Welcome to Janet's Blog

I first used this blog to publish "Trash" before I knew about ebooks. I wrote "Trash" twenty years ago. The novel explains why, in the original version of "If not for the tomatoes" Annie wrote: "We had aliens come and tell us". It wasn't Al Gore at all.

Annie isn't the hero of "Trash", but she has her own story ( a much more polished novel). Go to smashwords.com and look for "Tipping Point". (Follow the link to the right.)

If you're a first time visitor to my blog, try reading "If not for the tomatoes" first. (It's the short story in Annie's future - look in 6/5/07) This is only half the story, though. The complete story that inspired Tipping Point appears in my other blog as "Our choices".

To begin reading "Trash", start at 17/6/07. (Many apologies for the poor navigation.)


Saturday, 17 August 2013

Books versus Computer Games

The game and the book are like peas and corn. They are similar in some ways, very different in others, but both are favourite vegetables of mine. Although their growth habits are quite different, both are the seed of their plant. Preparing them as food requires differing techniques, but both taste great with a little melted butter. I do like a little salt as well with my corn-on-the-cob.

Games are a form of story-telling that can be extremely compelling when done well, but it is difficult for the game to give the detailed perspective offered by a book. While reading a book you do not have the sense of being involved that comes from controlling your character in a game. Both have the capacity to leave me wanting more.

Halfway through the novel, Metro 2033, Artyom has only once fired a gun. In the game he had fought monsters and killed men by this stage. While the game focusses on weapons and fire-power, the novel is a horror-story, creating a picture of a world where the boundaries between normal and para-normal may have been broken down by the very force of the holocaust. The game has simplified and changed the story, but I have walked every step of the way on Artyom's life-saving mission.

I suppose it's obvious that a game is going to lack the subtlety of a book, but to be honest I just don't care. My slippers and my walking shoes have very different functions, but I want to keep them both. When I'm awake at four in the morning I want to play a computer game that will keep me absorbed and fill the lonely hours until dawn. In the afternoon when my legs hurt, I want to lie on the couch and read a book that takes me away from the worries of the day.

Games and books - both have a valued role in my life.

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