04 January 2007

5 books, 5 lines [meme]

My big-time novelizing pal Cornelia, picked up an amusing meme on her gang-blog, nakedauthors.com (a meme which she says she originally picked up from Joshilyn Jackson's "Faster Than Kudzu" blog):
1. Take five books off your bookshelf.
2. Book #1 -- first sentence of the book
3. Book #2 -- last sentence on page 50
4. Book #3 -- second sentence on page 100
5. Book #4 -- next to the last sentence on page 150
6. Book #5 -- final sentence of the book
7. Make the five sentences into a paragraph.

Here's my resultant frankengraph:

All peoples have epic legends about their tribal ancestors, and these legends often formalize themselves into religious cults. The corollary to never going to a meeting without a strategy is never getting off a jet without a strategy, never going to a screening without a strategy, never going to dinner without a strategy, never going to a breakfast without a strategy. "But there's nothing we can do about it now." "It sounds good to me," said Peebles; "I ain't fer goin' 'ome empty 'anded." By restraining them with the nameless unhewn log, they will not feel disgraced, they will be still, whereupon heaven and earth will be made right by themselves.



(1) River Out Of Eden: A Darwinian View of Life, by Richard Dawkins

(2) Hello He Lied (and other true stories from the Hollywood trenches), by Linda Obst

(3) Deliverance, by James Dickey

(4) Tarzan and the Golden Lion, by Edgar Rice Burroughs

(5) Tao Te Ching, by Lao Tzu



Anonymous said...

Now, that's interesting. I'll do the same when I remember. I did take a writing class where the teacher stated that, give or take a few pages, something major in terms of plot and character development generally had to occur every 50 pages. I'd bet it's not a coincidence that these were the increments chosen for this meme as well...

Happy Holidays, B.

Curtis Edmonds said...

I'm just glad someone else goes to breakfast with a strategy. I have been honing my breakfast strategy for years, and I think I finally have it down. You see, you pour the cereal into the bowl first, and then the milk. Cereal first, and then milk. And then grapefruit juice. Not orange juice. I've had more breakfasts ruined by poor orange juice strategy than I care to remember. Grapefruit juice. Ruby red. That's the way to go with your breakfast strategy.

Now all I have to work on is the part where the wife doesn't get all upset and worried when I don't start up amusing breakfast-time conversation. I'm too busy strategizing to talk, woman! But then, she ain't one to leave empty-handed, neither.

Brett said...

G-- it's funny how the form can lead to odd edicts regarding teh timing of major events in a narrative work. In a TV movie, you pretty much need a major event every 11 minutes. In a novel, those breaks come at 25 or 50 page increments. (In a sitcom, they'd better come every alternate line, if not more often!)

C-- Obst's book is actually pretty fantastic and offers great insights for anyone seriously trying to make it in a creative business (film, writing, etc.). in LA, almost any trip or meeting anywhere outside one's own bedroom is an opportunity (hell, OBLIGATION) to work the network. Always know who you are talking to, what they might have to offer, and what you need to stand ready to ask for if the opportunity presents itself.

And always look good. There's no substitute for natural beauty... no matter how much it costs or what it took to get it and hold onto it.