^o^CORVUS^o^ wrote:Oh yeah, the rings trilogy is a superb example. I barely got through a reading if "Fellowship", but I only got 30 pages into "The Two Towers" before giving up.
Tolkien was an astounding linguist, and superb when it came to creating worlds and an overall plotline, but the stories themselves are hard to read.
The Princess Bride is presented as Goldman's abridgment of an older version by "S. Morgenstern", which was originally a satire of the excesses of European royalty. The book, in fact, is entirely Goldman's work. Morgenstern and the "original version" are fictional and used as a literary device.
Goldman carried the joke further by publishing another book called The Silent Gondoliers (explaining why the gondoliers of Venice no longer sing to their passengers) under S. Morgenstern's name.
Goldman's personal life, as described in the introduction and commentary in the novel, is also fictional. In The Princess Bride, Goldman claims to have one son with his wife, a psychiatrist. In reality, Goldman has two daughters, and his wife is not a psychiatrist. The commentary is extensive, continuing through the text until the very end.
The book's actual roots are in stories Goldman would tell to his daughters, one of whom had requested a story about "princesses" and the other "brides". Goldman describes the earliest character names from the "kid's saga" as "silly names: Buttercup, Humperdinck". The countries are both named after coins: the florin, originally a silver coin minted in Florence, and the Dutch guilder, also known as florin.
The device of claiming that a book is a pre-existing work that the author merely discovered and edited has been used by authors as diverse as Horace Walpole, Miguel de Cervantes, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Umberto Eco, Alessandro Manzoni, Jan Potocki, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Søren Kierkegaard; British fantasy authors Mary Gentle, J.R.R. Tolkien (The Lord of the Rings), and C.S. Lewis (Space Trilogy, The Screwtape Letters, The Chronicles of Narnia); Alison Croggon; George MacDonald Fraser; L. Frank Baum; Laurie King (The Mary Russell Mysteries); science fiction author Michael Crichton (Eaters of the Dead); zoologist Gerolf Steiner (The Snouters: Form and Life of the Rhinogrades); cartoonist Scott Adams (Dilbert); musicologist Peter Schickele (P.D.Q. Bach); and author Mark Z. Danielewski (House of Leaves). Some employers of this device admit to it, but claim that their act of writing the work constituted "discovering" a story or truth which already existed within the collective unconscious or some similar "pool of knowledge".
Akitsu wrote:Lol... there was a kid I went to college with who insisted until he was blue in the face that Florin was a real place
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