ELAYNE RIGGS: Would I lie to you?

Elayne Riggs

Elayne Riggs is the creator of the popular blog Pen-Elayne on the Web. She was a founding member of Friends of Lulu, an organization dedicated to increasing the involvement of girls and women in comics, as readers and creators. She is married to inker Robin Riggs, with whom she shares two cats, and has odd love/hate relationship with Hillary Clinton.

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2 Responses

  1. John Ostrander says:

    One of the things I love about GALAXY QUEST (and it's also one of MY fave movies as well) is that Jason and the others ARE liars at the start. By the end, they ARE telling the truth — they have become the ship's crew that they have pretended to be. They see the value in what they do.I used to talk to my step-father about fiction. He never read it; didn't believe in it. Histories were all right; biographies. Non-fiction. I told him there was no such thing as "non-fiction". In every case, the author was deciding which facts to tell, which to emphasize and which, who was important to the event or the life being told. Just exactly what fiction writers do. All in the name of the STORY they were telling about the event or the person.I used to say that stories were lies in service to the truth but i think that's a little glib now. I was going for the phrase. The fact is — we're storytellers, every single one of us, and we use stories every day as part of our social interaction. The rector at my church — I'm an agnostic who goes to church regularly; go figure — calls the stories the ATOMS of society. They're the building blocks of our communication, the way we try to convey information. Do we embelish sometimes? Yes, you bet. Why? You know why if you've ever listened to someone who can't tell a story. The listener's eyes glaze over. They stop listening. As Denny used to tell me when he was my editor, you can talk about whatever you want so long as you tell them a story. A good story. That's how you have a right to their time.A HACK is a liar. They pick your pocket of your money or your time. Maybe both. Jason and the rest of the crew are all hacks at the start of GALAXY QUEST. They change by the end and HOW that happens makes the movie a great story. IMO.

  2. Vinnie Bartilucci says:

    Of all the fans of fiction in the world, there is one group who stick inflexibly that the stories they read are factual, not just invented fabrications of a man being paid by the word.They are Sherlock Holmes fans.It is called "playing the game". Sherlockians state that the adventures of Holmes are biographical, written by Dr. John Watson, and edited by Doyle. They write massive research works to prove this point; works that would put comics fans trying to decide if Superman or The Hulk is stronger to SHAME.And to my knowledge, not one of them has been put away for not being able to draw the line between reality and fantasy. And bless them for it.The person I hate more than anyone is the one who interjects into a conversation between two comics fans (or even more commonly, two pro wrestling fans) and says "Hey, you know this is all pretend, right?" Well, God bless you, sir. I was four hundred dollars away from saving up enough for my own piece of Wakandan Vibranium which I planned to fashion into power armor – you've saved me from a lifetime of embarassment and shame. Of COURSE we know it's pretend, and it's a great deal of fun to have a conversation as if it were true, and try to explain logically the madness of such storylines. These are the same types of people who used to say Dungeons and Dragons was bad fior our kids because they'd not be able to tell when the game stopped. (Here's a hint – it's when you put the dice away).Lying is part and parcel of entertainment. I pity the people who cannot tell the difference, since they will be ultimately be disappointed (Yes, Mathesar's scene in GQ is the best one in the stellar film) as well as those literal-minded people who cannot grasp the magic of the difference between the two (Granny Weatherwax in Pratchett's _Wyrd Siters_ sees her first play and can't grasp why everyone is saying they don't know who killed the king when a whole THEATER full of people saw it were the man with the rusty dagger)."Romance at short notice was her speciality. " –Saki (H.H. Munro), "The Open Window"