B5JMS Poster b5jms-owner at
Sat Nov 4 06:28:59 EST 1995

Subject: ATTN JMS: TFoN...
+  1: Nov  1, 1995: mms at (Mark Scoville)
*  2: Nov  3, 1995: straczynski at


From: mms at (Mark Scoville)
Lines: 25


Out of the blue, my brother calls to discuss this episode.  In reflection
I wonder if perhaps the very jms is subject to his own work.  Who is master
here?  The man or his work?  Your knowledge of your art has endowed you
with a curious yet compelling "puissance".  The viewing mind succumbs
(knowingly or unknowingly) to your vorlonic grasp.  Like the capricious
Thomas Covenant, The White Gold Wielder of Stephen Donaldson's works,
your story is uncannily evasive yet frightfully compelling.  Unquestionably
your literary machine is in motion, and I forlornly marvel at what will
lie in its path.  This machine is propelled both by your artful stroke
as well as the cascading effect of the public factor.  How shrewdly have
you penned the future?

Just a couple light questions... ;-)

Mark Scoville, GUI Development      |   Internet: mms at or
Auto-Soft Corporation (NEW ADDRESS) |   mark_scoville at
5245 Yeager Road                    | Compuserve: 72430,3445
International Center                |      Voice: (801) 322-2069
Salt Lake City, UT 84116-2877       |        Fax: (801) 322-1846
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 


From: straczynski at
Lines: 27

     "Who is master here?  The man or his work?"

     That's like one of those questions, "Which came first?  Thought or
language?"  Can you really have thought without language?  And how can
you develop language without thought?"  (See the stuff on the breakdown
of the bicameral mind for some on this.)

     That's a question I don't think any reasonable writer can answer.  At
times, a lot of the time, really, I'm not entirely sure.  There's the
talent, and the vessel, and sometimes the latter seems a poor vehicle for
the former.  The story, once set in motion, takes on a life of its own.
To a very large extent, what I do when I write an episode is to peek into
the B5 universe and find out what happened there that week.  Sometimes I'm
as much surprised as anyone else by what these characters have gotten
themselves into *this* time.

     The flip side, of course, is that there's an awful lot of me in this
story, in the characters, the situations, the questions that get explored
in the course of the story.  I'm working through a lot of issues here,
no question.  It's my hope that there's enough interest in those issues
and questions to affect others.

     On that level, it's a very personal show.  And it consumes ever
waking hour of my life.  I think I've kind of lost track of where the line
is between "the man and the work."  It's all the same.


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