On Sat, 6 Jan 2001, Jim Hopkins wrote:

> Hi to all,
> Regarding printed conlang material:  I do maintain hard copies of my current
> Druni Language work.

As far as purely printed matter goes - I've got a few of those items,
too. Mostly made in the days before the web, when a copiers was
a conlangers best friend. There's a small volume of excerpts from
plays in the original script, a grammar or two, some articles in
conlang and conculture journals, and the pride of the collection,
a small anthology of Denden erotic poetry. All poems are now also
available on the web, but not the introduction, nor the - interesting -
illustrations... (

> I must agree, however, with the comment made made about committing things to
> paper.  It is a little scary.

On the other hand, I almost yearn towards the moment I can print and
photocopy some item. Only then I feel that it's really real - even
though my conlanging energy of the past year and a half has been
expended on Kura, which is ultimately meant to replace paper grammars
altogether by something more interactive and complete.
( - make sure you're browser
knows you're reading utf-8 html, otherwise the classical Chinese won't show
up.) And to think that I was very close to almost finishing the Grammar of
Denden when I started Kura - and that it was intended to speed it up!

> For example:  I now have T-shirts, posters, books, even a clock in Druni.
> Needless to say these things would be difficult to change.  So I have allowed
> the principle of what I call "canonicity" to take effect.  That is, what
> already exists in the language takes precedence over any innovation.  Not
> that changes are not to be seen in Druni any more but they are governed by
> what already exists.  So this have given the language a stability and
> solidness that the language can grow on.

The same happens to me. With some very small exceptions, everything
that has ever been published is still canonical. Of course, analysises
of those artefacts might have been wrong, the authors of texts could
have spoken an inferior dialect, or the scholar could have
mis-transcribed essential things, but on the whole, the corpus is
allowed to stand. (

> I guess too, that it has a lot to do with goals.  My goal in creating Druni
> was not to create a language for experimentation with various linguistic
> principles but rather to gather all the qualities and structures and sounds
> that I enjoyed in natlangs and gather them all in one language that would
> reflect my tastes and likes.  Then I would take this fledgling language and
> let it evolve into a deep and rich language complete and independent.

That's very to the point: my goal isn't experimentation either, but the
development of a believable, human language. Matthias thinks I've
succeeded. (

Still, I wonder whether I'll ever publish something significant on
paper again (apart from professional papers, of course) - the web
is so much more convenient.

Boudewijn Rempt  |