The book Adams was working on when he died, "A Salmon of Doubt" was a Dirk Gently book that he was reportedly changing into a Hitchhiker's book. I read the snippets that he had already written and was very sad that I wasn't going to be able to find out how they got resolved.
I don't know how you can do another book when the last one appeared to involve every Earth (and every Earth person) in the Whole Sort of General Mish-Mash being destroyed.
I will buy it, and I think I will enjoy it. I really really like the Artemis Fowl books.
Anyone who can write a book with an teenage criminal mastermind with the name of a goddess as the protagonist and pull it off as intelligent, funny, with a seemless mix of magic and technology, has a chance of writing a decent Hitchhiker book.
I'm not sure I will consider it a true Hitchhiker book, but I bet I'll enjoy reading it.
Originally posted by Mr. BoffoThe book Adams was working on when he died, "A Salmon of Doubt" was a Dirk Gently book that he was reportedly changing into a Hitchhiker's book.
Is it wrong of me to want another Dirk Gently book rather than another HGTTG book?
The most hilarious thing about Tommy Dreamer is that everyone else in WWE, from Shelton Benjamin to dudes who haven't even debuted yet, has a T-shirt available. WWE doesn't even bother printing up a T-shirt for Tommy Dreamer, A MAN WHOSE GIMMICK IS WEARING A T-SHIRT WHILE WRESTLING. And why is that? Because not a god damn person would ever pay money for a Tommy Dreamer shirt. Not even his own mother. As a result he usually ends up wearing a shirt that says "WRESTLEMANIA 24" or "JUDGEMENT DAY." I think it's time for Tommy Dreamer to just print up a T-shirt that says "UPCOMING PAY PER VIEW"
Originally posted by J. Kyle Now I have to read Artemis Fowl to find out how worried I should be.
I think reading Artemis Fowl is one of the least useful things you can do in terms of trying to figure out whether you're likely to enjoy Colfer's foray into H2G2. Mind, I can't actually think of anything you could do that would actually be useful in that context...
(J. Kyle, please note: the below is not an attack on you, what you said above just gave me pause to vent a little)
I know that this is the age of the Interweebs, where everything always sucks, especially as compared to how awesome everything always used to be, but consider that Douglas Adams is dead. He's never going to write another word. The only hope we fans have is something like this, unless we want to wade through fan-fiction desperately hoping to find a diamond in the rough. Or come up with our own.
This gives the H2G2 fan a couple of options: you can wring your hands and get in a snit and go on about how "worried you should be" and prepare for what everyone knows will be a sorry excuse for a story that pisses all over the legacy that Adams left behind (and shame on everyone for dirtying it with their moneygrubbing), or you can anticipate the chance, however small you may perceive it to be, that maybe someone can take that legacy and that world that Adams made and do something great with it; someone who loves that world as much as you do, someone who understands the hallowed ground he's been asked to walk on, someone who really wants to do a good job at this, for Adams, for Adams' widow, and for all of us who love H2G2.
I was in the minority of those who really liked the H2G2 movie. To me it followed the spirit of Adams and the world he created, not because it was too much or too little like the book or because the casting was all wrong or because there weren't enough fjords. I liked the BBC Radio Drama for the same reason. And the computer game too. I felt like they were all part of the same bigger thing, even if they were not even mutually consistent with each other, let alone the books. On top of that, they were all entertaining in their own ways.
I'm prepared to like whatever Mr. Colfer (none of whose work I've read) gives us as long as I feel that the spirit of the thing resonates with my impression of Adams' H2G2 world. And given his comments in the linked article, I like my chances.
I probably should have said, "whether to be worried" but this is the Guide: the book that changed the way I view science/philosophy/religion/humor, the way I write sentences, hell maybe even the way I think.
I started Discworld because I heard it was Adams-esque fantasy.
I started Doctor Who because I heard Adams used to work for them.
So this is a big deal. But I'm eager to give it a chance, since, speaking as someone who studies/practices all areas of writing, I value authorial intent a great deal. And Adams didn't want it to end on the note it did.
Not to mention I think it is possible to pick up the story. Someone saved the dolphins, Arthur's time traveled before, and ever since Adams said the Dirk story seemed more H2G2 I've been dreaming of the possibilities. My favorite is Arthur going back and teaming with Dirk to kick some Infinidim ass. The possibilities (finding Fenchurch~!) are endless and it feels good to think I'll get to see these characters again.
My trepidation in my previous post is because for so long, in my mind, the Guide is Adams and nothing short of a Scott Adams/Terry Pratchett collaboration would come close to Adams, so an Adams-less guide just seems surreal to me.
But I've heard good things about Artemis Fowl. Things I've never thought would work have surprised me recently. The end of Discworld is coming much sooner than later. And the world/life has been so hectic that a proper end or continuation couldn't hurt. This alternate version of the article detalinig Colfer's history with the Guide leaves me hopeful.
The fact that nobody has gone comic book guy in this thread is awesome. I think people like KJames and I are hopeful but wary at the same time.
Because I'm an optimist (when it comes to this) I'm probably much more optimistic than most. And because I love the Guide so, anything that comes close will make me happy.
Though for the record, I believe the movie didn't work because the first book just doesn't fit the three act arc used in blockbusters and the combination of adding two third acts with the idea that Zaphod is Bill Clinton made me, this is the technical term, sad face.
The Guide works better as a novel or serial, and there's no producers/studio heads to worry about here so I've lowered my guard.
Was that a mistake? We'll find out in 13 months.
(edited by J. Kyle on 25.9.08 0624) Just J, not Johnny.
Gamian wrote something in his blog the other day about being asked by Adams to work on a radio adaptation.
Nobody asked me to do it, but then, when Douglas asked me if I'd like to adapt Life, The Universe and Everything for radio I said no, and that was with Douglas alive and asking. (Dirk Maggs did it, and did an excellent job.) It seemed a thankless task.
I like Eoin very much, and wish him well with the book. He'll probably write a sixth Hitchhiker's book with more enthusiasm, and certainly faster, than Douglas would have done. But it won't be a Douglas Adams Hitchhiker's book.
Originally posted by tarnish I know that this is the age of the Interweebs, where everything always sucks, especially as compared to how awesome everything always used to be, but consider that Douglas Adams is dead. He's never going to write another word. The only hope we fans have is something like this, unless we want to wade through fan-fiction desperately hoping to find a diamond in the rough. Or come up with our own.
True. I've got to deal with this same thing with Robert Jordan. But in that case it's even worse because Jordan was working on the last book when he died. With Hitchhiker's I can either read the book and like it, or I can pretend it never happened (like some people do with movies they don't like, like Rocky 5). With Wheel of Time, pretending it never happened means leaving the story unfinished, which is probably worse.
J. Kyle, you should listen to the BBC Radio adaptations of So Long And Thanks For All The Fish (The W at Amazon) and Mostly Harmless. They do a great job of adapting those two books together to make them make sense, and it ends on a much happier note (even if it is, um, quite improbable?).
Originally posted by Neil Gaiman I like Eoin very much, and wish him well with the book. He'll probably write a sixth Hitchhiker's book with more enthusiasm, and certainly faster, than Douglas would have done. But it won't be a Douglas Adams Hitchhiker's book.
I'm a big Neil Gaiman fan (the novels, never got into the comics), but this statement disappoints me.
Some may say I'm splitting hairs here, but there's no guarantee that if Adams were alive he'd write a "Douglas Adams Hitchhiker's book." That is to say, DA could be alive right now and releasing another in the series and it could go down as a huge failure and a disappointment to fans. But maybe he would do it because he felt the need to grow himself and change his own creation. No one would argue that he doesn't have the right to do so, but that wouldn't change the fact that there's a chance DA himself couldn't live up to his own past, at least in the way the fans want him to.
I'm suddenly swimming in questions of authenticity and the right of a creator and stuff. Sometimes I think the most dangerous notion in literature, especially with regards to series of stories like H2G2 is "canon". Schisms in Fundamentalist Christianity are an excellent example of both how much people can care about such things and how divisive disagreement can be. The "retcons" of the comic book world are almost always derided; but they're done because it makes it possible to carry forward in a way that the original formulation didn't allow for. If one accepts comic book writers as "unreliable narrators" it's easier to deal with; if you view them as "omnipotent creators" it's much harder. And look at the oral tradition in our history: you're never going to be able to convince me that there weren't bards and storytellers who embellished and even changed the great epics to suit the times or the audience. In fact, I'd submit that's probably what separated the great storytellers from the merely good ones.
When Tom Stoppard wrote "Rosencrantz & Guildenstern are Dead", he tromped all over the canon of Shakespeare, one of the greatest works by one of the most beloved and admired writers in the English language. But he did it with a twinkle in his eye, a healthy respect for Shakespeare's work, and a desire to explore a scenario from a different perspective. And he produced something great, something that stands both on its own and as an adjunct to the original "Hamlet".
Sometimes I have trouble believing that anyone other than Tolkien could have written a coherent Middle Earth book because that world was so completely realized in Tolkien's mind and even he was only able to give us a glimpse. One argument posits that any "derivative work" would be necessarily inferior, because it would be the result of taking an incomplete view of the original world (as realized in the mind of Tolkien), building a complete view in the new author's mind, and then writing an incomplete view of that. But is it necessarily inferior? Or is it just "different"?
In music, especially classical, the goal of performance is to perform what the composer intended the listener to hear. But even many composers believed that musical notation was not a complete enough language to capture what they heard in their heads. Or look at covers of songs; a crappy-to-decent cover is simply a performance by another "author". A great cover is a reinterpretation of a previous work seen as seen through the gloss of a different author and output as reinterpretation.
I knew I should have taken another Philosophy of Art class...
My absolute favorite set of books when I was a preteen was the Swallows and Amazons series of books by Arthur Ransome. I think they are still very popular in Britain, I'm not so sure on this side of the Atlantic. Click Here (amazon.com)