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posted 05 Feb 2004, 18:02 in Author Q & AQuestion to R.S. regarding release dates. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Just a note: I've confirmed that the official Canadian release date has been pushed back one month to the third week in May. Not so bad afterall I guess... view post


posted 05 Feb 2004, 18:02 in The Thousandfold ThoughtThe Title by Shael, Commoner

To me, When Sorcerers Sing sounds a bit too cliche. The Thousand Fold Thought gives the title more of a philisophical edge, like The Darkness that Comes Before. view post


posted 05 Feb 2004, 19:02 in Author Q & AQuestion to R.S. regarding release dates. by Mithfânion, Didact

No, it certainly isn't bad, in fact delays don't come much smaller than that. Excellent news in fact 8) view post


posted 05 Feb 2004, 22:02 in Author Q & AQuestion to R.S. regarding release dates. by LooseCannon, Peralogue

Yeah, that news isn't too bad at all. Just out of curiosity, do you have a page count for the Canadian version yet? I think you said somewhere on this forum that it was bigger than tDtCB... Also, was it your choice or the publishers to put it in the trade paperback style? Whatever the case, it is easily the most durable book I've ever read (even more than Mieville's which is in the same style) because the pages and the front and back cover actually flex instead of bending and creasing. Please don't change the style! view post


posted 05 Feb 2004, 22:02 in The Warrior ProphetAbout the books by Sovin Nai, Site Administrator

You should join the forum, Guestage! We'd love to have another member. view post


posted 05 Feb 2004, 22:02 in Author Q & AQuestion to R.S. regarding release dates. by Sovin Nai, Site Administrator

I personally really like the hardback though. I would vote for a HB edition. view post


posted 05 Feb 2004, 23:02 in Author Q & AQuestion to R.S. regarding release dates. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

It was Penguin's decision to go with the trade paperback (with french flaps) after their beancounters priced the hardcover version at around $40 Cdn... A little steep for readers gambling on an untested author! I love what they did as well. view post


posted 05 Feb 2004, 23:02 in The Thousandfold ThoughtThe Title by Mithfânion, Didact

I agree, that's why I prefer TTT as well. It's quite a marvellous title actually. Reminds me of Donaldson's Gap Cycle, that series has such cool individual titles as well. view post


posted 05 Feb 2004, 23:02 in Author Q & AQuestion to R.S. regarding release dates. by Mithfânion, Didact

Sovin, in case you didn't know, the US edition will be a hardcover :) I prefer trade paperbacks myself, it's got the stature of a hardback but the nice (weighty) feel of a thick paperback. view post


posted 06 Feb 2004, 00:02 in Author Q & AQuestion to R.S. regarding release dates. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm guessing that TWP will weigh in at about 620 or 630. A little bigger than TDTCB. view post


posted 06 Feb 2004, 06:02 in The Warrior ProphetAbout the books by banditski, Candidate

[quote="Guestage":xrjedoct]I haven't read the books, so I don't think I have much to contribute, to be honest :).[/quote:xrjedoct] well, there's only one published so far, so you'd only be... *checking* ...577 pages behind!! 8) view post


posted 06 Feb 2004, 06:02 in Author Q & AQuestion to R.S. regarding release dates. by banditski, Candidate

i've recently become interested in collecting books, and i was wondering about the "value" placed on a trade paperback vs hardcover. if indeed the american (or british) is published as a hardcover, does anyone know if there is any value to it over the true first edition canadian trade paperback?? i wouldn't think so, i'm just curious... and add my tick to the column for those that love the "feel" of darkness. call me cheesy if you want, but the embossed cover and different width pages help to make the book feel exceptionally enticing. and the cover art is outstanding. view post


posted 06 Feb 2004, 12:02 in Author Q & AQuestion to R.S. regarding release dates. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I haven't a clue. I'm pretty much a Scylvendi when it comes to my books. Moody and abusive. I've been kicking myself in the ass for beating up all my editions. They're so dog-eared they're beginning to look like cabbages. view post


posted 06 Feb 2004, 18:02 in The Warrior ProphetAbout the books by Sovin Nai, Site Administrator

Join the forum, read the book, then spew your thoughts out! Not that you have to... view post


posted 06 Feb 2004, 18:02 in Author Q & AQuestion to R.S. regarding release dates. by Sovin Nai, Site Administrator

I got into collecting about a year ago, mostly with Robert Jordan (who needs to get a move on) and Robin Hobb. Honestly, When I first picked up TDTCB and randomly read a hunk out of the middle in the bookstore, I was so excited to find a new author who I thought would go somewhere I wanted "the hardback," first edition first printing. I was even more excited when I discovered that there was no Hardback, because I figured that they would re-release the book in hardback in a year or so when things picked up and then the trade would be worth a lot. So I'm betting that provided RSB does make it big (and I think he will), these early editions will be the ones others are drooling looking at on used book sites for $200. That's just my extremely amateur opinion. view post


posted 06 Feb 2004, 21:02 in The Warrior ProphetAbout the books by banditski, Candidate

[quote="Guestage":s3emhujd]577 pages? Am I supposed to have a life inbetween that too? :wink:[/quote:s3emhujd] well, you don't have to do it all on one sitting. :) actually, i think i am an exceptionally slow reader, and this book was slower than most - but for all the right reasons. the writing is significantly more 'literary' - yet completely enjoyable - than most of the pulp that i've read since university. i don't remember the exact number, but while reading darkness, i think i had to look up more than a dozen or so words to find out their exact meaning. view post


posted 06 Feb 2004, 21:02 in The Warrior ProphetAbout the books by Fade, Commoner

Sorry. That was me. Too long inactive. view post


posted 06 Feb 2004, 22:02 in The Warrior ProphetAbout the books by Sovin Nai, Site Administrator

Congratulations Fade! Member number 15! That calls for celebration. view post


posted 07 Feb 2004, 00:02 in The Thousandfold ThoughtThe Title by Fade, Commoner

I don't know what the book will be about, but I am inclined to agree with triple T. What I understood was that the books are not your typical high fantasy. When Sorcerers Sing is something I imagine for maybe other kind of fantasy books. Giving it the title When Sorcerers Sing may sound a bit cheesy and "out of character" compared to the more original and curious title The Darkness that Comes Before. But WSS may have more appeal at the public unfamiliar with the book. view post


posted 07 Feb 2004, 00:02 in The Warrior ProphetWarrior Prophet synopsis *Possible Spoiler* by banditski, Candidate

man, that seems a little spoilerific, even for me!! perhaps there should be some kind of **SPOILER** warning on the thread title. view post


posted 07 Feb 2004, 00:02 in The Thousandfold ThoughtThe Title by banditski, Candidate

[quote="Fade":3g0sqgdu]WSS may have more appeal at the public unfamiliar with the book.[/quote:3g0sqgdu] true, but nothing else (so far) in pon tries to appeal to the lowest common denominator. why start with the title of the third book?? i think it would do better to title the book appropriately for the target audience... i mean, the only thing more useless than selling a book to someone who won't like it is to not get a sale of a book because it appears too simple/pulpy to someone who is looking for something more substantial. besides, it's the third (and final??) book in the series. most people will have made up their mind about whether they like the books before they get around to buying the third one. if they're still around, then it's because they like the heavier reading found in pon, and a heavier title would appeal more to them. view post


posted 07 Feb 2004, 01:02 in The Warrior ProphetWarrior Prophet synopsis *Possible Spoiler* by Wil, Head Moderator

Done. view post


posted 07 Feb 2004, 09:02 in The Thousandfold ThoughtThe Title by Mithfânion, Didact

Good points Bandit. view post


posted 07 Feb 2004, 09:02 in The Thousandfold ThoughtThe Title by Mithfânion, Didact

forum error. view post


posted 07 Feb 2004, 12:02 in Off-Topic DiscussionHow did you get here? by Voland, Candidate

Saw it menitoned at asoiaf, Malazan Empire and sffworld, so I decided to check in :D view post


Curious if you... posted 07 Feb 2004, 17:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by DrBloodmoney1, Commoner

... saw this yet. Congratulations!! DrB [url=http://www.locusmag.com/2004/Issues/02RecommendedReading.html:2ngrlr8x]Locus[/url:2ngrlr8x] view post


posted 07 Feb 2004, 18:02 in Off-Topic DiscussionWoh! by Elfstone4Evenstar, Commoner

it was scary at first so thought i would post about it. just to show you i am an attentive member :wink: view post


posted 07 Feb 2004, 20:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

A couple of days back - thank you Dr.B! Totally unexpected, particularly since the only real negative review I received for TDTCB was from Locus (back last August). Second thoughts, perhaps? Or maybe a second read. I've always thought t myself that I wrote TDTCB to be read twice... view post


posted 07 Feb 2004, 20:02 in Off-Topic DiscussionHow did you get here? by banditski, Candidate

yeah, i saw it on ran's asoiaf board under other authors/bakker view post


posted 07 Feb 2004, 22:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Mithfânion, Didact

Alternatively, this book has had a lot of buzz on certain Fantasy forums. In case Locus actually gave it a bad review a few months ago, they may have yielded to the overwhelming amount of positive reviews by many readers, and listed it here. If they had wanted to fully endorse the book they could have listed it in the "Best Fantasy" category as well. Not that I want to dampen any enthusiasm btw ;) view post


posted 07 Feb 2004, 22:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

When the galleys of TDTCB first came out, Penguin made a mistake and double shipped the box they were supposed to give me, so, hat in hand, I went on a web safari searching for interested reviewers, several of whom emailed me back to say they 'don't do High Fantasy,' or even worse, that if I sent them TDTCB that I should brace myself because they hated the subgenre. Despite my oh-so witty 'don't judge a book by its genre' reply, this pretty much convinced me (as the insecure author I still am) that I was going to be murdered when it came to reviews because of some kind of Jordan or Goodkind backlash. I just assumed this was the case with [i]Locus[/i]. I'm glad to be mistaken! and I wouldn't be suprised if the MB 'buzz' played a hand. It's strange the way the dialectic of popularity and scarcity plays itself out in all the different media. Radio, film, television, literature: you see the formation of the same kinds of cliques - from mainstream mania to iconoclastic chic. I'm amazed, for instance, by how many people suddenly seem to have a hate on for tLotR. I've heard everything from the standard 'PC checklist' complaints to the 'trials and tribulations of a band of lawn ornaments.' Outright dismissals always make me suspicious... view post


posted 08 Feb 2004, 07:02 in Off-Topic DiscussionWoh! by Sovin Nai, Site Administrator

Well, its a good thing we're here to help you work through it. view post


We're on Google!!! posted 08 Feb 2004, 08:02 in Off-Topic DiscussionWe're on Google!!! by Wil, Head Moderator

Hey everbody, we're on Google!! We come in number nine after a search of The Darkness That Comes Before, one above Scott's site... view post


posted 08 Feb 2004, 09:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Mithfânion, Didact

[i:3ayli9ak]I'm amazed, for instance, by how many people suddenly seem to have a hate on for tLotR.[/i:3ayli9ak] It's the popularity, as you say. Some people seem to have an automatically negative response to things that quickly become popular. As an Orthodox Tolkienite ( :oops: ) I can't say I'm too pleased with all the LoTR marketing and publicizing either, all coming forth from the dreaded New Line Hype Machine (LoTR dolls, cups, spoons, plates, action figures, medallions and perhaps worst of all, fake The One Rings), but I don't see why I should dislike the original for it. But that happens often. Something becomes big with the masses and there are always people who will want to distinguish themselves by immediately assuming their contrarian opinions. I wouldn't be surprised to learn that many of the sudden LoTR-naysayers hadn't even read the book (though I can see why they would dislike the films after having seen them). view post


posted 09 Feb 2004, 05:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Sovin Nai, Site Administrator

I think the films should be taken separately from the books as tributes to the books. They should not be mistaken for replacements for the books or even good summaries, but as an artistic work inspired by the books and with a merit apart from their connection. view post


posted 09 Feb 2004, 15:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by DrBloodmoney1, Commoner

That was me before btw. I agree with Locus maybe being influenced by the amount of support for TDTCB on the MB's. That's certainly where I heard about it. On the small number of boards that I visit, there are a handful of very well-read fantasy fans whose opinion I trust very much. A few of them have very similar tastes to me. One of them is Fitz (Rob) a moderator over at SFF world. He's who I heard about it first from, so he gets the credit. I trust the opinions of them much more so than I would the critics, even at Locus. I find it appalling that the literati have so much prejudice against fantasy. Especially when there is so much to be found in it besides Tolkien-clones, Jordan, and Goodkind. As for the LOTR controversy: I have five very well-worn sets of LOTR on my shelves for more or less my whole life. I find a certain justification in the mass-approval. Now if only every person who saw the films and liked them decided to read the books. Then went and picked up another fantasy book. Then we'd be getting somewhere. DrB view post


posted 09 Feb 2004, 18:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

What do you guys think of the way the Penguin edition 'blurs' Tolkien? You know, with the script on the covers, the maps (which my editor asked me to make 'Tolkienesque'), even the over-the-top blurb on the back, suggesting that TCTCB 'out-Tolkiens Tolkien' (as if such a thing were possible). It's something I'm still uncomfortable with, even though I don't think it necessarily counts as 'deceptive advertising.' view post


posted 09 Feb 2004, 19:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Mithfânion, Didact

As I must have said before, I think the design is just tres cool. I simply don't exaggerate when I say that in terms of feel and design this is the best Fantasy book I own (and I own many). The script in particular is very nice. I have two editions of the LoTR, one of them is my favorite of all the many editions and has the Gandalf cover (of him arriving at Hobbiton, drawn by Howe), but even that doesn't rival TDTCB. Having said that, I dislike quotes like the one you mentioned (out-Tolkiening Tolkien being pretty poor). I realize the boasting is all part of the marketing and books need to have some blurbs, but perhaps it's better not to reference to other authors and instead comment on the book's genre strengths. view post


posted 09 Feb 2004, 19:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by banditski, Candidate

yeah, i agree... it's one thing for a bunch of schmucks like us here to compare darkness to lotr, but it's quite another for the publisher to do it. i would think that it is just setting the reader up to look for faults with it - ie. reasons why it doesn't out-tolkien tolkien. you can easily say many great things about darkness. i think it's a little cheesy to try to suck people in with such a loaded statement as that. and to say "me too" again, i love the cover and the feel of the book. i have little to no trouble with the 'elvin script' on the cover. paying homage (if that is indeed the intent) is a far cry from a direct comparison. all this being said, i think the book is strong enough by itself that i wouldn't think that a blurb like that will make *or* break the book. i just think it's a bit cheap and unnecessary. of course in this time of lotr mania, i suppose it's hard to resist... *after* writing this, i decided to read what exactly was on the book. :wink: i see that the quote in question isn't from penguin, but from a third party. i guess this lessens the cheese a little, but i'd still say it's not needed. of course, i know nothing about publishing books, so.... view post


posted 09 Feb 2004, 22:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

If only there was a clear way to distinguish an homage from a knock-off. It's just one of many distinctions that marketers are making meaningless. But that's the rub, I guess. Without revealing my bias, I recently polled my pop culture class asking them which cover they preferred, the S&S or the Penguin one. To my surprise, they favoured the S&S cover by an easy 2-1 margin - pretty much the opposite of what I expected! (There won't be too many people passing that course... :wink: ) I guess there's a good reason why they don't give authors much say when it comes to covers. We don't know squat when it comes to the 'buying public.' view post


posted 09 Feb 2004, 22:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Sovin Nai, Site Administrator

Is there anywhere we can see the S&S cover? view post


posted 10 Feb 2004, 02:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Wil, Head Moderator

I [i:353fx6us]think[/i:353fx6us] it's the one on amazon.co.uk, but I may be wrong view post


posted 10 Feb 2004, 04:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by LooseCannon, Peralogue

I find it interesting that so many chose the S&S cover yet the clear choice from all the people I've seen online is the Penguin cover. Anyway, the first thing I usually do when I'm looking at a book in a store is to see if there is a map of the world. The moment I saw yours I thought 'hey, this looks like the map of Middle Earth from Tolkien's work'. But I thought that in a good way ;). It comes across as familar by the way it is drawn and also, to me, made Earwa more credible because I was comparing it to such an amazingly realized world. Funny how you mentioned the Tolkien quote on the back there, I didn't even notice that. I remember when I first picked up Jordan's Eye of the World off a library shelf about ten years ago I read that blurb on the front about Jordan being the next Tolkien. It seems like every new, promising fantasy book these days gets that same Tolkien comparison placed on the cover. I have to admit that it is a good marketing tool as it made me interested in Jordan's series which I knew nothing about at the time. However, the Steven Erikson quote is what made me buy your book. And he didn't let me down I might add ;). view post


posted 10 Feb 2004, 05:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by banditski, Candidate

[quote="Sovin Nai":q1r9qot8]Is there anywhere we can see the S&S cover?[/quote:q1r9qot8] yeah, right [url=http://images-eu.amazon.com/images/P/0743256689.02.LZZZZZZZ.jpg:q1r9qot8]here[/url:q1r9qot8]. and the canadian one is way better, but the british one is pretty okay too. view post


posted 10 Feb 2004, 16:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I think that's because Overlook (my US publisher) is a class act. In the marketing discussions I've been privy to, the emphasis has been on marketing PoN as 'upscale,' as something that readily identifies itself as genre fiction with a literary bent. I think my marketing argument (which is that there's many, many readers out there (people like me!) who love the 'epic form,' but have become disenchanted with the sanitized, almost Y&A content of some fantasies) has had some impact on the choices that have been made so far. Epic fantasy need not be something many readers 'outgrow.' But then I always overestimate the impact of my arguments! Makes me feel rational... view post


posted 10 Feb 2004, 17:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Mithfânion, Didact

[i:5ss6df66]In the marketing discussions I've been privy to, the emphasis has been on marketing PoN as 'upscale,' as something that readily identifies itself as genre fiction with a literary bent. [/i:5ss6df66] A correct assessment from the publisher I think. I also agree that much of Epic Fantasy's ridicule comes from the sanitized content which makes even hardcore fans of Epic High Fantasy squirm and stutter. Authors who are able to step away from the extremely formulaic story and are able to provide a grittier story while still maintaining fantastic elements and a vast sense of wonder have the future imo (so as not the make the story simply bleak). I don't think Tolkienesque Fantasy needs to be abandoned (as New Weird writers like Mieville, Vandermeer, Ford, Cockayne etc do), but it needs to change. view post


posted 10 Feb 2004, 19:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I agree entirely, though I took quite a thrashing for suggesting as much on a Talkback forum some time ago - by none other than M. John Harrison, no less! Some seem to think that novelty and artistic merit consists in overturning conventions. The problem is that such moves tend to only be interesting once. I'm much more intrigued by the notion of making old machines do new things, to put preexisting conventions through their paces to see what they can do, and more importantly, what they mean. This is especially true of those conventions (like epic fantasy) that arise out of unreflective culture. Think of the popularity of the genre! It's obviously touching something very deep. And yet for so many literati, the question 'Why do people read that drivel?' is rhetorical, the implication being that people are morons (in comparison to themselves)... This is probably a horrible over-generalization, but fantasy, it seems to me, is presently caught between two different Orthodoxies, one which defines itself by it's continuity with the past, another which defines itself by its dismissive opposition to the past (all the while claiming to be open and heterodox). Outright dismissal of the old is too easy - and far too flattering - to be trusted. It smacks of fashion. I dunno. Maybe I'm just feeling defensive. No one wants to be a moron. view post


posted 10 Feb 2004, 22:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Mithfânion, Didact

[i:1i4hikud]I agree entirely, though I took quite a thrashing for suggesting as much on a Talkback forum some time ago - by none other than M. John Harrison, no less! [/i:1i4hikud] An M. John Harrison btw, whose dreary Urban Fantasy/New Weird books I find utterly uncompelling. I'll just say that I am not at all surprised you would find yourself at odds with him. He is one of the prime writers of the New Weird style and that category dismisses quite a lot which you yourself seem to like. These are precisely the people who are entertaining themselves with being different, changing for the sake of change. It is no surprise to me that writers such as Harrison and China Mieville are dismissive of Tolkienesque Fantasy, it is precisely what they are trying to get away from. Ever heard Mieville go off on Tolkien? He really can't stand him, there are two or three "essays" of his on Tolkien, here's a snippet I dug up through Google: [i:1i4hikud]"Tolkien is the wen on the arse of fantasy literature. His oeuvre is massive and contagious - you can't ignore it, so don't even try. The best you can do is consciously try to lance the boil. And there's a lot to dislike - his cod-Wagnerian pomposity, his boys-own-adventure glorying in war, his small-minded and reactionary love for hierarchical status-quos, his belief in absolute morality that blurs moral and political complexity. Tolkien's clichés - elves 'n' dwarfs 'n' magic rings - have spread like viruses. He wrote that the function of fantasy was 'consolation', thereby making it an article of policy that a fantasy writer should mollycoddle the reader..............Tolkien’s worldview was resolutely rural, petty bourgeois, conservative, anti-modernist, misanthropically Christian and anti-intellectual."[/i:1i4hikud] Of course, his political views are diametrically opposed to Tolkiens, which has everything to do with it. Personally I really dislike the Urban Fantasy stuff they write. Why? Because it endeavours to be grotesque, to be bizarre, and everything is so horribly blurry, instead of inspiring a sense of true etherealness. The world feels dreamish, sometimes even having different blurry planes about which nothing at all is explained, perhaps even entered by whimsical magic mirrors and portals. It's translucent. I like decent worldbuilding with proper detailed and vast history, a world which takes me back to a different time. Also magic never works for me in Urban Fantasy. And I have yet to read a more overwritten book than Mervyn Peake's ghastly Gormenghast. Anyway, I think that it is correct to say that Fantasy has arrived at something of a crossroads, perhaps it's even passed and made it's decision. There are those who will continue writing Tolkien clones, there are those who will try to re-invent Epich High Fantasy within the established context and there are those who will veer off into entirely different directions. view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 05:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

See. This is where I hang my head in shame. I haven't even read any Urban Fantasy... I came out of years and years of full-on school where all I read was primary texts into full-on teaching and writing. I'm horribly under-read (in both senses!). One of the things I've been trying to understand is the lay of the land. Tolkien-trashing, though, I'll never understand. CM's list seems to apply to lots of literature it would be obviously absurd to dismiss. Certainly Tolkien is a throwback in many ways, but that's the very thing that makes him so damn interesting - and almost mesmerizing to some (which is probably partly what troubles CM). Look at Middle-earth: it's a condensation of the fantasy world so many live in, and a photographic negative of our times, a shadow existence for all those values (good and bad) that industrial life has rendered irrelevant. view post


On The Warrior Prophet posted 11 Feb 2004, 09:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Priest, Candidate

Scott, is there anything you can tell us about the book? Obviously you've already stated your dislike for spoilers, but still, any thoughts on the focus of the book? Any hints as to what we'll be seeing? If I may ask one specific question, any chance of seeing that ancient Nonman city that you mentioned? view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 10:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Fade, Commoner

I don't have much of an opinion about Tolkien, because I never bothered to read all the books. I think Harrison is overeacting at Tolkien. It's like hatemail how he wrote about the books. It's a little difficult to take him serious like this. [quote="Mithfânion":3h7v4jnn] The world feels dreamish, sometimes even having different blurry planes about which nothing at all is explained, perhaps even entered by whimsical magic mirrors and portals. It's translucent.[/quote:3h7v4jnn] I haven't read any fantasy that I was like that (or perhaps I am easy satisfied..?). Not everything has to be described thorough or explained. In real life you can't come up with a explantion for everything either. Also, fantasy is fantasy. The degree of realism may vary and because it is fantasy, there is a license to give your imagination a free run without giving everything s scientific reason. That would break off the story and the fantasy feeling. If I got you wrong, my apology. [quote:3h7v4jnn]I like decent worldbuilding with proper detailed and vast history, a world which takes me back to a different time. Also magic never works for me in Urban Fantasy.[/quote:3h7v4jnn] A large amount of history is not needed in my opinion, unless it does the story good. I can find it sometimes tedious to read pages of history, when if you don't read it, it wouldn't make much of a difference. I do like description though. It shouldn't always be to descriptive, but it does help to get into the story and world the author created. Magic.. Hmm. I don't mind magic..But I think I prefer fantasy with a limited amount of magic, or practical none. Magic is often done to easy. The characters don't seem to have any problem with it, don't get tired, not any side effect and can do all amazing things with keen control. That is too much, it's beyond realism, if you want your book to have a degree of realism within the fantasy world. [quote:3h7v4jnn]And I have yet to read a more overwritten book than Mervyn Peake's ghastly Gormenghast.[/quote:3h7v4jnn] I never got complete understanding why it was considered as a classic and masterpiece. It isn't very bad, but it is long and for me a bit of a drag. If you like the writing style, not much of a plot and to follow the characters for years as a hidden camera inside their heads, these are your books. Fuschia and Steerpike were pretty much the only characters that interested me. It did not had the "I want to keep reading to see what happens" value to me. But the third book should never been written. That was the book of "psychologic crisis, the trip of a mental confused teenager". Just my opinion on things. May sound a little vague, but my mind is foggy. view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 11:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Mithfânion, Didact

[i:qb2mu0b4]I think Harrison is overeacting at Tolkien. It's like hatemail how he wrote about the books. It's a little difficult to take him serious like this[/i:qb2mu0b4] Well, note that it was Mieville, not Harrison that I quoted. [i:qb2mu0b4]Not everything has to be described thorough or explained. In real life you can't come up with a explantion for everything either[/i:qb2mu0b4] Not everything has to be blurry either :) As usual it comes down to personal preference, I like mystery and not everything needs to be revealed as the story is progressing but I do want to have most things resolved at the end, because I just don't feel the pay-off if that doesn't happen. I like descriptions of characters, of landscapes etc. Authors that don't make an effort at creating a vivid image of the world or the character don't work for me. [i:qb2mu0b4]The degree of realism may vary and because it is fantasy, there is a license to give your imagination a free run without giving everything s scientific reason. [/i:qb2mu0b4] I wouldn't call for a scientific explanation in Fantasy either, but I don't see a problem with explaining mysteries. Magic should be elusive in Fantasy, but still be internally consistent and there should at least be some explanation of for instance a hierarchy of users, the different types of magic, the consequences of it's use etc. It makes the Fantasy richer. [i:qb2mu0b4]I can find it sometimes tedious to read pages of history, when if you don't read it, it wouldn't make much of a difference. [/i:qb2mu0b4] That it has to blend in with the narrative instead of overwhelm it goes without saying. [i:qb2mu0b4]Magic.. Hmm. I don't mind magic..But I think I prefer fantasy with a limited amount of magic, or practical none. Magic is often done to easy. The characters don't seem to have any problem with it, don't get tired, not any side effect and can do all amazing things with keen control. That is too much, it's beyond realism, if you want your book to have a degree of realism within the fantasy world. [/i:qb2mu0b4] Well you're talking about the magic in Dungeons & Dragons games and novels. I don't like that either, for a variety of reasons. Having said that, unlike you I prefer High Fantasy with greater amounts of magic to low amounts, for instance I prefer the use of magic in Steven Erikson's books to George RR Martin's. I see what you mean about magic going overboard, but I think that the problem doesn't lie with large amounts of magic but rather with not showing the consquences of such abilities in a realistic manner. When you *do* show that, large amounts of magic are all the more impressive for it. It's the same with fighters in for instance the RA Salvatore Forgotten Realms novels or Martial arts films in which warriors take twenty blows to the head and two knives in their chest and still don't go down. [/i] view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 12:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I just submitted the revised manuscript yesterday, so I still feel too close to the work to offer anything resembling a reliable opinion of the quality of the work. It's wonderfully demented, I can tell you that much, and may very well be banned in public schools in the US - but then that's not necessarily saying much. My girlfriend contemplated making me sleep on the coach after she read it... 'Who thinks these things!' My gut tells me people will be blown away, but then my gut told me that people would despise TDTCB! How's that for a wishy-washy non-answer! Sorry, Priest. view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 13:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Priest, Candidate

Lol by the way, if you just submitted the revised manuscript, that doesn't that mean the release will be later than third week of May? About what you said about it being banned, it makes it sound a bit as if we're talking about horror, like the book will gross people out. Is that correctly interpreted? view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 14:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by LooseCannon, Peralogue

I have read Mieville's [u:3ksjylik]Perdido Street Station[/u:3ksjylik] and the [u:3ksjylik]Scar[/u:3ksjylik] and must say I quite enjoyed both. I like tasting different flavours of fantasy writing and Mieville is definitely at the top of the so-called Speculative Fantasy genre. I believe he is a self-proclaimed socialist and a lot of that reflects in his writing, but if the reader decides to ignore it you can easily enjoy his stories (well, at least I can). His comments on Tolkien are nothing more than a rant. When I read Tolkien I don't sit back and think "gee, this guy is ultra-conservative", I think "wow, what a great world and storyline he has created". Mieville is too political sometimes I think. view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 15:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by DrBloodmoney1, Commoner

That was me again. I always forget to sign in to the board before I post. view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 15:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Mithfânion, Didact

[i:3kg4faou]As far as Urban fantasy with more magical/mystical elements, I like de Lint for that[/i:3kg4faou] Can you give any examples? I've encountered him a couple of times but the combination of him writing Urban Fantasy and the fact that he only writes books with a signifcantly female-dominated cast have put me off sofar. view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 16:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I AM late on delivering the book, there's no doubt about that (my submission deadline was September 30th!). I had 15 years to write TDTCB, and I simply had no clue as to how long it took to write a book when I signed subsequent multi-book contracts. Book writin' learned me real good this year I tell you (I've literally only taken one day off since mid-July!). At the same time, I absolutely refused to compromise on the quality of the book (I'd never forgive myself otherwise). I'm just lucky that the people at Penguin, particularly my editor, Barbara Berson, are as flexible and forgiving as they are. In publishing parlance, they're 'crashing' the book, which is to say, reshuffling the deck to make sure my cards come out on top. I feel very fortunate. I can't understate how crucial I think this is. I pretty much have no 'power media' support for either the UK or the US releases, so I needed TWP to come out as early as possible - largely because I'm hoping/thinking it'll generate some web buzz. We'll see... I'm only half-joking about the banned thing. First, there's the way I've sexualized the old good/evil dichotomy. But secondly, TWP is where the religious themes really come the fore. Don't worry, I steer clear of preaching - one needs to know just WHAT they believe to do that, and I assuredly don't. But I pick away at the big mysteries, and some people are so insecure about their beliefs that they need to continually attack others just to prove the depth of their conviction. As though believing things really, really hard, ever made anything true. view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 17:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

de Lint is also someone high on my to read list, just below Meiville, in fact. I typically have problems with so-called post-modern works (and from what I've heard of the New Weird, it sounds like it self-consciously adopts many old po-mo saws) because of all the po-mo reading I had to do for my English degree way back when. I was a Branch Derridean (note, not 'Davidian') for a time, but became quickly disaffected once it started striking me as a technique for never having to say you were wrong (and when I started studying philosophy as opposed to literary criticism). All these notions of the carnivalesque, ontologically subversive doubling, the 'decentred self,' aesthetics of fragmentation, and so on, just strike me as trite. They MAY seem new within the confines of the SFF genre, but they're not. What you say about the TTA forum is true, Dr.B - but that's one of the reasons I was excited about it, being the institutionalized academic I am. I'm still scratching my head over the whole episode. At one point, I was actually taken to task for using the term 'sci-fi' (the implication being that I was being intentionally insulting (?)). It started with obvious misreadings of my points: anyone can knockdown a cartoon of another's views. When I brought up the principle of charity (which states that you give your opponent's arguments the kindest interpretation possible, so that when you knock them down, you really knock them down) I was accused of trying to manipulate everyone's interpretations (!!). Then things just deteriorated into character attacks - despite my continual apologizing for possible misunderstandings. I hung on for a bit, then just gave up. I realize now that they just wanted me the hell off their board. I'm sure it's up there still for anyone to check out - an epic fantasy thread in Claude Lalumiere's forum, I think. Who know's, maybe I was the ass... That was my experience with the proponents of the New Weird. Defensiveness like that's gotta make you wonder (I sometimes think I freaked them out because they don't often run into people who have a strong grasp of their assumptions (which I have because I was a 'postie' once myself)). Even still, I can't really say anything about the movement until I actually read the stuff. And as for politics - I've been called a 'commie' in my day. I just think turning what's called 'ideological critique' into aesthetic critique, or using politics as THE yardstick for art, throws far too much wheat out with the chaff. And I think that if I pressed CM on this issue, he would likely agree. Are TS Eliot and Ezra Pound goiters on the ass of poetry because of their political views? Of course not. Making plain ideological assumptions is a TOOL of criticism, nothing more. Only a dogmatist would make it the point. There's so much that JRRT does that is so damn interesting. Any work that can move so many, not simply to delight, but to a sense of AWE, is more than simply significant. I really think he's the Mallory of our age. view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 17:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Sovin Nai, Site Administrator

I couldn't agree more with that statement. Just out of curiosity, what is your religious bent? I get the feel from the books that you would be an atheist, maybe agnostic. I'm personally an atheist, but at the same time I love reading about religions and religious conflict. I think its because at their deepest everyone [i:b5e8j5i4]wants[/i:b5e8j5i4] to believe. It seems to me that having the certainty, or true belief in a god would be one of the most blissful sensations in the world. You are safe and taken care of. I think that is where religion stems from: human fear. view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 18:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm an agnostic myself, and I tend to believe that most atheists would jump ship if they saw how far down the rabbit-hole goes. Part of the reason I was late with TWP was that I took the spring of 2003 out to write a short sci-fi psychothriller that had been gnawing at me for several years, the idea being to follow the hole all the way down - to horrify people intellectually as well as emotionally. Science implies far more than the non-existence of God (and it does imply that, though it doesn't 'prove' it). People like to think that science chased religious notions of purpose and agency out of the world, leaving us as the sole preserves of meaning and choice, but the fact is that we're PART of that world, and now that science is making the neuroscientific inroads it is (mark me, in ten years time neuroscience will eclipse genetics as the social 'hot-button' issue), it's looking more and more obvious that we are no exception, that we're the last remnants of the fantasy world inhabited by our ancestors. As far as I know, I actually have an article on this topic coming out in The Journal of Consciousness Studies some time this year. Creepy, creepy stuff. All I can say is that there's simply HAS to be something more (without being able to say what that 'something' is) if we're to be anything other than complex biomechanisms deluded into thinking purpose, morality, love, and so on, are anything but delusions. There's a lot more than belief in God on the line. view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 18:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Mithfânion, Didact

[i:3qie4rpx]Part of the reason I was late with TWP was that I took the spring of 2003 out to write a short sci-fi psychothriller that had been gnawing at me for several years, the idea being to follow the hole all the way down - to horrify people intellectually as well as emotionally.[/i:3qie4rpx] You have a penchant for going off on tangents ;) What happened to the story? Will it come out? [i:3qie4rpx]now that science is making the neuroscientific inroads it is (mark me, in ten years time neuroscience will eclipse genetics as the social 'hot-button' issue), it's looking more and more obvious that we are no exception, that we're the last remnants of the fantasy world inhabited by our ancestors[/i:3qie4rpx] Could you elaborate a bit? I'm not really up to date with this stuff though I want to be, but what neuroscientific inroads do you refer to and why do you think it will become a major issue, topping even genetics? [i:3qie4rpx]All I can say is that there's simply HAS to be something more (without being able to say what that 'something' is) if we're to be anything other than complex biomechanisms deluded into thinking purpose, morality, love, and so on, are anything but delusions. [/i:3qie4rpx] I can't follow the phrase, I do apologize. If there is no God or something else higher than us, what do you think that means? That love and morality are delusions? If so, why do these emotions require the presence of a higher being? view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 18:02 in Author Q & AQuestion to R.S. regarding release dates. by Mithfânion, Didact

I find it a bit disconcerting that Amazon and Penguin are still listing TWP as a Mid-June release. Perhaps they haven't updated yet? view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 18:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by DrBloodmoney1, Commoner

Since I tend to be very much apolitical, I wasn't passing judgement on Mieville. Just making an observation that he aligns himself with a particular ideology. de Lint's writing is largely urban fantasy (although Subterranean is releasing some his early stories which have a epic fantasy setting) but much different from Harrison or Ford. He does write female characters very well, and seems to populate his books with strong female characters and heroines. I don't find that this bothers me, because he is a great storyteller. He definetly places magical elements and the characters usually possess some type of power, as opposed to Harrison or Ford who usually rely on the mysterious qualities of the situation or setting to give their stories the 'magical' feel. If you aren't a big short-story reader, a good introduction to de Lint would be Moonheart, which was one his earliest successes and is a novel. It's pretty good and it is separate from his major setting, Newford. Newford is a fictional city that he places a lot of his later stories in, and the majority of his work that you can find in-print deals with it. DrB view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 18:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Mithfânion, Didact

[i:2t8j4eja]All these notions of the carnivalesque, ontologically subversive doubling, the 'decentred self,' aesthetics of fragmentation, and so on, just strike me as trite.[/i:2t8j4eja] I must admit, you've finally lost me there :? view post


Other authors you enjoy posted 11 Feb 2004, 19:02 in Author Q & AOther authors you enjoy by Mithfânion, Didact

I've read you like Tolkien, and Martin as well, but are there are other authors, both in and outside of the genre that you're really fond off? If so, could you say why? Alternatively, are there also authors within and outside Fantasy that you've been really disappointed with, or would you rather not go into that? view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 19:02 in Off-Topic DiscussionHow did you get here? by Pearl, Commoner

Clicked the link in wils signature on the malazan board, cheers will **smiles** im a malazan at heart, but i do need to widen my fantasy base ad read alot more authors, these seem quite good, so ill start with them next..... view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 19:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Moonheart is on the list! Thanks Dr.B. And please forgive the theory-speak, Mith. They're just a bunch of philosophically motivated tropes common to much po-mo writing. You know how when it comes to fixing, say, historical periods you can pretty much interpret a break or a continuity anywhere (which is why periodization and classification debates are never-ending)? Poststructuralist philosophers and postmodernist writers pretty much do the same: they read discontinuities where the tradition assumes continuities, only in things like selfhood, story, and so on. The tradition assumes a 'unified self' so 'oh ho!' we must dismantle that... You end up with bizarre, disjointed characters without a consistent motivational frame, and dreamlike, disjointed worlds, governed by the 'logic of desire' or some such, continually calling attention to their 'constructedness,' and so on. These things can be interesting when they're not employed for their own sake (they're too formal (which is why they become formulaic so fast)), or for the sake of scoring worn out philosophical points. Now admittedly I explore a few similar things in my writing, but certainly not for their own sake, and through the lense of ancient concepts of selfhood, story, and so on. I like to think I have a point - now if I can just figure out what it is! Jeez, I can really tell I've finished the book! It's like I MUST keep writing or something... view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 19:02 in Author Q & AOther authors you enjoy by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Your question interests me because it points to a tension that's nagged me since I began posting on this (VERY WONDERFUL) board. Because it would be bad form for me to trash other writers, I'm sure most would expect me to soft sell my negative opinions, and perhaps I should. But the fact is I try very hard to live my life according to the credo of openness. For instance, the most recent book I completed was The Da Vinci Code - I needed to see what all the hullabaloo was about I guess. Within the first few pages I was laughing because Brown commits one of the oldest no-nos in fiction writing: he has his protagonist fortuitously encounter his reflection so that we can find out he resembles Harrison Ford. Now I can go on and on critiquing this book: according to any number of yardsticks it simply stinks to high heaven. But for some reason it struck a powerful chord with very, very many readers. The easy, FLATTERING thing to do would be to dismiss all those readers (as some version of the 'unwashed masses') - they simply wouldn't know a good book if it hit them. The difficult thing is to step back and try to understand not only WHY so many like it, but HOW there could be such a divide between my standards and those of the masses. This is what I try to do, and as a result I always try to offer qualified opinions of other people's work. So on to Brown's obvious epic fantasy analogues, Jordan and Goodkind. I feel like an anthropologist when I read their works, always trying to bracket my own criteria in an attempt to see what other's see in it. I do this whenever I read or watch 'unreflective works,' which is to say, works interested in meeting expectations rather than exploring them, and I try to understand them according to their own internal standards, no matter how miserably they fall short my own standards - which are far from god-given. So, who am I presently smitten by: Gene Wolfe, Caitlin Sweet, JRRT, and Sharon Kay Penman (for the effortless ease of her prose - I would give a limb...). Who am I presently disappointed with: Brown and Goodkind. How's that for wishing my wash! Sometimes I think philosophy is simply the art of decisive waffling... view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 19:02 in Author Q & AQuestion to R.S. regarding release dates. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

My editor says that they chose to post that as a 'safety date.' I think I was so far overdue with the unrevised draft that they were sceptical of my ability to deliver the revised draft this week, as I have. The May date is the 'if all goes to plan with that lazy f&%ker date.' And it will, from my end at least. It's all bolt tightening from here on in - something I seem to have some success prognosticating. view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 20:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Tangents? What tangents? You know, that reminds me of the time that... What can I say? I'M DONE THE BLOODY BOOK, and yet I simply can't stop writing! I know it might not seem like this, but I'm usually NOT the guy who empties rooms at parties... The book is called Neuropath, and I have an 'almost complete' (this is where editors roll their eyes!) draft. I simply don't have the time to rework it. I have to complete TTT by this September 30th and I'm hellbent to do so... Neuroscientific inroads? Where to start. There's the prospect of low-field MRI's, (think brain-scanning tricorders) which will allow anyone from governments to corporations to read our basic emotional states, and far more, as the mapping of brain-responses to various events continues apace. Their's the already troubling capacities of TMS - trans-cranial magnetic stimulation - which in the hands of people like Pirsinger at Laurentian university can induce any number of mystical experiences, from out of body to revelations from God. And that's just the beginning. Think truth-compelling machines and the like... The list goes on: for instance, what happens to free will when researchers can determine from brainscans what your choice will be BEFORE you even make it? For us, it feels like we just freely exercise our will, but neuroscience is revealing the neurophysiological precursors (which we have absolutely no awareness of), which determine that 'free exercise.' It gets creepier and creepier. Regarding God. It's not so much that God makes things like purpose and morality possible, rather it's that he possesses the same general structure of these things, a structure (which philosophers call 'intentional') which scientific explanation dispells whereever it goes. It just happens that with neuroscience scientific explanation is now delving deep into us. Consider ADHD. Just a few years ago, we attributed the inability to concentrate to CHARACTER - we blamed the kid for not paying attention. Now that we know the neurophysiology of the inability to concentrate, its been removed from the realm of character and been placed in the realm of disability - the kid can't help himself. Responsibility evaporates; it's not a matter of right or wrong anymore. The rub, however, is that EVERYTHING that we attribute to character is determined by our neurophysiology. In short order we'll start seeing things like 'Motivational Disorder' with its attendent neurophysiology, and we'll no longer be able to attribute laziness to character anymore. To put the dilemma succinctly: Science, which is hands down the greatest instrument of discovery the human race has ever known, is telling us that character and agency are illusory. I don't know about you, but it scares the hell out of me. There simply has to be more; the question is how do you argue for that more... view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 21:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Wil, Head Moderator

Wow view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 22:02 in Author Q & AOther authors you enjoy by Mithfânion, Didact

The mention of Caitlin Sweet is interesting. From the beginning I've seen some booksites couple that book to TDTCB, and having read a synopsis and some reviews I have no idea why. A friend of mine who reads a truly astonishing amount of Fantasy books per year listed her book in his 2003 top 10, which aroused my curiosity even more. Still, there appears to be no sign yet of a UK or US release. I think you touch on a very interesting aspect, that of certain author''s most peculiar popularity. As puzzling as their blatant success can be (Jordan and Goodkind are good examples, Eddings and Brooks are of similar stock), the interesting thing for me is to make a small attempt at understanding why this could possibly so. For instance, while both Jordan and Goodkind receive regular trashings at many internet forums and columns, both these authors are incredibly popular here in the Netherlands, and people actually think very highly of the books as well as huge sales figures (as opposed to the rest of the online community, where, despite the fact J&G's books sell equally well, there is a [b:2bbhdnb6]lot[/b:2bbhdnb6] of criticism on their writing). Personally I've read Eye of the World and it instinctively rubbed me the wrong way. Very very poor. I've not tried Goodkind, but he's always listed with Brooks and Eddings who are both authors of the sanitized and juvenile Fantasy variety. Anyway, in the end I always conclude that they most be catering to the lowest common denominator and therefore appeal to so many, whereas I simply don't go for that kind of story/level. Wolfe, I've got The Book of New Sun on my shelf, looking forward to that one. I've read The Sunne in Splendour by Penman, which was excellent and often said to be her best work, along with her Wales trilogy. Any thoughts on fellow Canadians Kay and Erikson? Any Sci-fi? I don't quite know why but I could see you veer off into Space opera one day. view post


posted 11 Feb 2004, 22:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Mithfânion, Didact

[i:nfpixtea] I have to complete TTT by this September 30th and I'm hellbent to do so... [/i:nfpixtea] Yes, let that one have first priority :!: Thanks for the elucidation on Neuroscience, I find that very interesting. Funny how one can be so drawn to mythical Fantasy worlds that inspire otherness and escapism yet at the same time be so interested in the future developments of this world. Perhaps there's an obvious connection ( a desire to be anything but here? But that would be too harsh). I see what you mean now on the issue of science unravelling character. But what did you mean earlier about atheists jumping ship if they knew how deep the rabbit-hole goes? view post


posted 12 Feb 2004, 01:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

>But what did you mean earlier about atheists jumping ship if they knew how deep the rabbit-hole goes? In my experience, most atheists arrive at their position through some kind of commitment to scientific methodology and its implications. Those commitments entail far more than the likely non-existence of God; it just depends on how far you follow them. view post


posted 12 Feb 2004, 01:02 in Author Q & AOther authors you enjoy by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I think Caitlin is simply brilliant, though she writes what I would call 'fabular' fantasy. I really think her work transcends genre - it's literature. She also happens to be good friend of mine (she's from Toronto), but I knew her work (through the OWW) before I knew her, and my opinion then was the same. She's been having difficulty getting international interest primarily because of the 'literariness' of her work. It's only a matter of time, though. Wolfe is, well, Wolfe. If you're into fiction that gives you that 'intellectual buzz' you'll likely think him messianic (some do!). TBNS has carved out a monumental place in my imagination. My only complaint is that he seems a little too taken with those tropes we discussed earlier - for my tastes, anyway. Erikson - what can I say? He's my hero! Gritty, sprawling, extravagant tales set in a world as deep as THE world - sounds pretty damn familiar! I still haven't had time to get past DG, though. I hope someday to armwrestle him for the 'biggest alternate reality' championship... GGK is another hero of mine. But again, my problem is that I'm so horribly under read. I read FT back when it first came out, and I've read the first of the Sarantium Books, but Hegel and those damned Pittsburgh Idealists keep getting in the way.... view post


posted 12 Feb 2004, 18:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Sovin Nai, Site Administrator

My personal atheism arises from an inability to believ in anything higher. To me some kind of supernatural existence is illogical and makes no sense, and I think to believe in it because of the resulting implications if you don't is not really a belief, but a fearful claim to belief. I cannot make mayself believe without some kind of evidence showing it to be so.l view post


posted 12 Feb 2004, 20:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Sovin Nai, Site Administrator

By all means, feel free to do it here! I am actually quite invigorated and intllectually interested with these discussions, it is a rare opportunity to "chat" with such a studied person. What exactly is the TTY forum? view post


posted 12 Feb 2004, 20:02 in Author Q & AOther authors you enjoy by delavagus, Commoner

Don't forget good ol' George RR, though I assume you've mentioned him in other threads. I view him -- have we talked about this before? -- as a bridge (constructed primarily of salvaged pieces from historical fiction) between 'mainstream' fantasy and 'literary' fantasy. He's perhaps the greatest boon for writers like you and me, since he's drawing from the bottomless well called Jordan/Goodkind readers, while in the process -- we hope -- converting them to the cause of 'serious' fantasy fiction. I've read almost all of Penman's non-historical-mystery books now. I'm halfway through TIME & CHANCE, her latest, about Henry II and Thomas Becket. The Wales trilogy will always hold a special spot in my heart, but overall I sense no diminishing of quality in her work. CHRIST AND HIS SAINTS was a helluva ride, and so far T&C is a nice complement: its focus on (relatively) few characters is a relief after the sprawl of the civil war between Stephen and Maude. Chances are I won't be reading anything non-school-related until summer (except for my Blue Heaven work, of course). Yesterday, I tried reading Leibniz's essay On Body and Force Against the Cartesians (or something), and I had no fricken idea what he was talking about. I'd re-read the same sentence three or four times and think, "I understand each individual word, yet all together..." Damn Germans. view post


posted 12 Feb 2004, 20:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Mithfânion, Didact

Well here's a link: http://www.ttapress.com/cgi-bin/discus/discus.cgi I tried to look for the Epic Fantasy thread but couldn't locate it. I see several writers post there, as Scott said. view post


posted 12 Feb 2004, 23:02 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Probably for the best. It's never nice seeing someone getting flamed, particularly when it's my ass on the BBQ! view post


posted 12 Feb 2004, 23:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

And I (almost) completely agree with you Jack. As Johnny Cochrane might say, truths that flatter rarely matter. People regularly choose the simplistic over the complex, the certain over the uncertain, and the flattering over the troubling. The problem arises when you realize just what the 'evidence' you speak of implies. For instance, the are you willing to surrender your belief in free will (which grounds responsibility which grounds morality)? If so, then you're a nihilist. If not, then you're a 'there's-gotta-be-morist' like me. Free will, I'm afraid to say, is every bit as spooky as God from a thoroughgoing scientific perspective. When it comes to the production of reliable truth-claims I'll be the first to admit that science is the only game in town. But that doesn't make it any less pernicious to all those things we cherish as 'human.' As a species, we really find ourselves in a pickle, knowledge-wise. Get a load of this: the more we come to know, the more it seems that knowledge (which depends on 'right and wrong') is an illusion. I think this is why fantasy is as compelling as it is: it gives us worlds that intrinsically MEAN something at a time when it's becoming more and more apparent that our world is meaningless. People will argue against this, of course, but who are you going to bet on, traditionalists with their grandiose flatteries, philosophers with their endless circles of reason, or the guys whose methodology has made things like thermonuclear explosions and computers possible? Seems like a no-brainer to me... view post


posted 12 Feb 2004, 23:02 in Author Q & AOther authors you enjoy by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

GRRM is king, no doubt about it. Whether he's built that bridge or not remains to be seen! Leibniz is the very model of clarity when it comes to the Germans. Wait till you sink your dentures in Hegel. He and Spinoza are just so alien because in the great battle of who-would-define-modern-thinking, Descartes won... You gotta think like a Scholastic. view post


posted 12 Feb 2004, 23:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Wil, Head Moderator

I must admit that this is all a new concept to me. You've mentioned things off-handedly that I've never even considered. I've never considered science as an "unraveling character". Personally I am agnostic. It doesn’t make sense that there is nothing out there, but I just haven’t figured out what it is yet. It seems to me that if God really did want all of us to believe him and join his True Church (Whatever it may be) the skies would open and a loud, thundering voice would say "HELLO, HERE I AM". I was raised LDS (Latter-Day Saint AKA Mormon), but many of the beliefs that were given to me were contradictory and just seemed wrong. Anyway, I love reading all this new information on a subject I've never carefully considered, and I encourage you to get all of your "writing need" out right here on the board. It's fascinating. view post


posted 13 Feb 2004, 00:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Shael, Commoner

Let me join in the fun. I think this topic is really interesting. Let me throw something out there. I am a Christian, but i'd like to talk about atheism, because it is an interesting concept. If God does not exist then that means that science is the only thing that governs the universe. Because we live in the universe, our lives must be a product of science. If you've ever taken science in school, you'll realize that biology is really just a form of chemistry, which is a form of physics, which is math, which is all a bunch of numbers and variables. That would mean life is really just a bunch of numbers. The interesting thing about this is that if we knew exactly how the universe began, then we would have all of the variables for how the universe works, and could predict the future exactly. Obviously this is impossible for us to do, but its just a fun little theory. view post


posted 13 Feb 2004, 01:02 in Author Q & AOther authors you enjoy by delavagus, Commoner

For some reason I heard your last line to the tune of "Walk Like An Egyptian." Other bits of Leibniz I've read make more sense than this fricken essay. Try this on: "I believe that the nature of body does not consist in extension alone; in unraveling the notion of extension, I noticed that it is relative to something which must be spread out [extendi], and that it signifies a diffusion or repetition of a certain nature. For every repetition (or collection of things of the same kind) is either discrete, as, for example, in things that are counted, where the parts of the aggregate are distinguished, or continuous, where the parts are indeterminate [indeterminata] and one can obtain parts in an infinite number of ways." Come again? Later in the paragraph: "Since extension is a continuous and simulataneous repetition (just as duration is a successive repetition), it follows that whenever the same nature is diffused through many things at the same time, as, for example, malleability or specific gravity or yellowness is in gold, whiteness is in milk, and resistance or impenetratability is generally in body, extension is said to have place. However, it must be confessed that the continuous diffusion of color, weight, malleability, and similar things that are homogeneous only in apperance is merely apparent [diffusion], and cannot be found in the smallest part [of bodies]." The problem isn't that I'm incapable of wrapping my mind around any individual sentence (although it can be tough), it's that every single sentence is like that, layering translucent upon translucent until the whole thing is rendered opaque. (This is way off topic, huh? School's making me even more boring than I was before...) view post


posted 13 Feb 2004, 04:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hi, Shael! Welcome to the mess! There's probably as many interpretations of what science is as there is of Christianity, but they pretty much all agree that science simply DESCRIBES the physical laws that govern the universe. Many of these descriptions, such as General Relativity, the Standard Model of Particle Physics, Evolution, are immensely successful, and have provided the foundation for whole sciences. The type of deterministic prediction of the future that you describe is most famously associated with Laplace, and has long since been abandoned - ever since the successes of quantum mechanics made it plain that randomness is essential to whatever it is that reality is. But something to think about is that God, by definition, DOES know all the variables (quantum or otherwise), and as such possesses complete knowledge of the future. At the same time, God is also the creator of all those variables, a collection of which happen to constitute me. I've always taken heart in the fact that if there is a God, then he must have known exactly where I'd end up when he created me, so that by doubting his existence I'm just doing the very thing he created me to do! :wink: view post


posted 13 Feb 2004, 04:02 in Author Q & AOther authors you enjoy by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Oi vey... Let me dust off my Leibniz cells and see if I can't remember what the hell's going on here. Take the following with a grain of salt... or maybe a mine (since I'm reading out of context). It strikes me as a standard deducing-the-structure-of-reality-from-rational-principles-alone schtick. The first passage refers to the standard dilemma (which is being argued to this day) of whether space is discrete or continuous. The problem, the second passage seems to suggest, is that although space SEEMS continuous in every day items, closer examination reveals that this isn't always the case. The suggestion is, and I'm just guessing here since it's only implied, is that this might be the case with EMPTY space as well (as indeed many modern physicists argue). Make sense? BTW: you were a bore before; now you're just a dreadful bore (which is a mite better than being an intolerable bore like me!) view post


posted 13 Feb 2004, 14:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Fade, Commoner

[quote="Wil":2yhtji26]It seems to me that if God really did want all of us to believe him and join his True Church (Whatever it may be) the skies would open and a loud, thundering voice would say "HELLO, HERE I AM".[/quote:2yhtji26] That may seem the solution, but even if God would do that, there would still be people who would refuse to believe in him, writing it off as a anomaly, or something else. And even if they believed he was God, some may still reject the God concept, or anything attached to it. I personal don't think it would be that easy. Carry on the discussion. It's a relief it is not a flame war about religion. view post


posted 13 Feb 2004, 14:02 in Author Q & AOther authors you enjoy by Fade, Commoner

Is this a contest about who's the embodiment of boredom? :wink: [quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":7zspinuq]Because it would be bad form for me to trash other writers, I'm sure most would expect me to soft sell my negative opinions, and perhaps I should.[/quote:7zspinuq] As author you have to be careful what you say. Before you know it, you will get some serious bashing. I noticed that authors only say what they like in books and what they read. I suppose that is some sort of courtship to fellow writers. GRR Martin king? I don't think I know any writer I would bow for and crown her or him for best work. GRR Martin is definite good. He's one of the few writers who to me have a enjoyable writing style. Eddings and Brooks tend to lapse in similar concepts a little too often. Eddings God theme's should know a end and Brooks has written too many books where a quest is too much of a central plot. view post


posted 13 Feb 2004, 15:02 in Author Q & AOther authors you enjoy by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The problem is that we get together on a fairly regular basis. I could find myself on a panel with say, Goodkind, at the next Worldcon or something. That said, I personally could care less whether other authors hated my books or not. I'm not writing for everybody, so why should I get upset when someone else dislikes my books? As a newbie, I'm still going through that phase where my family members are tiptoeing around the 'book issue,' either because they found it unreadable (for people who don't read, I can only imagine what it must be like), or because it simply wasn't their cup o' tea. Maybe it's because I've spent the last eight years having my writing torn to shreds as a philosophy grad student, but it doesn't bother me a whit. So my instinct is to not self-censor myself at all. But then again, it is a political world out there... Of all the criticisms I've received, I have to admit the one that made me see red was Carolyn Cushman's review in Locus back last August. Her complaints regarding the complexity of TDTCB, I can understand. Victoria Strauss made the same complaints in her SFSite review and I still think her review is the one that most closely approaches my estimation of the book. What bugged me was her complaints against the 'cliched female types' I used and the implication of sexism. I couldn't understand this because ALL the characters, male and female, are cliched types (because that was my point: to explore the existing conventions), and because in the revision of TDTCB I actually considered going through the manuscript to remove all the overtly feminist moments, thinking I was being too preachy and heavyhanded! I just think it's obvious that either she didn't read very carefully, or she pigeonholed me as a certain 'type' (the irony!) from the beginning, and read TDTCB through the lense of that bias. But I could be wrong: Isn't it obvious that an unsanitized fantasy world would also be a sexist fantasy world (which is far cry from a sexist story, or even worse, author)? If fantasy is a return to ancient contexts in the attempt to rehearse/remember all those positive things modern life has rendered irrelevant or problematic (such as heroism, moral certainty, purposiveness, and so on), shouldn't we also explore all the NEGATIVES of those contexts as well? Personally, politically correct fantasy worlds strike me as silly. My credo is to confront the bad with the good without flinching, and to explore the bad through the distortions they inflict on my characters. Isn't this obviously what I'm doing? I'm too close to the books to tell up from down anymore. view post


posted 13 Feb 2004, 15:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Anonymous, Subdidact

Yes, that is very similar to what is prophied in Revelation. Some people believe that when the Rapture occurs and all of the Christians are taken up to be with Christ that everyone left on Earth will still not believe, or they won't be able to. Also, at some point the Lamb (Christ) is supposed to return in His full glory. I'm at work, so I don't have m Bible with me at the moment. I haven't been through Revelation in a while, so i'm a little rusty. view post


posted 13 Feb 2004, 18:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Sovin Nai, Site Administrator

I agree with Scott that numbers provide a model of reality, but they do not make up reality. He said it very well. Scott, I don't think I see what you were saying about relinquising free will. I assume you mean that if science can predict neurologically what we are going to do then we actually make no choices but just follow through on action-reaction type behavior. That may be, but each of is genetically/biologically/raised in a way different enough to provide differing action-reaction chains. This is then what free will would be reduced to, and I think it quite possible. You were also talking about responsibility and morality. You as an entity are responsible for your behavior, whether you can help it or not. We already see this in psychopaths, who are deranged and relaly cannot control themselves. However, that does not keep them out of jail. Morality also does not have to be based on a supernatural power. The Natural Rights philosophists came up with a model of rights, admittedly based on their western cultural and therefore religious beliefs. Morality can be described as the mean (as in average) behavior of a society. We have different moral standards than did ages, even decades past. I think it is possible to have a cohesive society with sound moral footing without any kind of supernatural power involved. (by the way, I am LOVING this discussion!) view post


posted 13 Feb 2004, 18:02 in Author Q & AOther authors you enjoy by Sovin Nai, Site Administrator

It didn't come across to me as sexist, but it did show women in roles they would most likely be in living in a male dominated older society. view post


posted 13 Feb 2004, 18:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm loving it as well (though I have this damn synopsis of TDTCB to finish)! The tactic you're taking is a tried and true one in the free-will/determinism debate: simply redefining 'free will' so that it accords with the mechanistic descriptions of science. 'Compatibilism,' they call it. I have a number of problems with this strategy. It's clever because it forces the determinist (which I'm not, BTW, I just don't see any convincing arguments against them) into a classification debate, which are notoriously treacherous, and make the issue unresolvable. Given the regresses of endless argumentation that lurk about every corner in this debate, I simply opt for a commonsense approach and ask the question, How can your position make sense of choice, given that the brain is simply a vastly complicated mechanism, without at the same time glossing over or erasing the obvious, commonsense antagonism between these two concepts (choice and mechanism)? Anyone can redefine; the challenge is to redefine in a manner that either perserves or explains the force of the original (if troubling) insight, which is in this case is the incompatibility of mechanism and choice. Think of ADHD and the problem of character dilemma again. In practice, we no longer hold kids with ADHD responsible for their inattention, because now we know they have no choice - they're victims of their neurophysiology. We deal with them in an entirely different way. If we redefine choice to be compatible with neurophysiological determination, then the suggestion is we shouldn't treat them any differently at all, and once again hold them accountable for their inattention. And why not, when they 'choose' (in the redefined sense) not to pay attention. Obviously, this is absurd. Do you see the pickle? Kellhus stands astride this problem. Once again, I DO believe we have choice, I just have no bloody idea as to how we can honestly argue for it. All I have is faith. Against all odds, it sometimes seems... view post


posted 13 Feb 2004, 19:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Shael, Commoner

[quote:vw0n4ah7]Think of ADHD and the problem of character dilemma again. In practice, we no longer hold kids with ADHD responsible for their inattention, because now we know they have no choice - they're victims of their neurophysiology.[/quote:vw0n4ah7] I think there is an issue with how far can take this idea. I think humans are made up of both mechanism and choice. If humans acted on instinct and mechanics alone then we couldn't hold anyone responsible for anything, since everyone's action are predefined and we have no control over our lives. We can't be made up of just choice either. I think everyone acts instinctively in many ways. If we were an organism without mechanism then our choices would be infinite. Our minds would be forced to think about every thing we do, questioning every motion our body makes. view post


posted 13 Feb 2004, 19:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by banditski, Candidate

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":259wscf6]Once again, I DO believe we have choice, I just have no bloody idea as to how we can honestly argue for it. All I have is faith. Against all odds, it sometimes seems...[/quote:259wscf6] this may seem (and indeed it is) the backdoor cop-out of someone long away from scholastic debates, but i think you hit the nail on the head here, scott. i heard an argument a while ago - concerning physics, in this case, but i can extrapolate it to this discussion. it was simply that the human brain is not 'powerful' enough to understand the answers to the questions we are asking, if indeed we are asking the correct questions. consider a duck. in this case a duck smarter than average, who wishes to understand how he can fly. he can debate (to himself, in his little bird-brain) about how flight works, and can come up with some theories. but he is (i think we would all agree) incapable of understanding the fluid dynamics associated with flight. not to mention all the levels of physics that fluid dynamics is based on. not that i could understand them either if i was left to my own devices from a baby, so let's assume that we can try to explain it to him. you could sit him down in front of a chalk board for hours, talking in the universal language of mathematics, and he still wouldn't get it. where i might eventually. but my point is that i think it's rather arrogant (and also a huge cop-out, as i've already stated) to think that the human brain is capable of understanding everything, even if it was spelled out for us in a language we could understand. so scott's statement "I DO believe we have choice, I just have no bloody idea as to how we can honestly argue for it," makes perfect sense to me. view post


posted 13 Feb 2004, 19:02 in The Thousandfold ThoughtThe Title by Fade, Commoner

I agree there banditski. Nothing more to ad :) So....is it unanimous (sp) decided that we agree for TTT as title? :) view post


posted 13 Feb 2004, 19:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Fade, Commoner

Guest (Shael?) if you want to look into Revelations, you can use a online Bible also, if you want to look something up. Tip/reminder :) [quote="banditski":1pkjsfwr]but my point is that i think it's rather arrogant (and also a huge cop-out, as i've already stated) to think that the human brain is capable of understanding everything, even if it was spelled out for us in a language we could understand.[/quote:1pkjsfwr] banditski for president! [img:1pkjsfwr]http://www.hardwaregeeks.com/board/images/smilies/7.gif[/img:1pkjsfwr] view post


posted 13 Feb 2004, 20:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by banditski, Candidate

[quote="Fade":2t8k2kb3] banditski for president! [img:2t8k2kb3]http://www.hardwaregeeks.com/board/images/smilies/7.gif[/img:2t8k2kb3][/quote:2t8k2kb3] prime minister okay with everyone?? 8) view post


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