had not heard of. That's not a promise, mind you, just a challenge.

April 25, 2009  
Blogger seanag said...

Well, there's Thousand Pieces of Gold by Ruthann Lum McCunn, for one. A popular west coast historic novel about a young Chinese woman in Gold Rush days. I didn't actually read it, but saw the nicely made movie of it.

Just to get the ball rolling here.

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

The ball is rolling. I had not heard of that book or movie, so you are in the running for a prize to be determined. Thanks.

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Gary Corby said...

The Thousand Nights And A Night springs instantly to mind.

Also Joseph Campbell's The Hero With a Thousand Faces.

I've only just discovered your blog. Congratulations on 1,000 posts. I have a few to catch up, it seems.

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Thanks. My only objection to The Thousand Nights and a Night is that I can hever remember how to spell Scheherazade. And I'd forgotten about Joseph Campbell.

Seems to be Xenophon ought to have a place in here somewhere.

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Linkmeister said...

I haven't read it, but A Thousand Splendid Suns is recently out in trade paper. It's written by the author of "The Kite Runner."

Hmm. Extra "a" in the captcha word: spalat. Marvel Comics misspelling?

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Kerrie said...

Congratulations Peter. Does that make you a master?

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Linkmeister, this post is going to enlarge my to-read list, or least diversify my browsing.

Spalat is the sound one makes when falling from ten floors instead of just five.

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Thanks, Kerrie. It makes me a master idler.

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Vanda Symon said...

Well done on the Thousand. Don't you have anything better to do?!

I can't think of a thousand story that hasn't already been mentioned, but in New Zealand, in Auckland there's a road, notorious shall we say for it's professions and entertainment, which is called K-Road that just screams for a story.

Linkmeister, Spalat is an emphatic slam into a wall.

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Spa-lat reminds me of ker-plunk.

I just listened to Luke Kelly and the Dubliners singing "Monto." The Monto is a former district of Dublin that sounds much like Auckland's K-Road. Now that you have suggested it, you will have to write a novel with that title.

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Bill Crider said...

Congratulations on reaching a milestone!

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Fred said...

Congratulations on a Grand achievement. I'm afraid I can't come up with a mystery title that's appropriate, but I do know an SF title that fits. It's

_Forty Thousand in Gehenna_ by CJ Cherryh.

Again, congrats...

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Dana King said...

First, congratulations on reaching one thousand. I am routinely amazed at the frequency you're able to post without losing quality. Well done.

I'm in the process of reading Fifty Grand now, and have been beaten to the punch. Since McKinty's main man is James Ellroy, how about The Cold Six Thousand?

April 25, 2009  
Blogger R. T. said...

Bravo! (However, I am envious.)
Since you focus mostly on detective fiction and similar offerings, consider, please, Cornell Woolrich's _Night Has a Thousand Eyes_. Now, let's all go out and read it.

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Much obliged, Bill. Once again, Pennsylvania leads the way.

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Gerard Brennan said...

Bugger! I was gonna go for Fitty G too. Beat to the punch. Twice! And I guess Dana nailed the other title you had in mind.

I got nothing.

gb

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Gerard Brennan said...

Oh, and I should say, congrats on reaching the milestone!

gb

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Thanks, Fred. I'm an ecumenical type of guy; science fiction is permitted. I don't know Forty Thousand in Gehenna, but I like the title. Moloch's kitchen is getting pretty crowded.

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Dana: Bingo. You nailed the second title, after Fifty Grand, that gave me the idea for this little question/quiz.

The secret is the same thing that writers always tell prospective writers: write every day, no matter how little. Just keep at it.

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

R.T., thanks. The Night Has a Thousand Eyes was previously just a movie title to me. I knew nothing about the movie, and I didn't know it had been a book, much less by Cornell Woolrich.

Woolrich, eh? Maybe I'll settle into bed with it for a quiet, calming read ... then spring up and run to a bar for a calming drink.

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Yep, Gerard, Dana nailed both titles, and you get nothing except maybe a consolation Carlsberg.

Thanks.

April 25, 2009  
Blogger R. T. said...

Ah, you're looking for a calming read? Skip this Woolrich novel. However, you seem to have a catalyst on hand for calming your nerves while reading Woolrich if you have that drink handy.

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

I've read just a few of Cornell Woolrich's stories, but that's enough to know he's not for the high-strung. No one ratchets up the tension the way he did.

This would make a good plot for a Woolrich story: A schemer traps a nervous bibliophile on a desert island with nothing to read but Cornell Woolrich.

April 25, 2009  
Blogger R. T. said...

Yes, but make sure the stranded soul is not alone . . . well, he or she might at first think no one else is on the island, but . . . Well, you get the idea.

It would a perverse variation of the TV show LOST with a bit of a psychopathic twist (which could be further complicated with a bit of H. P. Lovecraft thrown in just to interest the hardcore fantasy-SF freaks).

At any rate, enjoy the Woolrich when you find a copy (i.e., reprint editions are still available through retailers).

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

The stranded soul is a neurotic observer of deadlines with no way to get off the island for a month -- and the Woolrich books are due back at the library next week.

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Fred said...

R. T.
Thanks for the reference: _The Night has a Thousand Eyes_. I will look for it. I figure if it was written by Cornell Woolrich, it should be pretty good.

I know of only one other work by him--"It Had to Be Murder"--which is the basis for Hitchcock's superb _Rear Window_, if I'm not mistaken.

Fred

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

You're not mistaken, though Hitchcock took the usual extravagant liberties he took when adapting popular literature. Two of the movie's memorable features, for example, are Grace Kelly's and Thelma Ritter's characters. Neither appears in Woolrich's story.

April 25, 2009  
Anonymous Peter said...

Happy thousandth, Peter. You certainly deserve an Oxford for every post, in which case you'd have two monkeys or a gorilla. Title entry: Gorillas in the Mist.

April 25, 2009  
Anonymous BV Lawson said...

I was going to suggest "The Hero With a Thousand Faces," since I'm a Joseph Campbell fan, but someone beat me to the punch. I haven't read them yet, but how about the pulp title "Doc Savage, the Thousand Headed Man" by Kenneth Robeson or "A Thousand Bones" by P.J. Parrish? At any rate, Happy 1000 -- to infinity and beyond!

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Fred said...

Peter,

Agreed. Hitchcock did expand considerably on the story.

One other "expansion" I remember involved the other tenants. Hitchcock did much more with the other tenants than Woolrich did. The film was almost an anthology of short works, each rear window being a small story in itself, with the murder being the featured tale.

I did a blog post on the story and the film.

http://tinyurl.com/5urlla

Fred

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Thanks, B.V., for the heads and the bones. But infinity? I may want to stop before then.

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Fred, have you read Francois Truffaut's book-length interview with Hitchcock? Hitch has some interesting things to say about adapting popular literature vs. adapting classic literature. He took even more liberties in Rear Window than he did in The Thirty-Nine Steps, I think.

April 25, 2009  
Blogger dcdrew said...

How about:
Randy Wayne White's Ten Thousand Islands; Jane Smiley's A Thousand Acres; and the infamous Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea?

April 25, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Thanks, thanks and thanks. I can't believe I had not thought of "Twenty Thousand Leagues..."

April 25, 2009  
Blogger seanag said...

And I can't believe I didn't think of A Thousand Acres. Not only did I read and like it, but Smiley's daughter used to work at the bookstore with me!

April 25, 2009  
Blogger seanag said...

I don't have another legitimate reason to post--just wanted to say that my v word is 'chili'

April 25, 2009  
Anonymous Wolfgang said...

Oxford? Two monkeys? A gorilla? What is the other Peter talking about?

April 25, 2009  
Blogger adrian mckinty said...

Peter

Congratulations. 1000 posts - its ridiculous.

I like Borges's comment on 100 Years of Solitude:
"90 would have been enough for me."

What you have to look forward to is your 20000th post when you'll have to review "20 000 Lieues Sous Les Mers" which always gets translated in English as an expression of depth not distance to my immense irritation.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Seana, Smiley is in my bed right now, or at least my collection of Icelandic sagas, to which she wrote an introduction, is.

Oh, do I wish my v-word were concarne. Alas, my v-word is so dull that I am going to log out then repost in an effort to get a better one.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

It didn't work. This one is no better.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Thanks, Wolfgang. I have no idea, either.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Thanks, Adrian, though, I think that high king of puns, Declan Burke, passed his thousandth some time ago.

Just think: If I were marking a Twitter milestone, I could celebrate typing my thousandth character rather than my thousandth post.

I'd never thought about the title "Twenty Thousand Leagues ... " before, but leagues is a measure if distance, so I can fathom the depth of your annoyance.

April 26, 2009  
OpenID maxine said...

Congratulations, Peter, and thanks for the shout-out. I think I may have discovered your blog so early because of your then-colleague Frank Wilson who, if I recall, introduced it to readers of Books, Inq.

I will have to pass on the thousands, I'm afraid - but an impressive list! I imagine Janet Evanovich will never get there.....

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Thanks. Yep, you heard about me through Frank, which is why I threw bouquets your way and his in another of my earliest posts.

Janet Evanovich is prolific; she might make it. She did not limit herself the way, say, Sue Grafton did.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Oh, and hasta Bristol!

April 26, 2009  
Anonymous Peter said...

I'm surprised at you, Peter and Wolfgang. An Oxford is Australian slang for a dollar (abbreviation of rhyming slang Oxford scholar for dollar).US servicemen took the term back to the US. So an Oxford for every post is a thousand dollars. Gamblers call $500 a monkey, so $1,000 is two monkeys, which is known as a gorilla.

Thus the best title entry Gorillas in the Mist.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Peter, you have vindicated my belief that blogging can be educational. Thanks.

I'd started down the right track, figuring Oxford had to tied to thousand, but I got nowhere. We have no real tradition of rhyming slang in North America, and I had not heard Oxford as a slang term. But them, when I lived in Boston, I used to hang around Cambridge.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Dorte H said...

Congratulations!

Tusind gange tillykke, Peter.

Like others, I have struggled to come up with a story for you - I´m afraid I´ll have to write it myself.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Uriah Robinson said...

Congratulations Peter. We started blogging at the same time and I am now way behind you on posts, well done.
I can only suggest for your next target 1,599.

1599 by James Shapiro, A Year in the Life of William Shakespeare.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger adrian mckinty said...

Peter

I think the mistake the translators make is forgetting that Verne says "mers" i.e. its a lateral movement through many seas. Since most people dont really know what a league is they do get it mixed up with fathoms etc. Twenty thousand leagues under the sea would take you right through the planet and into deep space which is an entirely different Verne novel.

I remember hearing that phrase GB Snr's "a thousand points of light" for the first time and thinking it was the stupidest thing I'd ever heard up to that point. Of course it has since been surpassed by his progeny.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Fred said...

Peter,

No, I haven't read Truffaut's book. It does look interesting though. I would like to watch some of Hitchcock's "translations" with his comments in mind.

I read the book long ago and saw the film long afterwards, so I'm really vague about _39 steps_ and what changes Hitchcock made. Perhaps it's time to reread the book and watch the film.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Mange tak, Dorte.

OK, I've got stories coming in from Denmark and New Zealand. We can discuss deadlines later.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Adrian: On their way through the planet, Nemo and friends could wave at characters from yet another Verne novel. I haven't read the book since a probably abridged kiddie version when I was very young, so I don't remember noticing what translators to with "under" But ... Under the Seas might alleviate confusion and is only marginally less idiomatic.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Uriah, I had not thought of thousands plus fractions thereof, but 1599 undeniably has "thousand" in the title. Besides, I hear that Shakespeare guy was pretty good. Thanks.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Fred, one addition to Hitchcock's movie of The Thirty-Nine Steps was the segment about the forbidding old crofter and his pretty young wife, who helps Hannay. Hitchcock says in the Truffaut interview that he took that story from another source. One subtraction is the thirty-nine steps themselves. In the novel, thirty-nine actual, physical steps figure in the plot, but Hitchcock removed this from the movie.

The Truffaut book is simply called Hitchcock/Truffaut or Truffaut/Hitchcock, and it's worth seeking out.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Juri said...

Congrats on the work well done, Peter!

I'd have to vote THE COLD SIX THOUSAND, since that's the only example I can think of.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Sucharita Sarkar said...

Congratulations, and may you write many 1000-s of posts, it's a great pleasure and edification to read them.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Linkmeister said...

Mercedes Lackey might make it to 1000 books, if you count co-authorship. Heck, Nora Roberts is probably halfway there already.

Captcha: Flout, as in "for these purposes, I flout SF/Fantasy and Romance!"

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Dorte H said...

"We can discuss deadlines later."

Or you can find your story here: http://skrive-bloggen.blogspot.com/2009/04/mord-for-en-tusse.html

A suitable title + one word per blog post you have written.
Congratulations :D

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Thanks, Juri. That was one of the two I could think of. A couple of other people suggested it, which may be a sign that it's time for me to make an attempt on that difficult book.

April 26, 2009  
Anonymous marco said...

Congratulations!
Haven't read them yet- though I managed to snatch a used copy of the first one- but Stieg Larsson 's books are collectively known as The Millenium Trilogy, so since all the others have been taken...

Linkmeister,
Nora Roberts is probably well over 1,000

Dorte,here's how you do Hyperlinks:

(a href="the web address")a description of the link(/a)

and change the above parentheses to < and >

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Many thanks, Sucharita. Yours is a high compliment.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger adrian mckinty said...

Peter

I know my views are eccentric and
C6M inspires a lot of hatred, but I think C6M is Ellroy's masterpiece.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Linkmeister said...

marco, Roberts' bibliography. There are only (only!) 26 "In Death" books, which are the ones which might appeal to the mystery or police procedural fans more than her other works. I like 'em.

captcha: "screa" Hmm. A missing "m" at the end there.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger seanag said...

More like a cut off scream, Linkmeister.

Yeah, and to think that those In Death books are only a kind of side venture of her vast empire. It makes me want to screa-

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Flout is one of the better v-words, Linkmeister. But then, I've always liked that Groucho Marx song, you know, the one that goes:

"And on the day that I was born
My mother screamed from night to morn
Whatever it is, I'm against it.
No matter what it is or who commenced it
I'm against it."

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Ah, but that is a writing exercise, Dorte, and quite the example of writerly disciple. Tusind tak.

A translator's task is now to render the story into his or her own language also in precisely a thousand words, an exercise worthy of Oulipo.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Millennium Trilogy -- I should have thought of it. Thanks, Marco.

In re Nora ROberts, isn't she really J.D. Robb, or vice versa? That ought to add to her bibiography.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Adrian, I'm not sure Cold 6K inspires hatred as much as intense exasperation with its prose style.

Hmm, maybe that does add up to hatred in the form of intense resentment that an author should attempt prose style so odd and have the nerve to get it published.

I've read just one Ellroy novel, "L.A. Confidential," and I finished that it one sitting, so I know the man is good.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

screa--? Oh, yeah. I'd say the v-word pendulum is swinging in Linkmeister's direction.

Seana and Linkmeister, you both seem awed by the vastness of the Roberts domain. I wonder if she has written more than the sadly departed Donald Westlake, not to mention the old pulp guys like Erle Stanley Gardner.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger adrian mckinty said...

Peter

The thing about Cold 6000 and American Tabloid is that after the first 20 or 30 pages or so you dont really notice the style anymore. Or rather it doesnt grate anymore. Admittedly a lot of people have given up by then but I think its worth sticking with it.

Personally I think Cold 6000 and Cloud Atlas are the best novels written so far this century.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Linkmeister said...

Actually, what I'm awed by is Roberts' ability to switch voices so seemingly effortlessly between her styles. Westlake, Lawrence Block and Evan Hunter could do it, and that's pretty good company for a woman who started out in genre romance.

She'll have three new "mainstream" books out this year and two new "In Death" books as well, and that doesn't count all the reissues that Harlequin/Silhouette keep pumping out.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Linkmeister said...

Maybe my awe is based on the fact that she's about six months older than I, and her accomplishments in about the same number of years make any I have pale in comparison. ;)

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Gary Corby said...

Hi Peter,

Xenophon would be a fine idea, except it doesn't count by your rules. His book's title was Anabasis, which means "uphill". There's no thousand in the actual title.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger pattinase (abbott) said...

Congrats, Pete. My favorite would be Anne of a Thousand Days. Was anyone lovelier than Genevieve Bujold?

April 26, 2009  
Blogger R. T. said...

The play "Anne of a Thousand Days," I believe, was written by Maxwell Anderson--or was it Sherwood Anderson? Well, it was an Anderson. In any event, the actress in the movie offered up a performance that was indeed head-and-shoulders above and beyond all others. Oops! I must have lost my head by throwing in that remark. Sorry.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Adrian, I took a look at Cloud Atlas just now on a popular retailer's site. The first sample page is full of references to ships and Australia. Seems like it may capture the spirit of classic adventure stories.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Linkmeister, I may have to read something of hers one of these days. And Ian Rankin is younger than I am, so I know the feeling Roberts must give you.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Gary, I make the rules, and I can creatively break them. I've let 1599 and "The Millennium Trilogy" in, so I'm going to admit Xeonphon based on the popular subtitles involving the Ten Thousand. A little classics can never hurt.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

She's my homegirl, Patti! And thanks for the kind words.

I watched part of The Lion in Winter at a bar last night. movies involving Kings Henry are suddenly part of my life.

And Maxwell Anderson was the man, R.T. (Head joke noted and acknowledged.)

April 26, 2009  
Blogger adrian mckinty said...

Peter

I dont want to spoil the book but Cloud Atlas is more in the mode of Italo Calvino's If On A Winter's Night A Traveller. Shouldnt really say anymore than that.

April 26, 2009  
Blogger seanag said...

Did I mention how my sister was sitting in an airport once, reading If On a Winter's Night a Traveler, and she looked up and the guy sitting across from her was reading If on a Winter's Night a Traveler. And they had a sort of moment about it. If you've read the book, you'll understand the frisson. But it ended up being a little anticlimactic. I think they just eventually got on their planes and went on their separate ways.

April 27, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Adrian, if Cloud Atlas is metafiction or stories within stories, it certainly picks at least one engaging story to tell, in what looks like a nautical-adventure segment. I read a bunch of Italo Calvino years ago, though not If On a Winter's Night ... , and I love frame stories in fiction, so Cloud Atlas is an attractive prospect.

April 27, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Seana, wouldn't the frisson have been even more exciting and disorienting if one of them had been writing a story about someone reading If On a Winter's Night? In any case, I think such frissons are always anticlimactic in real life. They grow less so only in the retelling.

But I'm a man of simpler Calvino tastes. My favorites were Cosmicomics and T-Zero.

April 27, 2009  
Anonymous marco said...

The pulp/western writers were extremely prolific, and switched genres with ease.
Robert Silverberg is another approaching the thousand - along with his hundreds of Science-fiction noves, he has written countless erotic/sleazy paperbacks under pseudonym.


Black Swan Green is probably very different from Cloud Atlas- much simpler - but I've enjoyed it very much.



Calvino:
Invisible Cities.

April 27, 2009  
Blogger adrian mckinty said...

Another vote for Invisible Cities.

I remember Asimov wrote a book called Opus 400 because it was his 400th book. I dont know how many he wrote in the end but his son Eric (the restaurant critic) said that he had 3 typewriters on the go at any one time. Maybe he reached 1000 novels I dont know.

After a lot of pestering I finally persuaded my little brother to read Cloud Atlas. He read it last year, finishing it rather dramatically in Iraq while his base was under mortar fire. He told me that while reading CA he completely forgot where he was which can only be a good thing. He put it among his top 10 of all time.

That good man Dave Torrans of No Alibis gave me a signed 1st ed. of Black Swan Green which I liked (but not as much as CA)

Incidentally according to Dec Burke the BBC are going to make a film of Mystery Man, presumably Mr Torrans will get a cameo.

April 27, 2009  
Blogger Dorte H said...

Marco, thank you for your technical advide - probably wasted on me anyway, as I can understand it, but am not able to remember it ;)

Peter,
"A translator's task is now to render the story into his or her own language also in precisely a thousand words, an exercise worthy of Oulipo."
Not sure I know any of them, - but you could try to advertise. If you are interested in an English version, that is.

April 27, 2009  
Anonymous marco said...

Dorte

You don't have to remember it, Just copy the basic line with empty spaces, save it somewhere and then paste it inserting a new address and comment every time you want to do an hyperlink.

April 27, 2009  
Anonymous Heine said...

Quote Personally I think Cold 6000 and Cloud Atlas are the best novels written so far this century. Unquote

Point one, Mckinty, everything you say is personal. Either that or someone else is saying it. Point two, the words SO FAR are redundant. Get it?

Mate, stick with helicopters of World War Two.

April 27, 2009  
Blogger adrian mckinty said...

Heine

Well, no, I use "personally" in a colloquial sense to denote that I am not asserting an objective truth but only a rather transitory personal opinion.

"So far" is another qualifier. I am not convinced that the decades will be kind to either Cloud Atlas or Cold 6000, so again its an expression denoting that this is a rather lighthearted and preliminary opinion.

Most comments on blogs are replete with such stuff. Perhaps you are new to the blogging world or English is not your first language?

By the way in Irish surnames Mac means "son of" so the letter after the Mac or Mc is capitalised i.e. "K" rather than "k". Not to do so of course is an insult to one's father, clan and kin. I assume, however, you just made a typing mistake rather than a crude attempt at mick bashing, I mean we're all human after all, aren't we ... mate?

My favourite Heine quote BTW (that means by the way, by the way) "Ordinarily he was insane, but there were lucid moments when he was merely stupid."

April 27, 2009  
Anonymous Bjorn (not again) said...

Congratulations Peter. As they say in drivetime long time listener, first time caller. I mean commenter.

Cold 6K - diggin the slang - HATED the book. Unreadable!!! It read likes notes for the book, not the book itself! Lent it to an ex and now she's an ex! Coincidence?!

Note to Heine: big difference from saying "Best film of the year" and "Best film of the year so far." You can make both statements in January but the former makes a very different claim than the latter!

Have you been keeping up with the news from Iceland?

Skol

Another Philly fan.

April 27, 2009  
Anonymous Dave from Belfast said...

Heine

"The words SO FAR are redundant."

No they're not. They're temporal qualifiers.

"Get it?"

No because it's a solecism.

"Mate, stick with helicopters of World War Two"

Ha, ha, what does that even mean? You think McKinty or any of us should hold off commenting on a blog because we might run into some ill informed eejit hiding behind so obviously inappropriate a pseudonym?

Maybe where you live, mate, but clearly you've never a man from Belfast. Lucky for you I expect.
Oh aye and bad form on the lower case k, really bad form. Trust me.

April 27, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Marco, I chose Erle Stanley Gardner as an example, but I suspect any number of pulp-era writers wrote more words than the most prolific contemporary authors, though not necessarily in novels, of course. Those old guys wrote in the heyday of magazine fiction, and one is always reading prodigious accounts of their output.

April 27, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Dorte, Oulipo is an experimental group founded by a collection of authors, mostly French but including, as it happens, Italo Calvino. I think a credo of the group's is that discipline enforced by arbitrary limits can spur creativity. One well-known project by a member of the group was a novel written, in French, without a single instance of the letter "e," a feat duplicated in the book's English translation.

April 27, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Dorte, I can never remember the details for creating hyperlinks in blog comments either, but I don't have to. The format is the same as that in the Blogger template for adding blogs to your blog roll, except without the (li) at the beginning and the end of the line.

April 27, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Bjorn, I have not kept up much with the news from Iceland since the initial shock. I happened to meet a couple of Icelanders at the time, and the issue came up.

April 27, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Adrian, "made me forget the mortar fire" beats "I couldn't put it down!" as blurb material any day.

Perhaps I'll ask Dave Torrans about his movie prospects in a few weeks.

April 27, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Bjorn, I forgot to extend a special welcome to you as a first-time commenter. Thanks, and I'll hope you come back for many more visits.

April 27, 2009  
Blogger seanag said...

wouldn't the frisson have been even more exciting and disorienting if one of them had been writing a story about someone reading If On a Winter's Night? In any case, I think such frissons are always anticlimactic in real life. They grow less so only in the retelling..Well, it would have been more exciting if there had been a third person writing a story about someone reading If on a Winter's, etc. But you need the two readers, I think.

I don't think it's anticlimactic in the moment, exactly. It's really in the trying to analyze the moment that at the time seemed so significant that anticlimax gets involved. I think it's true of a lot of things that are a little beyond our everyday sense of things.

April 27, 2009  
Blogger Peter Rozovsky said...

Oh, I'm sure your frisson met all the requirements of a good frisson. It's just that Calvino set such high standards in the frisson department.

Nothing wrong, of course, with a story improving in the telling in the retelling. It's why we tell stories, I think.

April 27, 2009  

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