Writing the latest chapter (24, the fourth Bianca one), I have been wondering if the references to research about utopian fiction must be submerged, or if people will enjoy them for what they are.
Why in fact did I put that bit in there? What in fact are they? I suppose I thought it was a rather neat way of thinking about existence. It could have been because I wanted to show off my erudition, I suppose. I was looking for an impersonal way of making an introduction to the chapter, because it was supposed to be a bit mysterious, it was a plot that had been mentioned but not described and should unfold in a leisurely fashion because there is already a sure element of suspense involved.
(Mind you, we haven’t written all the previous Bianca chapter yet.)
It occurred to me that the description of life as a corridor, with blinding windows beside it, mirrors behind and a trapdoor ahead, was picture of mortality we wanted our readers to fear on behalf of our valiant revolutionaries.
It is also a poetic image which is striking, the vulnerable inside the invulnerable. The elderly person in the robot.
The question is, do you mention the source or ask people to figure it out for themselves? I suppose if you do not put people off, there is no harm in it. It is a chapter of action, and can stand a little freight.
Naturally, this post will make more sense if you read the chapter. Come back in about a year; I hope it’s published by then! We’ll see if the bit about Erewhon makes it.