Saturday, October 30, 2010

Gut Instinct.

by Louis Bertrand Shalako


All Rights Reserved

‘The Paranoid Cat and other tales’ is my fourth release and it’s kind of scary just how quick it went together. Seriously, folks, this is just too easy. What is wrong with this picture? But these tales were written more recently, rather than ‘over many years.’

I could upload this thing in a heartbeat, and that has its dangers. One more run-through, right? What the hell, it's worth it. The book will be out in three or four days.

No one can tell you how to write, what to write, or what you should write. No one can tell you what it is permissible to write, or what you should not write. Recently I read an interview of a prominent fantasy writer, David Farland. Peter Orullian did the interview. According to David, people like fantasy for its moral elements.

Another interesting thing he said was, ‘I don’t want to tell someone how to kill someone.”

Bearing in mind that a lot of fantasy deals with swords, lances, bows, laser beams, doomsday spells and curses, there is plenty of ‘instruction’ in fantasy. So it is just plain bullshit. There are some things which should not be published, I agree with that. It is self-evident and we all know what it is. Especially insofar as Mr. Farland also advocates certain types of censorship although he doesn’t want to be put in charge of it. Neither do I, which is why I have to have some form of self-checking routine when making editorial and publishing judgment calls.

Someone with a lot of guns and power is always slavering at the jaws to put a crimp in the freedom of expression we all enjoy, and there is some level of intimidation by interest groups as well. But in the end, the ‘moral majority’ turns out to be fifteen crackpots writing vile and anonymous letters in a church basement somewhere. (Handy Hint: Use your spell-checker.)

Recently on the news there was a report of broken glass put at the bottom of a slide, and police are investigating. There is some ‘instruction’ there; if one is a problem individual, prone to devising new ways to hurt people. That’s mainstream TV for you, by the way.

I have always believed that I would not be too good as a fantasy writer, because I simply don’t believe in the supernatural. It would be dishonest for me to attempt to write it, and in the end I would fool nobody but myself. Right?

Wrong. Due to my policy of ‘inversion,’ the next time I attempt to write any sort of fantasy, I intend to approach this literary problem from a point of view of pure and abject cynicism. I can’t really explain why, exactly…just call it ‘gut instinct.’

Holy fuck! You know what? That would be a pretty good title for a book or a story or something.

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