About this blog

This is a window into the weird world of Anglicanism, as experienced on a Cathedral Close. Has anything much happened since Trollope's Barchester Chronicles? You will still see the 'canon in residence' hurrying across to choral Evensong, robes flapping, as the late bell chimes. But look carefully and you will notice he is checking the football score on his iPhone as he runs. This is also a writer's blog. It charts the agony and ecstasy of the novelist's life. And it's a fighter's blog. It charts the agony and ecstasy of the judo mat. Well, the agony, anyway.

Saturday 9 February 2013

The Classical Unities

In writing Acts & Omissions I have hedged myself about with various kinds of restrictions.  The obvious ones are the word length: 2000 words (give or take); and the weekly deadline.  This has been the first week when the latter has felt oppressive.  The new chapter is normally written by Friday.  I spend Saturday tweaking it, then copying it into blogger, tweaking it again and then discovering I've somehow bollocksed up the formatting.  This is why the occasional rogue paragraph appears in the wrong font size.  This week has been busy though.  On Monday I went to London to see the making of the new archbishop ceremony at St Paul's.  (New word: 'porrect'.)  And then on Wednesday and Thursday I was in Durham staying with an old friend while the dean was on a deaning conference.  As a result I've spent today neglecting the housework and busily writing.  I believe we're back on track now.  

I have set myself other limits, too.  Rather brilliantly (and quite by accident) these are a loose version of the three classical unities of time, space and action in Greek drama; something I learned about as an undergraduate, dimly remember, and which you may look up for yourselves:

In Acts & Omissions I respect the unity of time in that the novel takes place in the calender year of 2013; the unity of space, in that the novel takes place within the boundaries of the fictional (you will remember this, won't you?) Diocese of Lindchester; and the unity of action, in that the novel is confined to one major plot strand, which I'm not going to divulge because it will ruin the suspense.  

And because I haven't quite decided yet.

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