Comment 28735

By Mark Fenton (anonymous) | Posted February 16, 2009 at 17:07:49

That's not far from how Bad Hall Director entered the world.
At the time I was working as a Hall Director in a university residence with two very small children and to save my sanity I created a serial novel written in the first person about a ex-con named Clayton Brogham who had married way out of his class and was now working as a hall director with his wife who was a PhD student (this part was slightly autobiographical, as I had the least education of any of the hall directors I worked with, all of whom were completing post graduate degrees. I had no such credentials; I'd just married into the academic world. [The part about having done time was made up, i.e. I haven't done time. Not yet anyway.]) Somewhere around Chapter 10 the novel became stranger as each chapter started to have a preamble written in the 3rd peson, about a guy named Mark Fenton who had left his family and was living in a rooming house on Barton East and was writing segments of Bad Hall Director when the spirit moved him, but was mostly just drinking a lot. I would write a chapter every few nights and then send it off to everyone on my e-mail distribution list. (This was in the mid-90s and being a luddite like most writers I didn't have a clue about how to build a website or I would have just posted it.) The novel reached a friend who worked in television and asked if she could develop it as a "Series" and give me a percentage which was fine by me. At one point the entire shooting cast was picked and I could go onto a locked-down website and see all those beautiful actors with their head shots and cvs all ready to play my grimy characters, and you could even read my novel there. It was very strange. Apparently it came close to being picked up by CTV but was beaten out by what became Corner Gas, which I've still never seen because I don't have cable. (I used have dreams where the show would be on the air and I'd have to go to bars in order to watch it and then get threatened by big scary guys who wanted me to turn back to the sports channel.)

A few weeks ago when I was reviewing old floppy disks to see if there was anything I needed before throwing them out, I came upon Chapter 36 of BHD and found it was completely incomprehensible. If you track down my address and send me a postal money order in any amount I'll pull the hard copy from my bottom drawer and mail it to you. If, however, your money order arrives at the home of the other Mark Fenton I suspect he'll just cash it and buy cocaine. So you're on your own here.

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