Sometimes something so completely odd comes across the screen that we only need to sit back and gape in wonder. Such is the case with a Craigslist ad recently posted in New Orleans and shared by the folks at The Huffington Post.
A woman (at least, I’m assuming it’s a woman) advertised for a “casual encounter” with a man dressed up as Game of Thrones’ bastard heartthrob Robb Stark. In nerdy detail, she describes the entire scenario. Summed up: she’ll dress up as Daenerys Targaryen and sit on a replica of the Iron Throne to “make wild and passionate love…repeatedly” to the Stark impersonator. The poster continues:
Please only respond to this post if you look like Robb Stark! I would appreciate pictures, but please, no names. In order to stay as true to the fantasy as possible, I ONLY want you to refer to yourself as Robb Stark.
But, wait! There’s more:
You will need to provide your own clothing. Please keep in mind that you will have recently participated in a battle and been thrown in a dungeon, so you will not be wearing your nicest furs. I’m looking for a Stark in the streets but a wildling in the sheets.
As of this evening the full ad is still available on Craigslist. (I would have inserted the full image myself if I had screenshot skills. Alas, I do not.)
You don’t need to be a Game of Thrones fan to appreciate the poster’s attention or passion for detail. Or their obvious chops at cleverly transforming a crude street phrase. So, and I mean this quite seriously, my wish for myself and my fellow writers is that we may attack our own projects with such obvious knowledge and ferocity.
P.S. Be safe, Daenerys.
P.P.S. Seriously? There’s a casual encounters section on Craigslist?
At least, in a reasonable world no one ever should.
Yet according to novelist and non-fiction author James Forrester’s recent HuffPo essay some feel that historical fiction writers have a responsibility to maintain accuracy. He describes an Institute of Historical Research seminar in which popular and award-winning historical author Hilary Mantel argued that novelists should not misrepresent the past.
Like Forrester, I disagree. He lays out solid reasons—I encourage you to read the full article.
My take? Fiction is, by definition, a product of the imagination…the writer’s creative juices mixed with their experiences, interests, fears, hopes, and everything else that makes the author, well, the author. Just because he or she has chosen to place that story in a specific place and time or chosen to tell the story using people known to history doesn’t bind their soul to the facts we expect from non-fiction writers.
When I read or watch fiction, I understand I’m consuming a narrative that is invented. Abraham Lincoln was never a Vampire Hunter. Henry VIII didn’t stay an attractive hottie until his death. (Okay, I can’t be the only one who watched The Tudors solely because of Jonathan Rhys Meyers.) And just because Harry Potter takes place in modern Britain, I’m pretty sure that Platform 9 ¾ isn’t tucked away, ready to whisk a few lucky souls away to wizard school.
That’s why it’s called fiction. If I want facts I’ll go to Wikipedia. (Did you hear that sound? It was the collective sound of teachers everywhere cringing. [insert evil laugh here])
Image courtesy of thaikrit / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Over the last few days, a thank you note written by a 4th grader has been making the viral rounds. It was penned by a kid, delightfully named Flint, expressing his appreciation to meteorologist Albert Ramon, who had visited his Texas classroom. I don’t want to dilute the note by paraphrasing it, so check it out for yourself:
This note makes me realize how much I love the creativity of young boys.
This note makes me want to write about jewel-encrusted thrones and cyborg unicorns.
This note makes me want to write copy using the term “pretty dang sweet.” (But I promise to avoid that urge, dear clients.)
Yes, some have questioned whether the writing is genuine, but as mom to a 6-year-old boy with a similarly active imagination I’m ready to believe in Flint. Keep writing, buddy!
And I am so asking for a unicorn servant for Mother’s Day.
My 6-year-old son makes up words. Sometimes he makes up words when he can’t come up with the correct word to use. Other times they come about because he’s delightfully unaware of the ponderous rules of English grammar and usage. His most recent creations include poink (“My brother poinked me with his fork.”) and saucering (“Will it ever snow? I want to go saucering down the hill?”)
I don’t discourage it. In fact, I use my own nonsense words when I’m with the little humans. A few conversations have taken on a Dr. Seuss-ish quality, minus the crazy-good poetic skills, of course, because if they were that good I would publish them and bask in the literary glory that would undoubtedly follow. (Excuse the slip into fantasy land…sounds like it’s time for my afternoon dose of caffeine.)
Do you use nonsense words? (And don’t you get a little irritated when you can’t use them on Words with Friends? Okay, maybe that’s just me…)
Image courtesy of Stuart Miles/FreeDigitalPhotos.net.