About ‘Undone’

24 Jun

Ben Moor wrote the sci-fi series Undone, which is available to download from AudioGO.

Ben MoorWriters love one thing more than anything in the world. More than the first coffee of the morning (which I have next to me here by the way, and I really like it a lot, mmm coffee), more than finishing a draft and hitting ‘send’, more than receiving a nice payment for royalties in Sweden or Belize, more than reading a mediocre review of a friend’s work; more than any of those things, what they love the most is being asked the question “where do you get your ideas from?”

Undone was sort of my answer to that question.

I’ve always loved sci-fi books about parallel universes and alternate histories – the concept that the world could be a little different somehow is what drives all cool imaginative work. And there’s something very exciting about coming to a new place and making your own discoveries. I didn’t grow up in London, so, like for most of us provincials, a trip to the big city as a kid was like a visit to a new world. But when you choose to make it your home and you have to deal with the odd and extraordinary, the new sounds and possibilities it offers, and the people, and the ideas, well you have to accept it and adapt. Unless your ideas can shape it the way you want it.

Edna Turner arrives to work on a listings magazine, goes out to see bands, art shows and is generally interested in all London offers. At first she doesn’t feel like a superheroine, she hasn’t been chosen for anything, she’s not got a zaggy scar on her forehead. But over the course of three series she discovers how the strangeness of the big city is determined by the ideas of its people. That just to one side of London – the other side of one of those gaps we’re always being told to mind – is its weirder sister, Undone. And her job is to make sure the weirdness is kept in check, too much means bad things.

Her adventures only get more complex though when she asks the question – if the bizarre city of Undone exists in that direction, what’s in the other direction? And that’s when things start to get really weird.

I don’t want to give away too much of the overall plot of the three series of Undone, as I’d hope part of the fun of it is keeping up with Edna’s journey and trying to work out what’s really going on. All the actors did brilliant jobs with their oddly shaped characters, and Colin Anderson and his crew made it sound amazing. There’s also some superneat music in the background.

But as a writer, what I loved most was messing around in the stories. It was fantastic to play with the idea that the adventures of our 20s, when we’re just making our way in this brilliant life, are all about discovering the potential within us and our world. And it gave me the answer to my favourite question.

“Weird ideas come from a version of me in a weirder parallel London,” I now say to people. It’s a strange answer, but strange is good.

Buy ‘Undone’ from AudioGO.

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