Tuesday, September 11, 2007

So Where Were You When IT happened?

Today is the day the world changed. Did it? I dunno, history will tell us otherwise. I watched Michael Moore’s Fahreheit 9/11 last night. There wasn’t much in it that I already didn’t know, but was interesting enough.

So where were you when the shit hit the fan? Or when the planes hit the towers. Me? I was in a Turkish kebab shop, located in a shopping mall, stripping the ceiling back so they could put in some fire breaks in the air-conditioning. Normally I would have a radio playing, but there was no reception, so didn’t get the news till I was finished and went into the flower shop to purchase flowers (that’s bleedin obvious) because it was my wedding anniversary. The owner then informed me of the days shenanigans, and as a result, we had a candle light dinner whilst watching repeats of the end of the world as we know it.

Today is also my Rhodie friend Mike’s birthday, so I will happily go off tonight to pollute my innards with alcohol with him after spending over a week de-toxing from the ZimFest.

Changing subjects, I received the results from my exam number 4 in my Creative Writing course that is part of the degree I am studying for. The comments you see below refer to the shortened version (I was limited to 1500 words) of an excerpt from my book Last Of The Rhodesians. This is the story called The Amazing Cooked Up Story of The Great White Bwana and His Trusty Servant Sixpence. It is available for you only as an audio story. (Scroll down a bit) As you will see, teacher went into a bit of a shock.


This is an interesting TMA, Lore - you did say it would be experimental, and it's certainly that! You take great liberties with the concept of 'autobiography' - it's stretched to the utmost here. The piece reads like a piece of fiction, written as it is in a traditional story-telling style and in the third person. From the story itself there's no way of telling which, if either, of the two characters is 'you', and to what extent the events are factual.

Because it's based on a very localised oral storytelling tradition, it's difficult for me to assess as a piece of creative writing. It's entertaining and amusing, and as such it fulfils its (presumed) intention. I'm not sure (and you don't indicate in your commentary) what else it may be intended to do, other than be a light entertaining anecdote in a rather peculiar idiom.

Your comments on the White Zimbabwean tradition of these stories help to make some sense of the style, but you don't say why you chose to use this style in the first place. It's quite alien to the British reader - and I must say that the concept behind it (of referring to Black characters by the generic 'Sixpence', and mimicking the native style of speaking) does seem pretty dubious, and based on racist attitudes. You've turned this around by making yourself the 'Sixpence' character - but as the story stands, without the commentary, this isn't obvious. I have to be honest here, and say I don't like it at all. But I've tried to be fair and not let my personal preferences influence your grade! I've given you a clear pass because the standard of writing is good on its own terms.

If you want to publish your work and be read exclusively among White Zimbabweans, this genre of writing may go down very well - but otherwise, I suggest you go for a more conventional approach that would appeal to a broader readership!

A bold approach, anyway - you're not averse to risk-taking in your writing, and that can't be a bad thing! But risks don't always come off.

Don’t you just love it?

Man, this book is gonna be just great!

So whilst I am in a good mood, I have to show you this…

It is rare these days to see an advert on television that really captures the imagination. This one is so good; I watch it with pleasure grinning like an ape. Guerrilla Advertising is an unconventional way of performing promotional activities. Usually very funny or subtle, it’s a great way to promote a business. This new advert by Cadburys, is pure brilliance. Enjoy!

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