Author Topic: PC004: Goosegirl  (Read 30038 times)

Rain

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Re: PC004: Goosegirl
« Reply #20 on: April 24, 2008, 04:10:44 PM »
I hate to be down on all the stories but i didnt really enjoy this either, i thought it was told in a very confusing manner in order to hide the fact that there really wasnt much to this story, i am not familiar with the original tale (at the start of the story i thought it was about some actual goose-human creature) but the theme is common to me and this tale really didnt add anything new to it

Tango Alpha Delta

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Re: PC004: Goosegirl
« Reply #21 on: April 25, 2008, 11:58:41 AM »
[...]the unused 90% of each individual's gray matter.[...]

I hate to nitpick, but if I held this in, my head would explode. :)  The whole "we only use 10% of our brains" thing has been soundly and completely debunked. We use our entire brain.  All the time.


Dangit!  *I* don't use all of it... certainly not when I'm posting!  ;)   

(First the 100 Monkeys myth, and now the 10% of our brains myth... what's next?  I suppose you'll tell me we don't really live in a representative republic?)

As a linguist/writer/smartass, I appreciate the power that words have to focus the mind, and as a reader, I never tire of contemplating the latent powers that the human brain *might* hold in the unused 90% of each individual's gray matter.  As a hacker (in spirit, if not in skill) I appreciate the idea that a particular string of commands - in the proper syntax, of course - could unlock a hidden backdoor, and allow some control over the world around us.

Have you read Snow Crash?  The novel involves a concept very much like what you say here.

Yes, I have; and I thought it was brilliant.  I can never remember Stephenson's plot points, or much about the characters, but I always feel fondness for the books themselves.  Perhaps if I used my whole brain.....
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Kaa

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Re: PC004: Goosegirl
« Reply #22 on: April 25, 2008, 12:18:49 PM »
I can never remember Stephenson's plot points, or much about the characters, but I always feel fondness for the books themselves.  Perhaps if I used my whole brain.....

Whew. I thought I was the only one.  I was trying to tell someone about Snow Crash and realized I remembered the main character's name (Hiro Protagonist, which has to be the best name in all of literature) and the virus that affected computers and brains.  And that's it.  I remember even less about The Diamond Age.  I read them both and I loved them both.  Weird.

Maybe reading Stephenson's books puts a meme infection in our brains that causes us to like the books but forget the subconscious commands he [SESSION ENDED]
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stePH

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Re: PC004: Goosegirl
« Reply #23 on: April 25, 2008, 12:53:54 PM »
I can never remember Stephenson's plot points, or much about the characters, but I always feel fondness for the books themselves.  Perhaps if I used my whole brain.....

Whew. I thought I was the only one.  I was trying to tell someone about Snow Crash and realized I remembered the main character's name (Hiro Protagonist, which has to be the best name in all of literature) and the virus that affected computers and brains.  And that's it.  I remember even less about The Diamond Age.  I read them both and I loved them both.  Weird.

Maybe reading Stephenson's books puts a meme infection in our brains that causes us to like the books but forget the subconscious commands he [SESSION ENDED]

I can remember the book quite well; even make a decent attempt to summarize it.  But I've read it several times and listened to the audio once.
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Listener

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Re: PC004: Goosegirl
« Reply #24 on: April 25, 2008, 03:42:06 PM »
I like trying to figure out what it happening.

So do I, but this was more like trying to muddle through the language and I lost the story several times as a result.
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Rachel Swirsky

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Re: PC004: Goosegirl
« Reply #25 on: April 25, 2008, 04:08:53 PM »
Quote
So do I, but this was more like trying to muddle through the language and I lost the story several times as a result.


If you (or anyone else who found the story prohibitively confusing) happen to have a chance to take a gander at this story in text, and want to mention whether you find it more or less confusing in print than audio, I'd be really interested to hear that.

deflective

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Re: PC004: Goosegirl
« Reply #26 on: April 25, 2008, 06:02:47 PM »
those wanting to gander the goosegirl, here's your chance
« Last Edit: April 25, 2008, 08:17:59 PM by deflective »

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Re: PC004: Goosegirl
« Reply #27 on: April 25, 2008, 06:57:16 PM »
Quote
So do I, but this was more like trying to muddle through the language and I lost the story several times as a result.


If you (or anyone else who found the story prohibitively confusing) happen to have a chance to take a gander at this story in text, and want to mention whether you find it more or less confusing in print than audio, I'd be really interested to hear that.

I was wondering the same thing, Rachel, and would love to hear back from people as well.  Unfortunately, I have to disqualify myself on answering, since I'd read it already.  I enjoyed it both times, but maybe it WAS easier to understand after I'd had the text in front of me.  So far I'm digging PodCastle, keep the good stories coming.
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Re: PC004: Goosegirl
« Reply #28 on: April 25, 2008, 08:01:55 PM »
Quote
So do I, but this was more like trying to muddle through the language and I lost the story several times as a result.


If you (or anyone else who found the story prohibitively confusing) happen to have a chance to take a gander at this story in text, and want to mention whether you find it more or less confusing in print than audio, I'd be really interested to hear that.

I skimmed parts of it, and it was easier to follow as text, but not nearly as compelling.

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Re: PC004: Goosegirl
« Reply #29 on: April 25, 2008, 09:24:51 PM »
Out of the four stories on PC's mantle (hell, out of all the stories I've heard), this one was BY FAR the hardest one to follow.  If it hadn't been for Rachel's personal accounts beforehand, I would have been completely lost.  I may go through the text later but I don't think it would help much.

Heradel

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Re: PC004: Goosegirl
« Reply #30 on: April 26, 2008, 12:55:37 AM »
Quote
So do I, but this was more like trying to muddle through the language and I lost the story several times as a result.


If you (or anyone else who found the story prohibitively confusing) happen to have a chance to take a gander at this story in text, and want to mention whether you find it more or less confusing in print than audio, I'd be really interested to hear that.

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Personally, I think that complex stories get more complex when you can't go back and reread a sentence. Audio is mostly linear, and paper is a lot more random access, which makes it easier. That said, this story wasn't too bad for me, but I've been reading some pretty weird stories lately, so it might just be a matter of degrees.
« Last Edit: April 26, 2008, 12:57:32 AM by Heradel »
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Re: PC004: Goosegirl
« Reply #31 on: April 26, 2008, 06:49:32 PM »
Not to be overly shallow, but are we going to get any blood-and-guts, sword-swinging, spellcasting fantasy mayhem on PC anytime soon? I'm all for good storycrafting and exploring psychological motifs, but don't forget about the nitty-gritty of fantasy either.

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Kaa

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Re: PC004: Goosegirl
« Reply #32 on: April 26, 2008, 10:57:55 PM »
Not to be overly shallow, but are we going to get any blood-and-guts, sword-swinging, spellcasting fantasy mayhem on PC anytime soon? I'm all for good storycrafting and exploring psychological motifs, but don't forget about the nitty-gritty of fantasy either.

Some of us need our testosterone fueled heroes, you know... ;)

I believe she said that the first group of stories purposefully explored all different facets of "fantasy."  So I'm sure there's likely to be some of what you're asking for, soon. :)
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JoeFitz

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Re: PC004: Goosegirl
« Reply #33 on: April 26, 2008, 11:39:12 PM »
Good story, great reading. Excellent unfolding of the story. It did take some time to realize what was going on - and that was great. I loved the gradual reveal for the narrator.

I think the original witch was a villain. She took what was not hers and was willing to kill to keep it. She also said she would defile the shrine on the wall. By contrast, the princess was turned into a goose girl and yet grew to be happy with her new life.

A little quibble that the king and princess who were apparently genuine, decent people were unable to keep their offices but the power-hungry and envious took over. Another quibble that the "old king" and the "young princess" hook up. I think I would have liked it better if the "old king" was just the prince's older brother, who had been widowed without an heir, leaving the younger prince next in line.

I had not read the goose girl tale before, but I fell right into this one. Thanks.




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Re: PC004: Goosegirl
« Reply #34 on: April 27, 2008, 12:06:43 AM »
I think the original witch was a villain. She took what was not hers and was willing to kill to keep it.


She was willing to threaten to kill. It was pretty unclear to me from the actual confrontation whether she had it in her (anymore?)

Quote
Another quibble that the "old king" and the "young princess" hook up. I think I would have liked it better if the "old king" was just the prince's older brother, who had been widowed without an heir, leaving the younger prince next in line.

The story made a point of stressing that the king wasn't really old (he had the prince when he was very young), and she was relatively old for an unmarried princess. I think he was in his forties and she was in her mid-twenties. Not a small gap, but not a particularly unconventional one.

Heradel

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Re: PC004: Goosegirl
« Reply #35 on: April 27, 2008, 12:29:58 AM »
I think the original witch was a villain. She took what was not hers and was willing to kill to keep it.


She was willing to threaten to kill. It was pretty unclear to me from the actual confrontation whether she had it in her (anymore?)

I found it interesting how much the witch had changed in this story, it felt more like one of those Star Trek stories where two characters go into a teleporter and emerge mixed into one or two fundamentally new characters with bits and pieces of both(Tuvix being the operative example). We know the witch is scared to death of going back to the farm/being found out (considering the punishment in the original, not unjustifiably), but we don't spend a lot of time with her except with those bits that have been stitched onto the princess.

The problem with viewing them as villain and victim is that they are so jumbled up that neither is who they are before — they both are going through this period of disquietude where they're neither one nor t'other, and eventually both emerge as new people. Is the previous witch villainous and the previous princess virtuous? Probably, that's certainly how they play it in the fairy tale. But we no longer have the witch to blame, the princess to empathize. Maybe that spark of desperation for a new life that drove the witch into plan now resides in the princess and that's why the princess happy with being the goose girl wife to a swineherd. If we blame that aspect of the witch for causing the evil, and now it resides in the princess, who are we to blame?

Quote from: eytanz
Quote
Another quibble that the "old king" and the "young princess" hook up. I think I would have liked it better if the "old king" was just the prince's older brother, who had been widowed without an heir, leaving the younger prince next in line.

The story made a point of stressing that the king wasn't really old (he had the prince when he was very young), and she was relatively old for an unmarried princess. I think he was in his forties and she was in her mid-twenties. Not a small gap, but not a particularly unconventional one.

Quote from: Goosegirl
He is no more than twelve years older than I; he fathered the prince young and was widowed young. (And I, no matter which memory I touch, know I was old to be married: past twenty at least.) Maybe they confuse the king with his father, who died only a year ago and whose endless senescence has endowed the crown with years; maybe the vitality of the prince steals any youth from his surroundings. Or maybe it is only that no one cares to look too closely at one who reeks of pigs.
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Kaa

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Re: PC004: Goosegirl
« Reply #36 on: April 27, 2008, 12:33:51 AM »
The story made a point of stressing that the king wasn't really old (he had the prince when he was very young), and she was relatively old for an unmarried princess. I think he was in his forties and she was in her mid-twenties. Not a small gap, but not a particularly unconventional one.

This bugged me, briefly, but then I started thinking. Didn't the princess-who-was-actually-the-witch switch bodies with the goose-girl-who-used-to-be-the-princess?  Else, wouldn't someone sorta-kinda notice that the princess doesn't look like the princess?  Or that the goose-girl and the princess look an awful lot alike? So if she was "a hag," before the switch, would she not also be "old" like the king?  That was my take.  I can't imagine the witch leaving the former-princess-now-goose-girl young and pretty. That would be too kind.

Note: The reading suggested she was young, but I'm not sure the text does. I haven't looked, to be honest.

[Edit] Now that Heradel has clarified things a bit, perhaps "hag" meant anything over "typical marriageable age," which probably would have been mid-teens.  :)
« Last Edit: April 27, 2008, 12:37:52 AM by Kaa »
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deflective

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Re: PC004: Goosegirl
« Reply #37 on: April 27, 2008, 02:38:44 AM »
hag is a term for a witch.

Kaa

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Re: PC004: Goosegirl
« Reply #38 on: April 27, 2008, 06:03:21 AM »
hag is a term for a witch.

Ah, of course.  That never even occurred to me. I was going with the less...folklore-y, more prosaic meaning of "an ugly, slatternly, or evil-looking old woman."  Podcastle. Fantasy. Right. :)
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eytanz

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Re: PC004: Goosegirl
« Reply #39 on: April 27, 2008, 09:26:30 AM »
The problem with viewing them as villain and victim is that they are so jumbled up that neither is who they are before — they both are going through this period of disquietude where they're neither one nor t'other, and eventually both emerge as new people. Is the previous witch villainous and the previous princess virtuous? Probably, that's certainly how they play it in the fairy tale. But we no longer have the witch to blame, the princess to empathize.

Yes, thank you. That was what I was aiming at above, I just wasn't explaining myself as well.

Quote
Maybe that spark of desperation for a new life that drove the witch into plan now resides in the princess and that's why the princess happy with being the goose girl wife to a swineherd. If we blame that aspect of the witch for causing the evil, and now it resides in the princess, who are we to blame?

Of course, though, she doesn't end up being the goose girl wife to a swineherd, she ends up as the witch wife of a man leaving in search of his fortune.