RE: [forensic-science] Re: Writer's notes


Of course, it depends what one means by "long-term." My meaning was days or weeks as opposed to years.

Regarding the flavor of storytelling, you're right, John. Much more a Harris (or Lovecraft) than a King (or E.A. Poe) kind of story. But then, as I said, I'm not a horror fan so I don't spend much time comparing notes between such authors (although I am a EAP fan). I did find Silence of the Lambs to be an excellent example of masterful storytelling, however (having a superb cast certainly didn't hurt). I don't consider Hitchcock's work to be within the horror genre - much more the suspense/thriller genre I think. I do agree, he was the absolute master of causing viewers to form their OWN images in their minds, instead of graphically depicting it on screen. Such techniques are far more skillful, and more effective in my opinion, than the blood and gore that has now become commonplace in modern storytelling. Both novels and movies are the poorer for the change.

From:<> []<mailto:[]> On Behalf Of John Lloyd Scharf
Sent: Wednesday, October 05, 2011 3:21 PM
Subject: [forensic-science] Re: Writer's notes

"Long term" is not a consideration in his scenario. If horror is the object rather than pain, you could remove everything but the brain, heart, and lungs. You cannot live without your liver and kidneys, but you can live long enough to see them and know you do not have them anymore.

This is more like a Thomas Harris [Hannibal Lecter] horror and that writer makes Stephen King look like Alfred Hitchcock. Most of Harris' work has its equivalent in reality and serving up victims as the main course to others without their knowledge has its predecessors in fiction [i.e., "Eating Raoul"] as well.

"The Silence of the Lambs" swept the Oscars in 1991 or 1992, but its award winning parts had to do with the dialogue creating pictures in your mind rather than the pictures created on the screen that set them up. That is what should be called the, "Hitchcock Principle," and I suppose that principle informs serial killers as well. There seems to be far more claims of cannibalism by serial killers than there is evidence of its existence. It seems to be an attempt at being ruled to be "insane."

"I do wish we could chat longer, but I'm having an old friend for dinner."

--- In<>, Bob Parsons <parsonsr@...<mailto:parsonsr@...>> wrote:
> That's a pretty gruesome story you have there. Angling to be the next Stephen King (and surpass him in the gross-out department)?
> To answer your question, the major organs that are referred to as "vital organs" are essential to life and one cannot survive for long without any of them - namely, the brain, heart, lungs, liver and pancreas - but you can live with only portions of the lungs, liver and pancreas remaining, and even with small parts of the brain removed. The heart must remain intact unless replaced by an artificial heart, but survival with the best artificial hearts designed to date is difficult due to clotting problems, and ultimately temporary at best. You must also have at least one functioning kidney, unless subjected to twice daily dialysis to remove wastes from the blood. The gall bladder, spleen, and some endocrine glands can be removed without short-term harm, but the missing endocrine hormones must be provided artificially for long-term survival. Sex organs can be entirely removed without life-threatening consequences. You can live with major portions of the stomach and intestines removed, so long as the remaining portions are properly connected together, or if the rectum is missing, with a colostomy port implanted to allow feces removal; however nutrition will suffer without careful diet adjustments and/or supplementation, and diarrhea may be a significant problem. If fed and hydrated intravenously, you can survive in the short term with the digestive tract entirely removed, but long-term survival is unlikely.
> I have to tell you: there may be some horror fans who would buy your novel, but I doubt many mainstream readers would (I wouldn't). It's just too monstrously depraved a plot line in my opinion, but I could be wrong (I'm not a fan of the horror genre). Good luck anyway.
> Bob Parsons, F-ABC
> Forensic Chemist
> Indian River Crime Laboratory
> Ft. Pierce, FL
> "The forensic scientist's goal is the evenhanded use of all available information to determine the facts and, subsequently, the truth."
> American Academy of Forensic Sciences web site, Choosing a Career page
> "If the law has made you a witness, remain a man of science. You have no victim to avenge, no guilty or innocent person to convict or to save - you must bear testimony within the limits of science."
> Dr. P.C.H. Brouardel, 19th Century French Medico-legalist
> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

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