Monday, January 07, 2008

Homage is where the heart is

About a week ago when I announced that Aoife's Kiss was buying my short story "After Effects" I made a side reference that the piece contained "a teeny homage to the Robot Man." Since nobody asked me what that meant, I figured I'd talk a bit about what I like to do with my short stories. Namely, I like to put in little bits of adulation for writers, musicians, artists, and a thousand of others whose work I've come to respect over time.

This is why I absolutely lurve the show LOST. Details, details, and details, along with the quick a-ha moments where they show you something obvious yet make it so transparent that you don't realize what you are seeing. LOST absolutely bounces in delight when it showcases books (Carrie, Catch-22, Heart of Darkness, Rainbow Six, and Stranger in a Strange Land to name a few), makes light of philosophers (John Locke, Jean-Jacques Rousseau), and lets slip those seductively damning numbers (4, 8, 15, 16, 23, and 42, in case you forgot). It cares about these things, making it important that they are mentioned, that they are carefully revealed with respect and attitude.

Sure, the producers must like it when a fan picks up on a reference...but whether they do or don't, it truly doesn't matter. The deed is done, and its meaning is out there for whoever to take it in. I like that. I like looking for those sorts of things, linking one and two to make three, understanding the why and how of a creator's intent.

Now where was I? Oh right. Homages. I suspect I'm not the only one.

I won't reveal all of my secrets now (I'll wait until I'm insanely famous for that, of course).

So, who is the Robot Man then? To me, that'd be Isaac Asimov.

And how did I bend my knee? I named the spaceship that the story's events transpire on The Foundation. Plus, there's some robots on board (though they do not adhere to the Three Laws of Robotics). There ya go.

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