So, Cormac McCarthy's The Road. That's good. The only novel I've ever read in one sitting. Partly because it isn't very long, but also because he really knows how to tell a story. Stripping a narrative down to its bare minimum is how to keep me entertained. Having only two characters wandering around a post-apocalyptic environment, always on the edge of dying, keeps it focused. You're not taken away from it for a second. They only say and do what they absolutely need to, and McCarthy only writes this. The closeness means you never fully understand the world around them, but that adds to the bleak, sparse mystery of it all.
It's a conversation like this that is all the subject needs:
Why do you think we're going to die?It's this sort of writing that influences me. Just the bare bones is the most effective. There's no need to overload it. I'm becoming more and more obsessed with minimalism. It's half laziness, but also the thought that it might just be better. If a book bores me, it's because there are too many words saying too little. Throw most of them away.
We dont have anything to eat.
We'll find something.
How long do you think people can go without food?
I dont know.
But how long do you think?
Maybe a few days.
And then what? You fall over dead?
Well you dont. It takes a long time. We have water. That's the most important thing. You don't last very long without water.
And yes, there's a film coming. The director has already complained about the trailer, which makes the whole thing look a bit too exciting. He assures us (and by 'us' I mean anyone that's read the book) that it'll be as bleak and harrowing as it should be. Lovely.