So I may just be reading into things too much, but re-reading A Series of Unfortunate Events has made me see a few things I overlooked when I was like eleven.
I can’t help wondering whether Isadora Quagmire was AMAB like her brothers. There seems to be a lot of deliberation in her being IDENTICAL to Duncan when she is first introduced. She doesn’t just look kind of like him, she looks exactly like him in every way.
Identical twins/triplets/and so on are born the same gender because same egg split into two or more.
I know this doesn’t have to be realistic in fiction, but there are other indications in A Series of Unfortunate Events, that lead me to believe Isadora might have been purposefully described as identical to her brothers for that reason.
1) Almost everything is written deliberately, and with double meanings. Why not describe a character in that same style? It’s also, in my opinion a good way to highlight something important about a character without making their whole story revolve around said important thing.
2) I think there is other representation in those books. Charles and Sir, for example. I assumed they were business partners when I first read The Miserable Mill, but this time around I thought maybe they were in a relationship. Sir wouldn’t have a business partner. He would have an assistant to boss around. And he didn’t give Charles any of the money they earned. He also must have had a soft spot for Charles because he let him have a library for the employees…even if it wasn’t very good.
And then there is Count Olaf’s associate, who is probably gender neutral.
Neither of those things are specified, but highlighted in a way that doesn’t take away from the plot.
I’m probably wrong but it would be nice, I think, especially in children’s books.
i have a lot of emotions about how such a big part of asoue is about the dehumanization and exploitation of children
and i’d love asoue a lot more if it didn’t have the ‘LOL IS THAT A MAN OR WOMAN WE’LL JUST CALL THEM IT HAHA’ thing
what the hell daniel handler???
why would you care about other things but put something that toxic in a children’s book
Was that part of the dialogue? As far as I remember the narrative only ever referred to them as Olaf’s associate “who looks like neither a man nor a woman”, which I always assumed meant they were nonbinary?
I’m reading “the bad beginning” and they’re trying to escape Olaf’s tower and friggin Violet keeps suggesting fire and prison shanks as solutions I’m so fucking done
|1. What book genre do you read more of for pleasure reading?|
|A:||Lately, early European decadence.|
|2. What is the significance to the number thirteen in A Series of Unfortunate Events?|
|A:||It started as a nod to a common superstition, but it turned out to be an elegant structural shape.|
|3. Do you find creative writing to be an art? If so, why?|
|A:||Hmm, as opposed to a science, do you mean? I’m never good at delineating categories, but offhand I’d say that creative writing is an instinct. But that’s not to say it isn’t an art.|
|4. If you were to transcribe a typical day, what would it consist of?|
|A:||Waking, showering, shaving, breakfast with child, waking wife, overseeing child’s piano practice, waking wife, waking wife, waking wife, walking child to school, swimming laps in pool, phone and email, writing on legal pad, typing up of writing, long walk, cocktail hour, cooking of dinner, good night to child, reading or watching of obscure movie with wife, bed.|
|5. Do you find yourself to be more characteristic of Violet (the inventor), Klaus (the reader), Sunny (the biter), Count Olaf (the villain) or any other characters in the series except for the one resembling your own name (Lemony Snicket)?|
|A:||“Lemony Snicket” resembles my own name? I never thought that. I would never presume to be as capable as Violet, as thorough as Klaus nor as physically imposing as Sunny, but perhaps a touch of me can be found in the character of Bruce, who first appears in The Reptile Room.|
|6. Do you keep a journal or commonplace book near your bed in order to write down ideas? If not, do you at least take one with you when you leave the house?|
|A:||I keep a small notebook with me at all times, except during nudity.|
|7. Has your music influenced your writing? How is your music related to your writing or writing in general?|
|A:||Music in general, with its ineffable and in utterable qualities, has influenced my writing a good deal, but I don’t know if my own music has. My meager career as a musician consists almost exclusively of performing other people’s music, which is a refreshing back seat to take when the rest of my creative life consists of being responsible for the thing.|
|8. If you knew what you know now about writing for the public would you still become a writer? If so, why or why not?|
|A:||Certainly. My complaints about my profession could fit in a demitasse spoon.|
|9. What is your definition of a writer?|
|A:||“If I don’t manage to fly, someone else will. The spirit wants only that there by flying. As for who happens to do it, he has only a passing interest.”|
|10. Where is the most intriguing place you find or have found inspiration?|
|A:||I find inspiration in walking around and from other works of literature. Recent intriguing places include abandoned restaurants and Greying Ghost Press.|
|11. Are you or were you ever surprised by a book you read or created? What book and what surprised you?|
|A:||The element of surprise is the whole point of literature, so anything I like I find surprising in some way or another. I am currently reading Gary Miranda’s translation The Duino Elegies and am surprised how modern it is. As for my own work, I leave it to others to be surprised.|
|12. How do you defeat writer’s block?|
|A:||Brisk walks, recordings by The Flying Lizards.|
|13. Do you ever think you have a great story and it turns out to be less than you expected?|
|A:||Everything I’ve written has disappointed me in some way, but it should be like that. One should stay hungry.|
Guys I think I found Lemony Snicket
ASOUE Valentines, Part 1 of 4
(Apologies for using last year’s)
I’m a big fan of how Brett Helquist is slowly convinced throughout A Series of Unfortunate Events to join in the ridiculousness that is Lemony Snicket’s author blurbs. In the first few books, his are completely serious, but by The Carnivorous Carnival he’s a cyclops who wishes he became a pirate instead of an illustrator.
so in ATWQ Lemony Snicket is a kid who understands the failures of the system he’s operating in and has all these big plans to be the change that makes it better.
and in ASOUE Lemony Snicket is constantly on the run and miserable because of the schism, and the death of his family and the death of the love of his life.
if that’s not the most depressing representation of the transitions in our lives from childhood to adulthood I don’t know what is.
the saddest thing about a series of unfortunate events is that it actually kind of accurately represented child services and the foster care system