Monday, October 17, 2005

[VW] Dylan Horrock's lecture

Totally absorbed by Dylan’s lecture yesterday (unlike the 4 year old kid someone brought along). According to the blurb, the subject was:

Imaginary worlds are everywhere these days. From Hogwarts to The Sims, people are spending more and more time in places that don't exist. Dylan Horrocks takes a look at the importance of ‘world building’ in novels, comics, art and games - including Henry Darger, Dungeons & Dragons, the Bronte sisters and Star Wars - and asks what happens when stories become worlds.

It was very entertaining, using lots of slides, images from comics, quotes and film clips - including a stunning remix of the starwarskid download.

Condensing the talk down into 2 points, here's what I took from it ...

1) Self revelation. You should reveal yourself, or truths about you, in a world you create. Other people will recognise and key into this. As one of the quotes that Dylan referenced said, there's the real world and how we perceive the world. In the process of creating something, "Art turns us inside out."

2) Worlds implicitly convey that self revelation. What that means is that even when you remove the characters and what they do from a story, the world that you're left with (its geography, population and history, for example) still convey themes and conflict.Worlds have meaning.

It was also fascinating to hear the sad story of Ed Greenwood and how he sold the Forgotten Realms setting to TSR, plus cool to see Paul Czege’s Nicotine Girls get cited as an example of a game created to encourage Narrativist play.

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