Saturday, June 4, 2016

I am guilty of an Anachronism in my story The Piano Maidens.

Published in Tales of The Shadowmen Volume 12.  But that I've also made available online.

The anachronism is that the story is set in 1839, yet I refereed to the existence of Eugene Sue's The Wandering Jew, which didn't begin serialization till 1843.  My mind I guess just focused on that when that Novel takes place was in 1832 so it's already part of Father Rodin's history.  I made this mistake and I'm amazed how long it took me to notice it, I proof read it several times before sending it to Jean-Marc.

I should have known better, I wrote this as I was obsessing over every minutia of the development of French Popular fiction in the mid 19th-early 20th centuries.

In the past I have felt annoyed at other writers making such mistakes.  Now I've made one myself that I should have known better and thus forfeited my right to complain.

I am of course free to re-write the story in a way that corrects the problem, it would be perfectly intellectually and morally consistent as I defend George Lucas by pointing to the precedent of Tolkien and Mary Shelly.  But I'm unsure how.

One option is I could change when it's set to a later date.  I don't want to do that because I wrote this story imagining Eugenie and Louise as teenagers or very early 20s, my ambition here is to write a YA Lesbian Romance in a Shadowmen setting,  But more directly important the Blakccoats lore tie in depends on The Colonel being alive and were made with it being the same year as Coriolani's rebellion as a subtle backdrop (the character of Gian-Paolo dies before the end of 1839).

And I also want the lead Heroines to have not aged much since they left the narrative of TCoMC in 1838.

The second option is to remove the reference.  Problem there is first that it's a decent chuck of the conversation with Rodin though not what's important to the direct plot-line I'm setting up.  And I was particular on how I handled the topic changes in the conversions.

But also thematically I wanted to set up that in this fictional universe some fictional novels exist even though events they depict also happened.  So that the references to the Jane Austen novels do not rule out those characters also existing.  I realize that's already a given for the TOTS fan-base, but I also want to this to work as a possible introduction for my own fictional shared universe.

Thing is I will probably be least faithful to Eugene Sue's among all the Public Domain characters I use.  His moral outlook was often to simplistic and did not usually do well by female characters.  My Rodin I intend to have be a more nuanced character, even though I do share Sue's anti-Catholic sentiment for a different reason.

Which is why I was deliberately ambiguous about if we should view Sue's novel as a reliable account of the events in question (but equally on how reliable a source of info Rodin himself is).  I kind of don't want the title character to be real since that myth is Aniti-Semitic in origin.

I've been meaning to look into exactly when Father Rodin would have been born, Sue also had him pop up already during the French Revolution.

I'll probably decide in favor of the second option, but I'll need to work on that, and I'm trying to write this story's sequel (might not be a direct one, but it'll also star Eugenie and Louise) right now.  I will remember to ignore the discussion in question.

No comments:

Post a Comment