Monday, April 30, 2012

When FICTION is Stranger than Truth

Hey, all!

I was reminded this weekend of what I originally wanted to blog about a few weeks ago. That happens to me a lot. I have an interesting blog topic and then poof I forget about it.

But anyway, (before I forget again) I wanted to mention
the Titanic--since it was the 100 year anniversary of its sinking a few weeks ago.

I don't know if anyone else has mentioned this, but as a writer I thought this was particularly cool, so bear with me if you already saw this somewhere.

There was one really strange aspect of the Titanic's sinking:

Morgan Robertson, 14 years before this great disaster, wrote Futility, a novel about the sinking of another enormous Atlantic liner. The author's fictional ship had about the same length and weight too--even the same high-society passenger list and an insufficient number of lifeboats. What's more is that Robertson had his ship striking an iceberg on a cold April night and sinking.
The name of Robertson's fictional ship: the Titan.

I know!! Weird, right?

Did Robertson have a premonition? Or did the author think he was making up some fantastic story and that could in no way happen in real life?
Who knows?
But it did make me think about how there really is no such thing as an original idea.

And that, folks, concludes your history/writer/book lesson for the week. :-)

Have you heard that Titanic trivia before? Have you read the book?
What do you think there is about the Titanic that keeps people (like me) so fascinated even after all these years?

30 comments:

Jessica R. Patch said...

That is freaky. I guess the tragedy is so overwhelming it's hard not to read about it, watch it. It's like watching a shipwreck. You just have to stare. ;) Ba-dump- dump ching! LOL

CJ Kennedy said...

Never heard that tidbit before. I guess what keeps the Titanic myth alive is the cruise line bragged the ship was impossible to sink, and it did. And so many other things went wrong. Not enough life boats for all passengers, not all the life boats were filled to capacity, wireless operators kept busy sending frivolous messages instead of responding to iceberg warnings, nearby ships didn't respond to the Titanic call for help. Two different call signals were used. Makes you wonder.

Justine Dell said...

Whoa, that's kind of creepy.

I think there are several things that keep Titanic in the headlines. One, the SIZE of the disaster. Two, the stories/movies/books/etc they continue to make about the wreckage, the people on board, etc. And three, the fact that is was avoidable.

~JD

Susan Fields said...

That's fascinating! And a little creepy. My mom is convinced she has ESP. Maybe this guy did, too.

Susanne Drazic said...

Hi Jennifer. I'd never heard that before. That is weird. Now I want to read that book.

Susanne
PUTTING WORDS DOWN ON PAPER

Old Kitty said...

Oh how totally freaky! I love this!! I've not heard of it but now I want to look this amazing coincidence up!! Wow!! Thanks Jennifer! Take cre
x

vinobaby said...

Interesting. I didn't know that, and I thought I was pretty much a Titanic expert. Or, at least my son is an expert (totally obsessed) so I hear Titanic facts all day long. Thanks for giving me a new tidbit to pass along to him.

Maria Zannini said...

Somewhere back in my memory, I do remember the story about the Titan.

If only Twitter and Google were around back then. That author would've been chased by every newspaper.

Lindi said...

I never heard that bit of trivia before. Kind of scary. I think it's all the drama combined with elegance and improbability that keeps people fascinated. Plus they're still digging up treasures.

Leah (aka Mary_not_Martha) said...

Weird! That is so interesting. In the news today a guy announced that he is building a replica to sail 2016.

Karen Lange said...

I have heard that story (just recently) but haven't read the book. It is interesting - really makes you wonder!

Thanks for the history lesson. :) Have a great Monday!

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

Ooh, I never heard that story before, but it certainly is fascinating. I think one of the reasons interest has remained high when it comes to the Titanic is because movies, books, newspaper and magazine articles continue to promote interest in it. Without the publicity surrounding it, the tragedy probably would've sunk into obscurity like so many other events of the past.

Cindy R. Wilson said...

I had never heard that before--really interesting. I love how that proves there are no new story ideas. We just have to do our best to tell a story as well as we can--or better than someone else ;)

Rula Sinara said...

I hadn't heard about that. Really feaky! Just, wow.

Jessica Lemmon said...

CRAZY!!! I love those "Art imitates life" moments, they give me goosebumps!

Wendy Paine Miller said...

I've been having a lot of weird circumstances of life mimicking art lately. I'll have written something then watch it play out in my life or a friend's life. Odd stuff!

~ Wendy

Bossy Betty said...

Whoa--very freaky, but I believe it! Life certainly is interesting, isn't it?

Madeleine Maddocks said...

Wow yes that is a premonition of a novel. I believe in them as I've had premonitions myself. I must read that novel.I did hear about it on the various TV programmes I saw about the anniversary.
I have also heard it said there's no such thing as an original idea.
I guess with so many brains in the world statistically many must be thinking the same thing at the same time.

Linda Kage said...

Okay, that is wickedly weird. I'm gonna look up the book "The Titan" though!

Linda G. said...

Wow. That is so eerie. I'd never heard of that before.

Liz @ A Nut in a Nutshell said...

I've never heard that. Fascinating bit of trivia, for sure!

Glynis said...

I had never heard that before. I know the one about the nurse who survived the sinking of the Titanic, and her two sister ships.

Thanks for that piece of trivia. I will use it for a quiz night!

Shelley Munro said...

That is interesting. I hadn't heard that before.
For me it's the human element of the disaster that makes it so fascinating, and of course all the movies and documentaries have kept the story alive.

Diane said...

Great history lesson and maybe he was the Nostradamus of the shipping world!!! :O)

Nicole Mc said...

I remember getting a neat book at the book fair when I was in grade school that talked about coincidences like this. The ones about the Titanic gave me the chills. There were some good ones about Lincoln and Kennedy too. I love that kind of thing!! Fun post!

Caryn Caldwell said...

Ooh, creepy! And it's a truth is stranger than fiction story, because no one would believe a novel about a novelist who writes a novel about a book sinking, and then it actually sinks.

Oh, and it's so annoying when I have the perfect topic for a blog post and then forget it, so I totally sympathize!

Theresa Milstein said...

Wow, that's crazy. I can't believe it's true. I'll admit, a part of me does believe in premonitions.

Carolyn V said...

That IS weird! And spooky cool. I had never heard of that. So interesting.

orbit said...

Hmm, very, very interesting!

Sandra Cox said...

Weird, in a goosebumpy sort of way.