“Fliction” – a new genre

We say that life imitates art but the full Oscar Wilde quote is that ‘Life imitates art far more than art imitates life’ and in my current writing I’m attempting to complete this circle by making my characters’ lives connected to, and in some ways guided by, a film they encounter. This is a new sub-genre of literary fiction that I’ve called “film fiction” which has been abbreviated to “fliction”.

Final_1407In my second novel Out of Such Darkness (published by Patrician Press in March 2015), which is the only example of fliction that I know of, the plot was inspired by and echoes themes in the film Cabaret, directed by Bob Fosse and released in 1972. This interplay between life and art gives my work a characteristic that in my marketing days I would have called its ‘brand’.

While this technique may be new to fiction, it was used with brilliant effect in a film that I remember fondly – Woody Allen’s Play It Again, Sam (1972).

Few who have seen it will forget the climactic scene in Allen’s movie where the plot has come to a point so that his character’s only possible action is to repeat verbatim the speech at the end of Casablanca when Humphrey Bogart as Rick Blaine tells Ingrid Bergman as Ilsa that despite their love for each other she should join her husband ‘on that plane’ and fly out of his life.

In a forty-five minute talk, I introduce the movie influences that led me to develop the plot and structure of Out of Such Darkness and how I’m continuing this with my work-in-progress An Innocent Man which is linked to another Hollywood classic Chinatown (Roman Polanski 1974).

There is a rich seam of classic movies to be mined. Others that have had a profound effect on me and are likely to feature in future novels are: Bonnie and Clyde (Arthur Penn 1967) and Body Heat (Lawrence Kasdan 1981).

If you would like to invite me to talk about Fliction please click on the ‘Contact me’ tab above and leave a message. The talk lasts for about forty-five minutes with a further ten minutes or so for questions.

 

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