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Re: Detailed Hyper-realities: The Conlang Instinct

From:Doug Ball <db001i@...>
Date:Monday, December 13, 1999, 4:25
> Do you consider making up a language, your Skerre, as a kind of musical > composition?
No. Skerre and compositions both involve the same creative process that I have utilized to create a million things in my life, but Skerre is not a kind of composition in my mind.
>What are the features that they share in common?
Now this is the question that I have pondered on and off all day. The similarities, at least in my mind, aren't many, but here's some ideas. Both composition and conlanging have caused me to embark on a journey to learn more about them and their related fields. Both tend to structured analytically, but that's probably more a a bi-product of the way I think. In terms of the sound of my language and my compositions, I try to look for something that sounds "cool," which tends towards the bizarre, but again that seems to be my personality coming out, and not some intrinsic properties of these two endeavors. One difference that I notice is that with composing is that I consider it a relatively short-term project-one that I put a lot of energy into when I'm working on it, but then I step back, and see the mistakes, and move on since there will be more compositions. But I treat conlanging very differently. With Skerre, I see it as one project, and if something is wrong, I change it, but it is a project that doesn't end, nor do I really want it to end. Perhaps those of you with multiple conlangs treat conlanging like I treat composing, but the whole Skerre endeavor is so personal that I refuse to end it like I stop working on a composition. So Sally, I hope that sort of answers your question, and to the rest of you, I hope you find this mildly interesting, since I feel one of the strengths of this listserv is our willingness to share our various experiences with languages. -Doug