I’m reading Terry Prachett’s Soul Music and there have been a number of times I was annoyed while reading it. So annoyed that I almost abandoned it.
A few things.
At times, I’ve noticed it’s written by an old white guy. Now, I’m not an uber feminist, but in it he tends to make jabs at youth being clueless and other such things that make it really evident.
There are also footnotes that I’ve found pull me out of the story, so I had to ignore them to move forward, which means I’m missing a bit of the story in order to enjoy the story and that seems silly.
As I read further, I realized he made fun of everything. There’s even a subtle jab at Michael Jackson’s musicianship that is both a jab and yet not at the same time.
He says a lot through subtext. There is so much of the book that is true to life that one might not be able to fully understand depending on their life experience. Had I read it 10 years ago, I think I would’ve missed much. I want to read it again in 10 years to see how I feel about it all then and to see if there is more that I haven’t gotten at age 37 because I haven’t yet lived as much as he had when he wrote it.
I think it’s masterfully written despite the few things that annoyed me. Perhaps it’s partly because of my love of music or my spirituality, but I feel like it’s a work that has impacted me deeply and may affect my writing for decades to come.
A key message in the work is that great things can only be achieved by vastly different groups of people appreciating each other’s differences and using their diverse talents to make something more than each individual could alone.
There’s also a different bent on differences I noticed when he talked of Death’s inability to properly create things like towels. Death’s towels might as well be cardboard cutouts because Death can’t understand the concept of a towel.
I think it is a work that challenges one no matter what one’s current worldview is, so long as they are willing to let it.
Today I’m thankful for all the differences in the world that both annoy and enrich me.
It also has me wanting to write music… It may or may not have rocks in.