On Strange and Norrell and Madness

On Strange and Norrell and Madness

The BBC has once more proved the worth of the licence fee with the stunning adaptation of Susanna Clarke's novel Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell. Now we're all had time to digest the series, I wanted to think on the depictions of "madness" in the adaptation and what writers can learn about depicting mental illness, particularly in the fantasy genre. SPOILERS FOR THE SERIES AND THE NOVEL - YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED The relationship between magic and madness "Magic cannot cure madness." - Gilbert Norrell From the beginning, Strange and Norrell was explicit in its discussion of madness and magic, with an alternate early nineteenth century viewpoint. When Sir Walter Pole asks Mr Norrell to cure his wife of madness, Norrell is firm on the point. However, given what we know of Norrell's role in Lady Pole's resurrection and his subsequent distancing from fairy magic, Norrell may well be lying. However, his efforts with Strange on curing the King's madness seem to uphold this assertion. Jonathan...
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10 Writing Career Lessons from Disney’s Frozen

Frozen, as the highest grossing animated film of all time, has commanded the attention of filmmakers everywhere. There have been in-depth analyses of what makes a successful animated film and how Frozen hits those buttons. This is not that kind of post. Instead, let's imagine the characters of Frozen have turned writing coach - what words of writing advice can they share? What do their life anecdotes teach us about how to be better writers? How can we learn from their mistakes? Here are 10 writing career lessons out of the mouths of Frozen characters: Don't let them in, don't let them see - be the good girl you always have to be. Most writers start out writing for themselves, for the joy of it. Because they can't not write. However, there will come a point when someone will ask why you spend all your time with a computer screen and may ask to see the finished product... I have always been something of an exhibitionist,...
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Starting

So, I'm back from holiday and I haven't written a word. Well, that's a lie. I scribbled a couple of rewritten scenes in my notebook and wrote about two thousand words of something completely unpublishable. And then I just can't concentrate on one thing at a time (as you may have noticed). But maybe this is a good thing? Michelle Lipton quotes Adrian Mead on types of writer: - The Martyr - full time movie writer - The Optimist - full time movie and TV writer - The Realist - full time screenwriter: movies, TV, theatre, radio, online, multi-platform, games So...it's good that I'm like the Energizer bunny on speed? And, if you're a green newbie like me, Bitter's 'How do I get started?' is a good summary of the complexity of hard work and determination required for this business. Okay...going to stop procrastinating now and work on my short ...
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