June 14th, 2006


Africa and Strage Personnas

I've been watching Michael Palin's Sahara this week, thanks to Netflix.

All I can say is: Duuuuude, why wasn't this available when I started writing Facing the Heart in Darkness?

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Although I'm not sure which is worse: Writing about an area which you know nothing about and where you're completely unfamiliar with the local culture; or writing about an area with which you are intimately familiar, like in the case of Dancing Behind the Spider Gates.

In the first instance when you've got zero knowledge about an area, sometimes you have to tell yourself to stop the research, gloss over the holes in your knowledge, and word things carefully so your ignorance doesn't show too badly or at least in a way that insults people who know better.

In the second instance when you've got intimate knowledge about an area, you realize that you might have to compromise on some things you know are true because those facts aren't important to the story in question. If you like being close to correct it can sometimes grate.

Anyway, ummmm, patting myself on the back isn't the purpose of the post.

I was struck by something very funny while watching Sahara. Or should I say, I was struck funny by the whole idea that in my head that I thought I had a pretty firm idea of Michael Palin's public personna...unfortunately, it's his Monty Python personna.

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