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Surprise! What I saw: a fairy in boots dancing with a glove

by on January 6, 2013

I saw it, I saw it with my own two eyes….

Paranoid might be the famous track, but I’ve always loved this Black Sabbath song.  (Possibly because the riff is so simple even I can play it.)  The lyrics alone are enough to attract any fantasy writer.  The image of that sexy minx Tinkerbell, wearing Doc Martins and dancing to Sabbath, Slade, or Deep Purple with an animated glove is fantastic, isn’t it?

It has always both fascinated and inspired me, the joining of our real world and the image of a strange world of wonder, delight and danger co existing with ours, close enough to touch.  I suppose it started with reading Alice, or Narnia, or The Weirdstone of Brisingamen (Alan Garner).  And if you haven’t ever read the last one, then deep abiding shame be upon you.  Go and get a copy now, I promise you won’t regret it.

This week’s shaggy dog ramble is only closely related though.  You see, I also love watching the fantasy films.  Stardust, LOTR, the Narnia films…but in all of them the ingedient that made the books special to me is missing – the feeling that the weird and Other is right beside us as we walk our daily round: that we might turn a familiar corner and see…just something else.  You just don’t get that feeling of close Otherworldness in a film, do you?

Just can’t beat a book for drawing pictures inside your head.  So, which do you guys prefer? The books or the films?  So often I have been to the film of the book and been disappointed.  probably only LOTR failed to fail, if you see what I mean.  I haven’t been to The Hobbit yet, must get my act together and get out to see that quickly now…  An unexpected journey.  Sounds a bit like my life, too.


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  1. Books are nearly always so much better than their films!! I do love films, but they just can’t possibly put the same amount of detail and story in a film because of time etc. Also films are always going to be someone else’s imagination! 😀

  2. I loved the scene in Moria in LOTR. It was almost exactly as I imagined it.

  3. rebeccadouglass permalink

    Another one for the books over the films. Though kids’ books are most likely to be the exception (there is more depth in the movie “Sarah, Plain and Tall,” than in the book; ditto “Polar Express” not surprisingly).

    And I just put in an order with the library for “The Weirdstone”. Thanks for the tip.

  4. You’ll love Weirdstone. It should be required reading in schools. In fact my first book is heavily based on it, although you possibly wouldn’t realise it.

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