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Been there, done that

There's a big article in the new Radio Times about the upcoming series, 'Lost In Austen'. A girl from 2008, who loves reading Jane Austen's books, discovers a portal in her bathroom that enables her to enter the world of 'Pride and Prejudice' - she actually swaps places with Elizabeth Bennet, and lives with the Bennet family. Naturally, knowing what happens in the book, she tries some matchmaking but her 21st century ways begin to effect the Georgian characters.
   It's a concept that will sound distinctly familiar to a few of you on my friends list, but it's treated here as something stunningly original and daring.

In the interview, the producer says: "There have been elements of time travel in literature before, and 'The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe' used the portal idea. We didn't think of it as time travel; it was more 'If you could choose any book to go back into, which would you chose ?".
Asked: "So 'Lost in Austen' could pave the way for other literary-based copycats ?", the produced replied: "I'd say there's definitely potential."

So who else wants to slap the producer upside the head with a copy of 'The Eyre Affair' ?



( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
29th Aug, 2008 00:18 (UTC)
"Why, what a curious tome," they would doubtless say. "I've certainly never seen it before, nor anything else by the same author, gorblimey guv'nor, and nobody's ever told me about it either as far as you can prove."
29th Aug, 2008 06:53 (UTC)
How about slapping him (or her) upside the head with a lawsuit.
29th Aug, 2008 14:48 (UTC)
IANALB as far as I'm aware, you can't copyright an idea - only the expression of the idea. So unless they've lifted chunks of dialogue or identifiable plot points, Mr. Fforde has no case.

Even though they are, in my opinion, totally ripping him off. :)
29th Aug, 2008 15:21 (UTC)

Pity. The really annoying bit is that it'll probably be crap, and put people off reading Jasper's books ... not to mention rather screwing his chances of a film/TV deal.
29th Aug, 2008 08:01 (UTC)
Or a copy of "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court", which I think counts as "proper literature" in it's own right.

Or a copy of, well, about a quarter of the fan-fic ever written, featuring a contemporary hero who happens to share many traits with the author, who magically finds themselves in the universe of the work they are a fan of, and typically attempts to seduce the character they most fancied while saving the day.

(The other three quarters being a) slashfic between existing characters, b) cross-over fan-fic with other fictional universes, and c) actual attempts to produce new material consistent with original work :-)
29th Aug, 2008 10:11 (UTC)
I definitely wanted to hit him with a copy of The Eyre Affair, since it sounds practically identical just a different book in the genre..
30th Aug, 2008 14:17 (UTC)
ME! Oh, boy, as if I wasn't angry enough already today!
30th Aug, 2008 17:15 (UTC)
You and Jasper Fford were the people i thought of when i heard about that on Radio 4.
6th Sep, 2008 05:29 (UTC)
Sounds rather "Tom's Midnight Garden"
( 9 comments — Leave a comment )

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