(urth) Wolfe being clear on 5HoC

Hmpf MacSlow hmpf1998 at gmx.net
Thu Sep 7 11:59:34 PDT 2006

I am very amused by Wolfe explaining how Severian 
was mainly born from his desire to finally have a 
character of his that people could do at masquerades:

"As I sat there being instructed I was sulking 
because no one had ever done one of my characters 
at a masquerade. It seemed as though I had done a 
lot of things that people could do at a 
masquerade; but when I started to think this over 
more carefully, I realized there were few, if 
any, characters who would fit in with what Sandra 
and the others were saying. That led me to start 
thinking about a character who would fit­someone 
who would wear simple but dramatic clothes. And 
the very first thing that came to mind was a 
torturer: bare chest (everybody has a chest, all 
you have to do is take your shirt off), black 
trousers, black boots (you can get those 
anywhere), black cloak, a mask, and a sword! Here 
was an ideal, easy SF masquerade citizen."

(Totally unimportant in the grand scheme of 
things, I know, but... funny. To think that 
Severian sprung from such, errm, mundane 
concerns. Mundane? Well, okay, rather the 
opposite... but, you know what I mean. *g*)

Great interview. Thanks for the link.


>The interview is from 1988, has some interesting background on Wolfe's life
>and family as well as other topics.   For those interested, here is a link
>to the whole thing:

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