A Defense of Bulwer-Lytton

“It was a dark and stormy night….”

We all know that line, most likely from Snoopy’s writing efforts, as the ultimate in bad melodrama. It is the opening of Paul Clifford, an 1830 novel by Edward George Earle Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron of Knebworth.

Every year, the English Department of San Jose State University gives out the “Bulwer-Lytton Fiction Contest”, for intentionally bad writing.

My friend (author of The Encyclopedia of Fantastic Victoriana, among other works) has posted a defense of the Baron, taking the position that the man is unfairly maligned. It is well worth reading, especially if you only know of Bulwer-Lytton from the infamous quote. Go forth and do so.

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