Sunday Book-Thought 88

Tortoise: You’ve undoubtedly noticed how some authors go to so much trouble to build up great tension a few pages before the end of their stories – but a reader who is holding the book physically in his hands can FEEL that the story is about to end. Hence, he has some extra information which acts as an advance warning, in a way. The tension is a bit spoiled by the physicality of the book. It would be so much better if, for instance, there were a lot of padding at the end of novels.
Achilles: Padding?
Tortoise: Yes; what I mean is, a lot of extra printed pages which are not part of the story proper, but which serve to conceal the exact location of the end from a cursory glance, or from the feel of the book.
Douglas R. HofstadterGödel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid (London: Penguin Books, 1980 [first published London: The Harvester Press Ltd, 1979]), p. 402.

Advertisements

Have something to say?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s