Home › Forums › Dare 2 Discuss › Agents of Dreamland – March 22nd Dare to Discuss Forum › Lack of Plot
- March 20, 2017 at 10:43 am #27311
This question was submitted by David Dubrow:
Did the lack of a plot concern you, or is this kind of stream-of-consciousness/slice-of-life kind of narrative an acceptable way to tell a story?
- March 22, 2017 at 7:10 pm #27372
Honestly I was so annoyed from the get go,with this story that I never noticed the lack of plot!
- March 22, 2017 at 7:14 pm #27376
I thought of it more as a spiralling or looping plot than no plot. But it DIDN’T really have an ending. The weird thing is, with freaky chick Immacolata (not sure I spelled that right) and her time travel power you think they would have changed this but it either the point was you can’t change history or she was making sure things stayed on the path because even with the info she gave the Signalman, nothing seemed to change or get accomolished. Or am I way off. The spiralling made me dizzy and confused at times…
- March 22, 2017 at 7:19 pm #27382
This is a style of writing known as a slice-of-life vignette, where we’re given a pretty shallow narrative with a brief page count. It’s all about characters reacting, rather than dealing with plot, and that’s what we got. There’s a narrative, and threads of it were scattered all over the place, but it’s definitely not an A–>B–>C kind of story. And yeah, there was no ending at all, which is another conceit of vignette storytelling.
- March 22, 2017 at 7:24 pm #27388
It confused me as well, the time jumping. I had to recheck the chapter header a few times to be sure what time period we were in.
Am I the only one who was very confused by Immaculata? What was she exactly? I don’t mind things that are ambiguous sometimes but she and the Signalman? I had no idea what they were, who they worked for or what was going on with them half the time.
I’m not a huge fan of stream-of-conscious writing. This and short stories aren’t too bad but the longer works bother me when they do that.
Also, I’ve read one other book by the same author (The Red Tree) and a few short stories. And it doesn’t seem like she can ever end them. She jut sort of…stops.
- March 22, 2017 at 7:28 pm #27395
I thought she was an alien ..
- March 22, 2017 at 7:27 pm #27391
I hate to say it, but Immacolata almost felt like yet another twist on the whole vampire thing…le sigh…
- March 22, 2017 at 7:27 pm #27392
I think it’s acceptable, definitely. It’s much more in home in its native land, the literary short story. But there can be a place for it, or other kind-of experimental or avant-garde writing tactics.
They’re just harder to pull off. I’ve never really tried it, though I’ve done a vignette or two which is a different form of no-plot story.
- March 22, 2017 at 7:43 pm #27412
Understanding all this about the type of story/writing employed, I STILL widh there had been a LITTLE more action. You have a drunken, burnt out agent eith a seemingly endless supply of liquor bottles and an infestation of fungi-humans. Can’t I get ONE molotov cocktail?
- March 22, 2017 at 7:49 pm #27417
Seriously. A Molotov in a spore cloud would be like a wheat silo explosion, very pretty. And then that nuclear explosion to bright sky comparison would have had a purpose, kind of, as foreshadowing.
- March 22, 2017 at 8:09 pm #27436
Dude, a molotov would have made this SOOO much more fun!!
- March 22, 2017 at 7:44 pm #27413
Molotov cocktails really should be a requirement here!
- March 22, 2017 at 7:46 pm #27415
Or a flamethrower. Something involving fire. 🙂
- March 22, 2017 at 7:49 pm #27416
Oh hell, yes. I always kinda thought killing things with fire was mandatory in these types of situations.
- March 22, 2017 at 7:57 pm #27426
I like the way you think, JB. 🙂
- March 22, 2017 at 8:01 pm #27430
*tips cap* Also, I like fire *snicker*
- March 22, 2017 at 8:06 pm #27432
Sorry to go back to the original Lovecraft story but it does say in that that the clickety alien things do have human-ish emissaries, some are implied to be fairly influential (they start screwing with the the guy’s mail) so maybe she’s one of those?
See, when the world is ending you’ll be thankful for us smokers. We always have lighters, lol.
- March 22, 2017 at 8:11 pm #27440
Yeah, the way they talked about her paleness and keeping her eyes covered..and she just never seemed ‘human enough’.
Yes, fire in the apocalypse will be a wonderful thing. lol.
- March 22, 2017 at 8:14 pm #27442
Did snyone pick up the time period of the main thread with the Signalman? It felt 1960s to me…
- March 22, 2017 at 8:18 pm #27448
I actually thought it was set present-day, and it was just the author’s style. I did feel “dated” but I didn’t actually didn’t think the time period was something other than present-day. Not you’ve got me wondering if there were cell phones and computers, or if I only thought there were.
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