the archives

dusted off in read-only

  •  

posts by Cu'jara Cinmoi Author of Prince of Nothing | joined 26 Jan 2004 | 836


posted 26 Jan 2004, 17:01 in Author Q & ALanguage by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

It's a working script (called 'keneic,' the standard script for Sheyic, which is the lingua franca of the Three Seas). David Rankine, the cover artist for the Canadian edition, actually used the script to transcribe one of the epigraphs in the book (in Sheyic), and then added some of his favourite lyrics (from a King Crimson tune, if I recall correctly). He's yet to tell me what he translated for the WP cover, though... I do love those covers, especially for WP. I just found out that they'll be used for the US hardcover editions as well. view post


posted 27 Jan 2004, 12:01 in Author Q & ALanguage by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Just realized I never fully answered your question, Sovin! No, the languages in the book are hypothetical, without much more than a short lexicon of terms and a distinctive sound pattern. I've studied several languages, which I draw on to try to make the languages of the Three Seas as consistent as possible, but I'm certainly no JRRT! The languages are all what they call 'inflected,' however, which is to say they're more like latin than english... view post


posted 27 Jan 2004, 19:01 in Author Q & ALanguage by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

It's an alphabet, though like most foreign alphabets it doesn't correspond perfectly with the english one. Once I finish all three books of PoN I hope to beat some coherent background material out of the knobby mountain of notes I've been accumulating all these years, including the various alphabets and syllabaries. I'm committed to finishing the books first though, since I know first hand how frustrating it can be waiting and waiting for sequels. I've been dying a slow death waiting for A Feast of Crows! view post


posted 27 Jan 2004, 19:01 in Author Q & ALanguage by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Damn, I forgot again... 'Cu'jara Cinmoi' is the name of the ancient Nonman King who waged the first wars against the Inchoroi before the coming of Men to Earwa. I know he's mentioned a couple of times in The Warrior-Prophet, but for the life of me I can't remember if he's mentioned in The Darkness... Hmm. view post


posted 28 Jan 2004, 23:01 in Author Q & AMen v. Nonmen by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I could... I hate to be coy, but I there's some information I want to reveal gradually through the course of the story. Certain crucial facts regarding the Nonmen come to light toward the end of The Warrior-Prophet. I hope this doesn't sound too cheesey, but I actually look at the story as a kind of striptease that gradually reveals the world - kind of like Gene Wolfe, though not so cryptic (or brilliant). I can recap and clarify the info that's been given so far: the Nonmen are an ancient race, the 'original people' of Earwa, who are nearly immortal, and who fought both for and against the No-God during the Apocalypse. They are slowly going insane: their minds can only hold roughly four or five human lifetimes of experiences, and as the centuries pass the traumatic experiences they suffer crowd out their other memories, until now, almost all Nonmen remember only the pain and loss in their lives. And some, like the Nonman (Mekertrig) that Kellhus meets in the Prologue, have taken to creating traumatic experiences just so they can have something to remember... view post


posted 02 Feb 2004, 03:02 in Literature DiscussionFantasy by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I've been a GRRM fan since reading "Sand-Kings" in grade 7. But he's had a special place on my shelf ever since reading aGoT made me realize that complex, demented, and thoroughly unsanitized epic fantasy was possible to publish. Until then, I never even thought of submitting TDTCB. And I hear you on Tolkien. He may not be the first to have introduced Fantasy to the world, but he's the first, and perhaps the only, to truly have introduced it to Epic. It all comes to the languages. view post


posted 02 Feb 2004, 03:02 in Author Q & AQuestion to R.S. regarding release dates. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hi Mithfanion. Thanks for the kind words! As far as the release dates go, all I can say is 'you know you're a small fry when...' As far as I know TWP will heft in a little bigger than TDTCB - big enough to be useful in a potentially life-threatening situation. For the title for Bk III, I've been debating between When Sorcerers Sing and, as Wil mentions, The Thousandfold Thought. If I'm tending to TTT rather than WSS it's because of When Dragons Rage. I'm not sure about the tpbk of TDTCB - I certainly hope they keep it in print. Otherwise, Overlook is using the same cover design for the US release. The colours we've discussed for Bk III are in the orbit of red, but we have no mock ups of it as yet. I think I'd have to be pretty lucky to have it look as cool as TWP. If any of this changes, I'm sure you'll know before me! view post


posted 02 Feb 2004, 18:02 in Author Q & AJust wanted to say thanks by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thank you, DrB! And thank Tracy Carns at Overlook Press in the US for picking the books up... I almost found myself in Steven's boat of having to prove myself in every market other than the US market before they would pick me up. Strange how conservatism seems directly proportional to power... There's always more flexibility at the fringes of things. view post


posted 02 Feb 2004, 18:02 in Literature DiscussionFantasy by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm with you on the Silmarillion, Mithfanion. The primary protagonist of all Tolkien's works is Middle-earth - I see the Silmarillion as ME's solo adventure. The 'scarcity of magic' debate is a tricky one, and something I've pondered obsessively in my own work. It seems to me that if magic is over-used or haphazardly presented that it ceases to become 'fantastic.' The more scarce it is, the more exceptional it seems. But then, if you make too scarce, it starts to seem you're reading an 'alternate historical' rather than a fantasy. It's a tightrope. view post


posted 02 Feb 2004, 18:02 in Author Q & ATouring by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Penguin flew me out to Vancouver last year, but there's nothing firm yet about my spring itinerary. Overlook seems to be concentrating on the Northeast for this June and July - I don't think they have money for much more. Lord knows I don't! I give you updates as these things are confirmed. Anyone here going to Worldcon in Boston this year? When they're organized properly they're some serious fun. view post


posted 02 Feb 2004, 23:02 in Literature DiscussionFantasy by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Consistency is king. Consistency conveys authenticity, which generates the suspension of disbelief, which makes possible the experience of AWE. Large or small, I think magic needs to be 'awe inspiring,' whatever that means. view post


posted 03 Feb 2004, 17:02 in Author Q & AMen v. Nonmen by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Many Nonmen wander Earwa and the Three Seas, searching for trauma - which is to say, memories. A few hundred serve Golgotterath. The majority of these are what are called 'Erratics' - Nonmen who've been driven mad by the accumulation of trauma. The majority of surviving Nonmen, however, dwell in Ishterebinth - stonghold of the ancient Nonmen nation of Injor Niyas - where they struggle to keep the dwindling flame of their ancient civilization alive. Here the Quya and the Siqu masters continue their studies, developing techniques, sorcerous and otherwise, to keep their race sane. There, I've gone and said too much! Welcome to forum Loosecannon! Will I see you at the TWP book launch? view post


posted 03 Feb 2004, 20:02 in Literature DiscussionFantasy by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Drawing a blank delavagus? How about ME getting published! Don't get no stranger than that... During daylight at least. view post


posted 04 Feb 2004, 00:02 in Author Q & AQuestion to R.S. regarding release dates. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Oh, I've told them. I'll let you all know as soon as I get anything definite... The most it seems anyone can say is that it's coming out sometime between the end of April and mid-June. I'm pretty dismayed about all this - and embarrassed. But then GGK told me once that stuff like this is pretty much the rule in the biz. view post


posted 04 Feb 2004, 18:02 in Author Q & AMagic by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hi Loosecannon. I knew I was going to get into trouble when you mentioned in an earlier post that you appreciated not getting a 'read and find out' response! Many particulars regarding the Schoolmen and their competing Metaphysics come to the fore in TWP, and I'm sure you despise spoilers more than 'read and find out!' I can summarize the tidbits scattered through TDTCB, however. The sorcery of the Three Seas, Anagogic (and Daimotic) sorcery, arose from its shamanistic roots without the benefit of the Quya, the Nonmen sorcerer caste, whose sorcery was ancient before the Tusk was even written. The Gnosis, the sorcery of the Ancient North, is the result of what was called the Nonman Tutelage, a period in ancient Norsirai history marked by cultural exchanges between Nonmen and Men. The Gnosis is simply what the Anagogis could be, if the proper conceptual leaps were made... Differences between sorcerers sharing the same Metaphysics is determined in much the same way differences in any profession are: native ability, knowledge, training, and experience. view post


posted 04 Feb 2004, 19:02 in Author Q & AMagic by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hi Voland. Thanks for the kind words! The issue of the Chorae threshold is also broached in TWP. There is, however, a limited grey zone, consisting of arcane keys, ciphers, and so on, which one of the Few can utter without suffering the bruise or Mark of sorcery. It's the Mark that determines whom the Chorae can kill. If one of the Few can recognize you, then so can those accursed Trinkets... view post


posted 04 Feb 2004, 22:02 in Author Q & ADunyain by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Greetings Priest! Kellhus is definitely one tough mother fo... At this point, comparing him strength-wise to Cishaurim or Schoolmen is kind of like comparing apples and oranges - especially since so much of his power derives from his intellect. I know this'll sound like a cheat, but your question actually becomes important to much of what happens in TWP. Crucial, in fact. And I hate being a spoiler as much as reading them. view post


posted 04 Feb 2004, 22:02 in Author Q & AMagic by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

They're almost as fatal to the Cishaurim as well, though the mechanics differ. The Inrithi would be in a whole heap of trouble otherwise. I've actually structured the different sorceries of Earwa along the lines of different philosophical theories of language. For the Cishaurim, it's the THOUGHT, and not the utterance that is key, as it is in traditional sorcery. The Chorae are each inscribed with metaphysical contradictions, impossible propositions, that undo thoughts as readily as they undo utterances. view post


posted 04 Feb 2004, 23:02 in Author Q & AQuestion to R.S. regarding release dates. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Nothing for Scandinavia as of yet. S&S UK actually has Scandinavian rights for English publications. I'll ask my agent about the translation rights - though I thought most of you hyper-educated norsemen preferred reading your fantasy like your philosophy - in the original English! As it stands, the book is being translated into Russian, French, and German. I'm intensely curious to see how these turn out. If you don't mind, Voland, I'm very curious how many of the names strike your ear. English, which is a bastardized, mongrel language if there ever was one, has a curious hierarchy of sound-groups because of its history, with Germanic words (like 'good') at the bottom, French-derived words (like 'superb') in the middle, and Latinate words (like 'excellent') at the top (with Celtic and Scandinavian influences wriggling in from the side). What this means is that native English readers will more readily associate 'earthiness' with those names I derive from Germanic roots, and 'loftiness' with those names I derive from Latinate roots. How do they strike you? view post


posted 04 Feb 2004, 23:02 in Author Q & ADunyain by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Sorry about that. Kellhus is actually a prodigy among even the Dunyain, though any one of them would have us raking their yard and taking out their trash (and loving them for it) inside of five sentences. view post


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, 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 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, 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 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, 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 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, 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 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, 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 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


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

PM? Fine by me, so long as I get to be Pope! And I agree with you Banditski. It's one of the reasons I'm so terrified of AI. Think of the ease with which Kellhus manipulates people. In a matter of a few decades we'll have CPU's with far, far more transistors than we have neurons, and working at the speed of light no less! We're already 'evolving' programs in artificial environments that produce better results than any human design, and with structures no one can understand... We live in a creepy world. Which might be why I spend so much time in Earwa. view post


posted 16 Feb 2004, 22:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

How about scientific rationalization? Don't you have to have FAITH in reason and observation (since grounding these in reason and observation would just be begging the question)? But this question is rhetorical. There really seems to no way to escape some minimal form of faith: philosophy is littered with failed attempts to absolutely ground knowledge in first principles. I guess the hard question (the one that torments me at night, anyway) would be this: What are your grounds for believing in morality and purpose? Whatever those grounds are, they can't be scientific (which is why I bite the bullet and opt for faith). You might have faith that science will someday account for them, but from what we know so far, it seems more and more likely that science will simply explain them away. view post


posted 17 Feb 2004, 02:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I remember rooting around on the web trying to find a crossword answer and stumbling across this crazy religion where the member(s) thought the sacred purpose of mankind wasn't to worship God but to MAKE him. He called it the 'Artilect' (I ended up writing a short story of the same name). Anyway, the argument he used was almost identical to yours, LC. The upshot seemed to be that we were doomed to make God, whether we wanted to or not. Reminds me of Herbert's 'Ship' books... There's a growing literature out there on something called the 'singularity,' which, if I remember correctly, has to do with the point at which our technological advances are so radical we simply cannot predict that anything we're presently familiar with (such as our humanity) will abide in any recognizable form. Supposedly it's just around the corner... view post


posted 17 Feb 2004, 19:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I see what you're saying, and very many people hold this view, but I'm not sure they're comfortable with the consequences. For instance, when the Nazi's looked around, and decided they wanted to exterminate all the Jews, cripples, Gypsies, and homosexuals they found, were they right? If right and wrong are just what everyone within a society takes them to be, then it would seem the Nazi's, given their society, were quite right to murder those millions of people. view post


posted 17 Feb 2004, 21:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

And if the entire world goes Nazi? view post


posted 18 Feb 2004, 21:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The thing is that on your account it doesn't matter one whit which way the world goes: no matter what, it'll be the 'right way,' whether we ban the harm and consumption of animals, or start dicing our children up for our salads. There's no society-independent (which is to say, objective) yardstick. And this, I think, is just another way of saying there's no such thing as right or wrong. I can argue against you, Jack, because I think you're not willing to accept the consequences of your initial commitments, but I couldn't argue against him because he WAS. Since I sincerely wanted, as you do, the BEST answer rather than MY answer, I was forced to concede. The reason was all on his side. Nevertheless, I REFUSE to accept his conclusions. So all I have left is my crummy minimalist faith in 'something more.' It can be depressing. view post


posted 18 Feb 2004, 21:02 in Author Q & AOther authors you enjoy by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thank you, Kellais! I really think you'll enjoy TWP... Or at least I hope :lol: view post


posted 19 Feb 2004, 17:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

So you're a nihilist, then? view post


posted 19 Feb 2004, 23:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

A moral code for animals? I having a hard enough time clinging to one for humans! There certainly doesn't seem to be any code animals recognize. view post


posted 20 Feb 2004, 18:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Not really. It's not clear, for instance, that animals enjoy anything remotely resembling choice. Without choice, there's no responisibility, and without responsibility, there's no morality. view post


posted 21 Feb 2004, 16:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

That's the million dollar question, and as you might suspect, there's a million different answers to it. The simplest, most forceful answer, is that we DON'T have any - we're just another animal species like any other, distinguished by the peculiar nature of our delusions. And though I accept this as the strongest argument, I refuse to believe it's true. Others would say we have choice because we have souls, or because we have reason, or because of quantum tunnelling deep in our brain, or because choice REALLY is (substitute elaborate redefinition here), and so on, and so on. view post


posted 21 Feb 2004, 16:02 in Author Q & AMen v. Nonmen by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Legend. Cu'jara Cinmoi has been dead for several thousand years. References to and explanations regarding him surface a few times in TWP, and the story of his wars with the Inchoroi will be included in the appendices to Bk III - if I can convince them to include it! I actually hope, at some point, to write a stand alone regarding him. view post


posted 22 Feb 2004, 05:02 in Author Q & AMen v. Nonmen by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm actually waiting a couple weeks before digging into TTT (I'm still decompressing from TWP). I have the old, old version that I wrote some fifteen years ago, but I would be surprised if more than a few phrases survived in the final version. I tend to go underground for periods of frenetic writing and rewriting. The big difference will be the relative density of the events. Many things start happening within a short span of time. Things hit the proverbial fan. There will also be a series of extensive glossaries dealing with Earwa. view post


posted 23 Feb 2004, 19:02 in Author Q & ADunyain by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hi Skyfell. In the original versions of TDTCB, the story started with three or four Dunyain sections, so I actually tend to lose track of what I did or didn't include in this final version! There's very much that I allude to that never appears in the book - I'm morbidly obsessed with subtexts. I see the radical hygiene of the 'present' Dunyain not as the result of any single event, but rather many small insights and decisions over the course of many years. No matter how clean one is, one can always be cleaner, even if the soil at issue is history, custom, and animal passion. view post


posted 23 Feb 2004, 19:02 in Author Q & AThe Inchoroi and the Sranc by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

So far, precious little. This changes in a big way in TWP, however. Lotsa juicy little revelations (he says, cackling and rubbing his hands in glee)... view post


posted 23 Feb 2004, 21:02 in Author Q & ADunyain by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Plenty :wink: view post


posted 24 Feb 2004, 04:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Like I said, I'm an agnostic. 8) view post


posted 27 Feb 2004, 01:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I think it's pretty obvious that animals don't have choice, at least not in any sense that entails responsibility. We human beings, on the other hand, simply HAVE to have choice, if anything is to make any sense whatsoever... view post


Eating Crow posted 27 Feb 2004, 18:02 in Author Q & AEating Crow by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Just received my February Locus magazine, and find myself eating crow. Carolyn Cushman, who in her respective capsule reviews more or less panned both TDTCB and A Telling of Stars by my fellow Penguin Caitlin Sweet, has also chosen them for her favourite first novel releases of 2003! I'm going to have to dig out my August Locus and reread her review... :lol: view post


posted 28 Feb 2004, 11:02 in Author Q & AEating Crow by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

DON'T get me started. You'd think Canada must be overseas or something. I reread the August review, and have decided it wasn't so bad afterall. We need a little smiley face with crow feathers sticking out its mouth... view post


posted 28 Feb 2004, 23:02 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Actually, you're saying quite a bit more, aren't you Jack? You're saying that all morality (as opposed to just religion) is a social construct. At least that's what I understood. It's coincidental that you should mention memes, Jonathan, since it was reading about memes back in the mid 80's (in Hofstadter's Metamagical Themas, if I remember aright) that the idea for Kellhus started germinating. It was the first time I ever encountered the notion of ideas behaving as 'mechanisms,' as things which make people DO things, as opposed to little windows on the world. I really have no clue as to how responsibility could fit into a thoroughgoing memetic account, though. Don't the memes make all the choices? view post


posted 03 Mar 2004, 05:03 in Interviews and ReviewsMore laudations... this time from a very important group by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Very cool beans. Now I know what the word flabbergasted means. view post


posted 05 Mar 2004, 18:03 in Author Q & AOther authors you enjoy by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I still have to see the bloody thing (and I mean that literally - apparently, the screen Jesus bleeds enough to drain five men). I'm pretty cynical about all the 'controversy,' though. Smells like marketing to me... view post


posted 06 Mar 2004, 15:03 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hi Norsirai! In answer to your general question: The Dunyain are engaged in something similar to a Husserlian epoche, an attempt to bracket the untoward influences of history. Kellhus would likely cite some version of the genetic fallacy: so long as the destination is true, the point of origin is irrelevant. view post


posted 09 Mar 2004, 17:03 in Author Q & AHello to the author and everyone... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Welcome Vanarys! I have a tremendous amount of notes regarding Earwa that I've been accumulating since about 1980. And yet, I very rarely reference them - I've been living with the world so long it rarely seems that I need to. As far as world-building consistency goes, the only real MO I have is immersion and time. Being a dweeb helps... As far as writing and writing advice goes, the single most important thing I think any writer can do is to join an online workshop (for me it was the old Del Rey Online Writers Workshop - the DROWW - which has since become independent and morphed into the OWW). There's so many skills that I learned there, and perhaps even more importantly, so many writers that I met. As for the character-as-question vs character-as-answer issue. I really don't think there's an answer to which is 'best' - it all depends on what a writer is trying to accomplish. If, for instance, popularity and sales are the driving goal, then it seems to me that treating characters as answers is the best way to proceed. At least that's what seems to sell. For my own part, I try to let the story decide whether a character will be a question or an answer at any particular point. I actually look at Kellhus as an exception, in this sense. He is almost pure question - but then, THAT's the story! view post


posted 09 Mar 2004, 19:03 in Author Q & AHello to the author and everyone... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Anyone can join, though I think they now charge a modest monthly fee. It's definitely worth it, though. This might sound pessimistic, but I wouldn't recommend that anyone make writing their primary career choice. The odds are nothing short of insane. Even once you get published, I think there's only something like a 1 in 10 chance that your book will succeed. I lucked into this gig, and even still, when I think back to it, it seemed that every mountain I scraped and scrambled up simply revealed another mountain to be climbed. My advice is to approach writing as any other serious hobby - as something to be done for its own sake. This also gives you the freedom to experiment, to come up with your own voice, rather than relentlessly trying to stuff yourself into boxes built by others (if you join the OWW, you'll meet many, many people who'll try to convince you this is what MUST be done - but don't listen. If I had a nickel for every person who told me to avoid character interiors, purge all figurative language, etc...). It's win-win if it's just a hobby, no matter what happens. Even if TDTCB hadn't been published, I'd still be working on the world - and loving it! view post


posted 10 Mar 2004, 19:03 in Author Q & AHello to the author and everyone... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Ayn Rand is a joke. Normally I'm loathe to say that of any thinker, but I've been convinced that she's nothing short of pernicious. We human beings are actually quite inept when it comes to knowledge, and quite good when it comes to duping ourselves - which is the whole reason why science requires such elaborate precautions (and still regularly trips up). We generally hate complexity, we feel threatened by uncertainty, and we love flattery. This is why you have so many different groups saying, 'We're the best X!' with such absurd conviction, where x = nation, faith, race, gender, class, and so on. The best thinkers, it seems to me, cut against these tendencies, and so challenge the status quo. The worst thinkers, such as Ayn Rand, exploit these tendencies, and end up apologizing for the status quo - or even worse, arguing for more extreme versions of it. What you end up with is a very superficial but very appealing creed. view post


posted 11 Mar 2004, 12:03 in Author Q & AHello to the author and everyone... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

A good philosophical intro... hmm. As silly as it sounds, I think the Writers and Readers 'documentary comic books' series is actually a good place to get one's bearings. What kind of questions are you interested in exploring? view post


posted 12 Mar 2004, 18:03 in Author Q & AHello to the author and everyone... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

They're introductory texts highlighting the basics of different thinkers in a quasi graphic novel format. To be honest, I'm not even sure they're publishing them anymore. I found them immensely useful as an undergrad. view post


posted 18 Mar 2004, 16:03 in Author Q & AThe Series That Comes After? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Ah, the question I've been dreading. In the first few months of 2003 I took some time out to write a sleek little near-future psychothriller called Neuropath, which I intend to buff and polish once I finish TTT. I started NP thinking I needed a break from writing fantasy, only to discover that fantasy writing is, well... So much more damn fun! So NP is next, hot on the heels of TTT. What comes after NP? The Aspect-Emperor, another trilogy which returns to the demented cast (those that survive, that is) of PON some twenty years later. More than a few people groan when I say this, which is why I always feel the need to explain myself! First, I conceived and roughed out the greater cycle of stories (as a trilogy of trilogies) the year before WoT came out, so this is most definitely not a case of me slavishly following commercial precedents. This means, secondly, that every book in the series is motivated by STORY, and not money (if there is any in this business!) Third, PON is a complete tale, and not merely the first third of one. The relationship of AE to PON is more akin to the relationship between the Dune books, though the narrative arc that binds them - the story of the Second Apocalypse - is, I like to think, less ad hoc than Herbert's. As strange as it sounds, I look at PON as my version of The Hobbit. view post


posted 19 Mar 2004, 16:03 in Author Q & AFew Questions by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hi Akrasi. The stories are nested within a greater narrative. What I mean is that each trilogy (as opposed to each book within the trilogy) will have a complete story to tell. At the same time, each trilogy will also tell part of a much, much larger story. Though most everything happens within Earwa, so things do spill in from the outside. I actually think 'global world-building' is something of a mistake in creating fantasy worlds. One of the primary features of ancient understandings of the world, I think, is the incompleteness of that understanding. This is one of the things Tolkien does so well - even in the name 'Middle-earth': he conjures the sense of civilization encircled by mystery and darkness. view post


posted 19 Mar 2004, 16:03 in Author Q & AThe Series That Comes After? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Ten years! Maybe I should think about this... In answer to your question, Sovin, Robin Hobb has been on my must read list for some time. Any suggestions as to where I should start? In answer to your question, Loosecannon, yes, the scope does become more 'epic,' though in ways that might be surprising. The story is BIG. view post


posted 23 Mar 2004, 19:03 in Author Q & AThe Series That Comes After? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thanks for the Hobb advice everyone. I suspect Amazon thanks you as well... Welcome aboard Ifex! I do have a finished draft of PON, which I completed at the beginning of the eighties - back when I had far more ideas than ability. I only have outlines of the rest of the story, however. As far as NP goes, TTT takes precedence, but with any luck I should have something for my agent to shop around by late this year or early next. Just when it'll hit the shelves probably depends on how well PON is doing. view post


posted 31 Mar 2004, 18:03 in Author Q & AThe conditioning of Kellhus by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Welcome, both of you! I think you've both hit upon important nerves. The problem you mention, Euron - that of Kellhus being 'too outside' to effectively gain the power he does - was one that concerned me quite a bit in TDTCB - in fact you might say the entire prologue is concerned with it (though whether it does the job or not is a different matter). Remember that Kellhus 'suffered' emotions as a child, and that he uses his perfect recollections of these as the basis of his study of the trapper, who ends up being his first world-born test case. As far as adequately understanding the roots, Replay, I think you're right. But I'll have to let Kellhus answer that one... :wink: view post


posted 31 Mar 2004, 19:03 in Author Q & AHello to the author and everyone... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I absolutely loved the book, but I actually don't think Pirsig is that well versed in western philosophy - which is probably a good thing for the story! It really allowed the WONDER of questioning to come through - something which I think is lost in most philosophical meanderings. I thought the sequel, Lila, was horrible. Since he was arguing against as much as searching for, it screamed for a more philosophically nuanced approach. But from what I remember, it seemed that he hadn't actually read all that much. It's been awhile though. view post


posted 31 Mar 2004, 20:03 in Author Q & AHello to the author and everyone... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Very interesting... Though I'm not much on the metaphysics of things - apart from the sorcerous Schools that is! view post


posted 31 Mar 2004, 21:03 in Author Q & AThe conditioning of Kellhus by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

There's the rub: belief (with desire) forms the basis of action, so even if it is a fantasy, you need some kind of consistency between what your characters believe and what they do - especially when their actions are extreme. I should qualify: it depends on what your goals as a writer are. For me, epic fantasy is - in an important respect - about awe (or the memory of it), and an important condition of awe is believability. If your goal is, say, the exploration of a certain 'possibility space,' then these rules need not apply. What's the founding premise? view post


posted 05 Apr 2004, 11:04 in Author Q & AA few questions by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Welcome aboard Harren, and thanks for the kind words! With regards to your questions: yes, both Zeum and Eanna are inhabited, and both have roles to play in the darkness that comes after (forgive me - I couldn't resist!) - Zeum moreso. The excerpt on the website (which I hope to replace with something from TWP shortly, BTW - my webguy's gone working as a cybercrime detective for the RCMP and I'm ramping up to teach myself Frontpage) is actually from the Canadian edition of TDTCB. My original British editor, Darren Nash, asked for several changes, including splitting the Prologue in two, and getting rid of the nursery rhyme to avoid 'name overload' at the beginning of the book. To be honest, I'm not sure which version I like better... view post


posted 05 Apr 2004, 11:04 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

So if you're right, and rightness and wrongness is just 'personal,' you're only right because... you personally choose to be? Isn't that incoherent? I've always loved the following quote: "Guilt? It's this mechanism we use to control people. It's a kind of social control mechanism - and it's VERY unhealthy." --Ted Bundy view post


posted 05 Apr 2004, 19:04 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

"Morality is a social construct. It’s a necessity for the continued survival of that society." In other words, morality is (as Bundy says) just a control mechanism, an illusion society uses to conserve its inherited structures of power. It's not that murder is wrong, it's just that - given the murder-averse society we happen to live in - it's pretty stupid, unless your goal happens to be incarceration or execution. In other words, morality is just window-dressing for power - which is to say, a version of nihilism. Kellhus would approve! :wink: But there's a more difficult question: What makes YOUR argument right or wrong, Iceman? In order for you to be right, it seems to me that rightness and wrongness must be absolutes of some kind. But that simply contradicts your initial thesis, doesn't it? view post


posted 06 Apr 2004, 12:04 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Is the latter part of this a reply to me, Iceman? The question of constraints makes me think so, but the 'apparent disgust' comment makes me unsure. Maybe it was the Bundy example? Bringing that up was a bad teacher habit, I'm afraid: I like collecting outrageous and interesting examples to shock my students. When it comes to questions in moral philosophy, I take the old bumper sticker as my slogan: 'I used to be disgusted, now I'm just amused.' Otherwise, before answering your questions, I'd ask that you answer my question from before first (here quoted): "What makes YOUR argument right or wrong, Iceman? In order for you to be right, it seems to me that rightness and wrongness must be absolutes of some kind. But that simply contradicts your initial thesis, doesn't it?" Quid pro quo! :D view post


posted 06 Apr 2004, 15:04 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Just to clarify, Iceman: So you don't think all normativity is a social construct, that the rightness and wrongness pertaining to argument transcends social contexts, while the rightness and wrongness pertaining to morality does not? view post


posted 06 Apr 2004, 15:04 in Author Q & AA few questions by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I know there was a typo in the first edition (the beginning of chapter 7)regarding the date you mention (as well as about 12 others we've found!). It should be Early Autumn 4111. What puzzles me, though, is that they didn't correct this for the mass paperback version... I distinctly remember noting it on the proofs for the reprint. Typos... It's like trying to strangle water. view post


posted 06 Apr 2004, 19:04 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Sorry Iceman. Normativity is a technical term - I'm probably giving native speakers headaches too! It refers to the general category of rightness and wrongness that includes both the rightness and wrongness of argument and claims as well as the rightness and wrongness of morality as well. The reason I'm pressing you on this issue is that you seem to be staking out a roughly 'social constructivist' position, and before I can really give any arguments, I just need to know where you draw the lines. If you were a thoroughgoing social constructivist, then you would have to explain how your own arguments simply don't get swept up into the relativism you describe. If you're not, then you have explain how it is moral value can be a social construct (and therefore relative), when truth value is not. Believe it or not, most theorists grab the first horn of the dilemma (made famous by Plato) - but then only after doing away with the 'constructivist' side of their position, and opting for what's called 'contextualism.' The idea here is that there is no 'context independent' value (be it moral or otherwise). The rightness or wrongness of acts and claims is simply a function of all the contexts, social, historical, economic, personal, evolutionary, physical, and so on, that inform it. Though I don't subscribe to it myself, in my opinion it's a far superior position to social constructivism - and what I think you're tending toward in your replies to Replay, who's trying to bedevil you (as he should) with non-social contexts! The two MAJOR weaknesses of the position, however, have to do with accounting for the apparent objectivity of statements like those you made regarding sabre-tooth tigers, and the difficulty of making cross contextual judgements that seem otherwise obvious, like 'No matter what your point of view, the Holocaust was wrong.' It seems pretty clear that Hitler was off his rocker, no matter how many likeminded people he surrounded himself with. That said, contextualism remains one of the more powerful positions out there. I would never have guessed you weren't a native speaker, BTW. But then you guys have quite an education system in Norway - or so I'm told. view post


posted 07 Apr 2004, 11:04 in Author Q & AA few questions by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

You know what, you're wrong and you're right. I have to look at things more closely, but I think there's a COLOSSAL screw-up in the time line in the transition between 4110 and 4111. There was a typo in the first version of the book, but that came later. But this. Heaven's to betsy - my first writer's nightmare... If I was Ford I'd order a recall! I'm not sure how it precisely happened, but I suspect that it has something to do with the fact that I wrote the thing over such a long period of time and was dealing with material from several different drafts when I cobbled together the final manuscript - that and my big fat sloppy ASS! view post


posted 07 Apr 2004, 19:04 in Tour and Signing InformationVisiting the US? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

My publicist is still busy hashing out my schedule, but the money looks tight, and I doubt I'll make it out of car striking distance of Ontario. Maybe someday, Jack, but for now I'm bound to my trusty, 14 year old VW... I will try to make it out to sign some books, though, Neil. view post


posted 07 Apr 2004, 19:04 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

A philosophy section would be a good idea - people expecting a long and fruitful discussion about TWP on this thread are in for a surprise! Without sounding too presumptuous, let me put my teaching cap on for a moment, if only so that we can pin down our views and see where each of us stands. The crucial difference at stake here is the question of where rightness/wrongness (normativity) comes from - a question of 'what comes before,' in fact. The big split is between those who think rightness/wrongness follows from human action and those who think rightness/wrongness precedes human action. Do we 'take' things to be right or wrong, or do we 'recognize' them as such. Both of these general positions are widely held and fiercely fought within philosophical circles. The primary problem with the former is moral relativism: if right or wrong are simply the result of individuals or communities taking certain things 'as' right or wrong, then it becomes (seemingly) impossible to make cross individual or communal moral judgments that are anything other than expressions of bias. In fact, ALL moral judgments start seeming arbitrary and entirely unjustified - expressions of power, in effect. Morality starts looking suspiciously amoral. Consider the Holocaust. If the most you can say is "Well, I find it repugnant NOW, but it was obviously the right thing to do when you consider the context back THEN," there's a sense in which you're not making any moral judgment at all. There's a powerful sense in which moral relativism doesn't so much explain morality as it explains it away... And how can it be otherwise, if the rightness or wrongness of genocide becomes a matter of timing? This cuts against some deep seated intuitions. The primary problem with the latter is 'spookiness': if right or wrong are external to individuals or communities, if they are something judgments must be brought into accord with, then just where do they reside? There's many, many possible answers on this side of the question. Some say nature, others say transcendental categories, still others say consequences - and one can't forget divine revelation. After thousands of years of bickering, all philosophers have been able to do is clarify the shape of the disagreements. No one has come even close to providing a knockdown answer one way or another. It starts looking as though we're searching for something - absolute yardsticks of right and wrong - that simply doesn't exist. Things are in quite a muddle. view post


posted 08 Apr 2004, 01:04 in Author Q & AA few questions by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thanks Malarion. I'll still be gnashing my teeth to nubs, though. It's like noticing your kid has six fingers the moment before sending it through the kindergarten doors. view post


posted 12 Apr 2004, 18:04 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Since we've thrown evolution into the salad, let's pursue it, since it offers some interesting analogies, I think, to what's at stake in our moral debate. Consider 'sexual pleasure.' We engage in sexual behaviour for its own sake, because it's pleasurable. From an evolutionary perspective, however, sexual pleasure is simply SUBREPTIVE - which is just a fancy way of saying we think we do it because it's pleasurable, when in fact we do it to facilitate the reproduction of our genes. The same, evolutionary psychologists would say, is true of love. What we call 'love' simply facilitates the long-term pair-bonding required to successfully rear human offspring to the age of reproduction. In other words, love is just a SUBREPTION, an illusion that commits us to behaviours that (in this case) are evolutionarily effective. And the same, many would argue, goes for morality as well. Morality is simply something that generates the social cohesion necessary to produce the stable communities required to successfuly rear human offspring to reproductive age. Another subreption. Can this be right? Smacks of nihilism to me... view post


posted 12 Apr 2004, 20:04 in Author Q & AA few questions by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

That would be my cow. view post


posted 13 Apr 2004, 17:04 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

From an evolutionary standpoint, morality is an illusion that tricks us to behave in ways that maximize reproductive success. Save this deception, there's no point, no purpose... The problem isn't that this 'demeans morality,' it's that it renders it MEANINGLESS. Does your life, or any life for that matter, have any meaning? And remember, to say something like 'It has the meaning I give it' simply begs the question, which is simply whether there's any such thing to give at all... From an evolutionary standpoint, we've simply fooled ourselves into thinking our lives have value and purpose. view post


posted 13 Apr 2004, 18:04 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm just trying to tease out the implications of affirming an evolutionary account of morals. view post


posted 15 Apr 2004, 12:04 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I was trying to wait out Jack for a response - but no such luck! :lol: I think evolutionary (like social constructivist) accounts of morality simply come to nihilism in the end. And nihilism, I think, is the scourge of our day, something that's gnawing at our culture from the inside. That said, I absolutely refuse to paper over the problem. This is one demon that must be stared in the eye. view post


posted 15 Apr 2004, 14:04 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The evolutionary side is easy: no matter how much we 'affirm' our moral intuitions, the fact remains they're simply arbitrary, subreptive artifacts of an arbitrary evolutionary history. The social context side is somewhat more tricky. But in the end, I would argue, it all comes down to games of power and control. Rightness and wrongness become the determination of dominant groups and their memes - nothing more. For me, the big thing is that once you reflect on either of these approaches, it becomes unclear why morality should have any hold on you. 'That's just evolution screwing with you.' 'That's just what society says.' If statements like this are TRUE, why shouldn't we ALL say them? One could argue that you should act in this or that way to avoid incarceration or psychological dissonance, but it all comes down to self-interest - feeding the animal. Right or wrong collapse into desire (as the emotivists would say is the case). At issue here is the question of whether self-sacrifice, like dying to save your child (or your country, faith, etc.), has any meaning. I'm not interested in knowing whether I'm acting in accordance with my evolutionary design or my social conditioning; what I want to KNOW (as opposed to merely believe) is whether this act is RIGHT. view post


posted 15 Apr 2004, 21:04 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

You bite your bullets, Jack. Hard not to respect that. "At a basic level i think morality is not really about power or control, but more about a way of living that benifits not only yourself, but others also." This is what I was driving at with the self-sacrifice bit. But as far as non-biological evolution, I'm not sure I know what you're referring to. People often use the word 'evolution' as a synonym for 'progress' - is that what you mean? view post


Journey into the Underworld... posted 19 Apr 2004, 19:04 in Author AnnouncementsJourney into the Underworld... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I just thought I should post a little note letting everyone know that I'm about to return to the 'underworld,' that zoned-out, monomaniacal head-place where I do the bulk of my writing. So please forgive me if I take some time responding to questions and what-not... The Thousandfold Thought awaits. :twisted: view post


posted 27 Apr 2004, 17:04 in Author Q & APronunciation? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Welcome to the board Atanvarno! Actually, pronunciation questions are the one's I get asked the most, and people are always surprised when I tell them there is no canonical pronunciation as far as I'm concerned (as is the case with most dead languages). I use diacritics to break up some dipthongs and to mark most long u's, but not much otherwise. Hopefully, I'll have the time to go through my notes and outline the phonetics of some of the major language groups. But then I've been saying that for several years now... view post


posted 18 May 2004, 19:05 in Philosophy DiscussionFantasy and Philosophy by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I think how people find their way to fantasy is largely coincidental. I had a grade five teacher who read the Hobbit cover to cover to my class. So the question, I guess, would be one of why fantasy resonates with certain people. I have an article on sffworld.com which I think captures part of the reason: fantasy offers people meaningful worlds. One of the few things that burns my butt is the assumption that fantasy reading is simply a form of juvenile wish-fulfillment - anxious, hairy-palmed geeks living out revenge fantasies in print - a refuge for the weak from a world that rewards the strong. Or as you say, Jack, an affliction. That was certainly how it was perceived back when I was a hairy-palmed geek (as opposed to the sleek, well-groomed technocrat I've become)... And I seem to encounter more refined versions of this view whenever I read literary criticism that attempts to define the relation between SF (which is the forward-looking, society-transforming, 'literature of ideas') and F (which is presumed infantile and backward-looking). The thing to remember is that superficially this assumption makes a helluva lot of sense, and given our all too human predisposition to flatter ourselves, it's threatening claims like this that we geeks need to consider the most judiciously: Why do we run to alternate worlds unless we can't hack the REAL world? So if you don't mind, Jack, I'd like to narrow your question,somewhat... I'm very interested to hear what people have to say. Is fantasy a refuge for the weak? view post


posted 19 May 2004, 18:05 in Philosophy DiscussionFantasy and Philosophy by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Sounds like something a bunch of hairy-palmed geeks would say... :wink: I've been toying with the idea of putting the following epigraph from Adorno's Minima Moralia in TTT: "In order not to lose touch with the everyday dreariness in which, as irremediable realists, they are at home, they adapt the meaning they revel in to the meaninglessness they flee. The worthless magic is nothing other than the worthless existence it lights up." Here, he's speaking of occultism as an aberrant expression of the nihilism internal to our scientific and capitalist society. Occultism becomes a kind of neurotic coping mechanism, something like whistling in the dark... Could fantasy be the same? This possibility really struck me after I realized how many parallels one finds between epic fantasies like LoTR and the Bible. Before the scientific worldview rendered worlds structured by magic, divinity, and apocalyptic purpose 'fantastic,' we all lived in worlds LIKE Middle-earth or Earwa or Biblical Israel. These were the kind of worlds we humans seemed driven to create - MEANINGFUL worlds. It's almost as though we have some kind of 'meaning instinct.' The same way we instinctively anthropomorphize or attribute human qualities to our pets, we seem to instinctively anthropomorphize the world: we project things belonging to humans - purposes, morals, emotions - to the world. EVERY traditional worldview prior to the institutional dominance of science is characterized by these projections of the human self onto the worldly other. Could epic fantasy simply be an expression of this apparently instinctive need to remake things in our own image? If this is the case, then the 'weak route' would be to give in to this instinct altogether, and to assert the out and out truth of some traditionally sanctioned 'fantastic world,' be it Hindu, Taoist, Muslim, or Christian. The 'strong route' would be to deny the instinct altogether, and to embrace the scientific worldview no matter how alienating (and it's VERY alienating). The middle route would be to periodically indulge the instinct, turn it into a pasttime... Become a fantasy reader? view post


The Big Guns posted 23 May 2004, 19:05 in Interviews and ReviewsThe Big Guns by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Capsule reviews from the big guns keep trickling in, including some very nice ones from [i:frpq8lv8]The Guardian[/i:frpq8lv8] and [i:frpq8lv8]Publishers Weekly[/i:frpq8lv8]. Highlights can be viewed by clicking 'Reviews' at [url:frpq8lv8]http://www.princeofnothing.com/Frame.htm[/url:frpq8lv8]... view post


More shameless self-promotion... posted 24 May 2004, 16:05 in Interviews and ReviewsMore shameless self-promotion... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I just found an interview with some joker named Ray Scott Bakker at [url:8wtk7b17]http://members.lycos.co.uk/falcatatimes/siteindex.html[/url:8wtk7b17]... Just for the record, the 'R' stands for 'Richard' - or as my fiancee likes to remind me from time to time, 'Dick.' view post


posted 31 May 2004, 10:05 in Interviews and ReviewsMore shameless self-promotion... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I wouldn't touch [i:mdxdgzum]Dune[/i:mdxdgzum] either, Replay! It's the sequels I mentioned. The workshop I referred to is [url:mdxdgzum]http://sff.onlinewritingworkshop.com/[/url:mdxdgzum]... view post


posted 05 Jun 2004, 13:06 in Author Q & AOther authors you enjoy by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

After finishing PSS, I finally understand what all the hullabaloo about Mieville is... It really is an extraordinary book, though I think it shares many of the same weaknesses as TDTCB. I started Cryptonomicon some time ago, but somehow it slipped through the cracks of my hectic schedule. I seem to remember thinking it was pretty much mainstream - I'm trying to concentrate on catching up on the 'genre greats' - university put me about a decade behind. I have Snow Crash on the MUST READ shelf, but I'm trying to catch up on my Erikson (DG was my last). I started MOI, then decided to go back to GOTM. Damn, that man knows his yarn! view post


THE WARRIOR-PROPHET posted 08 Jun 2004, 19:06 in Author AnnouncementsTHE WARRIOR-PROPHET by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Just found out that TWP will be shipping to bookstores next week! I do apologize for the delays... view post


Bakka-Phoenix this June 12th posted 08 Jun 2004, 19:06 in Tour and Signing InformationBakka-Phoenix this June 12th by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Just a reminder for those in the Toronto area. I'll be signing books at Bakka-Phoenix (598 Yonge St.) between 3 to 5PM. I'm told they're receiving a special order of TWP from the printer, so you'll be seeing the monster for the first time with me! view post


posted 09 Jun 2004, 16:06 in Tour and Signing InformationBakka-Phoenix this June 12th by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Sorry, Fatherofthree. Penguin dropped their shorts for that first tour, and short of making the GaM bestseller list, I can't see them doing the same anytime soon. Besides, if I went to Calgary I'd have to find Clark heckle him, then likely get my lights punched out. There's only ONE rule with Tampa Bay - NO PENALITIES! view post


posted 09 Jun 2004, 20:06 in Tour and Signing InformationBakka-Phoenix this June 12th by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Maybe not so bad. When I discussed the possibility with my UK editor at S&S, he gave me a cryptic 'We'll see...' view post


posted 14 Jun 2004, 16:06 in Author Q & AIs the No-God a Nonman? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Welcome to the board, Scytale! Regarding the appendices, S&S was afraid the 'Languages of Earwa' appendix might scare away browsers, so unfortunately it didn't make it into the UK version of TDTCB. It will, however, appear in the appendices to TTT. Regarding the No-God, I think I should let the story fill in that particular piece of information, as the Consult comes to loom large in the books to follow. I've been working on the world for almost twenty years, and I'm afraid its made me as coy as a mormon stripper when it comes to revealing things. view post


posted 14 Jun 2004, 16:06 in Author AnnouncementsTHE WARRIOR-PROPHET by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

So I just got back from the book launch in Toronto at Bakka Books - thanks to everyone who was able to make it! The place seemed hopping, and my writing hand was cramped into a claw from signing - both good signs. It was actually my first chance to see the book (they had to rush order it from the printers due to (more) delays), and I am smitten. I set it upright on the table in my hotel room and just stared at it - for longer than I care to admit. I've never worked so hard on anything in my entire life. Those people at Penguin Canada really know how to cook! view post


Radio Sarnia posted 14 Jun 2004, 16:06 in Tour and Signing InformationRadio Sarnia by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

For those who are interested and in the Sarnia Ontario/Port Huron Michigan area, I'm being interviewed live (for a full half hour) on 1070 CHOK by Sue Storr shortly after 11AM, this Wednesday, June 16th. I'm also doing an interview for the Space Channel this week, but I'm not sure when it'll be aired. view post


Forthcoming publications in translation... posted 14 Jun 2004, 18:06 in Author AnnouncementsForthcoming publications in translation... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I thought I'd include this for those curious about translations. I hope to update this list as more of the world falls under Kellhus's thrall. I have no firm dates yet, so the best I can offer is guestimates. I have either signed or my agent is negotiating deals for Russia: TDTCB, 2005 Poland: TDTCB, 2005 Germany: TDTCB, TWP, TTT, starting 2005 France: TDTCB, 2005 Spain & Latin America, TDTCB, 2005 view post


posted 14 Jun 2004, 20:06 in Author Q & AIs the No-God a Nonman? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Jack: I sketch progressively more and more detail regarding the Consult through both TWP and TTT, particularly through Achamian's Dreams. Scytale: the 'Languages' appendix is about five or six pages long... Given what I've been told about the shipping rates, I'm not sure it warrants it. With a couple of exceptions, all of the books will take place within Earwa, though pretty much every damn corner comes into play at some point. It took me over half my life to just do the subcontinent - at that rate we'd all either be dead or retired by time I finished the setting for another part of the planet! I've stopped working on TTT because of all this PR stuff I've been doing, but things were clipping along at a breakneck pace up to last week. If all goes well, I should have the final draft finished in plenty of time for its scheduled April 2005 release - which is, incidentally, the same time that S&S plans on releasing it in the UK. Which means I'll have TWO editors breathing down my neck... view post


posted 14 Jun 2004, 20:06 in Tour and Signing InformationRadio Sarnia by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

As much as we wanted to, it was just too much to organize with the wedding coming up. I'm still astounded at how labour intensive these things can be. Even still, we're hoping to do a repeat at the Arts Project in London for TTT next spring. view post


posted 15 Jun 2004, 01:06 in Author Q & AIs the No-God a Nonman? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

They're being released in tradepaperback in the UK and Canada, and in hardcover in the US, though I don't think TWP is coming out until January 2005 in the US. view post


THE THOUSANDFOLD THOUGHT posted 16 Jun 2004, 13:06 in Author AnnouncementsTHE THOUSANDFOLD THOUGHT by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

OK. So I made my case, I showed them the poll here on the message board, and they've agreed to go with The Thousandfold Thought! It may sound strange, an author having to argue for their title, but many of the contracts I've signed stipulate the working title, When Sorcerers Sing, which I've never been all that comfortable with. The bean-counters get ancy, I think, at the thought of 'thought' in a title... Especially when the author at issue is a small fry like me. Remember how they renamed the first Harry Potter in the US, because they didn't like the word 'philosopher'? I should say that I feel the poll on the board here played no small part in the decision - thanks to you all! I'll likely have roughs of the cover within a couple of months. Too bad I couldn't say the same about the manuscript! view post


The Space Channel posted 16 Jun 2004, 13:06 in Author AnnouncementsThe Space Channel by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Just yesterday I did an interview for the Space Channel, which is Canada's version of the SciFi Channel in the US. What they do is make little clips to use as fillers (called 'Shelf Space'), so there's no saying exactly when my homely and pendantic ass might float across your screen. You might want to have a blanket or the remote ready just in case. At the very least, send the children to their rooms... Just a note: for some reason the guy with the camera filmed me while laying on the grass, so I might look as though I'm like, ten thousand feet tall. It's just an illusion. view post


posted 16 Jun 2004, 13:06 in Philosophy DiscussionFantasy and Philosophy by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

But faith, in its myriad forms, is inevitable isn't it? Part of being human consists in not knowing, yet acting nonetheless. I've spent ten years chasing down the justifications/reasons for things without answering a single damn question to my satisfaction. The problem, it seems to me, isn't faith so much as [i:2xlulr26]certainty[/i:2xlulr26]. Millennia from now our descendents will think we're as deluded as we think, say, the ancient Egyptians were deluded: this almost seems axiomatic. And yet most everyone is convinced that they somehow, miraculously, have the market on truth cornered - or at least more cornered than their neighbour. To err is to be human. To deny erring is more human still. view post


posted 16 Jun 2004, 15:06 in Philosophy DiscussionFantasy and Philosophy by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I think I agree with you Replay, and the bit about Zen certainly (there's that word again!) sounds interesting. I guess I need to know what you specifically mean by 'faith.' For me, all assumptions, whether implicit or explicit, are a form of faith - which is to say, beliefs without justification. But if I apply that definition to what you're saying, you seem to be suggesting that it's possible to get by without assumptions, which I think is not only demonstrably false (you wouldn't hand money to the guy at the movie wicket unless you assumed you'd get to see the movie - there are countless examples like this, both trivial and profound) but part and parcel of the same 'will to be certain' that drove so many philosophers (Descartes most famously) to seek an 'assumption free' philosophy. Do you see what I'm saying? I think being baffled is simply part of what it means to be human, and I can't help but be suspicious of any position, be it Cartesian or Zen, that claims to either banish or 'dissolve' perplexity. We should be uncomfortable, I think. It keeps us honest. view post


posted 17 Jun 2004, 12:06 in Author AnnouncementsTHE THOUSANDFOLD THOUGHT by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

A coppery, bloodish red. view post


posted 23 Jun 2004, 13:06 in Author Q & AThe appearance of the Sranc? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hi Scytale. There are some references to the Sranc in TWP, but I think the most 'thorough' remains the one given in the prologue of TDTCB, where they are described - if I remember aright - as 'dog-chested and inhumanly beautiful.' One of the things I like doing (and I've had more than a few of my readers curse me for it!) is allowing the story to slowly fill in the more enigmatic background details, with the idea of having the picture relatively complete by the end of PON. The Nonmen (and Bashrag), for instance, find themselves described in the beginning of TTT. view post


posted 23 Jun 2004, 13:06 in Author Q & ACouple of questions after a reread by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Always such a bloody mincer, Replay! :wink: Fair questions, all. As for the why the Dunyain would spend so much time with faces when they're utterly isolated (and they are - almost), the issue is indirectly broached in TWP - chapter sixteen, I think. Otherwise, I would point to Kellhus's surprise in the Prologue, when he meets Leweth for the first time. The idea is that the Dunyain have developed this skill for training purposes (to root out passion, one must be able to detect it). The fact that it translates into the ability to dominate of world-born men is simply a happy coincidence (or as you say, Jack, a byproduct). On the other side there is the strange feedback that occurs between emotion and displays of emotion - as evinced by those 'laughing classes' that seem to be sweeping the world. The idea here is that by mastering the display of the emotion (which is under your self-conscious control), you gain some measure of control over the emotion itself. The Dunyain are fond of control. The form of the Kellhus flashback scenes ultimately comes from my days smoking fatties and watching Kung Fu with my grandmother, back when I was fourteen... How I loved that show. view post


posted 23 Jun 2004, 13:06 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Welcome to the board, Takloufer. Just a note (as much a question as anything else), I thought Michael Shermer and the Skeptical Inquirer people did a real number on Radin and the psi stuff. I wouldn't argue the correlation between neurophysiologies and experiences is so much arbitrary, as you say, as it's simply inexplicable. I'm troubled by the ontological extravagance of approaches like Chalmers, flummoxed by Dennett-like eliminativism, skeptical of Searle's 'levels of description,' and very amused by the quantum approachs taken by Penrose. The bottom-line is that nobody knows what the hell is going on, which is why, like you, I'm inclined to think there could be room for the 'extra-material' (or, more pragmatically, 'something beyond the ability of science to explain'). The question is one of making meaningful inferences beyond this point, which leaves me stalled in my agnosticism. What do you think of Nagel's 'double-vision' approach to the problem? view post


posted 23 Jun 2004, 14:06 in Philosophy DiscussionDescartes by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

There's not many out-and-out Cartesians around any more, I'm afraid, though there are many Descartes scholars. The epigraph to TDTCB is Nietzsche's famous overturning of Descartes' cogito: 'IT thinks, therefore I am.' Sartre also has his own spin: "I think, therefore I WAS." I always used to joke that Derrida, if he were to have his own cogito, would say "IT thinks, therefore I WAS." Back when I tried Zyban to quit smoking I had what could be charitably described as a 'psychotic episode.' Zyban is simply another name for Welbutrin, an anti-depressant that has improved the lives of millions, but seems to drive a small handful bonkers. Quite the experience. 'IT' was thinking alright - the thoughts just seemed to come from nowhere (the 'darkness'). But what freaked me out more was the subsequent realization that the only difference between those thoughts and the thoughts I normally have was that I simply wasn't accustomed to them, and that if I had held onto them long enough, I likely would've have started identifying them as my own. Which led to the question: 'Just WHO (or what) is doing the thinking anyway?' Kellhus, probably. view post


posted 27 Jun 2004, 17:06 in Philosophy DiscussionDescartes by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I did manage to quit smoking, but it had precious little to do with Zyban. The issues regarding selfhood become very abstract and very perplexing very fast - it really is like clutching at smoke. The strange thing is that if it all does come down to brains and evolution, then this is the very thing we might expect. 'Self-consciousness,' whatever it is, seems to be a relatively recent evolutionary innovation. Given that our brains have had millions of years to develop circuits capable of tracking our external environments, we would expect our brains' ability to track itself would be far more rudimentary in comparison - that they would be 'blind' to themselves in important respects. From a naturalist standpoint, what we call 'self' might simply be the result of a brain that cannot see itself AS a brain - as just one more 'it' in the world. In other words, we might expect the brain to think of itself as standing [i:14zi2cop]outside[/i:14zi2cop] the world in someway - as it must, it seems, if things like free will and morality are to make sense. view post


posted 27 Jun 2004, 20:06 in Philosophy DiscussionDescartes by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Being a hyperchondriac helps - for the smoking, that is. I'll be rooting for you Replay! As for the 'blind brain hypothesis' (which I hope to publish soon), the idea is roughly this: thanks to millions of years of evolution, the brain has powerful resources when it comes to processing changes in its external environment, but when it comes to processing internal changes within itself, it has a far shorter evolutionary track record, and thus, one might assume, far fewer resources. So even though our brain is simply one more physical object in our environment, we might expect it to have difficulty recognizing itself as such. In fact, we might expect it to have a very strange and blinkered self-understanding, so much so that when we study it as any other natural object, it seems impossible that it can be the same thing. Take our sense of 'free will' as an example. Our brain is very good at tracking causal processes in its immediate environment, but it possesses only limited resources for tracking the causal processes within itself. Given this, one might expect a striking difference in the way the brain perceives external events (as possessing a causal history) as opposed to internal events (as arising ex nihilo). One might expect, in other words, that the brain would be unable to fully integrate itself in the causal structure of its environment, to think itself 'free.' view post


posted 27 Jun 2004, 20:06 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I agree. That 'out-Tolkien's Tolkien' line had me gnashing my teeth, as have the many other references to JRRT I've come across by various reviewers. I'm not sure there's any comparison that's been more abused, particularly when it comes to marketing fantasy. As far as the book being more 'Dunish' than 'Lord-of-the-Ringish' overall, sometimes I'm inclined to agree, and other times I'm not. I like to think I'm exploring something inbetween, but then we all like to believe flattering things! view post


posted 27 Jun 2004, 20:06 in Interviews and Reviewswotmania Interview with Scott by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Very cool beans. Thanks yet again, Larry! view post


posted 28 Jun 2004, 13:06 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I think he was using 'romance' in its generic literary sense. view post


posted 28 Jun 2004, 13:06 in Philosophy DiscussionDescartes by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Loof and Jack: I agree - insofar as the 'self-tracking' capability exists, it had to be selected for on the basis of some kind of competitive advantage. I've always wondered whether it has something to do with language and sexual selection. Whatever the case, it must have something to do with the social structure of early hominids... Imagine the reproductive edge of a 'Kellhus-robustus'... Replay: The idea is that since the brain can't process its own causal processes, they don't exist for it, so that where it assumes that events in its external environment are caused, it assumes internal events are not. It literally can't fit itself in the picture of events it sees around it. I actually have a line on getting the article published in The Journal of Consciousness Studies - I'm presently rewriting it with a much smarter, much better read, buddy of mine. view post


posted 28 Jun 2004, 14:06 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I should have said 'anomolous' causality. (Backward causality has to do with the precognitive stuff, doesn't it?) Either way, the sheer chutzpah of these claims makes Ockam's razor an enemy of parapsycologists (bigger even than the Amazing Randi!). All things being equal, the simplest most mundane explanation wins (pending further data, of course) - which in this case, is some version of experimental error. I too believe there simply HAS to be intentionality, I'm just not sure there's any convincing way to silence the meaning skeptic. But this actually wasn't the thrust of my question. I actually have a hard time understanding how idealism can make sense of intentionality. What are our experiences ABOUT? Other 'meta-experiences'? Or nothing at all? For instance, I believe I have a perspective IN the world ON the world. I'm not sure where to fit your metamind. Are you saying our perspectives are perspectives ON some kind of perspective? I'm not sure its possible to salvage an intelligible concept of perspective from this. A perspective, to be a perspective on something, must be one of many possible perspectives on something that transcends it - doesn't it? But if you acknowledge that our perspectives are on something that transcends them, my question would be: Then why not simply say 'world' like the rest of us? Are you willing to trust philosophical discourse (with its lack of regress enders) so far as to give such an extraordinary ontological content to what we experience? view post


posted 28 Jun 2004, 20:06 in Philosophy DiscussionDescartes by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The idea is that it tracks it (because of the lack of resources) in a 'low resolution' format, as when we say, "I got pissed off!" to explain an action. view post


posted 29 Jun 2004, 13:06 in Author Q & AThe shortest path... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thanks for the kind words Nicholas, and welcome to the board! Do let me know what you think of TWP - I sometimes feel that I write better at gun-point... Only sometimes. view post


posted 29 Jun 2004, 13:06 in Tour and Signing InformationChapters? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Loosecannon: I know for sure that I'm doing a signing sometime this fall at Oxford Books - I'll be sure and post the specifics when I receive them. Everything's been deferred because of my looming nuptials (insert ominous musical crescendo). Damaen: Thanks for the invite, and welcome to the board. Hopefully Penguin will decide to do a repeat of the cross-country tour I did last spring. view post


posted 29 Jun 2004, 15:06 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

That was me, BTW. For some reason, I'm being logged out whenever I pause to make a cup of tea during a longish post. view post


posted 29 Jun 2004, 19:06 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

No worries. I welcome the comparisons, and see the books as being in continuous dialogue with LoTR and Dune. It's just the USE made of the comparisons that I worry about, because they might be misleading. view post


posted 29 Jun 2004, 23:06 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Very interesting response! Though I'm not sure you addressed my worries, Tak. You never actually addressed my intentionality question (which is simply a version of the perspective question). What are out experiences of? You seem to agree with that the 'nothing response' is unpalatable (because it simply does away with the very intentionality you're trying to save). You admit the mental construct response is unpalatable to common sense (which you seem to need), but you never actually say what our experiences are about. The metamind? You have to admit that prima facie, this smacks far more of 'fiction' and 'unexplained explainer' than good old fashioned matter. Moreover, there's a sense in which saying our experiences are on 'meta-experiences' seems a horribly ad hoc way of saving intentionality, particularly when you want to say that intentionality is not only the fundamental feature of experience, but your primary basis for abandoning materialism! Just think of all the questions: So if experiences are about meta-experiences, then what are those 'meta-experiences' about? After-all, they are EXPERIENCES, aren't they? Or are we talking about 'intentionless experiences' at this level? If this is the case, and intentionality is an essential characteristic of experience, then it no longer seems like we're talking about experiences, but rather about something more inert... more, matter like? I really think that idealism renders intentionality unintelligible. You have to show me where I'm wrong. Another point: the 'limits of science' (which I take as a given) comes up all the time in debates like this, and I can't help but think it simply misses the point. No one I know of argues the completeness or infallibility of science. They only argue that when it comes to the generation of reliable theoretical truth-claims, it really seems to be the only game in town. I'm open to considering competitors, but the field looks pretty bleak. There are ways, BTW, of materially explaining why science can't crack intentionality - they just seem to lead to unpalatable conclusions. Colin McGinn has an interesting take on this. I have my own 'blind brain hypothesis.' And lastly, I'm not sure how giving up on metaphysical commitments (and after over two thousands years, no less!) bears in any way on truth... Such resignation comes, I would argue, when you recognize the truth of metaphysical commitments! :wink: view post


posted 30 Jun 2004, 12:06 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Holy moly, Tak! All I can say is QED... :wink: Welcome to the wonderful world of philosophy, Jack! view post


posted 30 Jun 2004, 12:06 in Author Q & ATerminology by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The use of archaicisms is a tricky thing when trying to find the right tone. At least I don't call it 'chainmail +3'! view post


posted 30 Jun 2004, 12:06 in Tour and Signing InformationChapters? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

LOL! Will (definitely) do... view post


posted 30 Jun 2004, 18:06 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Finally some time for a more proper reply, though nothing, I'm afraid, that would justice to all the points you raise. I'm not sure how you could get around the 'unexplained explainer' problem - certainly not with philosophy anyway. As it stands, you and I both agree 'there must be more,' but for me that 'more' must remain a blank posit. I don't share your optimism regarding philosophy's ability to make anything stick. Regarding the Blind Brain hypothesis, I think I understand why you might raise the old 'Cartesian Theatre' objection, but it really doesn't apply. I pursued the argument, in fact, to TROUBLE my 'there must be more' stance, which means that you're quite right to point out the automaton model of consciousness it seems to entail. What it does is provide a naturalistic explanation of the why and how of intentional phenomena - explaining them away in effect. But that's another story. If you want to explore it, we should probably start a different thread - one with a big warning sign! view post


posted 02 Jul 2004, 23:07 in Philosophy DiscussionThe Case of the Blind Brain and Other Strange Tales by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hi Tak... Back from Canada Day shennanigans. Regarding the unexplained explainer: The regress of justification ensures that we'll always bump into these, certainly - I took that as a given. What I was questioning was what warrants your 'mentalist' unexplained explainer. I need you to spell out to me, decisively (given the foibles of philosophical thought), how you get from 'Materialism is inadequate' to 'Mental monism is true.' Until then, your position strikes me as ad hoc at best: of the 'if it's not material, then it must be mental' variety. Why not something unknown? Spinoza and Heidegger's 'frame complaint' comes to mind here as well. Whatever meaning we accord the term 'mental' (for Spinoza the term was 'God' and for Heidegger it was 'Being') arises from WITHIN the frame of experience. So the question is, how can we know that meaning is even remotely adequate [i:3pflnh81]for the frame itself[/i:3pflnh81]. Now in cosmology we have comparatively robust emprical observations and mathematical models upon which to base our inferences (as well as a track record of breathtaking success). Here, on the other hand, all we have are metaphysical interpretations - which are doomed to be flimsey in the extreme. I have some comments regarding the duck analogy, but they'll have to wait... view post


posted 03 Jul 2004, 13:07 in Philosophy DiscussionThe Case of the Blind Brain and Other Strange Tales by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I've already acknowledged there's value in exploring 'frame questions' (my dissertation would be pointless otherwise!) It's your cognitive commitment to ONE answer - mental monism - that I'm dogging you on. Regarding which, you seem ready to bite the bullet... Once you take the metaphilosophical picture into account, agnosticism really seems to be the only rationally defensible position. The fact is, we just don't know. view post


posted 05 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Philosophy DiscussionThe Case of the Blind Brain and Other Strange Tales by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Friggin philosophy 101 over here. This is AWESOME. Don't mind the jargon, Replay, it's just shop-talk. And always remember the one sure fire way to get a philosopher to shut-up: pay for your pizza and tell him to get the hell off your porch... :wink: view post


posted 05 Jul 2004, 19:07 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

They are too sexy! After the Toronto book launch I set one up on the hotel table and simply stared at it, thinking to myself, 'So this is what a stalker feels like.' As far as I know, the only place that still has copies of the original tradepaperback at the original price is Bakka-Phoenix Books in Toronto. A quick Google will get you there. view post


posted 05 Jul 2004, 19:07 in Tour and Signing InformationChapters? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The little London, I'm afraid. On Richmond Street just south of Oxford. view post


posted 05 Jul 2004, 20:07 in Tour and Signing InformationMichigan? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

My publicist had something set up for Ann Arbor, but it fell through for some reason. My guess is that I won't be doing much in the US until the second book comes out. It's a classic catch-22: you need to do events like book-signings to increase your audience, and yet without an audience, they really aren't worth the time and money. Meanwhile the book seems to be languishing in the US. Not good. view post


posted 06 Jul 2004, 13:07 in Author Q & ACurious if you... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm doing an interview with Rob right now in fact! He's a cool head. view post


posted 08 Jul 2004, 19:07 in Interviews and ReviewsLondon Free Press Article by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The wedge of the wabyss! Walking about, I've had several complete strangers congratulate me now. Unnerving, but it could be worse, I guess. They could be trying to strangulate me... :lol: view post


posted 09 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Interviews and ReviewsLondon Free Press Article by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Got the mane hacked off last night, actually. My stag's tomorrow and I don't want to catch fire... view post


posted 09 Jul 2004, 22:07 in Interviews and ReviewsLondon Free Press Article by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Substitute 'fatties' for 'pyres,' 'headbanging' for 'satyric dances,' and 'peeler-bar' for 'Dionysian,' and I'd say you're right on the money! But I'm getting ahead of myself... It could just be vomit. Lots and lots of vomit. view post


posted 10 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Interviews and ReviewsLondon Free Press Article by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'll try, but there's just something about piss-grease smeared across your forehead and cheek... Tends to deflate the divine. view post


posted 12 Jul 2004, 12:07 in Author Q & ASymbol Question **WP Spoilers** by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I've always had in mind Da Vinci's Vitruvian Man (I think that's how its spelled), only upside down. view post


posted 12 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Author Q & AOn the subject of Chorae by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Same old problem: me assuming that crucial details will somehow leak through my elliptical descriptions! Chorae bowmen from different nations adopt different strategies, but in each case, what they fire is the Chorae itself fixed to the shaft or bolt. Physical contact with a Chorae grants an individual and their immediate effects immunity - nothing else. view post


posted 12 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Author Q & ATerminology by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm not sure I've even heard of Ragnarok Online... view post


posted 12 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Author Q & APrivate questions for Mr. Bakker. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hi Soulwielder, and a cryptic welcome! This forum has private messaging... view post


posted 12 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Author Q & AWomen In the Three Seas by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Yeah, I've taken some heat on this issue - which I suspected I might. Pardon the length of my response: good questions deserve thorough answers. Most fantasy worlds, despite being patterned on various traditional milieus, are thoroughly sanitized - usually to make them more palatable to their audiences, I think. I wanted something unsanitary, through and through, both for authenticity's sake, and to explore a couple of different themes. I wanted to look this 'epic fantasy thing' in the eye - without blinking. Up until a few decades ago, women were little more than chattel, at least in the dominant traditional cultures. They were the property of either their husband or their father, and they spent their lives fairly imprisoned by their reproductive systems. It's no accident that the women's rights explosion occurred during a time when women began working and began taking the pill. Now many people gravitate toward epic fantasy, I think, because it offers them examples of what technological civilization has stripped from us: a clear and certain place in the social and cosmic orders. It's no accident that fantasy worlds tend to be ancient worlds: before science we were free to construct worlds - like Homeric Greece, Biblical Israel, or Vedic India - that confirmed our hopes and fears. The problem, of course, is that these worlds were also powerfully chauvinistic and authoritarian. I'm just trying to give the good with the bad, to explore the object of our fascination - alternate, prescientific contexts - honestly. I chose the Whore, the Harridan, and the Waif as my archetypes because each, I think, is an expression of the way authoritarian patriarchal societies warp the feminine: each represents a real way a woman might cope. Warrior princesses do not (these, I would argue, are actually misogynistic). Of course Esmenet and Serwe have a 'neediness' about them. Neediness is the primary way human beings respond to helplessness. Abusive systems produce damaged people. I hope this doesn't come off as me trying to make a bad thing look good after the fact, because it isn't. I was very deliberate in making the choices I did - and I think, or at least hope, that this becomes more clear in TWP. Regarding the graphic depiction of sex, my answer would run along similar lines. Also, if you ever get a chance to reread TDTCB, watch for the recurring role and references to appetite. Carnal lust is but one more 'darkness that comes before,' and in the end, perhaps it's the most significant one. view post


posted 12 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Interviews and ReviewsLondon Free Press Article by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Could've been the whiskey, Might've been the gin. Could've the three/four six packs, I dunno, But look at the shape I'm in... view post


posted 12 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Interviews and ReviewsLondon Free Press Article by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

At one point I found myself in a C&W bar. Still tapping my toes, and hating myself for it. Goddamn my head hurts. Still. view post


posted 13 Jul 2004, 01:07 in Author Q & AWomen In the Three Seas by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Pretty crazy, I know. Serial murderers are almost always serial rapists as well. I wanted the evil to be a real world evil, and once again I didn't want to blink. I've been told that Anne Rice makes me look like a choir boy, though! :lol: view post


posted 13 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & AWomen In the Three Seas by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

But I think your last reason is the very thing that makes them scratch their heads. Simply because it's an alternate world, the patriarchal, misogynistic nature of the Three Seas is a matter of authorial choice. If the subtext is missed, it's pretty easy, I think, to jump to worries and conclusions regarding the author. Thank God for the internet, I say. view post


FREE BOOK CONTEST posted 13 Jul 2004, 18:07 in Author AnnouncementsFREE BOOK CONTEST by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

With Larry's guidance and invaluable advice, I've come up with the following contest with the aim of generating more awareness of TDTCB - especially in the US. Feedback is welcome, of course - especially if you find something cheesy! I have seven signed, to-be-personalized, hardcovers of The Darkness That Comes Before, which I will send to the seven people who can best answer "What is the darkness that comes before?" in a single paragraph sent to Whatisthedarkness@rogers.com. I'm not looking for any one answer in particular (because I'm not sure there is one), just responses that make me laugh or ponder - two things I need to do more of! A valid email address is required in order for me to reply to the winners, and since there's no real way to police the number of submissions anyone makes, we'll have to go by the honour system: one per person, please. I'll announce the winners at the end of August, just before the next Worldcon in Boston. Feel free to Ctrl-c and post wherever! view post


posted 14 Jul 2004, 18:07 in Author Q & AWomen In the Three Seas by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

You're certainly right, the picture is always more complicated, but I'm not sure that the examples you draw, which come from many different times and societies, point to anything one dimensional in the Three Seas, which is one time and one society, and certainly in line with the majority of historical precedents here in the real world. Don't you think? I'm also not sure whether the backdoor access to power you speak of - which certainly occurs in the Three Seas as well - provides much in the way of compensation, no more than the power of palace eunuchs in the Persian Empire does anything to lessen the bite of institutionalized slavery. All it does is complicate a generally ugly picture. Personally, I worry more that, if anything, I've done too much candy-coating, particularly with regards to Esmenet. I recently watched a couple of documentaries chronicling the lives of Thai prostitutes - the stories they told were more harrowing than anything I've encountered in fiction. Unrelenting brutality, and from all quarters: family, pimps, customers, police... It was numbing. One women was actually sold by her mother to Chinese businessmen who chained her naked in a 'leech pond.' Leeches fattened on the blood of young women is a delicacy in some circles, they said. I'd like to go into the question of the Dunyain and gender, but believe it or not, the issue has a significant role to play in the greater story of the Second Apocalypse - I think I need to turn this 'no-answer answer' into a macro or something! Sorry Laughing As I mentioned above, this is an important theme to me. I'm curious: What did you make of TWP on this score? view post


posted 15 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & AWomen In the Three Seas by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

This is a just a general response (because legatus and saintjon are such crafty buggers! :P ): If you think in evolutionary terms, then [i:t1adm0wb]everything[/i:t1adm0wb] we do is 'about' reproduction - which is to say, sex. So the question is... More specifically, I knew beforehand that more than a few people would find the book unreadable because of the sexuality. This is why I'm always careful to frame my goals when I pitch my book to people I know might have difficulty: I tell them I wanted to take a 'predigested' form (the well worn conventions of epic fantasy) and fill it with well nigh indigestible content. Of course it rarely works. Digestion is digestion. view post


posted 15 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & ADunyain by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Before the First Apocalypse the Dunyain were a heretical community of Kuniuric ascetics (originally based in Sauglish) who sought enlightenment (the Absolute) through the study and practice of reason (the Logos). They were a young movement, but they had already suffered sporadic persecution for some time. But since the Kunniat faith practiced by the High Norsirai was not hierarchical, no concerted effort was made to punish their atheism. It's nice to be able to answer for a change! view post


posted 15 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & AOn the subject of Chorae by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

But remember, though a sorcerous wind would blow mundane shafts away, it would have no effect on bolts fixed with Chorae. If one the other hand, a Schoolman were to cause a low pressure cell that subsequently unleashed winds... Since sorcery interacts with the real world, it produces real effects that Chorae are useless against. view post


posted 15 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author AnnouncementsFREE BOOK CONTEST by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I thought it was a good number to get my toes wet with. I dunno... :lol: The responses are starting to trickle in - all of them are AWESOME so far. It's going to be damn hard to choose, I can tell already. view post


posted 15 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & AWomen In the Three Seas by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:11xkd3v9]At the same time there is a pretty big faction of fantasy afficionados who will love you like a brother for doing it.[/quote:11xkd3v9] This was the big Q way back when: How many people like their wings suicide, and their fantasy deep? I know I do! :wink: view post


posted 15 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & AOn the subject of Chorae by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

It's a good thing I didn't give you my 'Chorae +2' explanation! view post


posted 16 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Philosophy DiscussionAyn Rand by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

It's no coincidence that you'll find so many versions of 'be true to yourself' in so many commercial taglines - it's a central component of consumer ideology, what we celebrate as 'individualism.' Two of the more illustrative examples, I think, are: "Everything you need, comes from within." (Nike?) and: "Obey your thirst." (Coca Cola) The first is an obvious falsehood (and yet one the vast majority take as gospel). We have never, in the history of humanity, depended so much on so many others, and yet we spend most of our time (in popular culture at least) congratulating ourselves on our 'self-sufficiency.' Likewise, we have never, in the history of humanity, needed an appreciation of communal interdependancy more. The second, which amounts to 'be true to your appetite,' is simply the mantra of consumerism: 'consume now, worry later.' Advertising is propaganda, which is to say, a form of mass communication that systematically distorts the truth for the purpose of inciting action - in this case, frivolous consumption. Advertising is, in fact, the single greatest propaganda enterprise in history - it simply doesn't seem that way both because it's decentralized and because it's been so damn successful. The next time you find yourself watching TV, try to imagine what an alien anthropologist would see. The slogan should be, 'Know yourself.' This requires critically engaging all the things that 'feel true,' which are in the end, the product of a long process of socialization - in many cases corporate administered and motivated, thanks to the good old boob tube! Since this socialization constitutes our frame of reference, it simply seems 'natural and true,' when in fact it's every bit as peculiar as those you see on the National Geographic channel. Ayn Rand is a classic apologist (and a very bad one at that - those looking for more robust apologia would be much better off reading Strauss or Nozick). Her intuitionist stance is simply a recipe for the continuance of a very problematic status quo. If you don't think it's problematic, consider these two FACTS: We live in a society where a largely hereditary elite commands and enjoys the surplus labour of the masses. We are becoming the largest extinction event the earth has witnessed since the Cretaceous, and thing are getting worse faster. Or consider the following argument: (1) The biosphere is a system. (2) The atmosphere is a fundamental component of the biosphere. (3) Transformations of fundamental components of a system generate transformations in that system. (4) Murphy's Law (There's a million more way for things to go wrong than go right). (5) The burning of carbon fuels has increased atmospheric CO2 levels by 30%. (6) This rate is increasing at a greater and greater pace. (7) There are no market viable alternatives to carbon fuels. (People are always surprised by this, but it's true, and it has to due with the sheer power fossil fuels in particular provide. If I remember correctly, you would have to cover an area the size of the state of Delaware to match the energy output of a mere 100 Exxon stations.) / 8: Odds are we're screwed. And this is only ONE facet of the problem. We live in a system which not only encourages increasing rates of consumption (Remember Bush's patriotic reminder to Americans in the wake of 9/11? Go to the mall!), it fundamentally depends upon it. At the same time, it lionizes the pseudo-individual, rendering directed collective action 'uncool' (think about how many movies you've seen where the only way the hero can get things done is 'outside the law' or the institution he or she happens to belong to). Meanwhile we elect politicians who cry 'less government' (which is public, collective, and therefore uncool), thinking that 'private enterprise' (which through advertising has aligned itself with the 'individual') is better. Less government equals more corporation, and I don't know about you, but I've yet to elect a CEO. To quote the man, 'You live in a dream world, Neo.' view post


posted 18 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Philosophy DiscussionIs the idea of a "god" inherent in our minds? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Every society develops an ideology to conserve the status quo. Since societies are, in the most fundamental sense, collections of people acting in systematically interrelated ways, and since desire and belief are the bases of all directed actions, stable societies, by definition, require that its members be socialized with the proper desires and beliefs. Religion has always played a pivotal role in this. But the question of whether we're hardwired to believe in deity is a different one, I think. What seems to be the case is that human cognition is largely the evolutionary result of sexual selection: our version of a peacock's colours, you might say. We seem to be designed to understand one another more than the world, and as a result, we're predisposed to prefer intentional explanations - understanding by recourse to reasons and agency - over causal or functional explanations (which is why so much training is required for people to see the world from a scientific perspective - it's an accomplishment). As a result, we seem predisposed to understand natural events in the same way we understand [i:2yxalyii]human[/i:2yxalyii] events. We believe (falsely, it appears) that natural events have reasons. And since reasons belong to agents, we conjure quasi-human agencies to explain things. We anthropomorphize. Given our hardwired preferences for simplicity and synthesis, it seems almost inevitable that the multiple agencies that characterize animism would, over time, be condensed into a single 'agent of agents.' God. So I wouldn't so much say we're hardwired to believe in God as I would say we're hardwired to eventually arrive at Him. view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 01:07 in Author Q & AYour education by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm ABD for my philosophy PhD, and unless I sell many, many books soon, I likely will be for the foreseeable future! I also have an MA in Theory and Criticism, and a BA in English Language and Literature. My interests in highschool were painfully predictable... :lol: view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 01:07 in Author Q & AWomen In the Three Seas by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm not sure I really explore gender relations outside of Inrithi culture. A bit with the Scylvendi perhaps... [quote:2oqj6xta]I just wanted to call into question the general tone of the thread which seems to assume that most of the history that we have of the past with regard to women is reality or accurate. I don’t personally believe in an objective history, but there are women’s personal realities.[/quote:2oqj6xta] Certainly not my assumption! But by same token, not all histories are equal, are they? Taking a hermeneutic approach to gender and history would provide a different evaluative framework, but I find myself wary of the threat of relativism even as I want to hear more. I can see how the portrayal of women as victims can be a further form of victimization, and I can see how I might even be guilty on this score, but things seem to become so ... circular at this level of meta-meta-analysis. In the end, despite my skepticism, I am a moral universalist, and as such I do believe that, say, female circumcision in the Sudan is wrong is wrong, whether the victim would agree with me or not. But still, I have that tickle... Let me mull this over a bit. view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 04:07 in Author Q & AYour education by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm still in my thirties! Please, call me Scott. I was always one of those punks whom highschool teachers refer to as 'bright underachievers.' Lots of dreams, and not a lick of self-discipline. I actually quit highschool twice, and I somehow managed to transform the first few years of university into an extension of highschool. Then I met Sharron and everything changed. Suddenly I started pursuing rather than talking about my passions: philosophy and fiction. Believe it or not, I actually pursued the first because I thought it was more practical! :shock: And Larry - you even got the order right! view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Author Q & AYour thoughts on Postmodernism in The Book of the New Sun by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The unreliable narrator enjoys a much longer history than post-modernism, but what makes Wolfe's manner of handling it post-modern is, on the one hand, the fact that Severian is also Chatelaine (I hope I'm getting her name right), and second, the lack of any clear rationale for so many of the things Severian narrates. Mysterious things are done for mysterious reasons, but no overarching rationale is ever provided. As a result you get all these episodic pieces that seem to fit together, but don't. This is a hallmark of po-mo, something I call 'cognitive baiting': the narrative is never 'clinched,' which is to say, it falls somewhere between a traditional story (where most things happen for identifiable reasons) and a travelogue (where things simply happen and are described). The reader continuously tries to cognize Severian's narration as a traditional story (because the markers are there), but is continually flummoxed. This leads to what I call the 'Minister's Black Veil' effect: a formally generated sense of mysterious profundity. Like I said in the interview, I had a hard time reading this as more than an 'effect' in The Book of the New Sun. I thought it worked much better in The Soldier of the Mist. As for why Wolfe adopted this strategy, it seemed to me he was simply warming the old po-mo saws of decentred selves and originary repetitions. All this is bound to sound far more critical than it's actually meant. Reading The Book of the New Sun remains one of the top reading experiences of my life. Just the fact that it engaged me at this level says a lot, I think.... view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Author Q & AWomen In the Three Seas by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

OK, lemme try to catch this bloody bee you've put in my bonnet, Tattooed Hand! First, just so I know I'm getting your concerns right: You worry that in writing a 'hard fantasy,' which is to say, a fantasy that attempts to 'get the history right' (as opposed to 'getting the science right' in hard SF), I may have in fact got the [i:29q902u5]wrong[/i:29q902u5] history - namely, a patriarchal history that improperly paints women as victims. I think I need to be convinced of this victimized by victimization thing... I like to think that the nexus of problems I'm posing with Esmenet and Serwe is pretty subtle (for instance, what does it mean that it's [i:29q902u5]Kellhus[/i:29q902u5] who gives the 'language of the conquerors' speech? Or that it's Serwe's [i:29q902u5]innocence[/i:29q902u5] that leads to her fantasy world?), but subtlety is no guarantee against incipient misogyny. So tell me more. :D view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Author Q & AYour thoughts on Postmodernism in The Book of the New Sun by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thanks for the name! The Knight stareths at me even as I write, but from the bottom of a very big pile... What did you make of Severian's characterization, Larry? view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & ALanguage by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

'Quya'? Goddamn, I hate it when I encounter my favourite names elsewhere! :twisted: view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Philosophy DiscussionIs the idea of a "god" inherent in our minds? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

'Statistical spirituality' - there's no way I'm letting you get away without explaining that, Jack! view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Philosophy DiscussionAyn Rand by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:2150vcep]As long as you live your life so that everytime you look in the mirror you can be happy with what you see then your doing it right[/quote:2150vcep] But why is that, drosdelnoch? More than a few Nazi's slept like babies, don't you think? The yardstick can't be one's own conscience - especially once you realize how inclined we humans are to dupe ourselves. But then I suspect that's the whole point of what we call 'individualism.' view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & ALanguage by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Well I hope he does! I could use the PR... :roll: view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & AYour thoughts on Postmodernism in The Book of the New Sun by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:2ix89re4]And that feeling is part of the story. Wolfe just purposely wants us to consider our role in the story, our beliefs in ourselves as textual detectives, just to illustrate how incomplete and misleading we can be toward ourselves. [/quote:2ix89re4] I've become very suspicious of this (which is the classic metafictional rationale), which is why I read it as cognitive baiting, a formal shortcut to generating the 'buzz' of profundity (the sense of something ineluctable hovering just beyond the fingertips of comprehension). A mechanical device employed for a conventional effect - part of which, you might argue, is giving grad students something to write about! Promiscuous signifiers are good for that... I'd go with Humbert Humbert any day. Do you think I'm being too harsh? Wolfe scares me otherwise... scott/ view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & ALanguage by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

:shock: :? :o :) :D :twisted: view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & ALanguage by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Give it time. Give it time. PoN is something of a Trojan Horse, I think, bound to be read by people who have little or no patience for what I'm trying to do. As much as the sexuality worries me, the religious stuff worries me more. view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 18:07 in Author Q & ALanguage by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Well, I think there's a couple of places where I let the temptation to preach get the better of me in TWP... And there's the actual biblical passages I work into the text here and there. And then there's the reworking of the Sermon on the Mount (or part of it, anyway). The thing is I really have no problem with religion itself. I think [i:276ol6op]certainty[/i:276ol6op] is the disease, and that most religion, like nationalism and dogmatism of almost every stripe, is simply a symptom. view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Author Q & ALanguage by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Mongolian was totally my inspiration in laying out the original script - for longer than I can remember. David used 12th Century illuminated Persian manuscripts as his decorative model, and he does decorative Celtic manuscripts for a living. You hunches are pretty much all on the money, Azimuth! view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & AWomen In the Three Seas by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I think I understand your worry, now: though you have to admit, no matter how nuanced I make the portrait, the fact of the matter will always be more complicated. And also, I'm constrained by my original narrative (which I drafted long before I had the conceptual tools I needed to tackle these themes), which in large measure determines what will be shown. Either way, though, I share your concern. But I also have a couple of concerns of my own! For instance, you eschew relativism, then go on to describe what's essentially a historicist position - which is to say, you embrace relativism! I'm guessing this inconsistency dissappears on a more full-blooded account of your position... So I guess my question would be (and this, I imagine, would be among the BIG questions in feminist historiography), what prevents your historicism from collapsing into relativism? Also, I would be very interested to hear your take on the 'warrior princess' archetype in fantasy. You have a kickass thesis project by the way! I personally see fantasy as part of the same long historical process that led to the parsing of history from myth. view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & AHow were you introduced to fantasy? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

After TDTCB, I took some time out to write a little near future psychothriller entitled Neuropath (which I have high hopes for), thinking that I was burned out on fantasy. It was only when I returned to TWP that I realized just how much I love writing fantasy. My guess is that I'll be writing it for the rest of my life, taking time out here and there for side-projects. I'm a bonified crackpot: at any given time, I have about a dozen pots on my four burner stove. :lol: view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & AFight! Fight! Fight! by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

If you ever get a chance to find it and read it, you'll see instantly, I think, how much it inspired the particular brand of 'historical narrative' I use in the books. For whatever reason, Lamb stamped my imagination, to the point where he's become the yardstick I use to judge other writer's battle scenes. There's more than a few people who seem to have difficulty with it though. Other than that, the most important book, hands down, would be a little gem called [i:3abf7fax]Alexander the Great and the Logistics of the Macedonian Army[/i:3abf7fax] by Donald Engels. Grognard. Definitely grognard. view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 18:07 in Author Q & AFight! Fight! Fight! by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

And that's the thing that struck me - that mere [i:35s89lwo]belief[/i:35s89lwo] could be capable of generating such extremes, not only of cruelty and self-sacrifice, but of endurance as well. This is why I chose the First Crusade as my model: the Holy War's story would be scarce believeable otherwise! view post


posted 21 Jul 2004, 12:07 in Author Q & AWomen In the Three Seas by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:13tcei63]Am I pulling this out of thin air? [/quote:13tcei63] The air is always hot and sultry in the Three Seas - never thin. :wink: Moral relativism, as I take it, is the thesis that the validity of moral determinations is always relative to the norms and practices of a certain group at a certain time. With something like feminist historigraphy, where you would expect a strong evaluative component - where the past is judged - the question would be one of what warrants those feminist evaluations over the evaluations of those judged. The historicist position you take seems to suggest that nothing warrants those evaluations, since they're just the contingent product of another contingent historical position. Doesn't your position need to be 'better' somehow, for your claims that others had it 'worse' to be anything more than chauvinism? And if your position is 'better,' doesn't that imply some notion of progress (with or without a telos)? view post


posted 21 Jul 2004, 12:07 in Author Q & AFight! Fight! Fight! by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

No, though it sounds interesting. Is it on the web anywhere? view post


STRANGE DAYS posted 21 Jul 2004, 18:07 in Author AnnouncementsSTRANGE DAYS by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I was just asked to be the Canadian Guest of Honour at something called Con-version 2006 in Calgary. :shock: Holy moly. view post


posted 22 Jul 2004, 13:07 in Philosophy DiscussionAyn Rand by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:j647ez9y]I dont agree with the way in which it was done just pointing out that the people were cleverly manipulated into following an ideology. [/quote:j647ez9y] I guess I'm not sure how your response would differ from the response of a Nazi at the time. Isn't it always the [i:j647ez9y]other guy[/i:j647ez9y] who's manipulated? And if that's the case, doesn't that mean we should be 'skeptical of ourselves' rather than 'true'? Our 'common sense,' after all, is the product of how we were socialized, so if this process of socialization is, as I'm suggesting, problematic in the extreme, then our 'gut instincts' simply can't be trusted. Let me put it to you another way: If every society in history has developed a belief system that reinforces and rationalizes the hierarchies within it, why should we think our society is the lone exception? Tell me if you agree with the following: Our society is the systematic sum of our collective actions. As a system, it requires the continued [i:j647ez9y]repetition[/i:j647ez9y] of those actions. (This is what a job is: a place where you continuously repeat actions that facilitate the systematic whole.) Since desire and belief are the bases of all our actions, our society requires a specific belief and desire set from it's members in order to persist in its present form (recall Bush telling Americans to shop after 9/11). Individualism, with all its talk about being true to oneself, is a major component of that desire and belief set. view post


Wolfe interview... posted 22 Jul 2004, 21:07 in Author Q & AYour thoughts on Postmodernism in The Book of the New Sun by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Has anyone read this interview with Gene Wolfe yet? [url:18mmzy3o]http://mysite.verizon.net/~vze2tmhh/gwjbj3.html[/url:18mmzy3o] It certainly has me scratching my head... view post


posted 23 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Author Q & AYour thoughts on Postmodernism in The Book of the New Sun by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Yeah, that's where I found it. Ah, the good old ad hominem attack. If life is about making the right decisions, and school is supposed to prepare you for life, then why o' why is no one taught anything about the rules of reasoning in school? Afterall, it's only [i:9l5nmb79]the[/i:9l5nmb79] art of sound [i:9l5nmb79]decision-making[/i:9l5nmb79] (!!). Makes you think, doesn't it? view post


posted 23 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & AYour thoughts on Postmodernism in The Book of the New Sun by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

You task me, Replay! You task me! :lol: view post


posted 24 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Philosophy DiscussionThings I will not accept in an argument by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I could go on and on, but here's my biggies. Lack of charity: people who respond to caricatures of your argument, rather than your argument. The good old strawman fallacy. Self-congratulation: people who mistake agreement for intelligence. Since everyone tends to agree with themselves, it automatically makes them the most intelligent person in the room. Dogmatism: free and open debate is impossible unless both parties acknowledge they could be the one in the wrong. Anyone who makes their conclusions the immovable point of their arguments has ceased to reason and has started to [i:sur4zrw3]rationalize[/i:sur4zrw3]. More importantly, they've closed down all hope of learning or expanding their views. view post


posted 26 Jul 2004, 12:07 in Author Q & AWhat do you listen to? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'll listen to pretty much anything, so long as it has some kind of spark, but my tastes run to the heavier end of the spectrum. My fav band of all time is Sabbath. The Melvins come in a close second (at the moment). Some of my other favs include CoC, Monster Magnet, and Tool - which I listen to obsessively whenever I write philosophy. BTW, 'Orion' has gotta be one of my top ten instrumental favs. MoP rules! view post


posted 26 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Interviews and ReviewsWell Scott, you wanted some discussion of your Interviews ;) by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Should be interesting! view post


posted 26 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & AWhat do you listen to? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I don't just listen... :shock: view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 16:07 in Philosophy DiscussionStatistical Sprirtuality by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Very interesting, Jack! If I understand you right, what you're suggesting is an alternative understanding of the 'miraculous.' [i:2ccnsxyq]Everything[/i:2ccnsxyq] that happens is miraculous in the 'what are the chances' sense. Heavy stuff! But you seem to imply there's some kind of [i:2ccnsxyq]consolation[/i:2ccnsxyq] to be had in this. What might that be specifically? view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 16:07 in Author Q & AKarma? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

You assume too much, Replay! :wink: No, there was no intentional parallel to Buddhism and the Dunyain, though I think I can see how you might suspect one, Furax: both are concerned with the 'appetitive soul.' But where Buddhism (as I understand it) seeks to master or extinguish the appetitive soul to end suffering, the Dunyain seek to master or extinguish the appetitive soul to better master the origins of their thought - to become a 'self-moving soul,' one free of the myriad darknesses that come before. The Logos, or Reason, is their principle instrument. Unlike the Buddhists, the Dunyain draw no line between what must be mastered and what must be accepted. For the Dunyain, [i:3tefbu9l]anything[/i:3tefbu9l] that impacts the origins of our thoughts, be it animal lust, historical caprice, or the words of another, must be mastered. This actually makes the Dunyain the antithesis of creeds such as Buddhism or Stoicism, I think. view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 16:07 in Author Q & AKarma? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Well now, logocentrism is a different story (so long as you take it in the expanded sense)! What is the darkness that comes before if not [i:3j9znr2r]differance[/i:3j9znr2r]? view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 19:07 in Author Q & AKarma? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:1blz50lt]Would you mind expanding on what you mean by this? Especially the bit about a 'self-moving soul'. [/quote:1blz50lt] If that which comes before determines that which comes after, this means every thought is moved by something stemming from the 'darkness', and that agency and purposiveness are illusory. What the Dunyain are after, in effect, is [i:1blz50lt]free will[/i:1blz50lt] - which they see as an accomplishment rather than a pre-given faculty. What impresses them so much about the Logos (and its brethren, geometry, mathematics) is it's [i:1blz50lt]its timelessness[/i:1blz50lt], the fact that it does not seem to fall within the 'circuit of before and after.' [quote:1blz50lt]That's the thing though, trying to master thought with even more thought (Reason) just isn't going to happen. I guess you could say it's like trying to wash off mud with mud.[/quote:1blz50lt] Only if you look at thought in performative terms. If thought is representational (or something like it), then this isn't the case. Just think of the way various insights over the course of your life led you to greater self understanding and self-control. This is implicit in your comments regarding the Buddhists achieving mastery by 'seeing through.' [quote:1blz50lt]But if they truely wish to be free from all that comes before, should not they also try to rid of themselves of this very need to be certain? Of this need to be in control of everything around them?[/quote:1blz50lt] For the Dunyain, certainty or knowledge is just a means to the end of becoming the Absolute - or a self-moving soul. In more philosophical terms, you might say their primary concern is ontological (the attainment of a certain mode of unconditioned (which is to say, transcendent) being), and that the epistemology has value only as a primary means to this end. Excellent questions as always, Replay! Does this answer them? view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 19:07 in Author Q & AKarma? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:o25s9h86]But I'm slowly beginning to grasp part of what Derrida is saying there. It's going to take a while to retrain my mind to think that way. I'm still in my Foucault stage, ya know Something about archaeologies of knowledge appeals to me more than what Derrida wrote [/quote:o25s9h86] I actually think that the [i:o25s9h86]Archaeology[/i:o25s9h86] Foucault is the worst of the many Foucaults - still too caught up in the structuralist backlash against phenomenology (Sartre was too popular to be cool). Otherwise, though, I agree: there's a formalism to Derrida that I (now) find very problematic. If you want help deciphering him, though, just throw some questions/quotes my way. It'd do me some good to shake the rust off! view post


Locus Poll posted 27 Jul 2004, 20:07 in Author AnnouncementsLocus Poll by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Just received my spanking new issue of [i:expclfyd]Locus[/i:expclfyd] this afternoon. Somehow TDTCB made it to number eight for best first novel on the Locus Poll... Not bad, considering the book had only been released in Canada at the time! Cheers to all! Hopefully this makes an American ppbk deal more likely. view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 20:07 in Author Q & AWhen is TDTCB being released in paperback in the US? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I literally have no idea. Though my agent received several calls following TDTCB's review in [i:2xojncje]Publisher's Weekly[/i:2xojncje], Overlook actually owns the US ppbk rights, which they intend to sub-licence. I've heard that Tor might be interested (which at once excites and worries me: excites because they are the bomb marketing-wise, and worries because of the covers they slapped on US release of Erikson's GotM - yeesh!)... It's a waiting game now. view post


posted 28 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Philosophy DiscussionStatistical Sprirtuality by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:35wz7fwk]I see a couple points of consolation. First, with regard to 'fate,' that you determine your own fate yet have one. I would like to be able to say to my loved one 'we are fated to be together.' But are we? I think yes, but only because of the many small decisions we have made over the course of our lives.[/quote:35wz7fwk] I'm not sure how this works, because if everything is random, then there's no real such things as 'decisions' - or anything [i:35wz7fwk]intentional[/i:35wz7fwk] - is there? [quote:35wz7fwk]The second point of consolation is the elimination of certainty this brings about. If we acknowledge that events only have the significance we give them, then we no longer have the bolstering of one's own argument by way of events.[/quote:35wz7fwk] This actually strikes me as an argument [i:35wz7fwk]against[/i:35wz7fwk] consolation, since we humans seem to be hard-wired to find comfort in certainty and to be anxious when uncertain (which explains why there's so much faux certainty out there). And more, there's a vicious circularity here as well. In a sense, what you're trying to do is to give what are essentially meaningless occurances the patina of human significance - in other words, the very thing you saying your view [i:35wz7fwk]allows[/i:35wz7fwk] others to do, so offering the consolation of uncertainty! By your very own lights, it seems, you have no real way to argue your position. The knives were there all along, Jack! :twisted: view post


Nearing Nuptials posted 29 Jul 2004, 20:07 in Author AnnouncementsNearing Nuptials by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Well, the wedding is two days away ( :shock: ), and the avalanche has started. I look forward to seeing what madness has been brewing come mid-August. view post


posted 09 Aug 2004, 17:08 in Author Q & ADo You Play Any MMRPG's? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Welcome to the board, Skotch! I've never played Everquest (or 'Evercrack' as my brother calls it), nor any other computer/online RPG. As a teenager I was a massive D&D junkie, though, before graduating to bookcase wargames. I try to avoid all such games now for precisely the reason Legatus gives. The things are like morphine or something. view post


posted 09 Aug 2004, 18:08 in Author Q & AFight! Fight! Fight! by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

It's awesome that you guys have been able to find Lamb's book - I've only ever seen it in used bookstores. Even after all this time I still go back to reread IMaIS (I don't find his other works nearly so engaging), and almost every time I feel as though I learn more about narrating epic events. Something about the story and teller really come together in that book. view post


posted 09 Aug 2004, 18:08 in Author Q & ALanguage by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

C's can be either hard or soft, depending on the word. This might sound sloppy on my part - why not simply use K's for the hard C's (as in 'Kishaurim')? - but I wanted my nomenclature to mirror the inconsistencies you find in so many historical accounts. For instance, since most readers crinkle their noses at kyklops, writers tend to go with the conventional, latinized 'cyclops,' even though elsewhere they'll transliterate names directly from the Greek. Likewise, many of the names I use are presented in the 'Sheyic' as opposed to the 'native' version. Since I actually go into this at some length in the Encyclopaedic Glossary in TTT, I'll leave it at that for now. Since the books literally swarm with new names, I decided to avoid neologistic titles and honorifics, save those that struck my ear in the right way (I had no real system in this regard). I think renaming everything is a mistake, because it either leaves you with a plethora of names that carry little or no semantic weight (I think Steve Erikson falls into this trap at times when he starts naming flora and fauna), or it burdens the narrative with a lot of exposition. Even as it stands, I'm not sure I struck the right balance. At different periods I've studied German, Spanish, French, ancient Greek, and Latin - though I remain obscenely monolingual! I thought I was going to be a philosophy professor, and as such, you need to find your way around these languages in particular (to check on translations and the like). That was the theory anyway :lol: I hope that covers your questions, Aiturahim... Lemme know! view post


posted 10 Aug 2004, 12:08 in Author Q & ALanguage by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:3vij1n5z]to establish psuedo-historical authenticity seems rather superfluous here [/quote:3vij1n5z] Perhaps, but then I suspect you can say that about pretty much every choice I've made when taken in isolation. All I can say is that I [i:3vij1n5z]try[/i:3vij1n5z] to aim for the mediocra firma! [quote:3vij1n5z]The term Padiraja rather suggests some blending of Indian and Persian characteristics the culture of the Fanim. Is that a valid assumption?[/quote:3vij1n5z] Sounds fair to me! though personally, I'm not too keen on laying down canonical association-sets for my readers - or pronunciations for that matter. Afterall, it is [i:3vij1n5z]pseudo[/i:3vij1n5z]historical authenticity I'm trying to conjure. :lol: [quote:3vij1n5z]Do the names of your characters and places have meanings in their own languages?[/quote:3vij1n5z] Many place names are descriptive/incident names in other languages. Most of these will be given in the Encyclopaedic Glossary. view post


posted 10 Aug 2004, 12:08 in Author Q & AFight! Fight! Fight! by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Cool beans, JH! It's certainly not to everyone's liking, though. Most people skip the orders of battle in the [i:w1krh2en]Illiad[/i:w1krh2en] I suspect. view post


posted 10 Aug 2004, 12:08 in Philosophy DiscussionCritique this phrase by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:30j3chgt]But recent historiography is starting to view this in a different light, concentrating more on how proles expressed themselves in music, wine, and song and this increased scrutiny has led to reconsiderations about the importance that fantasy can play in real-world situations.[/quote:30j3chgt] I'd be interested to check this out, Aldarion. What madness are you reading now? :lol: view post


posted 10 Aug 2004, 13:08 in Philosophy DiscussionCritique this phrase by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Sound very cool! I definitely need to check out that Darnton and Foucault. Don't get too lost in the categorization question: those who attack on this front typically do so because it's an easy place to set up strawmen. All you need do is qualify your position regarding 'generic family resemblances' and the like. You might even want to use the good old genetic analogy to rough out the relationships: even though the Aeneid and tLoTR share many of the same genotypes, the way these genotypes are expressed - their phenotypes - is a function of historical context. view post


posted 11 Aug 2004, 01:08 in Author Q & ALanguage by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:3ns5p8s7]My only real complaint is when they start dabbling in fields about which they know almost nothing.[/quote:3ns5p8s7] It seems that this is pretty much all I do when I write fiction! Don't get me wrong, I'm a fellow grognard junkie myself, but I rarely make it a primary criterion when reading fiction. Take all those who criticize Tolkien for the absence of plagues, etc. in his fictional armies: since this kind of verisimilitude obviously didn't interest Tolkien, isn't taking him to task on this and like issues simply missing the point? I guess I'm not clear on what makes this a matter of quality rather than taste. More later... :wink: view post


posted 11 Aug 2004, 14:08 in Author Q & AJust a totally stupid question, but I have to ask! by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Monty Python is an old disease that I've suffered a long, long time. The Moderns vs the Ancients soccer match is precious - I think they actually redid that sketch for [i:1hc8vuo1]And Now For Something Completely Different[/i:1hc8vuo1], didn't they? I actually use them for Neuropath. 8) view post


posted 11 Aug 2004, 14:08 in Author Q & AConcerning Chapter Quotes by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I spend an inordinate amount of time crafting those bloody things! :lol: Every single one has a 'point' - sometimes narrative, sometimes thematic - but I use many of them as ciphers for the deeper, more philosophical layers of the book. Clues... view post


posted 11 Aug 2004, 15:08 in Author Q & ALanguage by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I see your point regarding Martin, but what makes it an obvious matter of quality is the issue of [i:297h8y9r]consistency[/i:297h8y9r] - which is quite different. Truth be told, from the grognard side of things, I actually have some problems with Westeros as well, but I view these misgivings the same way I view my misgivings regarding the physics of Star Trek: all things being equal, I prefer my fiction be 'hard.' I too dislike ad hoc settings in of themselves, but if they can be made to really work, as Westeros and Federation physics obviously do, then I no longer worry about it. As you might imagine, I've spent quite a bit of time considering just these issues. After reading tLoTR for the umpteenth time in my teens, I started puzzling over just what it was that gave the book so much impact. I came to the conclusion that it was some combination of scale, depth, and authenticity, and afterwards I decided I'd try to do the same, to create a world as broad, deep, and authentic as Middle-earth. Once you make a commitment like that, the question immediately becomes one of [i:297h8y9r]how far do you go?[/i:297h8y9r]. I quickly realized that the answer for this would be different for different readers. Take the names, for instance. On the one side, many think I went too far, whereas on the other side, I'm sure some specialists think I didn't go nearly far enough. I have had equesterians question my handling of horses, martial artists question my handling of hand-to-hand combat, and so on and so on. I could have worked on the story and world for another ten years, and this would still happen. Earwa is an [i:297h8y9r]illusion[/i:297h8y9r], and since I'm no polymath, there's always going to be people either possessing knowledge that renders them immune to parts of that illusion, or lacking the minimal knowledge for parts of the illusion to work. I see this as inevitable. I mean, if old JRRT couldn't do it... Given this, how do you think I should respond to linguists 'baying for my blood'? Should I say, 'Damn, I guess I dropped the ball,' or should I just shrug my shoulders and just acknowledge that I didn't write the book for them? view post


posted 11 Aug 2004, 17:08 in Author Q & AConcerning Chapter Quotes by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Pickled tink indeed! :wink: view post


posted 11 Aug 2004, 20:08 in Author Q & AConcerning Chapter Quotes by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Like manure, profanity is most effective when it's spread. :twisted: view post


posted 12 Aug 2004, 20:08 in Author Q & ALanguage by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm excited and apprehensive about seeing the first translations of TDTCB. My agent has already told me to admire the cover, but never dare open and start reading translations. Supposedly they're notoriously bad. Speaking of the name thing, I came across an absolutely hilarious pan of TDTCB on amazon.com! I always thought the book was the 'love it or hate it' type... :wink: [quote:zhl5pr8k]I didn't come to break you on the rack over linguistic inconsistencies. I've actually been pleasantly surprised by how much you've said. [/quote:zhl5pr8k] I hope I didn't come across as defensive - I've actually appreciated the opportunity to work out my opinions in text! As I said, I've encountered the concern before and I have no doubt I'll encounter it again. Regarding your question about editorial pressure to 'keep things simple,' I think it was my profound good fortune to be picked up by Penguin Canada first, and to work with artistically-minded editors. There was no pressure whatsoever, even though I was told by others 'in the know' that the best I could hope for was a Wolfe-like niche audience because of the complexity. view post


posted 13 Aug 2004, 14:08 in Author Q & AGreat Book by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thanks steve! Welcome to the board! Just watch out for those muck-rakers in the philosophy section :wink: view post


posted 13 Aug 2004, 14:08 in Author Q & ALanguage by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:ztaws3xj]This is an opinion given after reading only the first novel, so don't take offense, but there is nothing in TDCTB, except more philosophy, more linguistic and historical work than usual, and possibly, a more Oriental-flavored backdrop, that should put it far outside the mainstream. [/quote:ztaws3xj] Actually this is exactly what I was aiming for: something that walked the line. view post


posted 14 Aug 2004, 15:08 in Author Q & AGreat Book by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:mri715bx]Just who are you calling a muckracker? Hrmm? *throws muck at you* [/quote:mri715bx] *ducks muck and flips Larry the bird* Oh, no one in particular... :wink: view post


posted 14 Aug 2004, 15:08 in Author Q & ALanguage by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I like to think so! Thanks, Steve - and feel free to call me Scott. view post


posted 16 Aug 2004, 13:08 in Author Q & AWill be there an italian edition? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hi Adres - thanks for the kind words and welcome to the board! Unfortunately, no one in Italy has shown any interest in the translation rights to TDTCB - yet anyway. From the sounds of it, the situation there is similar to the one in Spain. Your English is excellent, by the way. view post


posted 16 Aug 2004, 13:08 in Author Q & AWhat is your position on science vs philosophy? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Just for the record, I've officially hung my professorial spurs this summer. I am now a fulltime writer. *insert circus drum roll here* Holy moly, but this question is BIG, Grantaire! So let me give you the short answer. Since 'taking as true' reflects a type of commitment to a claim, I'll talk in terms of the latter instead of the former. Claims regarding this or that are made all the time; the question is always one of what our [i:2o42p663]commitment[/i:2o42p663] to those claims should be. Since we humans seem marvelously adept at duping ourselves, I've become something of a miser when it comes to committing myself, and I don't believe in unconditional commitment to anything. I also believe that our commitments should always reflect the reliability of the claim, and not our wants or hopes (as is most often the case, I think). It's all on a continuum. Science, given an understanding of its institutional and methodological weaknesses, certainly tops the list. My commitment to philosophical claims, I'm afraid, falls quite short this mark - thus my commitment to interpretative pluralism regarding philosophical subject matter. Philosophy provides [i:2o42p663]heuristic ways[/i:2o42p663] of understanding explananda that exceed the reach of science. Does this answer your question? view post


posted 16 Aug 2004, 15:08 in Author Q & AScott, have you heard of this journal? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

First time I've heard of it... Do they have a website? As far as submissions go, you should start at the top (SFS), then work your way down. view post


posted 18 Aug 2004, 18:08 in Author Q & AScott, have you heard of this journal? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:rqpqx2i4]Any others to suggest for me to consider? I need to know so I can purchase an issue or two.[/quote:rqpqx2i4] SFS is the only one that comes immediately to mind. I think the SFRA and the IAFA have once-yearly publications, but don't quote me on that. Are you planning on attending Worldcon in Boston in a couple of weeks time? view post


posted 18 Aug 2004, 18:08 in Author Q & AThe appearance of the Sranc? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

If I'm ever in the mind for a long vacation, Legatus, I might just have to give you a call! :wink: view post


posted 27 Aug 2004, 15:08 in Author Q & ADo You Play Any MMRPG's? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Ah, Diplomacy! Hands down my [i:19lx3pb8]favourite[/i:19lx3pb8] wargame period: I've just never been able to find enough regulars to play it (and it's [i:19lx3pb8]got[/i:19lx3pb8] to be face to face - the lying and cheating (the 'diplomacy' part) are the heart of the game). I have a bunch of bookcase games in my basement. My favourite, hands down, is Pacific War, which my brother and I wasted an entire summer on once. I royally kicked his ass, and as the Japanese no less! As it stands, all I allow myself is a little Close Combat (I find III to be the best) skirmish now and anon... Like I said, games are like morphine to me. view post


posted 27 Aug 2004, 15:08 in Author Q & AAre Kellus/the dunyain not as "enslaved" as anyone by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Welcome to the board, Andrew! All good questions, though best posed later in the story! The philosophy of the Dunyain, and Kellhus's elaboration of that philosophy, are actually integral to the plot. In all honesty, I would have answered this a couple of months ago, but that was before I realized just how crafty you buggers are! :wink: view post


posted 27 Aug 2004, 15:08 in Author Q & AWhat is your position on science vs philosophy? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I share your Quinean proclivities, Andrew. All theory, no matter what it's stripe, is bound to be underdetermined if your criterion is absolute truth, (which I don't think anyone takes seriously anymore). But when it comes to say, the 'production of reliable truth claims,' it remains the only game in town - it certainly makes philosophy look like an undependable blowhard! view post


posted 27 Aug 2004, 17:08 in Author Q & ACurious: What's the strangest fan request you've received? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

No real kooks that I can think of... I've been propositioned (but I think that's VERY rational :wink: ), and I've run into a couple of people who I think had difficulty reading the book and for some reason needed me to know that it was my fault and not theirs (but they're anti-fans, not fans). view post


WINNERS OF THE FREE BOOK CONTEST posted 28 Aug 2004, 17:08 in Author AnnouncementsWINNERS OF THE FREE BOOK CONTEST by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

So we got some winners. I just want to thank everyone who participated – you made the decisions pretty damn difficult! I have no doubt my choices will strike many as arbitrary – this is pretty much inescapable – so in an effort to make sense of just how and why I chose the entries I did, I thought I’d explain the process a little. First off, I’m afraid I had no choice but to disqualify those entries (and there were several) that ran over the specified one paragraph. This was a drag because some of them, I thought, deserved to be winners. Otherwise, I divided the entries into three different categories: those that made me laugh, those that made me ponder, and those that used the book. I then went through all the entries from each category, choosing three comic answers, three philosophical answers, and one textual answer (because they were fewer entries of this type). Because what makes me laugh isn’t necessarily what makes others laugh, and because what I find thought-provoking isn’t what others find thought-provoking, my choices may not ring true for quite a few of you, but since all I had were my (admittedly distorted) sensibilities to go by, this simply couldn’t be helped. That said, I’m very curious to hear your responses – feel free to post your gripes and observations! So here are my choices, followed by a couple of honourable mentions. Once again, thank you all for participating! For the winners, an email asking for mailing instructions is forthcoming… What is the darkness that comes before? COMIC RESPONSES Mike: It's that special time in a little boy's life when he goes over the edge of the event horizon of a black hole. Unfortunately he didn't listen to his mother's sage warnings not to play near the edge of the black hole in the first place, but ah well that's neither here nor there. Anyhow it's said that time stretches out towards infinity and slows down to nothing as one approaches a black hole, so we hope that said little boy listened to his mother when she said A) Always wear clean underwear, and to his B) to go to the bathroom before you leave home because we're not going to stop before we get there. eg h: What is the darkness that comes before? According to ancient and modern scholars, it means many things under different contexts. It is that feeling of despair that you get when you realize that you are a little too late and are about to make a wonderful mess in your pants as you are hurriedly running to the bathroom, according to John Latrine, bathroom scholar. Kay Nyne, a scholar of all things dog, claims that the darkness is that warning smell that blows into your home before your faithful pet comes home after a wonderful day at playing with the neighborhood skunks.According to Cupid Amour, who has studied relationships in excruciating detail, it is that feeling men of all ages get just before asking the most beautiful woman in the room for a date, a dance, or the time. Sometimes, the darkness comes in the form of fainting. This is not to be mistaken for "the darkness that comes after," which one feels after asking the woman for a kiss and gets slapped so hard that he sees stars. Other scholars say that "the darkness" is that phenomenon that occurs to people watching a particularly boring movie, or a particulary bad book just before they perform another strange phenomenon called "waking up". Others simply prefer to call it "sleeping." Indeed, "the darkness that comes before" is expressed in many ways, and the scholars throughout the centuries had barely begun to scratch the surface. We may yet research this phrase for another million years before we can come to a satisfying conclusion to this question. TaskmasterJack: The agony of ravenous longing awakens and drives me, unseeing, through the blackness. Foresight of the inevitable regret forces my reaching grasp to hesitate, even as a primal hunger inches my hand forward. Surrender breeds disappointment even as it brings relief. Temptation is satisfied and wisdom ignored in the darkness that comes before I open the door... and the refrigerator light comes on. Honourable mention… Mana: BY DARYA JAKEED, for Associated Press SOMERVILLE, Ma. The winds of fortune are shifting for infamous cult favorites The Darkness That Comes Before. For nearly a decade the heavy rock group has churned out a deafening mixture of hardcore metal and pretentious lyrics to audiences mostly either too drunk to enjoy the subtleties of songs like ‘Wittgenstein’s Bladder’ or too high to catch the appropriation of Pythagorean scales in ‘Heraclitoris.’ The off-kilter savagery of percussionist Mana Kia has permanently damaged all but one band member’s hearing, and the group’s frontman, Seth ‘Breath of Death’ Young, is known to indulge in self-mutilation while exhorting audiences to holy war against Oflaccid Enlightenment positivisms. No, their fan-base has not been large. For starters, there¹s the name, which their tiny coterie of acolytes usually shorten to TDT. But what’s in a name? History and everything, say the linguistically inclined, and for once, they might be right. In the blink of an eye, R. Scott Bakker’s 2003 epic fantasy hit ‘The Darkness That Comes Before’ has brought The Darkness That Comes Before, well, out of obscurity and into the limelight. Hits on the their website have quadrupled over the last six months. I recently telephoned Seth Young and Mana Kia at their Somerville apartment to see about rumors of a trademark infringement suit against mild-mannered Canadian author Bakker. DARYA JAKEED: Is this a good time for our call? SETH YOUNG: Sure, I’m just finishing up screwing this severed headSno, just kidding. MANA KIA: Sure, yeah. JAKEED: OK, first tell me about the name. Where did it come from? Or I guess I should ask: what is the darkness that comes before? YOUNG: It’s the before everything, man, the primordial sea and the amniotic sea. I mean, there is no light in the belly. Thunderbolt steers all things. KIA: We wanted a name that was even more primordial than primordial, that would split the origin, you know? We’re, like, after and according to Black Sabbath, but we’re even more primordial than them. JAKEED: What of the rumors of a lawsuit against Scott Bakker? YOUNG: He totally ripped us off! We’ve been toiling for ten f***ing years, and this guy just comes in and steals our name. JAKEED: Are you optimistic about winning a case against him? KIA: Totally. And if we don’t, then we¹re just going to change our name to The Darkness That Comes Before The Darkness That Comes Before. YOUNG: Oh, yeah, baby, that’s heavy. PHILOSOPHICAL RESPONSES Daniel: The darkness that comes before is Life. Life, compared to the enlightenment that death brings, can only be described as darkness. [Short, I know, but for some reason, this one scared the bejesus out of me…] Atan: If all our actions and thoughts, if all our decisions are caused by, and therefore, by their nature add to and enrich the complex web of predestination, then the darkness that comes before is not just the past. The darkness that comes before is not that which has come before, it is the world itself: what it has been made and what it will make. The darkness surrounds us, it is that which counsels and comforts us, it is Locke's locked room and the choice not to try and open the door. In that we are nothing more than the logical extension of the past, we also make the past: our choices will force others' hands and their hands will force our choices. The darkness is our unbreakable covenant with the past, and we have made the past. We are the darkness, and it is the world, for each makes each. In this way the world and man are one and the same. [I just love that ‘unbreakable covenant with the past’ line…] Jamie: During thought, as humans, we drive to arrive at a certainty with our choices and our actions used to carry about said choices. However, there is a lapse of time between the making of a decision and the action taken to pursue this decision. This is “The Darkness That Comes Before”. As humans, we tend to question our choices and to never been 100% certain, this is because we are fallible, we make mistakes, we question so we can have a fleeting glimpse of pure certainty. During this questioning period however, everything is dark, we know no answers, there is no guiding light, our uncertainty before our actions and after our thoughts is our “Darkness That Comes Before”. During this period we question, rethink, question again, all in hopes of evading the Darkness and being 100% purely certain in our decision, which is a near impossibility, because to be human is to be fallible, to make mistakes, so therefore, no matter how hard we try, we can never elude to Darkness, but our eyes can adjust. [I’d never really thought that much (and I obsessively think and rethink these things) about equating the ‘darkness’ with doubt, but given the themes I try to explore, I think this really works] Honourable mention… Ryan: The darkness that comes before represents the death that delivers life. Before anything truly great can be born, an annhilation of the good must occur, and the true macrocosm of this can be seen in the human culture. As we fill our lonely, vacant existences with things like Jessica Simpson, Hummer H2s, and the Atkins diet, the light radiating from the human spirit slowly dies. Hate, apathy, banality, and avarice reduce our lives to preordained, preprogrammed paths and rob us of the vibrance that once made life pulse. But, as the old spirit dies, a revolution brews just beneath the surface. And when we grow tired of all this and all the stupidity is dead and gone, light will shine through the darkness and we'll be free again. The clear blue always lies beyond the gray sky. [For not sharing my pessimism!] TEXTUAL RESPONSES Terry: In answering the question "What is the Darkness?" we have to ask "The Darkness that comes before what?" Light is what follows darkness and so we must now ask what the nature of this light might be since the darkness will be inevitably in opposition to it. I believe there is a crucial clue to be found in The Warrior Prophet. Achamian and Proyas are in conversation and Achamian says to Proyas, "What if the choice isn't between certainties, between this faith and that, but between faith and doubt? Between renouncing the mystery and embracing it?" Surely, this is the real choice we all face. But Proyas cannot accept this truth. He responds, "But doubt is weakness! Faith is strength! Strength!" Here Proyas speaks from the tenacious grip of the darkness. He is, by choice, blind to the truth and, like so many of us, he is willing to kill wantonly and even to die himself to protect his blindness. The "light" is the understanding that Achamian offers Proyas and the "darkness" is the ignore-ance of this truth; an ignorance that leads inevitably to war and the unfathomable suffering that follows from it. An ignorance borne of faith. Faith gives rise to and perpetuates the darkness. In The Warrior Prophet an important object of faith emerges. Anasurimbor Kellus is that object. Throughout TWP Kellus increasingly inspires faith and in so doing he, himself, becomes a potent source of darkness. In as much as the cause of a thing is the thing itself, Anasurimbor Kellus is The Darkness That Comes Before. [Another example of why I’ve become so paranoid answering questions on this board!] Honourable mention… Jean: 'I could ramble on forever and ever about this, but I'll get to my answer. I tend to think in a linear fashion when not urged in another direction while reading, so I'll say that the darkness that comes before is the innocence/ignorance of the principle players in the story that comes before the burning light of revelation. Achamian lives in confusion as to whether or not The Consult still exists, and by stories end he is given confirmation. The Men of the Tusk believe that the Holy War is a pure and unstoppable thing, when it is truly directed by more subtle masters and will face peril as they've never known. The Scylvendi are unaware of how advanced everyone else has become, until they are crushed by a more brilliant tactician. Kellhus is both ignorant of how the world works in all ways until he learns to dominate it, and everyone else is ignorant of the fact that a man who will come to be known as the 'Warrior-Prophet' walks amongst them.' There they are. My thanks again. view post


posted 29 Aug 2004, 15:08 in Author Q & AOn the subject of Chorae by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Welcome to the board, Tellner! The Chorae are actually sorcerous artifacts (of something called the 'Aporos'), manufactured prior to the Cuno-Inchoroi Wars (by Quya defectors) as a way for the Inchoroi to counter the sorcery of the Nonmen. The script inscribed across each embodies a contradiction that unravels the semantics of all known Cants - even those of the Aporos! view post


posted 29 Aug 2004, 16:08 in Author Q & AWhat is your position on science vs philosophy? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

That's precisely the problem. Science has nothing to say about value, except to imply there's no such thing - which is quite terrifying when you realize that it's the most powerful instrument of discovery in the history of the human race. I think you're right that many people overestimate science, but far, far more people underestimate it. When I take classroom polls, the ratio seems to be about 10 to 1. [quote:3o1z40wh]Why do you say no one takes absolute truth seriously anymore?[/quote:3o1z40wh] I meant in the philosophical community. Personally, I'm not even sure I can come to a coherent understanding what an 'absolute' [i:3o1z40wh]anything[/i:3o1z40wh] would look like, let alone an 'absolute truth.' I don't even know what 'truth' is (nor does anyone else), though I think I can more or less distinguish between claims that are more or less true. view post


posted 29 Aug 2004, 16:08 in Philosophy DiscussionAyn Rand by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

My appraisal exactly. It's one reason why I think her position is so pernicious: it caters directly to our cognitive shortcomings - our hardwired yen for flattery, simplicity, and certainty. She's THE apologist for the pseudo-individualism that has become our dominant ideology. view post


posted 01 Sep 2004, 14:09 in Author Q & AOn the subject of Chorae by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm afraid you've touched world-building bottom with that one, Andrew! view post


posted 01 Sep 2004, 14:09 in Author Q & AConcerning Chapter Quotes by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:4btwom8b]Do you not think that using citations from Achamian's post-Holy War history gives too much away in general. Not that the reader is expecting the Consult to triumph, but this would seem to rule out certain possibilities, most notably, Achamian's death.[/quote:4btwom8b] I actually discussed this at some length with my original editor at Penguin. Certainly it allows one to infer that Achamian survives, which places his character out of mortal danger, but there's many characters, and we came to the conclusion that the benefits (dealing with 'information managing,' foreshadowing, concretizing the connection between the epigraphic world and story world, as well as some more arcane thematic concerns of mine regarding the 'already narrated past') were, despite being less immediate and tangible, well worth the cost. I'm not sure what you can infer beyond the fact that Achamian survives the '[i:4btwom8b]First[/i:4btwom8b] Holy War'... :wink: [quote:4btwom8b]in relation to your portrayal of women (and any controversy thereof), it seems to me that the demands of the (Kellhus-centric) plot rather the constraints of gender roles in pre-modern societies have dictated your choice of weaker, more needy female types over stronger ones. Would you say that this was the case?[/quote:4btwom8b] Not at all. I've always thought that sanitizing gender relations in ancient worlds comes very close to 'selling out.' The only real editorial pressure I received to make the book more commercially palatable was to make it more 'female friendly' - they even wanted me to change Conphas into a woman at one point! Apparently the male share of the fantasy book market is dropping quickly (because of weed and video games, I suspect). Once you decide to portray a repressive patriarchal society, then [i:4btwom8b]character[/i:4btwom8b] becomes the place to explore the inevitable distortions that result. I actually think of Esmenet as quite strong, though in a conflicted (which is to say, unsentimental) fashion. Besides, if anything, you would think that out and out strong characters would provide the better foil for Kellhus and his abilities. view post


posted 03 Sep 2004, 19:09 in Author Q & AConcerning Chapter Quotes by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Well I think you're both wrong, and conversely, both right! :wink: What you're doing is akin to arguing historical periodization. Arguing similarities and dissimilarities, accidental or essential, is bound to be plagued by interpretative underdetermination. It's always better I think, just to take the 'family resemblances' tack and to try to stipulate rather than to assert. There's no authority on which association-sets are canonical and which are not (as you yourself agreed in a previous discussion, I think, Aiturahim). Personally, for me the family resemblance that works the best is 'Medieval Mediterranean,' but even that could be plausibly contested. It's a mishmash. As for your original questions Aiturahim, yes, I thought about the change, but only because I try to give due consideration to all my editors' suggestions, even if I disagree with their motivations on principal, as I did in this case. The longer I thought about it, however, the worse the suggestion became. Otherwise, I'm afraid I don't share your historicist tack when it comes to questions of gender, which I'm very interested in exploring, and try to approach as self-consciously as possible. I think it follows that I'm not saying anything about women in general by having both of them fall under Kellhus's spell. In narrative terms, Kellhus simply gets what he wants, and he wanted both of them. In thematic terms, my quarry is actually contemporary society, not the 'nature of femininity.' As far as paralleling the First Crusade goes, I'm curious as to why you think this is a problem. I've had a couple of people complain to me about this, but I've been unable to make any sense of their explanations. Certainly you don't want to suggest that historical parallels, even when thematically motivated, have no place in fiction, do you? view post


posted 03 Sep 2004, 20:09 in Author Q & AWritten Language by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hopefully I'll have time to pull something workable together for the encyclopaedic glossary (which is in TTT) - but no promises! view post


posted 05 Sep 2004, 15:09 in Author Q & AConcerning Chapter Quotes by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:1jlcxfoq]Yes, rampant originality has its limits, but I think that world-building efforts are usually diminished rather than enhanced by excessive overt paralells. It seems to me that fantasy reaches its highest form when it reads like convincing history but we can't immediately pigeon-hole it. But this, admittedly, is an opinion.[/quote:1jlcxfoq] So I'm guessing you're not a fan of Guy Kay! I agree that this is an issue of taste more than anything else - and even then, I would suspect that the criteria would vary from case to case. Imagine someone dismissing McCarthy's [i:1jlcxfoq]Blood Meridian[/i:1jlcxfoq] on these grounds. To do so is to entirely miss the point, and I think a similar argument can be made for PoN. The 'too historical, therefore too predictable' criticisms I've encountered previously seem more opportunistically motivated than anything else: an excuse to show-off how much one knows, rather than say anything meaningful about the work. I would think it's obvious that I'm up to something, as opposed to being lazy or derivative or whatever. Your question, Aiturahim, is the decisive one, I think: [i:1jlcxfoq]Why[/i:1jlcxfoq] the parallel? I see, and have always seen, the parallel with the First Crusade as one of the thematic keels of the book, but I'm inclined to let others puzzle that out. There just seems something disingenuous about an author decoding too much of his own work. To answer your other question, the world started congealing several years before the story. And I agree with you as well, Damaen: though the Holy War parallels the First Crusade, there remain some significant differences - enough to render the outcome entirely undecidable. I don't think I give any guarantees - especially since the Keebler Elves have yet to show their foul hand... view post


posted 06 Sep 2004, 19:09 in Author Q & AAutographed editions by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

If I [i:21oys0n5]had[/i:21oys0n5] in fact cancelled, I [i:21oys0n5]might[/i:21oys0n5] have felt a twinge of guilt. Might... :wink: Otherwise, I get the feeling that Penguin might be sending me cross country for TTT - in which case, it shouldn't be a problem. I'm not too keen on receiving and returning books, mostly because I suffer administrative dyslexia, monomania, and chronic boneheadinitis. Besides, doing it in person would make it more 'real' - don't you think? view post


posted 06 Sep 2004, 20:09 in Author Q & AConcerning Chapter Quotes by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Stay away from that WoW stuff, Damaen - it'll be the death of your attention span! :wink: Again, I think you guys are locking horns on an irresolvable issue, though I think you might be overinterpreting (a bit) on your end, Damaen. I'm not sure that Aiturahim is saying that TTT has been 'spoiled' so much as he's staking out and justifying his own tastes - as well as describing some common generic liabilities. (Since I'm in fact trying to [i:13z2vtu0]embrace[/i:13z2vtu0] many of those liabilities (how else can you explore their significance?), I'm always keen to hear peoples' responses - particularly since I'm not sure I'm happy with some of my 'hugs'!) For my part, Aiturahim, I'm wondering how you would approach a book like [i:13z2vtu0]Blood Meridian[/i:13z2vtu0]. Wouldn't your tastes in this regard actually [i:13z2vtu0]interfere[/i:13z2vtu0] with your ability to appreciate what McCarthy is doing (in fact, this question is very apropriate when it comes to McCarthy, because so many find the book unreadable because of the violence (as opposed to the historical parallels, which as far as I know, have never been seriously raised as a criticism)). [quote:13z2vtu0]Also, there are plenty of other reasons to dislike TPoN.[/quote:13z2vtu0] Ayuh. This touches on something that's puzzled me over the past months: I've actually been expecting - perhaps even hoping - to receive some trenchant criticisms on the question of religion. So far nada... Only stuff that strikes me as spurious (like, 'tries too hard to be GRRM,' 'is misogynistic'), or stuff I'm more or less willing to bite the bullet on. view post


posted 06 Sep 2004, 20:09 in Author Q & Aquestion about the Schools by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Another bump and grind answer is all I can give, I'm afraid. Every detail in its season! :wink: view post


posted 06 Sep 2004, 21:09 in Philosophy DiscussionIs the idea of a "god" inherent in our minds? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:3ptsj5a7]I do not see that our minds are predisposed to believe in a God.[/quote:3ptsj5a7] It's not that we're predisposed to believe in God, it's that we're predisposed to comprehend the world in intentional (purposive and normative) terms. This is just a fancy way to say that we're hardwired to ascribe objective [i:3ptsj5a7]agency[/i:3ptsj5a7] to the world - to think things happen for [i:3ptsj5a7]reasons[/i:3ptsj5a7]. We anthropomorphize. Since we're also hardwired to generally prefer simplicity, the notion of some 'agent of agents' begins to seem like an inevitability. view post


posted 06 Sep 2004, 21:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Yeah, this thing has been around for quite some time now. I hope everyone realizes that it's unconscionably deceptive in that it literally depends on several false dilemmas (and if I remember correctly, one or two equivocations) in order to generate what it calls 'hits.' In other words, it literally uses fallacies to force you into 'contradictions' - as it has to in order to stuff a debate as sophisticated and nuanced as the 'existence of God' into an algorthm. view post


posted 06 Sep 2004, 21:09 in Author Q & AConcerning Chapter Quotes by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

There's certainly an important distinction between opining (where you list your likes and dislikes) and evaluating (where you analyze successes and failures), and there's plenty of things I've read that I think are works of genius, even though I don't particularly enjoy reading them. Jane Austen's works are a good example. The distinction between these two tacks can be pretty murky though. If anything, I'm amazed that as many people like the books as they do. I really saw myself writing to a very narrow set of tastes. You'd have to dig pretty hard to freak me out. Other than that, I don't think there's much reason to worry about 'ruining' it for others. Like any used good car salesman, I stand by my work! :wink: view post


posted 07 Sep 2004, 00:09 in Author Q & AConcerning Chapter Quotes by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

That's a perfect example because it shows just how opining and evaluating break down into two separate questions (there's actually more, but I think this illustrates the difference clearly): 1) What was your personal response? 2) What was the author trying to accomplish (in narrative terms, thematic terms, etc.)? Did he or she succeed? Note that with (2), what any author tries to accomplish will be relative to a certain 'ideal audience' (in this case, those who enjoy historical narratives). view post


posted 07 Sep 2004, 02:09 in Philosophy DiscussionIs the idea of a "god" inherent in our minds? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:2tni1238]Know the exact configuration of the universe at any one instant of time, and you can calculate its exact state at any other time.[/quote:2tni1238] This is the old Laplacian thesis (which as far as I know, has been thoroughly discredited by modern physics), isn't it? In principle, there's no way of knowing the exact state of any part of the universe at any given time. [quote:2tni1238]I believe things do happen for a reason.[/quote:2tni1238] I thought you tended to nihilism, Grantaire. A change of heart? :wink: view post


posted 07 Sep 2004, 02:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

You make it sound like they own up to the deception on the site. Did I miss something? view post


posted 07 Sep 2004, 13:09 in Author Q & AConcerning Chapter Quotes by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:p5zy0eyv]Well that's the thing, if you are not a part of that audience, would a critism be valid?[/quote:p5zy0eyv] So long as you qualify, certainly. As you say, you need to present both justifications and caveats - which can be a pain in the ass. Still, it builds big strong brains... :wink: view post


posted 07 Sep 2004, 13:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I think you write off contradiction a little too quickly, Replay, but I certainly agree with the spirit of what you're saying. Contradiction is a useful tool, not the foundation. And as I say, they knowingly use false dilemmas to generate contradictions, which is why I think the primary point of the site is manipulation rather than provocation or education. They would have owned up to their own bullets otherwise. The philosophy of mathematics is as controversial and divisive as any other philosophical field. And lately, with the sophistication of proofs going through the roof, it's starting to seem more and more interpretative. view post


posted 08 Sep 2004, 01:09 in Author Q & Aquestion about the Schools by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I think there's a thread kicking around somewhere on the constructive uses of frustration in storytelling... :wink: view post


posted 08 Sep 2004, 01:09 in Philosophy DiscussionIs the idea of a "god" inherent in our minds? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Total faith in science is actually [i]very[/i] unscientific, which is what, ironically, has made science - far, far and away - more successful than any other truth-claim generating institution in the history of humanity: it's capacity for self-correction in the light of new evidence. The 'weakness' you refer to AJ, is actually science's greatest strength. Otherwise, it's been my experience that people are far more likely to underestimate than overestimate the power of science. I poll my classes on this question every year, and I'm always dismayed by how skeptical students are of science, and how credible they are of other institutional modes of claim-making. view post


posted 08 Sep 2004, 01:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:2wnp97h1]What makes you say that? My point wasn't necessarily to defend their contradictions or errors, but rather to point out that not too many people could do better, as there is no way to make a universally identically comprehended description of something as clearly subjective as god.[/quote:2wnp97h1] Communicative misfire. My point had to do with the deceptiveness of the site, and your response (that it was obviously so) made me think I'd overlooked something. I actually don't think the deceptiveness is obvious at all. If anything, they seem at pains to conceal it with a patina of 'Hey, it's just [i:2wnp97h1]rational[/i:2wnp97h1] man.' view post


posted 08 Sep 2004, 14:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Something has 'meaning' when it has a 'point,' which is to say, when it's [i:tkp2t38j]purposive[/i:tkp2t38j]. My question to you, Larry, would be, What, in this day and age, is the point of traditional ritual? If it's simply 'comfort' or 'social bonding' why not take ecstasy and go to a rave? If the point is to [i:tkp2t38j]give life a point[/i:tkp2t38j], why should we look to [i:tkp2t38j]tradition[/i:tkp2t38j], when it all it offers is a plethora of unsubstantiated and incompatible options? My question to you, Grantaire, would be, Given that you see yourself living a pointless life in a world where value and meaning are illusory, how do you reconcile this with your own arguments, which continually appeal to epistemic values, and presumably have the point of providing the best conclusions? view post


posted 08 Sep 2004, 15:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I think you might be trading off two different senses of tradition to make your point, Larry: tradition as the collection of social [i:3hoaiprd]habits[/i:3hoaiprd] that makes societies possible, and tradition as something that gives life meaning. It seems to me that you're using the inevitability of the former to anchor the latter. I'm not sure the social neccessity of custom warrants any inference to the adequacy of traditional accounts of meaningfulness (religion), which is the very question at issue. What warrants a return to tradition in the attempt to comprehend the 'point of it all'? view post


posted 08 Sep 2004, 17:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

If I were a positivist I'd accuse you of succumbing to the genetic fallacy, Larry! :wink: Instead, I'm inclined to accuse you of obfuscation, of throwing up a semantic smoke screen to avoid answering my question! But that wouldn't be charitable, so let me rephrase your point to make sure I understand what you're saying. Any attempt to answer the question of meaningfulness will depend in some respect on past socio-cultural attempts to answer that same question, and in this respect, tradition is an ineliminable part of the debate. I agree with this, if this is what you're saying, but now I think you're succumbing to the process/product ambiguity: just because the process of determining 'the point of it all' inevitably engages tradition, doesn't mean that the [i:yq1o87f2]product[/i:yq1o87f2] - namely, the conclusion - will be 'traditional.' My original question - 'Why should we trust tradition to give us an answer considering its dismal track record?' - still stands, I think. view post


posted 08 Sep 2004, 19:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Now that's what I call slipping the bullet into a bag of Fritos. You bite it, but with all that crunching going on no one's the wiser! I actually think you and I pretty much agree on this point, save that I'm more pessimistic about our ability to press our point against those foul and despicable Nihilites, like Jack and Grantaire. :wink: view post


posted 09 Sep 2004, 13:09 in Philosophy DiscussionIs the idea of a "god" inherent in our minds? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:11lxbp7k]I do not reject science, just society's inclination to rely on it toatally[/quote:11lxbp7k] It's this 'totally' you have to sell me on, AJ. The polls I've seen show the majority of people being deeply skeptical of science. The problem is that no where, not once in our public school past, are we ever taught the difference between good beliefs and bad beleifs. Since we don't know what we don't know (ignorance is invisible), we simply assume that we can tell the difference between good beliefs and bad, when psychological study after psychological study has shown we're actually quite miserable at it. Take your statement that evolution and creation are two instances of 'faith' - this is in fact what the majority of people do: they simply assume that both are 'theories' in the sense of 'speculation,' the way we use the word in everyday contexts, when in fact evolution is a theory in a [i:11lxbp7k]scientific[/i:11lxbp7k] sense. Once you probe beneath the surface, the differences become dazzling. All theories can be evaluated according to very basic 'epistemic virtues.' Take [i:11lxbp7k]explanatory power[/i:11lxbp7k]: evolution can explain, in mundane biomechanical terms, much of what we call 'life,' so much you could spend the rest of your life studying it. On the other hand, ask yourself, can creationism explain the rise of new 'superbugs' in the age of antibiotics? Or take [i:11lxbp7k]predictive success[/i:11lxbp7k]: did you know that Darwin actually postulated there must be something with the characteristics belonging to DNA for evolution to be possible? Was it an accident that it just so happens that life turns on DNA (the mechanism that evolution predicts)? Is it just a coincidence that genetics and evolution display a remarkable compatibility? Or how about evolution and geology? Another virtue is [i:11lxbp7k]fecundity[/i:11lxbp7k], or a theory's ability to generate new theories, techniques, technologies, and so on: Did you know that the cornerstone of evolution, natural selection, has become the cornerstone of an entirely new way of computer programming. By creating artifical environments, then using competition and reproduction, designers are now 'evolving' new programs (in some cases, more efficient than anything humans have been able to design), and even inventing new circuits. Or how about [i:11lxbp7k]theoretical parsimony[/i:11lxbp7k]: evolution is able to do all of this simply by proposing a new mechanism for stuff we already know exists - it doesn't need to assume anything mysterious or spooky to do the work it does. As revolutionary as it sounds, it's in fact very mundane: it needs only the biology that we already know, that makes the doctor rather than the priest the person we most want to see when we're afraid of dying. The list of virtues goes on and on, AJ, and in not one instance does creation even come close to evolution when it comes to them. In scientific terms, it's a horrible theory. This is a simple fact, not a philosophical argument. And if the opposite were the case, then creation and not evolution would be a foundation of biology: once again, science is largely self-correcting. This is not to say evolution is the 'absolute truth' (whatever that is), only that it's one of the more powerful scientific theories (which is why it's a foundation of the biological sciences), and far, far and away, the best explanatory framework we've found. Lots of social institutions making lots of claims all the time, so the question is, Who do you believe? When it comes to generating truth-claims that are reliable, efficacious, parsimonious, comprehensive, fecund, etc., no institution in the history of the human race has even come [i:11lxbp7k]close[/i:11lxbp7k] to matching the track record of science. And that is a mundane fact. All truth-claims are not equal - the computer you're reading this on, the fabrics in your clothes, your health, your material comfort, all shout this very same thing. view post


posted 09 Sep 2004, 14:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:8zyyba6a] Sure, I'm making an argument based on the value of realizing there are no values. But as a human, that is the way things must be argued, in terms of value and meaning.[/quote:8zyyba6a] But you're contradicting yourself, aren't you? You're assuming value in the course of arguing against it. Since contradiction is an indicator of incoherence ([i:8zyyba6a]the[/i:8zyyba6a] indicator, in fact), why shouldn't I just dismiss your position as nonsense? view post


posted 09 Sep 2004, 22:09 in Philosophy DiscussionIs the idea of a "god" inherent in our minds? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:giy6i0sf]a somewhat newer scientific theory termed Intelligent Design[/quote:giy6i0sf] Even calling intelligent design theory 'scientific' is enormously controversial, and only then, I suspect, because so many want so desperately to believe in it. Evolution is very alienating, and as difficult to envisage as is a billion years. I personally find it repugnant. The idea as I take it (and please correct me if I'm wrong, Alric) is that only 'purposive intelligence' can explain the structural complexity of life. Though I'm not saying this isn't a worthwhile hypothesis to consider, the immediate problems seem almost insuperable. The first and primary problem is that [i:giy6i0sf]purpose[/i:giy6i0sf], understood from the process-mechanistic model that is the default in science, is looking more and more like an illusion of our limited processing abilities. One of the holy grails in cognitive science and philosophy of mind, for instance, is the 'naturalizing of purpose,' and the literature is littered with the carcasses of failed attempts. Natural science deals in [i:giy6i0sf]causes[/i:giy6i0sf], not reasons, in functional explanations, not intentional ones. In the course of four short centuries, it has systematically discredited nearly every intentional explanation of nature that we cooked up. And it has given us things like cures for cancer, low infant mortality rates, and thermonuclear weapons by doing so. In other words, 'intelligent design theory' explains the complexity evolution apparently cannot (and this thesis itself is roundly denied) by reference to something that not only remains inexplicable, but more and more seems [i:giy6i0sf]antithetical[/i:giy6i0sf] to scientific understanding - and this is just to say that it really explains nothing at all. It's pseudo-science. Aside from this, if you look at the list of other 'theoretical virtues' I mentioned, I think you'll find there's not one where intelligent design can even hold a candle to evolution. It has spawned no breakthroughs. It does not systematically fit with other scientific theories. It needs to posit the scientifically inexplicable in order to explicate. In fact it doesn't seem to do much of anything other than comfort people who need to believe that we are 'exceptional' somehow - that things have a 'point.' But then we're hardwired to generally prefer simple, flattering conclusions over complex, threatening ones. All told, this is why I think 'intelligent design theory' is simply creationism redux. In 20 years time, I think you'll find that it has been thoroughly discredited, and that proponents of creation will have found some other pseudo-scientific theory to muddy the debate. I'm told this has been the pattern for some time. I realize this must sound horribly cynical, Alric, but the problems with intelligent design really are profound. view post


posted 09 Sep 2004, 22:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:21v7b5ep]Did I ever claim to be a total nihilist, Scott?[/quote:21v7b5ep] No. You just claimed to be a [i:21v7b5ep]nihilist[/i:21v7b5ep]! :wink: [quote:21v7b5ep]Of course, if you care to enlighten me, go for it.[/quote:21v7b5ep] No need for tetchiness, Grantaire - I'm just asking questions! If I could 'enlighten' you I would, but that would suggest I actually [i:21v7b5ep]knew[/i:21v7b5ep] the answers to most of the questions I ask, which is most definitely NOT the case. (This is why I consider hardnosed examination to be my friend. I don't feel safe unless everyone I know is as confused as I am! :wink: ) So do you think value is simply a [i:21v7b5ep]mistake[/i:21v7b5ep] we humans foist on the world, or that it actually exists as a property of our neurophysiology or some such? view post


posted 10 Sep 2004, 11:09 in Author Q & Aall i can say by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

You've made my day, Sean! I only hope the next 3/4 work as well... :shock: view post


posted 10 Sep 2004, 12:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:34b2xyx5]If I had to throw in a haphazard guess, I would go with the idea that "value" is something our minds create to try to perpetuate the species.[/quote:34b2xyx5] From an evolutionary standpoint, morality, for instance, seems to be little more than a 'subreption' - a kind of functional deception - selected for because it facilitated the social cohesion necessary for successful reproduction. Much the same might be said of 'love,' or even of 'sexual pleasure.' We think we do these things for their own sake, when in fact they're behavioural mechanisms that, given existing environmental pressures, simply happened to lead to successful reproduction (in the case of sexual pleasure) and to the successful rearing of children to the age of reproduction (in the case of pair-bonding or love) in our hominid past. That Jennifer Anniston movie, [i:34b2xyx5]The Good Girl[/i:34b2xyx5], is all about this, I think. We behave like animals all the time, then paper things over with a false veneer of love, meaning, and moral virtue. This is the kind of nihilism I find absolutely terrifying because I know of no non-tendentious way of arguing against it. All I'm left with is foot-stomping... :shock: view post


posted 10 Sep 2004, 17:09 in Author Q & ATime for that very annoying question that many of us have by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I [i:1dtdxe8r]have[/i:1dtdxe8r] been dreading this question, though not for the reason you might expect. Writing-wise, I've have quite alot completed. Just how much is impossible for me to say since I don't write in a linear, chapter by chapter fashion. I write more like the way mold grows on bread. The thing's looking pretty moldy. No pulse yet, though... What I've been dreading is 'fessing up to the discussions I've been having with Penguin. My editor wants to push TTT to their fall list, for a number of reasons, all of them sound. They don't want to 'crash' the production schedule the way they did for TWP, which they'd likely have to do to make the spring list with TTT. The biggest disadvantage, it turns out, has to do with giving reviewers enough lead time to review the book. As it stands with TWP, the reviews are trickling in one at a time. Also with a small list like Penguin Canada's, mucking around with the release date can really impact their bottomline. Another reason, and my agent's with them on this, is that 'they don't want me to go insane,' which I very nearly did with TWP. I actually have no problem with that happening, but then I haven't felt 'normal' since I read Hegel's [i:1dtdxe8r]Phenomenology[/i:1dtdxe8r]. The last reason is that they're [i:1dtdxe8r]very[/i:1dtdxe8r] excited about the entire series 'breaking out' and perhaps even gaining some mainstream attention. They want to do things right. I haven't heard anything official yet - so this is all hypothetical. I'll likely find out the actual release date from Mithfanion several days after you all... :roll: view post


posted 11 Sep 2004, 11:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:tf3v0m6g]That's pretty much what I'm saying. If you want to find a purpose in life, quite simply, it would be to successfully reproduce and protect those offspring.[/quote:tf3v0m6g] But that's the rub: there is no such thing as 'evolutionary purpose.' We never evolved these things 'for the [i:tf3v0m6g]sake[/i:tf3v0m6g] of reproduction,' it was just that given a certain a environment, a certain accumulation of genetic mutations just happened to effect successful reproduction. Our purpose isn't to be fruitful and multiply. We have no purpose whatsoever, even as we're condemned to look at the world in purposive terms. This is what [i:tf3v0m6g]science[/i:tf3v0m6g] - the most powerful instrument of discovery in the history of humankind - implies. If you ask me that is totally, utterly, absolutely fucked up! :shock: I agree with you, Larry, 'You gotta live,' but once you really internalize the implications of this dilemma, it starts sounding a lot like 'You gotta [i:tf3v0m6g]pretend[/i:tf3v0m6g],' doesn't it? That and do a lotta foot-stomping! view post


posted 11 Sep 2004, 12:09 in Philosophy DiscussionIs the idea of a "god" inherent in our minds? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

We're certainly entirely [i:bqol5dcw]dependent[/i:bqol5dcw] on science, I agree with you there, AJ. I think it's safe to say the credence people give it, though, is far out of proportion to its practical import. You have people on antibiotic regimens designed to combat the evolution of bacteria, insisting that evolution is false. [quote:bqol5dcw]Hell, science may have it right, but until we can know really know, (which is impossible) it is a beleif system, one that rejects unfounded beliefs, but it is still in the same category, to me at least.[/quote:bqol5dcw] I agree: it's in the same category as religion insofar as it is a social institution that generates truth-claims. But that's just the beginning isn't it? Sooner or later, the issue always comes down to the question of the [i:bqol5dcw]cognitive difference[/i:bqol5dcw], or which claims are more reliable, comprehensive, efficacious, and so on. Whenever we walk into a car dealership, the cognitive differences between claims is something we're very keen on, but for some reason, most religious people seem to become less and less concerned the more [i:bqol5dcw]important[/i:bqol5dcw] the claims become. The question, 'But [i:bqol5dcw]how[/i:bqol5dcw] do you know?' becomes increasingly difficult to ask (to the point where I feel I need to be exceedingly delicate typing this!). Is this an accurate description? And if so, why do you think this is? And lastly, given that the 'feeling of being right' has no reliable correlation with actually being right (which is why two people can be absolutely convinced - to the point of sacrificing their lives - of two contradictory beliefs), how do you know? view post


posted 12 Sep 2004, 16:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Welcome to the discussion, Hatper. [quote:1ecgl43a]It seems to me that asking for a purpose, in science, has no answear since it really cannot be asked.[/quote:1ecgl43a] But the question being asked of science here isn't 'What is our purpose?' As you point out, asking that question of science seems to be a category mistake. The implication actually takes two forms. First, there's the pessemistic induction one can make regarding truth-claims of purposiveness: on the one hand, no institution seems capable of posing answers that even remotely possess the theoretical virtues of scientific truth-claims, and on the other hand, we have no reason to suppose that the 'scientific disenchantment of the world,' which basically consists of the substitution of intentional explanations with functional explanations, will stop anytime soon. Take neuroscience for example. Second, there is the thoroughgoing scientific question, [i:1ecgl43a]What is purpose?[/i:1ecgl43a]. Here it [i:1ecgl43a]seems[/i:1ecgl43a] to be the case that 'functional deception' account is gaining credence, rather than otherwise. view post


posted 12 Sep 2004, 17:09 in Philosophy DiscussionIs the idea of a "god" inherent in our minds? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:2kag021j]Oh, and just out of curiousity Scott, do you belong to a religion? [/quote:2kag021j] I'm an agnostic with a yen for the [i:2kag021j]mysterium tremendum[/i:2kag021j]. When people ask me if I believe there's such a thing as God, I tell them I'm having a hard enough time believing there's such a thing as meaning. view post


posted 15 Sep 2004, 12:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I take nihilism to be the position that there is no such thing as value - like the evil porn stars in [i:1vxbkxt3]The Big Lebowski[/i:1vxbkxt3]. :P [quote:1vxbkxt3]The reason I don't agree with this is that science, as a purely descriptive dicipline, cannot make the move from 'is' to 'ought' without some explanation which, I think, cannot be developed by a/the scientific method.[/quote:1vxbkxt3] I'm not exactly sure what you mean here. If you're saying that you think 'ought' does not allow functional explanations that do not 'explain it away,' then I agree - [i:1vxbkxt3]that's[/i:1vxbkxt3] the problem. If you're saying this means there has to be 'something else,' something science can't sink it's teeth into, then I also agree. We can stomp our feet together! But we can't do much more, which once again, [i:1vxbkxt3]is the problem![/i:1vxbkxt3] view post


posted 17 Sep 2004, 12:09 in Author Q & AOther authors you enjoy by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:1mtzlhfy]Hopefully, these aren't two authors to whom you'd inscribe an autographed copy with "May you always write unpublishable drivel. Eat my dust, hack!" Hearing about that made me laugh the other day. [/quote:1mtzlhfy] Me too! That was actually what he asked me to write. I tried to think of something even more cheeky just to freak him out, but nothing I came up with was half so funny. Hack indeed. :wink: view post


posted 17 Sep 2004, 13:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Have you not all seen [i:lbnk79ae]The Big Lebowski[/i:lbnk79ae]? If not, I suggest you go out and [i:lbnk79ae]buy[/i:lbnk79ae] it (skip the whole rental deal). You'll find it mildly amusing the first time you see it. By the twentieth time, you'll be calling in sick because of laughing-cramps. Here's a little sample of dialogue (imagine a German accent a la Arnie)... "Yeah... We're gonna fuck you up, Lebowski!" "We're nihilists. We don't believe in anything!" "We're going to fuck you up!" Kills me every time. view post


London Central Library Reading posted 19 Sep 2004, 16:09 in Author AnnouncementsLondon Central Library Reading by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm such a bonehead. I've been meaning to post this gig for over a month now. I'm scheduled to a do a reading at the London (Ontario) Central Library on Monday, Sept. 20th (yup, that would be [i:2w3onqdc]tomorrow[/i:2w3onqdc]), at 7:30PM. I deserve to be stranded on this one, but if anyone could make, the company would be much appreciated! view post


The Windsor Book Festival, Oct. 22-24 posted 19 Sep 2004, 16:09 in Author AnnouncementsThe Windsor Book Festival, Oct. 22-24 by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm very excited about this one, because for one, it's a fairly big deal, for another, I'm slated to be reading with Rob Sawyer, and lastly, they're picking up the bill for the entire weekend. I wonder if they know how much I drink... Details can be found here: [url:35o21gwv]http://www.windsorfestivalofthebook.ca[/url:35o21gwv] view post


posted 23 Sep 2004, 11:09 in Tour and Signing InformationR Scott Bakker in the UK by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

:D Sorry Drosdelnoch - there was a miscommunication somewhere. I just received an email from my S&S UK editor asking me if I was truly in London, which I am, here in Canada, though! Apparently I was spotted with Tyra Banks... view post


posted 23 Sep 2004, 11:09 in Author Q & AOther authors you enjoy by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Yann Martel's [i]The Life of Pi[/i]... Truth be told, I think I picked it up simply so I wouldn't feel like an idiot when everyone started talking about it. Now I still feel like an idiot - only minus 20 bucks. view post


posted 25 Sep 2004, 13:09 in Tour and Signing InformationR Scott Bakker in the UK by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The Windsor date is in Canada as well, I'm afraid. I live in a derivative nation it would seem :lol: view post


posted 25 Sep 2004, 13:09 in Author Q & AToronto readings? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm not sure. I'll ask my publicist to see if anything's cooking. view post


posted 25 Sep 2004, 13:09 in Author Q & AProbably the simplest question, though I haven't seen it yet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm 22, long golden hair, I'm buff, really buff (my friends call me 'Mr. Chiselled'), and ... er, wait a minute, this is the wrong MB! view post


posted 25 Sep 2004, 13:09 in Author Q & AThe Warrior Phophet? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Those guys at Amoron... I tell ya :wink: view post


posted 25 Sep 2004, 20:09 in Author Q & AThe Warrior Phophet? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

It's those foreign names. Trips people up every time, Larraby :wink: view post


posted 25 Sep 2004, 21:09 in Author Q & AOh yeah, another simple one. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The 'R' stands for dick. Which is just a clever way to say 'Richard.' view post


posted 25 Sep 2004, 21:09 in Author Q & AThe Warrior Phophet? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

It's just "Bakker" as in plain old 'baker.' And no Tammy Faye jokes!!! view post


posted 26 Sep 2004, 12:09 in Author Q & AOh yeah, another simple one. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

People would just end up pronouncing it 'Doctorrrrr Scott Bakker.' And this is assuming I ever finish my bloody dissertation! I don't think they're going to let me submit and defend TTT. view post


posted 28 Sep 2004, 15:09 in Author Q & AToronto readings? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Actual SF&F genre writers at Harbourfront? You'd have to either become a cultural icon [i:2yk8ctq6]first[/i:2yk8ctq6], or start off writing extended meditations of the quotidian minutae of contemporary/historical Canadian urban/prairie/immigrant life... Can you tell I'm still miffed at having been snubbed (twice now) by the Globe & Mail? :roll: Oh well. The cultural margins are where it's at, aren't they? That's what the mainstream likes to say, anyway... I'm pretty fickle when it comes to movies - my favourites come and go. The one's with the most longevity (for me) would have to be [i:2yk8ctq6]The Lion in Winter[/i:2yk8ctq6], [i:2yk8ctq6]Heavenly Creatures[/i:2yk8ctq6], and [i:2yk8ctq6]Starship Troopers[/i:2yk8ctq6]. view post


posted 28 Sep 2004, 17:09 in Author Q & AToronto readings? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Is that the one with Richard Burton? view post


posted 29 Sep 2004, 11:09 in Author Q & AToronto readings? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I thought Johnny Depp was actually pretty flat in that flick. Benicio del Toro, on the other hand, was sheer genius. He stole the show. I can't believe I forgot to mention [i:612cp9rg]The Big Lebowski[/i:612cp9rg] on my list... A total lapse of dudeness on my part. view post


posted 02 Oct 2004, 21:10 in Philosophy DiscussionScience disenchanting the world. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:3294qutt]It explains a lot about how romantic love happens at a biochemical level, excatly what is going on inside you when you get dumped, why people have less sex after a couple years in a relationship and more. It doesn't make love any less real than believing it's the effect of excesses of sanguine humor on the heart or caused by getting shot by flower-arrows from Kama's sugarcane bow. [/quote:3294qutt] Actually, there's a huge difference, one which has everything to do with 'disenchantment.' Love in these latter cases is something that possesses meaning in an objective order - it [i:3294qutt]has a point[/i:3294qutt]. If love is simply neurophysiology, then it's simply functional, and taking pills that induce these states is no more or less 'genuine' than doing it the old fashioned way. And it has no objective point whatsoever. It just happens to be the experiential apsect of behaviour-generating neural processes that happened to facilitate reproduction and the rearing of offspring to the age of reproduction, and so was selected for. In neurophysiological accounts of different aspects of experience, you find this 'But it's still the same!' tactic all the time, but it really amounts to nothing more than hand-waving. Think of Copernicus. Sure, from our standpoint, the sun still sails across the sky while we stand still - the experience itself remains unchanged. But now we understand that experience is an illusion generated by the limitations of our perspective. [i:3294qutt]We're[/i:3294qutt] the ones who are moving, not the sun. The same seems to go for love, free-will, and so on. Which is why we have to keep our fingers crossed and hope that science - which just happens to be the [i:3294qutt]only instititution in history[/i:3294qutt] capable of generating anything remotely resembling theoretical [i:3294qutt]knowledge[/i:3294qutt] - has got something really, really [i:3294qutt]wrong[/i:3294qutt] somewhere along the line. The most terrifying thing about the disenchantment of the world, which has primarily consisted in the wholesale replacement of our folk intentional explanations of the world with functional explanations, is that we humans are simply one more thing in that world. view post


posted 03 Oct 2004, 12:10 in Philosophy DiscussionScience disenchanting the world. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Awesome reply, Tellner! I think many would sympathize with the interpretation you give of science and the significance of scientific claims. There's no way I can do your full reply justice (I have a book to write!), so let me take a short cut of sorts to show what the dilemma is. You make, in effect, philosophical claims relegating science to one claim making institution among others, each with it's own appropriate explananda. The first question is: What is the [i:2336ob1v]signature[/i:2336ob1v] (world-transforming, really) difference between scientific claims and claims made in other institutions. The second question is: Where do your own claims fit in with respect to this difference? view post


THE FIRST CALL FOR THE BOOK TO BE BURNED posted 08 Oct 2004, 17:10 in Author AnnouncementsTHE FIRST CALL FOR THE BOOK TO BE BURNED by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

And here I was getting worried... Check it out: [url:3k5holn3]http://www.amazon.ca/exec/obidos/ASIN/1585675601/qid=1097255242/sr=2-3/ref=sr_2_3_3/702-0004617-8233617[/url:3k5holn3] This is not to say that I intentionally set out to [i:3k5holn3]offend[/i:3k5holn3] anybody, but I did want to provoke, and unfortunately, what makes some people think, makes others outraged. The way it's always been. view post


posted 09 Oct 2004, 23:10 in Philosophy DiscussionScience disenchanting the world. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Another holy moly response, Tak! Once again, there's no way I can do justice to your reply since I have bigger fish to fry (namely, TTT). So just a couple of comments: I entirely agree that the 'what-is-it-likeness' of experience is the crack of light in what otherwise seems to be a closing door. The question, and this is something I think you and I discussed extensively some time ago, is one of what kind of inferences you can draw from that. I'm not so sure your optimism is warranted. As far as science and theoretical knowledge goes, I'm not sure I understand what you're saying. It seems to pretty plain that no matter what set of 'theoretical virtues' you pick, there's nary an institution that can hold a candle to science. If you think, as I do, that whatever knowledge is it (somehow) involves an important public dimension, this is even more the case. I guess I need examples of something that is nonscientific and [i:32xoo772]theoretical[/i:32xoo772] that can plausibly count as 'knowledge' (defined as something that can be reasonably distinguished from opinion). As far as materialism goes, I'm actually disinclined to even take that wee metaphysical step (though I get sloppy in my expression sometimes). What I'm saying is that science implies that experiences like free will, morality, and so on, are - like the experience of the moving sun - artifacts of our limited perspective. A lot of things start making a helluva lot of sense if you adopt this position. Which is probably why I can't see my way out of it - despite my training as a 'continental philosopher'! Not even accounts as pragmatically ingenious as Dennett's seem to even touch it. BTW. Have you had a chance to check out [i:32xoo772]The Illusion of the Conscious Will[/i:32xoo772], yet? I hear it's quite terrifying.[/i] view post


posted 13 Oct 2004, 15:10 in Author Q & ABesides the one obvious review, ever had this happen, Scott? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Truth be told, the fact she responded that way says she doesn't have a clear sense of what writing is. If she thinks 'freedom from editorial feedback' was something that she had to work hard for and deserves - as though it were a negative component of the process - then she's out there with Goodkind and company. Writing's like painting a portrait from the [i:1aafqxr0]wrong side[/i:1aafqxr0] of the canvas, and that means that feedback, be it negative or positive, is simply all you have to know whether you're succeeding or not. To literally consider yourself 'above that' - and Rice seems to - is conceit at its most stupid. It's like an airplane pilot firing the ground crew, then blaming the passengers for the subsequent crash. It's ridiculous. That said, the point most definitely, for me, isn't to write something 'for everyone.' Frankly, I'm amazed the reviews have been as positive as they've been. I was kinda hoping to piss some people off. view post


posted 14 Oct 2004, 17:10 in Author Q & ABesides the one obvious review, ever had this happen, Scott? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

There's always going to be cranks saying cranky things. What can you expect when no one is taught the first thing about criticism in school?Some people think personal attacks are what 'criticizing' is all about, and no one's ever shown them different. They're wrong - there's no doubt about that - but they're inevitable as well. Letting stuff like that get under your skin is like ranting about the rain. The appropriate response, if you ask me, is regret, not anger or defensiveness. view post


posted 18 Oct 2004, 14:10 in Author Q & ASudbury Readings/Book Signings? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I never went to Sudbury for the TDTCB tour, and as for the TTT tour, your guess is as good as mine. I just fart around without a clue until someone aims my shoulders and says 'Go there.' Kinda like George Bush that way... :wink: view post


posted 19 Oct 2004, 15:10 in Philosophy DiscussionScience disenchanting the world. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm going to start calling you the 'mad panpsychist,' Tak! :wink: Just a few points: given the successes of functional explanation elsewhere, I find it hard to view the intransigence of 'what-it-is-likeness' with your optimism. As far as metaphysical questions like 'What is X fundamentally?' goes, you do realize your answer, 'mental experience,' not only explains very little (since we don't have a blasted clue as to what experience is), it also seems to overlook the myriad of ways in which experience is deceptive. We don't experience holes near the centre of our field of vision, though we have them. We're susceptible to a countless number of perceptual distortions and illusions. Experience has a veridical component. Not only that, there's the question of intentionality: experiences are [i:2b5o0mw2]about[/i:2b5o0mw2] things that, experience tells us, transcend those experiences. I have experiences of trees, not experiences of 'tree-experiences.' Whatever 'experience' is, it seems clear that it's inherently [i:2b5o0mw2]relational[/i:2b5o0mw2]. I could go on and on, and I'm sure you could cook up a thousand answers, to which I could cook up a thousand more, and so on, and so on, and so on. But then, this is just my point. Metaphysics is interesting, worthy of exploration, but given that no metaphysician has ever produced a claim capable of commanding consensus, I'm not sure what warrants specific [i:2b5o0mw2]commitments[/i:2b5o0mw2] to this or that metaphysical thesis. And this just brings us back to the only institution that has had any kind of luck with theoretical truth-claims: science. You still haven't given me an example of an alternate institution that has anything remotely approaching the track record of science when it comes to producing theoretical truth-claims. Stephen, I think, mentioned that these matters simply boiled down to whatever perspectives our interests lead us to take. This is the kind of levelling statement that many philosophers and laypeople are wont to make - hell, I used to make similar claims myself. But again, this is a [i:2b5o0mw2]philosophical[/i:2b5o0mw2] claim, and as such, no matter how much it serves our self-interest to relativize scientific claims, it suffers the same credibility crisis all philosophical statements suffer. This mistake is rife in academic philosophy. People commit to philosophical claims such as 'science is one language-game among many,' or 'science is an ontic enterprise incapable of examining its ontological foundations,' and then use this commitment to condition their commitment to every scientific claim they then encounter. They use a philosophical commitment to determine their scientific commitments! This is a nifty trick, until you consider the cognitive track record of the two institutions in question. If commitment is supposed to be a function of warrant, then this akin to making a deaf person presiding judge over [i:2b5o0mw2]American Idol[/i:2b5o0mw2]. Personally, I have no idea 'what science is really.' All I know, is that it seems to be the only game in town when it comes to generating reliable theoretical truth claims. view post


posted 19 Oct 2004, 18:10 in Philosophy DiscussionScience disenchanting the world. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:3b7bjiys]Just how applicable are scientific truth-claims to the events of a person's life? Just how applicable are scientific understandings to creating coping/destructive models of approaching personal problems?[/quote:3b7bjiys] I see this as a good way to formulate the problem, and to perhaps reorient the debate. The best way to understand the 'disenchantment of the world,' I've suggested, is as a gradual process whereby intentional explanations provided by tradition and philosophy are gradually replaced by the functional explanations provided by science - something which results in the 'scientific worldview.' Until recently, this substitution had resulted in what might be called the 'disenchantment of the world [i:3b7bjiys]minus us[/i:3b7bjiys].' Because the complexity of the brain defeated the scientific tools and techniques that make functional explanations possible, we were like a 'wildlife preserve.' We are only now witnessing the breakdown of that intentional preserve - the practical possibility of a thoroughgoing [i:3b7bjiys]functional self-understanding[/i:3b7bjiys] - and as of yet, we don't know how things will ultimately play out. Your question, Larry, brings us to this point. What we know to be the case is that what we call 'experience,' depends on the function of the brain. What we don't as of yet know is how all the particularities of that experience - especially things like intentionality and normativity (which are found nowhere outside of experience) - arise from the particularities of our neural machinery. But the picture is slowly coming into functional focus. Consider your 'experience of willing' (EoW), for instance. It turns out that we are very easily fooled into thinking that we will actions that we don't. It turns out that our EoW is [i:3b7bjiys]inferential[/i:3b7bjiys] - something that we learn - rather than intrinsic to the things we in fact do. It turns out, in other words, that our EoW [i:3b7bjiys]follows from our actions[/i:3b7bjiys], rather than, as we like to assume, [i:3b7bjiys]initiating[/i:3b7bjiys] them. It turns out, in other words, that our EoW is a cognitive illusion. So how are these claims applicable to your life? In innumerable ways, and few of them pretty: everything [i:3b7bjiys]you've[/i:3b7bjiys] done, every act you've been blamed or have taken credit for, you have experienced [i:3b7bjiys]after the fact[/i:3b7bjiys] as something 'you control.' This simply underscores the nihilistic dilemma I've been harping about all along. If you, like me, suspend commitment to all but the most robust truth-claims - namely those belonging to the same family that makes miracles like this computer possible - then the most basic, straighforward inferences lead you to unintelligible madness. The most powerful instrument of discovery in the history of humanity - bar none! - suggests that everything you do and everything that matters to you is an illusion - and here's the kicker, [i:3b7bjiys]including the very norms that make this argument stick[/i:3b7bjiys]. WTF view post


posted 20 Oct 2004, 17:10 in Philosophy DiscussionScience disenchanting the world. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:2l74k1nb]Let me suggest this: What if the EoW and the actions to which it is related cannot be separated? [/quote:2l74k1nb] But this is simply the point. The two are in fact separate. This is not a philosophical claim, but one belonging to the same family of claims that make thermonuclear explosions and moonshots possible. A scientific one. Certainly we experience our actions as expressions of our will, as together, but again, this is simply the point, the thing that makes the contrary scientific fact so unnerving. Simply asserting their 'togetherness' puts you in the uncomfortable position of contradicting scientific claims with philosophical claims. Is that what you're doing? [quote:2l74k1nb]If quantum entanglement asserts as possible (and has proven in recent experiments) that information can be instantaneously teleported without degradation, and Heisenberg's uncertainty principle remains in effect, then the entirey of existence is a form of cognitive illusion -- in which case the EoW is no less 'real' than anything else we experience.[/quote:2l74k1nb] I'm not sure what entanglement at the quantum level has to do with our experience of willing, other than to show, yet again, the power of scientific claims to overthrow our most cherished assumptions. Saying there's funky stuff going on at the quantum level that we can't ordinarily perceive is far different than saying our self-sense of freedom is a subreptive neural artifact. It's the difference between a limited perspective on the observed and a delusional perspective on the observer. [quote:2l74k1nb]Even an illusion is real if it exists as an experience, and if an experience influences an outcome, our will is as real as anything else we experience.[/quote:2l74k1nb] Then why do we medicate and institutionalize schizophrenics? Otherwise, once again, the whole point of the problem regarding our experience of willing is that it does not influence 'outcomes': it seems to be something our brain simply attaches to 'our' acts already in progress. view post


posted 21 Oct 2004, 18:10 in Philosophy DiscussionScience disenchanting the world. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Another whopper, Tak! Since I think in the course of arguing against me you actually started arguing against materialists, let me try to clarify where I stand regarding the points you raise. 1) I agree that conscious experience is now scientifically indigestible, and though I suspect it will remain so in principle, this is just a conjecture. 2) I have no clue as to what inferences this fact secures, other than suggesting that 'there's more.' This is why I think this is a 'crack in the door': while it's certainly grist for the imagination, it does not warrant much in the way of theoretical content. 3) I do think many formal characteristics of conscious experience, such as intentionality, will, normativity, and so on, are scientifically digestible to a point - so much the worse for us! I think you're mistaken to lump these in with the 'character' or 'what-is-it-likeness' problem. 4) I am not a materialist, though I do think the relational character of experience is what makes it the 'default metaphysick' for so many. This, I think, is THE problem for opponents of materialism. More below. 5) Given that all metaphysics is bunk, that innumerable varieties of innumerable positions can be argued (and argued, and argued), specific, exclusive metaphysical commitments are ultimately unwarranted. If one insists on entertaining such commitments, then metaphysical commitments which cut across the grain of 'common sense' (whatever the hell that might be), are in even more trouble than otherwise. 6) The bottomline is that one need not 'go metaphysical.' The fact that science is unable to examine it's own assumptions in no way discredits it's findings, nor does it prevent us from drawing inferences from those findings. 7) To be honest, I find all this talk about ‘illusions being real’ to be more than a little confusing. Is there no such distinction? And if so, how do you distinguish ‘real illusions’ from ‘illusion illusions’? Psychologists having been wracking up lists of perceptual and cognitive illusions for years. The fact of the matter is that experience fools us in innumerable ways - just look at all the things we’re discovering about ‘eye-witness testimony.’ To pick and choose which we’ll call ‘illusions’ and which we’ll call ‘real’ depending on how much we need or cherish them is tendentious. You need to give me decisive arguments, Tak. Since I think our differences regarding the first issues are little more than a matter of emphasis, and since I’m not at all interested in pursuing fruitless metaphysical debates, it’s (7) that I’m really interested in understanding, especially given the frequent way it seems to be used as a panacea for the problems I’ve raised. Answers such as ‘Ah, sure, but it’s real for us,’ strike me as wishful thinking, so much so that I can’t help but feel as though I’m missing something. So, to reset the point of contention: a) We attribute actual causal efficacy to our experience of will, when it seems to be a [i:3tnrubsg]scientific[/i:3tnrubsg] fact that such experiences possess no such causal efficacy. b) Willing is a cognitive illusion. c) Responsibility depends upon the reality of willing. d) Morality depends upon the reality of responsibility. /e) Morality is a cognitive illusion. Which is to say, the nihilist wins. view post


posted 22 Oct 2004, 13:10 in Author Q & ABesides the one obvious review, ever had this happen, Scott? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

That's exactly the way it works. The writer is always the first, and always the worst, judge of their own work. view post


posted 25 Oct 2004, 15:10 in Philosophy DiscussionScience disenchanting the world. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:uhn5uak1]I agree, but think this is beyond conjecture. Science can't make sense of experience unless experience is taken as a fundamental. Otherwise, it will simply be "just so."[/quote:uhn5uak1] But what about Dennett's 'heterophenomenological argument'? I think its flawed, but there's a lot who don't. It's conjecture because it's extremely controversial. [quote:uhn5uak1]But the "point" that marks the limit of science doesn't really answer any questions. Intentionality, for example: Science will be forced to just declare a certain neural state to just "be" the "aboutness of a tree" without anything resembling an explanation. [/quote:uhn5uak1] This latter statement is false, actually. There's any number of alternatives. My bet is that it will eventually provides two accounts: one dealing with what 'is really going on,' and another dealing with 'how we experience what is really going on.' This is in keeping with the pattern. I'm not sure what you mean with your former point. [quote:uhn5uak1]Well, if the observed data contradicts one's metaphysic, than the metaphysic is wrong. Also, I don't think common sense (of the "soft core" variety) should be held against a metaphysics. Just because something is unorthodox has no bearing on its truthfulness.[/quote:uhn5uak1] Don't forget the lesson Kant taught us. The problem is that metaphysics, any metaphysics, never relies on 'observed data' plain and simple. Look at all the ridiculous claims people think are 'demonstrated' by the findings of quantum physicists. The 'metaphysical import of the data' is every bit as vexed as the metaphysics themselves, which means, once again, there's nothing to warrant exclusive metaphysical commitments at this level either. [quote:uhn5uak1]McGinn simply takes it as self-evident that neurons are insentient (are protozoa insentient?). If one were to allow that neurons may possess experience (and their component parts possess experience themselves) maybe the problem wouldn't be so puzzling.[/quote:uhn5uak1] Seems to simply multiply the puzzle by about four billion to me. But on to the issue I'm most curious about: illusion. You haven't really answered my question. As I mentioned, we're ALL susceptible to many kinds of cognitive and perceptual illusions - publicity doesn't seem to have much to do with it. They're just part of being human. The question is how the case of willing is any different. The tree experience you mention is actually a disanalogy. The experience of a tree does not include the experience of self-determination, which is the crux of the illusion at issue here. We think we are consciously causing our acts, when we are not. Note also, Tak, that it's not [i:uhn5uak1]epiphenomenalism[/i:uhn5uak1] that's at issue, just the factual status of something we regularly experience. I'm committing to very little, here, aside from a growing scientific consensus regarding the 'will' (and there's far more than Libet's famed (and not so significant)experiments on the line here. Again, I urge you to check out Wegner's book). But here I suspect that, again, that aside from your (unwarranted! :wink: ), metaphysical commitments we are pretty close. On a last note, I think you're right when you say most people don't know what their freedom consists in, but I do think they have a rough sense of what their freedom is [i:uhn5uak1]not[/i:uhn5uak1]. I actually find the pragmatic approach (which is to say, Dennett's) to this issue interesting, but tendentious, akin to saying that, although the traditional setting (of souls and gods) has to be utterly overturned we can keep the same conceptual players (of freedom and morality) by just changing a few of their lines. The fact is, we're reading from an entirely different script. The 'redefinitional approach,' where we say something like 'freedom = the ratio of possible behavioural outputs versus environmental inputs, understood from an evolutionary perspective,' glosses over what is in fact very bizarre and profoundly troubling. The fact that one can cook up such redefinitional strategies ad nauseum simply attests to the seriousness of the problem - to the fact that all we can so is spin our wheels. Shrugging your shoulders doesn't make a problem go away, even if you're a pragmatist. The inferences at stake are so basic that you can terrify a class full of freshmen in a single hour using shared assumptions. The inferences that purport to 'resolve' or 'dissolve' these problems generally take years of specialized training to really comprehend and appreciate. view post


posted 28 Oct 2004, 19:10 in Philosophy DiscussionScience disenchanting the world. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The latter issues you raise, Tak, are the only one's that hold my attention anymore. For me, the primary 'abstract' issue confronting humanity is one of reconciling what we [i:3lwqm98v]experience[/i:3lwqm98v] with what we [i:3lwqm98v]know[/i:3lwqm98v]. This is an exciting and terrifying time in history. The dominant institutions in contemporary society are corporations, social units designed to pursue short-term self-interest. Meanwhile, we are in the course of witnessing the greatest extinction event since the comet that hit the Yucatan some 65 million years ago. Meanwhile, revolutions abound in every one of the natural sciences. Meanwhile, we're learning that our native self-understanding is as quaint and implausible as the fantastic world-views demolished by science. We've moved beyond, 'The world makes no sense!' [i:3lwqm98v]Sense[/i:3lwqm98v] doesn't even make sense anymore. We are all Achamian. We all walk in the shadow of the apocalypse. view post


posted 30 Oct 2004, 16:10 in Author Q & AHow Do You Write? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hi, Skotch. I pretty much exclusively use my decrepid computer, which I now refer to as my 'third lung' to do justice to the profundity of our co-dependency. If it weren't for the computer, I don't think I'd be a writer. I seem to have a problem writing things in a linear fashion. Which is probably why I wrote this line first... :wink: view post


posted 31 Oct 2004, 02:10 in Author Q & ATime for that very annoying question that many of us have by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I noticed that too, though they originally had 'When Sorcerers Sing' as the title! Classic left hand/right hand situation. :roll: view post


posted 31 Oct 2004, 16:10 in Author Q & ATime for that very annoying question that many of us have by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The release is scheduled for next October. My guess is that whoever it is at Penguin who gives new book information to Amazon has the old info. view post


posted 04 Nov 2004, 14:11 in Author Q & ACouple of quick questions by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hello Shryke. Welcome to the board! Save for some contact in Jek at the headwaters of the River Sayut, the Xuihianni, the Tribe left behind at the Breaking of the Gates, are entirely confined to Eanna. Uroborian circle is fleshed out some in TTT, at least how the draft stands now. Sorcery all comes down to semantics, meanings, and practitioners of the Aporos specialize in aporetic, or paradoxical meanings. view post


AMERICAN POLITICS... posted 04 Nov 2004, 14:11 in Philosophy DiscussionAMERICAN POLITICS... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

One of the things that has so blown me away about this discussion forum has been the almost utter lack of flame wars, despite the controversial nature of the subject matter. So far the spirit of open inquiry, and the corresponding distinction between egos and arguments, has reigned supreme, I think... So I thought a discussion about Bush's recent election victory might just be possible. Though I'm not an American citizen, I lived in America for three years (or my entire life! - depending on what you think of 'Canadian identity'), and I loved both the people and the country. If I were American, I would have voted for Nader. So as you can imagine, yesterday's election results have me scratching my bean. What happened? view post


posted 04 Nov 2004, 21:11 in Philosophy DiscussionAMERICAN POLITICS... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hard to believe you're not voting age yet, G! When I was in Windsor a couple of weekends back, I talked to a number of Americans about the election, and not a one had a clue as to what was going on, or how they would vote for that matter. As for strategic voting, this simply makes it utterly impossible for a 'third way' to open up in American politics. Since I think the long term always trumps the short term, I'm against it on principle. I should clarify my original statement. Though I have no idea HOW Bush won the election (given that his first term has been such an obvious disaster), I am glad that he won, insofar as it will force conservatives to reap what they have sown, both domestically and internationally. The bottomline is that the vast majority of people form opinions for utterly irrational reasons. Karl Rove, the mastermind of every Bush election since he won the governorship of Texas in the 90's, knows this all too well. They used marketing tactics that capitalize on what's called 'low attention processing': which is to say, they focussed on [i:1ku8hyhl]conditioning[/i:1ku8hyhl] potential voters, rather than convincing them. I think you're right, G, Americans are becoming more conservative (but I think the 'mushy centre' is much larger than most pundits make it out to be). The fact is, though, that message boards like this, or any other forum devoted to the presentation of arguments, will not change this. I really think the only thing that will work, short of a sustained, multi-billion marketing campaign that also takes advantage of low-attention processing, is giving the conservatives all the rope they want, then let them hang themselves. But this is all assuming that the conservative camp is dead wrong. Anyone out there actually vote for Bush? view post


posted 04 Nov 2004, 21:11 in Author Q & AScott, tell me this won't be your excuse for delaying TTT ;) by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Yeah, there's quite some talk of this at sffworld. I think you can trust that, whatever excuse I give, Larry, it'll be a lot more lame than that. Probably along the lines of, 'My cat pooped on my manuscript...' :wink: Rest assured, though, the writing is going VERY well. I'm getting pretty damned excited! view post


posted 05 Nov 2004, 00:11 in Author Q & AMr. Bakker... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Welcome to the board, Maddroi. Saintjon is right. If you just click on the 'Memberlist' option on the main forum page, and then hit the 'pm' tab next to 'Cu'jara Cinmoi,' I'll receive a private message via the forum. view post


posted 07 Nov 2004, 15:11 in Author Q & AScott, tell me this won't be your excuse for delaying TTT ;) by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Remember that I started this bloody thing twenty years ago. I've been mooning over PoN for a long, long time. It's actually hard to believe that I'm about to [i:14qx80h2]finish[/i:14qx80h2] the luverly monster... view post


posted 08 Nov 2004, 14:11 in Author Q & AScott, tell me this won't be your excuse for delaying TTT ;) by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I actually have the first version of the final chapter of PoN sitting beside me as I type, which if I remember correctly, I finished the same year [i:1r31l60a]Badmotorfinger[/i:1r31l60a] came out ('92?). Everything's changed except the basic outline. Back then it was all one book, and the writer didn't know nuthin.' view post


posted 08 Nov 2004, 18:11 in Author Q & AScott, tell me this won't be your excuse for delaying TTT ;) by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

For the longest time my ambitions far exceeded my abilities. It wasn't until the third year of my PhD when the writing just seemed to 'click' - when the gap between what I [i:zkwkbk88]wanted[/i:zkwkbk88] to say and my power of expression disappeared. Then I just had to learn how to tell a story. view post


posted 09 Nov 2004, 02:11 in Author Q & AA few questions by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thanks, Ahkond. Someday there WILL be a revised edition. Someday. :roll: view post


Wonder of wonders... posted 12 Nov 2004, 18:11 in Author AnnouncementsWonder of wonders... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

TWP made the #10 spot on Amazon.ca's 'Customer's Favourites: Best of 2004' list. Now if only I could say the same about Amazon.COM... view post


This time I got a question... posted 18 Nov 2004, 23:11 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Just found out that - once again - ALL the major genre publishers passed on the mass-market paperback rights to [i:den4yp8w]The Darkness that Comes Before[/i:den4yp8w]. Since we have so many big brains on this board, I thought I would field this question: What can a guy do to drum up some attention in the US? Maybe I should become a Dunyain spam master or something... view post


posted 19 Nov 2004, 14:11 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Ah, the dreaded answer: Time will tell. My agent says the same thing. Thanks for the encouraging words, Erthaelion. I never expected the book to be 'popular,' and I'm amazed at how well it's doing here in Canada, but the only real chance it has in America is for it to be affordable enough for people to take the risk on a no name, to see if it represents a direction they're interested in following. Maybe I am being impatient. But this is the [i:30qetegp]fourth[/i:30qetegp] time it's done the rounds in New York now. It's not like I'm writing experimental prose fiction or something... Sheesh. view post


posted 20 Nov 2004, 12:11 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Wasn't Donnie Darko killed when a jet engine crashed into his home? :wink: That positive feedback loop you're talking about really is the case. It actually [i:122dbe8y]seems[/i:122dbe8y] to be happening here in Canada - something which is blowing me away. But the American market is a different animal - far more saturated I think. I had a couple drinks last night with these guys who sold 45 000 albums here in Canada, where rocketing toward success, but for whatever reason, everything fell to pieces in the US, first saleswise, then bandwise... view post


posted 21 Nov 2004, 17:11 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

That's awesome, Damaen. That 3rd quarter is always such a heartbreaker though! :wink: Maybe I should pose on the cover, you know, my hair-extensions blowing in the wind, my sunken chest and beer-belly gleaming with perspiration... view post


posted 22 Nov 2004, 15:11 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Ayuh. There's a few other factors involved as well. Not many seem pleased with the prospect of splitting NA rights. For no names such as myself, initial cost is horribly important. Overlook will be releasing trade paperback versions - which likely help quite a bit - but for some reason that $10 mark seems to be the magical number. Berlin before Manhatten, I guess... view post


posted 23 Nov 2004, 12:11 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Traditionally though, publishers didn't worry all that much about small initial margins, being intent on 'developing' new authors. view post


posted 24 Nov 2004, 23:11 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Mith! Aw, man... Are you [i:19o3fwjy]ever[/i:19o3fwjy] going to let me release any news first? I haven't even signed anything yet! :wink: Definitely excited though, about being with a dedicated SF&F line, and more than anything, about working with Darren Nash once again, who was my editor at S&S before Viacom pulled out the knives. view post


posted 28 Nov 2004, 16:11 in Tour and Signing InformationR Scott Bakker in the UK by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'd say the same about Montreal! For the foreseeable future I'm homebound though, working on this little thing called TTT :wink: If I remember correctly, though, Penguin is planning to send me cross country for the tour next fall... view post


posted 30 Nov 2004, 14:11 in Author Q & ADoes this reviewer's comment scare you, Scott? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

LOL! I liked it better when they wanted to burn it... :roll: view post


posted 30 Nov 2004, 18:11 in Author Q & ADoes this reviewer's comment scare you, Scott? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Who do you work for again? :wink: view post


posted 30 Nov 2004, 20:11 in Author Q & ADoes this reviewer's comment scare you, Scott? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

At some point you're going to have to start calling your forum the 'Other (Better) Fantasy' forum... :wink: view post


posted 02 Dec 2004, 14:12 in Author Q & AHope you appreciate this, Scott by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Very cool beans indeed! I'll be passing out firstborns like lollipops before this is through... :wink: I was troubled by [i:1pt2296p]The Iron Council[/i:1pt2296p] pans, though. I thought [i:1pt2296p]The Scar[/i:1pt2296p] was fantastic, and was about to order IC... What went wrong? view post


posted 02 Dec 2004, 14:12 in Author Q & ADoes this reviewer's comment scare you, Scott? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hell, even I voted for the goat. Think of their powers of digestion. Simply amazing... view post


posted 02 Dec 2004, 18:12 in Author Q & AEver dressed up like this author did, Scott? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hell, no. view post


posted 02 Dec 2004, 20:12 in Author Q & AEver dressed up like this author did, Scott? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Well once, when I was a high-school punk, I went to this theme Halloween party dressed up in a loincloth with a prosthetic penis that reached to my knees... I called myself 'Hung the Barbarian.' I was quite the hit with the divorcee's... view post


posted 02 Dec 2004, 22:12 in Author Q & AEver dressed up like this author did, Scott? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I was young and it was a theme party... Don't ask. It traumatized me though: I've never dressed up for Halloween since! I mean, how do you top that? view post


posted 05 Dec 2004, 15:12 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thanks for the words of drummer wisdom, Arsenal. Maybe someday I'll be huge in Brazil... :wink: How are things back in Van? view post


posted 05 Dec 2004, 15:12 in Author Q & Acurious about something... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I think I've seen it at the video store... It's an anime feature, right? view post


posted 05 Dec 2004, 15:12 in Author Q & AScott, tell me this won't be your excuse for delaying TTT ;) by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Got this tune I'm working on... "The Anasurimbor Kellhus Pose" :wink: view post


posted 05 Dec 2004, 15:12 in Author Q & AEver dressed up like this author did, Scott? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'd rather write about it. :roll: view post


posted 05 Dec 2004, 15:12 in Author Q & AHope you appreciate this, Scott by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Still worth reading though, huh... I trust your taste and judgment implicity, Larry, but I was wondering what you made of all the rave reviews IC is getting. I had a similar experience with [i:g9mdpc9x]American Gods[/i:g9mdpc9x], where I just didn't think it was that well written, and that it was horribly plotted, and yet every critic from here to Oxford Mississippi thought it was a masterpiece... view post


posted 05 Dec 2004, 15:12 in Tour and Signing InformationR Scott Bakker in the UK by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'll definitely PUSH for it! They skipped straight to Calgary when I did the tour for the first book... I like Winnipeg. view post


posted 06 Dec 2004, 04:12 in Author Q & Acurious about something... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Can't see convincing the wife to watch 20 episodes of [i:1q63wyko]anime[/i:1q63wyko]! Maybe one or two, though. view post


posted 06 Dec 2004, 14:12 in Author Q & AHope you appreciate this, Scott by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I just find it interesting how certain authors build what you might call 'critical momentum'... Gotta get me some of that! :twisted: view post


posted 07 Dec 2004, 02:12 in Tour and Signing InformationR Scott Bakker in the UK by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The 2 month delay is the drawback of switching publishers, but I'm sure the positives outweigh the negatives. Orbit is very excited about the series, and Darren has a keen critical eye. I have been bugging the bastard to ship me over to England, trying to convince him I'm opinionated enough to be media-worthy, but as big as my mouth may be, I'm still a small-fry. :roll: Rest assured, if they ever do give me the green light, I'll be doing cartwheels all the way to this keyboard! view post


posted 07 Dec 2004, 14:12 in Author Q & ACongratulations! by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Caught wind of this last week. Coolus beanus. Still amazes that it's made so many lists. I can't help but think its a flawed book... view post


posted 07 Dec 2004, 16:12 in Author Q & ACongratulations! by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

That what I've been thinking, since I personally feel more confident about TWP. But though the reaction has been positive, so far, it's been somewhat more ambivalent... It's also been less reviewed than TDTCB after the same amount of time. I really think I shot myself in the foot pushing to have them crash the production schedule. It didn't leave much advance time for reviews. One more lesson learned, I guess. view post


posted 07 Dec 2004, 16:12 in Author Q & AMetaphysics and such by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm actually tormented by this very issue right at the moment. TTT gets deep into the metaphysics of the world - to the point where I'm beginning to worry that it's gratuitous. I'm going to have to see what my proofreaders think... If I end up cutting stuff, I'll paste somewhere on the board. view post


posted 08 Dec 2004, 15:12 in Author Q & AMetaphysics and such by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I had this conversation with my brother last night. The problem, I don't think, is one of 'potted moments' where the author is just taking this of that narrative turn as an excuse to beat you over the head with their views... I think everything arises organically, and I'm not grinding any axes. The question is one of accessibility. I've stood in front of enough stupified first year philosophy classes to know that what makes obvious sense to me just sounds like blah-blah-blah to others! Kinda sounds like the story of my life. :roll: view post


posted 08 Dec 2004, 15:12 in Author Q & AQuestion: Book Covers? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Welcome to the board, Nauticus. From what I hear it's going to be a kind of crimson sepia - which is what I asked for. I haven't seen any proofs of it yet... Shouldn't be too long, though! view post


posted 08 Dec 2004, 18:12 in Author Q & AMetaphysics and such by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Damn good idea Atanvarno. Hmmm... Must mull. view post


posted 08 Dec 2004, 20:12 in Author Q & AMetaphysics and such by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

But of course! Still mulling though. Need more feedback first. view post


posted 10 Dec 2004, 19:12 in Tour and Signing InformationKelowna, British Columbia by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

They sent me to Vancouver last time, so the chances are probably good that I'll end up somewhere in your vicinity Nauticus. It'll be some time before I know anything definite, and when I do, Mithfanion will likely tell everyone before I have a chance! :wink: view post


posted 11 Dec 2004, 15:12 in Author Q & AOf Kings and Emperors... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

To be honest, I can't remember exactly what the rules are. I remember looking them up then deciding not to worry about them. If the work is very Euro-medieval, you might want to google it, otherwise, the important thing is consistency within your text. As far as handing out my agents email address... :shock: He'd have my head on a platter! Have you workshopped your stuff yet? I'd recommend the Online Writer's Workshop if you haven't. view post


posted 11 Dec 2004, 15:12 in Philosophy Discussionwho should determine what is "right"? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

It seems pretty clear that our intuitions of what's right or wrong are largely determined by the preexisting values of the communities we're socialized into as children. It's a matter of training. view post


posted 12 Dec 2004, 00:12 in Author Q & AOf Kings and Emperors... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

That's actually very cool of Greenwood. Me, I'm always three or four obligations behind as it is... :roll: Have you already workshopped it, then, Nicholas? I wouldn't recommend shopping anything around - to agents or publishers - until you've workshopped the piece extensively with a number of different people. view post


posted 24 Dec 2004, 18:12 in Author Q & AThe plate is set... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Benjuka is something I've had swirling around conceptually for some time now. I've tried a couple of times to cook up an actual version of it, only to be stymied (things got pretty complicated pretty quick!). The hard thing is determining how various configurations of pieces would reconfigure the rules in a manner that could be manageable. There's a million questions... view post


posted 24 Dec 2004, 18:12 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Some great ideas, Fell - and thanks for plugging the book by the way! My difficulty is that I have such a hard time with SELF-promotion - something in me literally cringes. I could never be a politician... :roll: What I need, Gable, are some action figures for a Happy Meal! view post


posted 24 Dec 2004, 18:12 in Author Q & AMetaphysics and such by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thanks EE! You've piqued my interest Fell! I'm very curious to see what you think of the metaphysics as they unfold in TTT. I'm just worried that it's too damn complicated... What is it that's grabbed your attention so far? view post


posted 24 Dec 2004, 18:12 in Author Q & AA Question Regarding the Universe of tPoN? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

You know what, I have never - not once - asked myself this question! And it seems like such an obvious one... But I would have to say that no, Earth Prime isn't in Earwa's universe. view post


posted 24 Dec 2004, 18:12 in Author Q & AOf Kings and Emperors... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I think the most important part of something like the OWW is that it forces you to critique in order to be critiqued, and I sometimes think you learn more in the process of analyzing someone elses prose than in having your own analyzed. It also teaches the all important skill of discriminating between good criticisms and bad. view post


posted 27 Dec 2004, 12:12 in Author Q & AMetaphysics and such by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I hear you about the mosquito! LOL! Thanks for the reassurances, Fell. When I first starting taking philosophy classes I was dismayed by how inaccessible it all was, particularly with regards to what's called 'Continental Philosophy.' I was able to work through this in my teaching - I discovered that I could make the conceptual novelty and complexity accessible if I worked hard enough. I've taken - or I've tried to take - the same ethos to PoN. It's all in the presentation. view post


posted 27 Dec 2004, 12:12 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I made a pitch to Daniel Richler at BookTelevision. We'll see how that works out... view post


posted 27 Dec 2004, 12:12 in Author Q & AOkay - I just have to ask by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hi, Annabel. Welcome to the board! As a culture, our fascination with epic fantasy worlds, I think, stems from a yearning for all those things modern mass society has stripped from us: moral certainty, an unambiguous place in our social and cosmic orders, the meaningfulness of individual heroism, and so on. But in the course of losing these things, we also lost much of what was horrible, including institutionalized sexism. What I wanted to do was to explore the good with the bad, to have a thoroughly 'unsanitary' fantasy world. Since women throughout much of history have been treated as sexual resources, I opted for the 'tale of two women' you find in Esmenet and Serwe. I think this becomes more clear in TWP, but I'll let you be the judge! view post


posted 03 Jan 2005, 15:01 in Author Q & ACampaigning In Earwa by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The campaign was looonng, and the PC's did eventually become important, but the story and world were far different back then: I pretty much cannibalized them to write PoN. I haven't roleplayed in over 20 years, now... Getting. Old. view post


posted 07 Jan 2005, 13:01 in Author Q & AA linguistic question by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

That must be where I got it, then, because the phrase strikes me as familiar. So many names I think I come up with solo, only to see them pop up in the newspaper or movie credits or the like. I hope it didn't 'break the spell' for you. And welcome to the board, Faelcind! view post


posted 07 Jan 2005, 23:01 in Author Q & AA linguistic question by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

My wife is Irish, so I guess you can say I get my butt kicked by a Gael on regular basis! view post


posted 09 Jan 2005, 14:01 in Author Q & AToronto readings? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I think it's a little bit of both, actually. There's at least three prejudices at work: the prejudice against fantasy as an 'infantile' form of narrative wish-fulfillment, and therefore not 'serious'; the prejudice against fantasy as a commercial, and therefore 'coopted,' genre; and the prejudice against fantasy writers as somehow being 'sub-par.' And it's not just confined to the literary mainstream. Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr... view post


posted 12 Jan 2005, 05:01 in Author Q & AOkay - I just have to ask by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I self consciously picked three mysogynistic types for my female characters (just as I picked fantasy cliche types for my male characters): the whore, the waif, and the harridan. Earwa is a brutally patriarchal world, much as our own was (which makes our own fascination with fantastic versions of our past that much more peculiar), and I wanted to explore the significance of those types in such a world. Serwe is obviously the waif, the frail innocent wronged by the machinations of a cruel world. As such she had to die. But it was the innocence part, that struck me as the most significant and the most redemptive. Without giving too much away, there is a manner in which Serwe is the most important character in the book. Most people shake their head when I say that... Hell, even I shake my head. :wink: view post


posted 13 Jan 2005, 04:01 in Author Q & AArt for TTT? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

*deep breath* News to me Mith. But rest assured, I'll be kicking and screaming for a gif, and I'll post it as soon as I find out. How many times have you done this to me now? :wink: The author is always the last to know. And why not, I only [i:32uga7j5]write[/i:32uga7j5] the damn things... view post


posted 13 Jan 2005, 13:01 in Author Q & AArt for TTT? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I have no idea, White Lord. I'm a total nob when it comes to all things web (though I think I'm pretty slick when comes to finding things on Google). I'll ask Jack. view post


posted 13 Jan 2005, 20:01 in Author Q & AOkay - I just have to ask by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

No comment... :wink: view post


posted 14 Jan 2005, 13:01 in Author Q & AOkay - I just have to ask by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Kellhus is an inversion of 'the Young Man who would be King.' My UK editor calls him the 'Anti-Frodo.' He is of course, far more than that besides. Cnaiur is the All-conquering Barbarian (who cannot conquer himself). Achamian is the Wise Sorcerer (who continually fools himself). The idea was to take these types and fill them with real people with real problems. For better or worse, alcoholism, depression, violence, and bitterness are far more common human reaction to sustained stress than blithe hope is. The idea was to write something thoroughly unsentimental. We humans are very dark animals. In various studies of preliterate societies, for instance, the death by violence rate for men runs anywhere from 15-65%! view post


Cover Update posted 14 Jan 2005, 14:01 in Author Q & AArt for TTT? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

David's completed the design, but this is only half the cover, actually, since Martin Gould still needs to work his computer graphic magic. It'll likely be a couple of months. The huge time disconnect has to do, I think, with the fact that David's contract was based on that of the author, who apparently has had his head too far up his ass to complete his books on schedule! :wink: view post


First translated edition... posted 14 Jan 2005, 16:01 in Author AnnouncementsFirst translated edition... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The French translation of TDTCB is out... [url:1413y1kd]http://www.amazon.fr/exec/obidos/ASIN/226507943X/qid%3D1105637968/171-0309635-5849866[/url:1413y1kd] Cover, anyone? view post


posted 14 Jan 2005, 21:01 in Author Q & AArt for the UK Editions by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm very happy to be with Orbit, especially with Darren Nash, who was the editor who first signed me at S&S - before Viacom came a gobbling, that is... It looks like they'll be pulling out the stops for the summer release of TDTCB in mmpbk and TWP in tpbk this summer. I made my bid for the Canadian covers, but Orbit opted for a reworked version of the S&S covers, which although very similar, seem to make a big difference. I'll see if they have any jpegs they can send me that I can post - but since its the spot gloss they use that does the trick for me, I'm not sure the differences will come through that well. view post


posted 14 Jan 2005, 22:01 in Author Q & AOkay - I just have to ask by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Yes. Yes. Yes. And Yes. But all and all I'd say we're better managed. :roll: view post


posted 14 Jan 2005, 22:01 in Author Q & AWowza by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm still trying to figure it out. Good Gawd. And no, I had absolutely no input on the cover. Most authors never do (for good reason, I'm told). I think I was exceptionally lucky that Penguin Canada was an exception to the rule (those covers were actually my original concept), and that Overlook signed onto them in the US. I think they'll make for a handsome set when TTT comes out. view post


posted 14 Jan 2005, 22:01 in Author Q & AFrench Edition of TDTCB by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thank you Twaleph. I'm doing my best with TTT! I actually haven't sold the French-Canadian rights to the books, but I think it's definitely worth asking my agent about. I'll try to get back to you on this next week. view post


posted 15 Jan 2005, 04:01 in Author Q & AArt for the UK Editions by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Very cool. They're also supporting it with a national adrail poster campaign. view post


posted 16 Jan 2005, 22:01 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Two days! I'm glad you enjoyed the books, White Lord. I can tell by your questions that you're a classic 'world junkie' - a man after my own heart! 1) In terms of population, I see the two as being comparable, though the Three Seas necessarily has some cultural (such as a deeper history) and technological advantages (such as iron). The primary difference between the civilizations (with the exception that one is dead) lay in the maritime and commercial dimensions of the Three Seas. 2) Think ancient Egypt or Sumer compared to Europe in the 'Dark Ages,' where you literally have 4 000 years difference. There's just so many factors that determine the 'flourishing' of one civilization as opposed to another. The Norsirai, likely because of the Nonman Tutelage, simply enjoyed their 'renaissance' first. 3) He called them for what was called the 'Ordeal,' but out of common interest, not out of authority. 4) You're starting to mow some TTT grass with this one, I'm afraid! Sorry, WL... :wink: 5) Cil-Aujas is a dead Nonman city that the Men of the Three Seas know about. Something I have some devlish plans for. 6) If the prophecy is a [i:3ykrkzxq]real[/i:3ykrkzxq] prophecy, this would have to be what it means, wouldn't it? view post


posted 17 Jan 2005, 02:01 in Author Q & AA Few Questions for Scott by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Damn good question. After so many years working on this thing, I'd fooled myself into thinking I'd over-analyzed every aspect that could be analyzed. Here's another example of something obvious I just never considered... I think the way I've been approaching the villains has just fallen into the 'deepening layers' tactic I've used for so many other aspects of the story. After workshopping drafts of the book, I became painfully conscious of the amount of detail I used - and ultimately decided to put the reader on 'need-to-know' basis, only adding detail for 'textural purposes' to conjure the illusion of authentic depth, and only when necessary to advance the detail. I think the baddies just naturally fell into the 'striptease' M.O. view post


posted 17 Jan 2005, 03:01 in Author Q & AGonna jump in here. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thanks Quithane! I could tell you were an extremely talented reader as soon as you said 'extraordinary enjoyment'... 1) Actually, they straight up [i:3lmtfoy5]dice[/i:3lmtfoy5]. That is, unless you're talking about a glancing blow, in which case they just scream and salt a little. 2) I started with the rolls, but I got a headache from the ripple, so I made an executive DM decision (in the interests of furthering narrative economy). You should know I don't actually [i:3lmtfoy5]believe[/i:3lmtfoy5] in wandering monsters. They're premeditated SOB's who are just out to get me. 3) Strictly coach. It doesn't look like I'll ever make enough to fly first class. 4) Doll? How would you like it if Esmenet called you a 'chump?' Some sensitivity, please... 5) No, no, no, no, no! view post


posted 17 Jan 2005, 20:01 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The original plan was to write [i:18onjxdy]The Second Apocalypse[/i:18onjxdy] (am I weird for loving that title as much as I do?) as a trilogy. Since the first installment, [i:18onjxdy]The Prince of Nothing[/i:18onjxdy] turned into a trilogy in itself, I'm assuming the same thing will happen with the sequels. Nimil, which is the artifact of millennia of Nonman craft and metalurgy, is actually stronger than Dunyain steel, which in turn is stronger than the best Seleukaran steel in the Three Seas. Earwa is actually some four or five times the size of Europe. I put that allusory analogue of the Norwegian coast along the top as a sneaky way to guage the land masses involved. If everything goes to plan, TTT will include a number of appendices, including additional maps and an 'Encyclopaedic Glossary.' It all depends on how much secondary material I can polish up before my deadline. Your other questions regarding the metaphysics of Earwa and the place of sorcerers in the cosmic scheme of things is something that is also threshed out in TTT. Sorry :roll: view post


posted 17 Jan 2005, 20:01 in Author Q & AGonna jump in here. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

LOL! Thank you, Quithane! :wink: view post


posted 18 Jan 2005, 20:01 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Cil-Aujas is reserved for [i:3igvh4ux]The Aspect-Emperor[/i:3igvh4ux] - a very special place... And yes, the Cu'jara Cinmoi stuff will be in the appendices, if only to demonstrate why it's such a pompous, self-aggrandizing name for an avatar! :wink: view post


posted 19 Jan 2005, 23:01 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm not sure I understand the question, WL... :roll: view post


posted 20 Jan 2005, 13:01 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

No, no, I was using it in the 'oops' sense! I truly didn't understand your question. And it's no bother at all, believe me. 1) I think I should save this one for the striptease... 2) As with all things political, it's the conflux of perception and entrenched interests that matters. Just look at the Inaugural Celebrations in Washington today. Just look at [i:1ay9up99]who[/i:1ay9up99] is celebrating... The castes are strictly hereditary in the Three Seas. There would have been somewhat more mobility in the Ancient North, but only because in many ways they retained the 'freeman' tribal structure of their ancestors. view post


posted 21 Jan 2005, 10:01 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The Kellhus question I understood - the Spanish Inquisition would come crashing through the window if I answered that one! The one I didn't understand (but I think I understand now) was [quote:1bt1qwkt]Also I don't know if you missed the question earlier or if it's one of those 'read and find out' ones. Anyway I'm interested in knowing whether there are any more Norsirai, Ketyai etc. peoples still living in Eanna, or if the migrations really comprised whole nations.[/quote:1bt1qwkt] It was the 'whole nations' thing that threw me. I think it would be safe to say that residual populations would have remained for some time, but after 4000 years... I actually haven't worked out any details for lands surrounding Earwa, and nor do I have any plans to. One of the things that characterizes the ancient relation to the world is [i:1bt1qwkt]ignorance[/i:1bt1qwkt], the sense of occupying a small circle of light in a dark and cavernous room. This may just be bias on my part, but I think Erikson and Martin worry the readerly illusion a bit by 'going global' the way they do. view post


So you think I'm long-winded... You should hear me on radio! posted 21 Jan 2005, 20:01 in Interviews and ReviewsSo you think I'm long-winded... You should hear me on radio! by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Just learned about this... [url:14xp1i0p]http://www.buddhaboy.ca/mar04/archive.php[/url:14xp1i0p] view post


posted 22 Jan 2005, 18:01 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The only question out of these that doesn't find itself pinned to a important part of the future story has to do with women and sorcery (and even then!). Yes, as many women are born to the 'Few' as men, but due to oppression, they have no formal tradition as such: they're typically burned as witches. Neither the Schools nor the mundane powers tolerate sorcery outside the aegis of the Schools, so wizards suffer much the same fate. I think I should cut it short there, since it becomes quite significant in AE. view post


posted 23 Jan 2005, 01:01 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

You'll have to stay tuned for that one! view post


posted 23 Jan 2005, 01:01 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thanks for the encouraging words, ilana! I think you're right on the money as far as the American market goes. There's just so much clamouring for peoples' attention that it's hard for the peep-squeaks to be heard. view post


posted 24 Jan 2005, 18:01 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Another one verging on TTT... :wink: It's safe to assume that there some very ritualized, very long, Cants involved. view post


posted 24 Jan 2005, 18:01 in Author Q & AScott, tell me this won't be your excuse for delaying TTT ;) by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Sorry for the delay replying, ilana. This one somehow slipped through the cracks. I have outlines that sketch the entire story of the Second Apocalypse, starting with The Aspect-Emperor and ending with a third. Whether these will turn into trilogies like The Prince of Nothing remains to be seen. They could be dualogies. view post


posted 25 Jan 2005, 16:01 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Aengelas is one of my faves too. 1) Yes. Actually most of the norsirai from the so-called 'Middle-North' are descendents of Meornish refugees, who would eventually be responisible for the destruction of the Nonman Mansion of Cil-Aujas. I actually have a history worked out for the Ancient North, every bit as layered as that for the Three Seas. 2) I going to keep mum on the Anasurimbor for now. I actually have an outline for a stand alone dealing with the First Apocalypse. 3) The 'old fire' would be the blood of his ancestors. As for Aengelas - well things don't look all that good for him at the end of TWP! view post


posted 26 Jan 2005, 11:01 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

If I remember correctly, House Anasurimbor rises to prominence around five centuries before the First Apocalypse - but I'd have to go digging into the 'pile' to be sure. view post


First French Review - Help Wanted posted 26 Jan 2005, 22:01 in Interviews and ReviewsFirst French Review - Help Wanted by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

This is the first review I've found of the French translation of [i:s5da1c6h]The Darkness That Comes Before[/i:s5da1c6h]! I'm pretty sure it's pretty good, but the my French is dismal, and the Google 'translate' function (which is horrible anyway) doesn't want to translate the all-important final paragraph. Any bilingual francophones out there? [url=http://www.sfmag.net/article.php3?id_article=1737:s5da1c6h]Autrefois les tenebres[/url:s5da1c6h] view post


posted 29 Jan 2005, 01:01 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The Siqu are the Nonmen advisors to the ancient Norsirai Kings during the Nonman Tutelage... You sent me digging for this one. I thought I would post this little teaser of what to expect in the apendices to TTT: 820 - The Rape of Omindalea. Jiricet, a Nonman Siqû to the God-King Nincarû-Telesser II (787-828), rapes Omindalea (808-825), first daughter of Sanna-Neorjë (772-858) of the house of Anasûrimbor in 824, and then flees to Ishterebinth. When Nil’giccas refuses to return Jiricet to Ûmerau, Nicarû-Telesser II expels all Nonmen from the Ûmeri Empire. Omindalea conceives by the union and dies bearing Anasûrimbor Sanna-Jephera (825- 1032), called ‘Twoheart.’ After a house-slave conceives by him, Sanna-Jephera is adopted by Sanna-Neorjë as his heir. - The cuneiform script and the syllabaries of the Nonmen are outlawed and replaced with a consonantal alphabet, c.835. view post


posted 30 Jan 2005, 19:01 in Interviews and ReviewsFirst French Review - Help Wanted by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Awesome. Thank you, Twayleph! If you PM me your address I would like to send you one of the TWP hardcovers. view post


posted 01 Feb 2005, 00:02 in Author Q & AWhat are you most looking forward to? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Poor to excellent... :wink: view post


posted 01 Feb 2005, 00:02 in Author Q & AOkay - I just have to ask by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm a leftist, which means that I think we at least have to [i]try[/i] to improve - which is just another way of saying I'm a big believer in education. The thing is we humans are hardwired to thrive in small, technologically backward, communities of a couple hundred souls. What this means is that the cognitive skills and attention preferences we have are horribly mismatched to the mass consumer society we find ourselves in today. Just check out the TV Guide Channel or your local magazine rack for a gander of our overriding priorities at present. The vast bulk of it makes sense if you think in terms of promoting your genetic material in stone-age communities, but now it often strikes me as nothing short of tragic. This makes me pessemistic... view post


posted 01 Feb 2005, 01:02 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The Rape marks the end of the Nonman Tutelage, though the relations between the two races would have their mecurial ups and downs until the First Apocalypse. The old Siqu caste, as well as that of the Quya, have transformed considerably over the years. But then that's a story for some other day. The [i:1erchvuj]average[/i:1erchvuj] human warrior? Not a chance. You don't want to get [i:1erchvuj]any[/i:1erchvuj] Nonman pissed. But again... :wink: view post


posted 01 Feb 2005, 01:02 in Tour and Signing InformationDenver by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hi Annabel. I'd love to be able to say that Denver could be a possibility, but my publisher in the US is just to small to manage anything quite that extensive. If TWP were to suddenly take off (Overlook is very excited about the doors the [i:3nvw91g9]Publisher's Weekly[/i:3nvw91g9] stuff might open - but then it's their job to be excited) then it might be plausible. New York and Chicago, on the other hand, are possible, simply because they're both within reasonable driving distance for me (if I can get my hands on another car!). If or when the time comes, I'll be certain to forward your tips to my publicist. Thank you, Annabel! view post


posted 01 Feb 2005, 10:02 in Interviews and ReviewsAnd this is how viral marketing works, right? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Viral indeed! You have to wonder how long it would have taken Tolkien to climb the mountain had there been an internet 50 years ago. Cool stuff, Larry. As an aside, when's everyone going to stop associating Bakula with Quantum Leap instead of Enterprise? view post


posted 01 Feb 2005, 10:02 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

To answer those you'll just have me cutting and pasting from the appendices, WL. Patience, my friend. Patience. :wink: You're not missing a thing, EE. Everything's some shade a grey, and nothing moreso than the Nonmen. Strangely enough, TTT actually does set foot on a couple of Cunuroi (Nonmen) paths. view post


posted 01 Feb 2005, 10:02 in Author Q & AWhat are you most looking forward to? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

My [i:2iv0fjw6]life[/i:2iv0fjw6] is one long, sad, fart joke, Larry. Otherwise I believe dwarves should be pitched... And mayhem... Mayhem? Ayuh. :wink: view post


posted 02 Feb 2005, 12:02 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

There's something to be said about historical indeterminacy, WL. I want Earwa to be as realistic as possible, which means I have to inject all the same indeterminacies that plague our world. view post


posted 02 Feb 2005, 12:02 in Author Q & AOkay - I just have to ask by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I've been meaning to set up an Apocalypse thread in the PD forum... My guess is that high heels will be free after the end of the world, Annabel! view post


posted 02 Feb 2005, 12:02 in Interviews and ReviewsAnd this is how viral marketing works, right? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

How long did things take for GRRM? I know the mmpb played a big role in his explosion, which is one of the reasons I was so bummed last fall. view post


posted 03 Feb 2005, 10:02 in Author Q & ACharacter heights in Earwa by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Interesting question. I think I actually have a pretty clear idea of their [i:fjagio60]relative[/i:fjagio60] heights, using myself and Kellhus as a reference point. -Kellhus 6'6" -Cnaiur 6'4" -Achamian 5'7" -Cunuroi as a race, their average height 6' -Inchoroi as a race, their average height 8'+ -The Sranc 4'8" -Conphas 5'10" -Proyas 5'11" -Yalgrota 7'10" -Esmenet 5'3" -Serwe 5'5" You have to remember that most caste-menials would be under 5'6" due to their diets. view post


posted 03 Feb 2005, 10:02 in Interviews and ReviewsAnd this is how viral marketing works, right? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I had no idea it took that long. I thought CoK was big in hc, but then that's probably because I bought it in hc - and if [i:3nn72un0]I[/i:3nn72un0] buy it, it [i:3nn72un0]must[/i:3nn72un0] be big. :roll: I'm bad for that. It's why I'm always dumbfounded and dismayed when they cancel my favourite TV shows... view post


posted 03 Feb 2005, 18:02 in Author Q & ACharacter heights in Earwa by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I left out Mallahet on purpose, since I seem to remember there was some speculation regarding him in one of the different forums. I didn't want to prejudice things one way or the other. I've never thought about Skaiyelt... About 5'11" maybe? view post


posted 03 Feb 2005, 19:02 in Author Q & AEarwa Related babble... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I actually liked Morgan's review quite abit. I thought she was a mite unfair, here and there. I remember scratching my head about the comment you mention, as well as another regarding the languages. The resonances that strike her as derivative are actually part of the point, from my perspective. I literally wanted all these association-sets to echo in Earwa, primarily because I think epic fantasy is a powerful way in which we reconnect with our own past. Others, particularly those with an anti-epic bias, take sheer [i:1py204bc]difference[/i:1py204bc] as their yardstick of aesthetic merit, when it seems obvious to me that the issue is a whole lot more involved. It would mean, for instance, that any work that self-consciously adopts generic conventions in the effort to explore them - which is to say, self-consciously tries to be the [i:1py204bc]same[/i:1py204bc] - starts in an aesthetic hole. This strikes me as obviously wrong. I'm actually glad you bring this up Erthaelion, because I've been thinking about reviews quite abit lately. All in all, I'm flabbergasted by how positive they've been - I really thought it would be a love it or hate work, with a lot more haters than lovers! As it stands, the opposite seems to be the case. The thing that has me scratching my head though is the complaint that the book has no 'likeable characters.' It really has me wondering what people mean by 'likeable.' Are they saying that conflicted, ambiguous characters (like the ones that comprise 100% of humanity) are not 'likeable'? Or is it the [i:1py204bc]way[/i:1py204bc] those characters are conflicted that they're referring to? Maybe the problem is that I've always found myself adoring the demented characters... view post


posted 03 Feb 2005, 19:02 in Author Q & ACharacter heights in Earwa by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Well I just pulled out his license and it says he's 6'6"... :wink: view post


posted 03 Feb 2005, 20:02 in Author Q & AEarwa Related babble... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I think the schlep thing is probably a factor, but what strikes me most by what you're saying, Mith, is the way that rooting requires a clear delineation of [i:z4b4sqmp]sides[/i:z4b4sqmp]. It strikes me that most all narratives give the reader a clear - if implicit - side to pick. In my books, there's as many sides as their are characters. Maybe the problem has nothing to do with likeability at all, but rather the indeterminacy that underwrites what all of the characters do, making it very difficult to identify with any given set of interests. Hmmm... Very interesting. view post


posted 04 Feb 2005, 00:02 in Author Q & AOkay - I just have to ask by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:2uoqv2ee]So, I can't have free shoes after the Apocalypse? Scott? [/quote:2uoqv2ee] Since so many shopping centres lie in the outskirts of major cities, I imagine you should have no problem - so long as you don't mind rubbing shoulders with radiation burn victims... :shock: view post


posted 04 Feb 2005, 00:02 in Author Q & AEarwa Related babble... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:24n11xhq]When you wrote PoN the second time, after all your academic osmosis, did you picture 10th-11th Century Europe as a guideline? Or was it much more complex then that?[/quote:24n11xhq] Just realized I completely missed the second leg of your question, Erthaelion. It was actually a strange hybrid that grew of it's own volition. For me anyway, it has more the feel of the 4th century Mediterranean, with the historical depth of the 12th century. More generally, I've been thinking about Martin with regards to this question as well. The difference between his characters and mine, I think, is that he [i:24n11xhq]tries[/i:24n11xhq] to make his characters - even the brutes like Sandor - likeable. Mine all end up being these crazy inversions, where I give the [i:24n11xhq]form[/i:24n11xhq] of a favourite fantastic archetype - like Cnaiur - and I fill it with very flawed and distorted contents. I want my characters to be out and out [i:24n11xhq]troubling[/i:24n11xhq], whereas - and I in no mean this as a criticism - Martin wants his characters to be 'gritty.' I think it's just a function of our differing goals. Mine are either far deeper or far more pretentious! But Martin does have a clear moral centre with the Starks, and I think this has an overall impact on the way people identify with his characters. The only difference between his work and the rest of the mainstream in this respect is that he's actually willing to use this identification to wring his readers' hearts. It's a much different kind of 'reading buzz' he's aiming for with his works than I'm aiming for in mine - and I think much more accessible. I don't so much want to strain my readers' moral muscles as to interrogate them. Does that sound like a good/fair characterization? Too flattering, maybe? It's always a temptation to try to reason away what might just be a flaw in your work... view post


posted 04 Feb 2005, 09:02 in Author Q & AEarwa Related babble... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

What about Achamian and Esmenet? More generally, I wish I could share your optimism regarding human nature, Faelcind. I'm not saying the goodness you refer to doesn't exist, only that it's a luxury of relative stability and material well-being. The more trying the circumstances become, the more rare it becomes - as things like the original First Crusade demonstrate. There's a growing body of evidence to the effect that we humans, males in particular, have evolved to be violent. Studies of preliterate societies have shown death-by-violence rates for males running between 15-65%. view post


posted 04 Feb 2005, 13:02 in Author Q & AEarwa Related babble... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I just want to say that discussing this has helped gain some important perspective - on my craft and on my characters. When I was workshopping the book before publication, the 'too cerebral' complaint came up several times regarding the characters. They are all, with the exception of Serwe, highly intelligent, self-conscious individuals. Could this be a factor? We actually have a pretty deep cultural bias against reflective intelligence in our society. Think of how many movies you've seen were the jock-hero with 'common-sense smarts' confronts the hyper-analytical bad guy. Hell, even [i:1vmdjlp5]The Lion-King[/i:1vmdjlp5] fits this model. Add to this a cerebral [i:1vmdjlp5]treatment[/i:1vmdjlp5] of cerebral characters, against a backdrop of indeterminacy that makes 'picking sides' impossible - it's amazing anybody can even stand the book! :wink: view post


posted 05 Feb 2005, 11:02 in Author Q & ACharacter heights in Earwa by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

There's a difference in height between ketyai and norsirai, but this is dietary, not intrinsic. And I'll do what I can to keep Achamian from hearing that slam, shorty... :wink: People think you have to go to New Zealand to visit Hobbiton. I just need to step out my door in the morning! view post


posted 05 Feb 2005, 12:02 in Author Q & AEarwa Related babble... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The [i:1epd81x7]last[/i:1epd81x7] thing I would want on this board is groupthink, Faelcind! I enjoy this stuff, since it forces me to think about things that have been implicit for some time. You're initial complaint was that the characters were unrealistic to the extent that none displayed any compassion, and you think compassion is more fundamental to human nature. When I asked about Akka and Esmi, you told me why you found it difficult to like them - you answered a different question. As for their flaws, the rule of thumb I followed is: "What does not kill makes one [i:1epd81x7]stranger[/i:1epd81x7]." We humans tend to develop pathological responses to sustained stress - even when suffered at far lower levels than that suffered by Akka and Esmi. Despite all these, they remain deeply compassionate characters. The thematic focus of the book, which is the war between instrumental and religious reason (a war I take no sides on, btw) does lead me to focus on the 'users and abusers' more than most novels, and as you yourself mention, I think that might have coloured your overall impression of the characterization. The type of group solidarity you mention, and the ways that instrumental thinking short-circuit it, is actually an important part of the story. Especially with regard to Cnaiur. Otherwise, I'm definitely no believer in the blank slate. Kellhus, remember, is the product of a two thousand year breeding project. view post


posted 05 Feb 2005, 20:02 in Interviews and ReviewsAnd this is how viral marketing works, right? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I've been biting my nails regarding TWP's fate in the US for the past few weeks now. My US publisher, Overlook is working hard to capitalize on the twin nods TDTCB received at [i:1gajghg5]Publisher's Weekly[/i:1gajghg5] - especially their assertion that the mainstream media had [i:1gajghg5]overlooked[/i:1gajghg5] it. They were positively overjoyed with that one! The next couple of months will be the test to see whether fiction review editors at places like [i:1gajghg5]USA Today[/i:1gajghg5] and [i:1gajghg5]People[/i:1gajghg5] actually give the books a whirl. If that does happen, there's a chance that they could enjoy the same kind of success in the US that they seem to be enjoying here. Who knows? I still might get that mmpb deal... 8) view post


posted 06 Feb 2005, 14:02 in Author Q & AEarwa Related babble... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:2th1j5j1]I think you could breed some incredible intelligent and atheletic human beings its the lack of emotionality that I find unlikely. I beleive their pretty deeply rooted in the chemisty of the brain, but then Kellhus shows signs that his lack of emotionality is a cultural learned fascade. I am very curious to see how you that line plays out in the story. [/quote:2th1j5j1] The bottom line is that no one knows. Think of how fast the modern human brain evolved without artificial selection. All it would take is one fortuitous mutation. Since so many 'emotion-circuits' seem to be routed through the amygdala, it really could be the case that suppression of emotions through breeding (think of the temperment differences between dogs) is far more plausible than their physical abilities. All you would need is one sociopath, for instance, and you could eradicate things like guilt and shame from the entire population. But you're right, is it is [i:2th1j5j1]fantasy[/i:2th1j5j1]! Gives an author a pretty big fig-leaf to hide behind, I'd say :wink: view post


posted 06 Feb 2005, 14:02 in Author Q & ACharacter heights in Earwa by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I think Larry is working on that short super-model thing, ilana ... :wink: In the Three Seas proper, cereals (primarily in the form of breads and gruels) provide the main source of calories for the populace, supplemented by meats where possible. In the Middle-North, cereals are likewise important, but there is generally more meats... "Meats back on the menu boys!" view post


posted 07 Feb 2005, 13:02 in Author Q & AEarwa Related babble... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Anyone feel a breeze? :wink: view post


posted 08 Feb 2005, 12:02 in Author Q & AEarwa Related babble... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The bottomline, though, is that we really don't know how much it would take to suppress emotions. Sociopaths, for instance, don't seem to experience the 'social emotions' the way normal people do. If this does have something to do with an underdeveloped amygdala, and other emotions share similar neurological convergence zones that act as choke points, then it could simply be the result of a single happy mutation. And don't forget the ancient art of neuropuncture... :lol: view post


posted 08 Feb 2005, 12:02 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I have no clue. You struck world-building bottom with that one! Who knows, though, he might find a place as things develop. :wink: view post


posted 08 Feb 2005, 12:02 in Interviews and ReviewsAnd this is how viral marketing works, right? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I always thought it would be a great idea for a gag book to do an 'Aphorisms as the should be' things. Patience is a virtue or a vice. Good and bad things come to those who wait. And so on... view post


posted 13 Feb 2005, 21:02 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

All told, I would say the population of the Three Seas would hover around 75 million - just somewhat larger than that of the Roman Empire circa 300CE. Since Zeum has a big role to play in the future books, I'll take a pass on answering that one :wink: Unions between the races were rare, as you might imagine, but some interbreeding was inevitable. The first recorded mention of it is in the [i:1j5psfej]Isuphiryas[/i:1j5psfej], which relates the tale of Sirwitta, an Emwama slave, who seduces an unamed Cunuroi noblewomen, who later conceives a daughter, Cimoira. This is going waaay back, though, before the Womb-Plague. The Nonmen have a peculiar notion of religion, which will be revealed in due course. As for the skin-spies, strictly Verboten! view post


posted 18 Feb 2005, 21:02 in Author Q & AA Conception of Virtue by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Good question, and now that I think about it, there really is no place where it comes up in the books, though it's actually in the original draft. The Scylvendi believe in the Outside, but since Lokung, their God, is dead, they don't believe they have any place in it. And they hold all outlanders accountable for this... The Dunyain is a far different story. :wink: view post


posted 18 Feb 2005, 21:02 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Like I say, I want Zeum to be a mystery, to be a 'pregnant unknown' similar to 'Cathay' for the Persians or the Romans. As for the population, don't forget that this number includes Nilnamesh, which is very densely populated. The story of the Womb-Plague will actually be in the appendices to TTT. Suffice to say it was a consequence of the Cuno-Inchoroi wars. I'm actually finding it difficult trying to decide what information can be 'safely' released, and what to jealously hold onto. I want the whole cycle of books to be a long, gradual revelation of the world of Earwa, and even though I feel I've come so far with finishing PoN (well, almost finishing!), there just seems to be so much more story! Also there's the fact that I quite often rework things in the course of incorporating details into the narrative proper. Just so you know, WL, much of what I say isn't final until it actually finds itself in print. Evil, I know... :twisted: view post


posted 21 Feb 2005, 16:02 in Author Q & AAppendices by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Welcome to the board, Maltaran. I think the only thing missing from the UK edition is the "Languages of Earwa" appendix, which as far as I know, isn't available anywhere on the web. It will, however, be included in the appendices to TTT. At least if I have my druthers... view post


posted 21 Feb 2005, 16:02 in Author Q & Aso what is Scott Bakker reading? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Personally, I loved [i:26xslgfo]The Scar[/i:26xslgfo] - it's my favourite Bas Lag novel so far. I'm presently reading [i:26xslgfo]The Iron Council[/i:26xslgfo], and the jury's still out. Next up fantasy-wise is [i:26xslgfo]The Twins[/i:26xslgfo] by Gary Wassener. But what has me captivated right now is John Cheever's collection of short stories. I'm actually [i:26xslgfo]rationing[/i:26xslgfo] my reading so that I can draw it out for the length of time it takes me to complete TTT. He writes these elegant - even economical - vignettes of individuals and families in and about New York. There's just something about his writing - it strikes a tone that seems at once entirely common and yet utterly unique. It's pretty much as far from fantasy as you can get, but you asked! As far as Fantasy goes, aside from Martin, who goes without saying, I would always recommend Erikson, if you enjoy big, brash, action-driven yarns, or Tad Williams' [i:26xslgfo]Memory, Sorrow, Thorn[/i:26xslgfo] if you enjoy more character-driven stories. view post


posted 21 Feb 2005, 16:02 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Nilnamesh is Ketyai with a Satyothi admixture, and though it was incorporated into the Ceneian Empire (the famous fortress of Auvangshei, which for denizens of the Three Seas is synonymous with the ends of the world, is actually a Ceneian fortress), it's grip was shortlived and dubious. Otherwise, and I cannot emphasize this enough, trees [i:35qpqjcv][b:35qpqjcv][u:35qpqjcv]DO NOT[/i:35qpqjcv][/b:35qpqjcv][/u:35qpqjcv] have any particular significance to the Nonmen - as I think will become apparent in TTT. The motif you're picking up on plays a far different roll... :wink: view post


posted 22 Feb 2005, 13:02 in Author Q & Aso what is Scott Bakker reading? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I have Hobb right above my computer in fact, though she keeps getting pushed bumped by other reads. The Cheever book, Mith, is called [i:2dsbjy0x]The Stories of John Cheever[/i:2dsbjy0x], which, if I recollect aright, is the one that won the Pulitzer. view post


posted 25 Feb 2005, 15:02 in Author Q & AA Conception of Virtue by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

They don't believe they have any afterlife. You have to remember too, that just as most religious people have no consistent, systematic understanding of 'noumenal world' that brackets the mundane, neither do the Scylvendi, nor the Inrithi, though the latter have many scholarly accounts of what awaits them. Given this overarching indeterminacy, there's three basic options: Oblivion, Damnation, or Redemption. The idea is that without the interest of the various 'agencies' (as the Nonmen call them) inhabiting the Outside, one simply falls into oblivion - dies. Certain acts attract the interest of certain agencies. One can, and most Inrithi do, plead to redeemed ancestors to intercede on their behalf, but most give themselves over to some God. Doing so, however, puts their souls entirely into play, and the more sketchy one's life is, the more liable one is to be 'poached' by the demonic, and to live out eternity in everlasting torment. I could go on, but most of all this will be covered in the encyclopaedic glossary in TTT. And to answer your question, Maltaran, yes, Lokung is indeed the No-God - though this is not necessarily how the Scylvendi themselves see things. view post


posted 25 Feb 2005, 15:02 in Author Q & Aso what is Scott Bakker reading? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

No, I haven't. I reread GoTM and DG a few months back so that I could dive into MoI, but I got sidetracked - with Cormac McCarthy, if remember correctly. The Cheever stuff is totally slice of life. view post


posted 25 Feb 2005, 15:02 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

As for your first query, WL, you know damn well what I think of questions of the form 'Will X be in TTT?' I feel like you've squeezed too much out of me as it is! :wink: As for the numbers of Nonmen, it's not something I've really thought about... hmm. Definitely less than the human population, though they did exercise absolute authority over all of Earwa. The history of the Nonmen definitely something I intend on putting some work into as the series progresses. view post


posted 04 Mar 2005, 21:03 in Philosophy DiscussionCan someone clarify Postmodernism for me? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

'Post-modernism' is a big term to define! I think the simplest way to look at it is in terms of [i:1pe9dqbo]norms[/i:1pe9dqbo]. Norms are the little rules, the procedural repetitions that characterize everything we do, and make it possible to determine whether we're doing it poorly or well. Now at some point toward the end of the 19th century, thinkers and artists began to become very self-conscious of the norms that govern [i:1pe9dqbo]representation[/i:1pe9dqbo]. They took Kant's point that genius remakes the rules seriously. Suddenly the rules that implicitly govern, say, perspective in painting, began to seem 'tyrannical.' Why have a consistent vanishing point? Why have a consistent perspective at all? Why not take multiple perspectives on a face and combine them in a single image? Why use canvas? Why use paint? Why compose anything at all? Why not just find something and slap it on a pedestal? When the rules become explicit, you suddenly realize that you're [i:1pe9dqbo]following[/i:1pe9dqbo] them, and you can decide to do something different. So long as the rule remain implicit, it doesn't seem like you're following at all. You're just doing things how they're done. Post-modernism arises out of this self-consciousness, this making explicit, of representational norms. The rule of thumb is that a work is post-modern to the degree to which it follows or defects from the norms of representation. Post-[i:1pe9dqbo]structuralism[/i:1pe9dqbo], which eventually gave post-modernism its primary philosophical rationale, is closely related. view post


posted 04 Mar 2005, 21:03 in Philosophy DiscussionAMERICAN POLITICS... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Just a couple of questions for Amadah: What is the social function of money? What is the purpose of economy? What determines our obligations to others? view post


posted 04 Mar 2005, 21:03 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

TTT is coming along GREEAAAAAT!!! At least, I hope so. It's so hard to gain any perspective on one's writing... Lots of questions as always, WL, most of which I ain't touching. TTT follows the revelatory arc of the previous two books nicely, I think, and will provide partial answers, at least, to much of what you ask. The Siqu need not be Quya, though they could be. The ability to see and work sorcery is heritable, though far less so in Men than in Nonmen. The Quya are in fact hereditary sorcerers. view post


posted 05 Mar 2005, 17:03 in Philosophy DiscussionCan someone clarify Postmodernism for me? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:wvk5d7dz]Aren't they then by following the post-modernist ideas, subtly following those rules that go against following the traditional representational norms? [/quote:wvk5d7dz] You bet. Personally, I think post-modernism hit the end of its road sometime ago. Defecting from received norms is all well and fine, but there's certainly nothing innately original about it, and it's as prone to following into implicit patterns of repetition as any other approach - especially if it's taken up without any real understanding. There's also the problem you find in fine art, where the defection from received norms has gone so far that the resulting works are largely incomprehensible to the vast majority. Postmodernism has literally succeeded in removing art from the community, and leaving only ornament and commodities in its wake. Then there's the 'practice/standard' problem. Without clear norms, there can be no clear standards, and without clear standards, there is no way to define a practice [i:wvk5d7dz]as a practice[/i:wvk5d7dz]. [quote:wvk5d7dz]Also, are writers such as Foucault and Derrida post-modernists or post-structuralists?[/quote:wvk5d7dz] Post-structuralists, so-called because they succeeded the structuralisms of Saussure, Levi-Strauss, Althusser, and others, which were so modish in French academia in the early 60's. view post


posted 06 Mar 2005, 16:03 in Author Q & AFrench Edition of TDTCB by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thanks Tol h'Eddes, and welcome to the board! Fleuve Noir only has French territorial rights. Amazon.ca is able to sell it because individual sales are exempt from those rights. That cover, though... I gotta tell you... view post


posted 06 Mar 2005, 16:03 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Which is the case in point! It looks pretty certain that TTT will be pushed back three or four months. Penguin wants to organize another book tour, and they want to promote the book when the competition isn't quite so stiff. I'll let you know when I hear anything definite. Jack is actually entirely redesigning the princeofnothing.com site, Mith. Once its up I hope to start adding some new content - I'm too monomaniacal to do more than one thing at a time... view post


posted 06 Mar 2005, 16:03 in Philosophy DiscussionCan someone clarify Postmodernism for me? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

That's typically how the post-modern finds expression, Faelcind: in varying forms of relativism, usually with some ersatz emancipatory interpretation attached. The bottomline, though, is that it suits the facist as well as the liberal. I could go on and on about the corrosive effects of this... I don't think anything has come along to replace post-modernism yet, Grantaire. I don't have a clue as to what the 'next big thing' will be. [quote:4p8cxc0v]I see nothing wrong with post-modernism, at least in the sense that by going along with long-held assumptions, there are many things to overlook- at least in the sense of deconstructionism, looking into the multiple meanings and interpretations.[/quote:4p8cxc0v] I'm not sure what you mean here... view post


posted 06 Mar 2005, 16:03 in Philosophy DiscussionAMERICAN POLITICS... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm glad you like the books, Amadah! But doesn't mean I'm going to let you off the hook with these questions... :wink: It's just been my experience that these kinds of debates break along certain 'hinge positions,' which once clarified, allow the real issues to come to the fore, and cut down on cross-purpose sniping - which resolves nothing at all. [quote:29zs1n4o]That question is much more than just seven words...! Please clarify, if you would. I am accustomed to the phrase "social function of money" as being part of the rhetoric of communism/socialism, which I reject out of hand. [/quote:29zs1n4o] This answer puzzles me. Social function is neither 'left' nor 'right.' Money does in fact have a very clear, very powerful social function. I was just wondering what you think it is... [quote:29zs1n4o]Of "economy" or of "the economy"? The latter, I am assuming, and you probably mean in the broadest of senses, but please clarify. [/quote:29zs1n4o] Let's say [i:29zs1n4o]our[/i:29zs1n4o] economy, then. What's the point of our economy? What should it be doing? [quote:29zs1n4o]Our own values which are, in turn, thrust upon us by the societies in which we live (in the general sense) or upon a particular situation in which we find ourselves (in a more specific one). [/quote:29zs1n4o] So our obligations to others are simply the result of how we're socialized? Which is to say, if I feel obligated to others, and you don't, there's no fact of the matter that makes me or you right or wrong? view post


posted 06 Mar 2005, 17:03 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Well, ultimately all these delays are my fault for not adhering to the original schedule. It [i:hrphq37p]should[/i:hrphq37p] be coming out this April by that schedule. :shock: But I refuse - [i:hrphq37p]refuse[/i:hrphq37p] - to let go of something I'm not satisfied with. Otherwise, they take many different factors into account. Take fall releases, for instance. It's not that they know specifically that Martin's book is coming out, it's that they know that generating publicity for a relatively new author is more difficult because more 'big name' titles get published at this time. Or consider dearth of reviews for TWP. With TDTCB, we had several months to circulate galleys, and the book was reviewed everywhere. Or consider the way TWP got screwed in the last SF Site best of lists... As much as the delay sucks, so long as its only a few months, I'm actually all for it. It'll leave time for reviewers. It opens up publicity opportunities. It'll help synchronize the release dates across countries... And it gives me some extra time for fiddle-farting! All told, I'll have come out with three big ass books in three years and eight months here in Canada. In three years exactly in the UK. And in around 18 mos. in the US. That ain't all that bad, is it Mith? view post


posted 06 Mar 2005, 20:03 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Before, synchronizing didn't much matter, but now with Amazon there's quite a bit of inadvertant poaching that favours the early release. In the bigger scheme, though, I don't imagine it's that big of a deal. The marketing is a different story - Penguin has big plans - but like I say it all ultimately comes back to me. I have to give them enough time to do that kind of groundwork - and like I say, if I'd been able to stick with the original schedule, the book would be on shelves within two months! But the bottomline was that I didn't know what kind of a writer I'd be when I signed all those deals. Some can punch out manuscripts in months, others yearly, others bi-yearly, and others even longer than that. It turns out that I've been a year-and-a-halfer trying to meet the dates set in a yearly contract. That's the ultimate reason all these dates have been pushed back. I do apologize! view post


posted 06 Mar 2005, 21:03 in Philosophy DiscussionAMERICAN POLITICS... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I agree, these things don't typically resolve in anyone abandoning their position wholesale - there's nothing in the subject matter that can command consensus, as there is in, say, scientific debates. But then it all depends on how those involved approach the issue. Personally I've had my head turned right around, as have many people I know, through the course of debates. So long as those involved both agree from the outset, that odds are they're mostly wrong (and odds [i:19dx7n5a]are[/i:19dx7n5a], in fact, that we are mostly wrong) then the argument need not be about defending conclusions, as opposed to [i:19dx7n5a]considering[/i:19dx7n5a] them. I'm not sure how to rephrase the question about the social function of money. Are you saying you don't know what it is? If not, it would be a good place to start. As for the purpose of our economy... Isn't it simply to work for the benefit of all its members? That's why most of the world's centrally planned economies 'failed,' is it not? They were more detrimental to their members than market economies were. I'm not sure I understand you position regarding values. You're a relativist who thinks you are nevertheless essentially right? I'm not sure that makes sense! :) Even still, wouldn't you say that dependency entails obligations? view post


posted 06 Mar 2005, 21:03 in Philosophy DiscussionCan someone clarify Postmodernism for me? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Ah, but that is for history to decide! It certainly exploded the boundaries of what was possible in the beginning, but I think it quickly developed into a blind alley, both philosophically and artistically. view post


posted 06 Mar 2005, 22:03 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm thinking January. They told me that it would be a good time to promote the book anyway. Like I say, when I find out the final, final, final date ( :wink: ) I'll post it right away. All I can say is that I'll do my best to make it worth the wait! Failing that, I'll settle for baffle and disturb.... :twisted: view post


posted 07 Mar 2005, 15:03 in Philosophy DiscussionCan someone clarify Postmodernism for me? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Do you mean French post-structuralism, Faelcind? The single biggest problem with this family of philosophies is that they have no way of accounting for the obvious [i:2sgibqc3]cognitive differences[/i:2sgibqc3] between claims. Even worse, when misunderstood (which is easy to do) they lend the impression that cognitive differences are at best, apparent, and at worst, the expression of some oppressive social apparatus. Since our ability to arbitrate between competing claims is - to put it mildly - crucial, I'd say this makes them disastrous. And I say this as someone who spent almost ten years as a 'Branch Derridean.' view post


posted 07 Mar 2005, 15:03 in Author Q & AFrench Edition of TDTCB by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Not with the Fleuve Noir, edition. The covers for the Overlook and Penguin Canada editions were actually my idea. Typically, though, publishers are careful to keep us yahoos as far from the art department as possible! How is the translation, by the way? view post


posted 07 Mar 2005, 16:03 in Philosophy DiscussionAMERICAN POLITICS... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

All societies require hierarchy to function: the actions of some must be subordinated to the imperatives of others. In our society, money is the primary vehicle of this subordination. People DO things for money. Given that societies are basically vast networks of interdependent actions, this makes money [i:1r5m09ah]the[/i:1r5m09ah] social lynchpin. Wouldn't you agree? Regarding the purpose of our economy, if you think the economy [i:1r5m09ah]should[/i:1r5m09ah] work for the benefit of all the individuals, then you think that should be the purpose of our economy, right? I get the impression that you're waffling out of fear that you'll be drawn into a trap! :wink: So I'll be upfront. I think the libertarian position is little more than a rationalization of the status quo, one that derives its intuitive force from our socialization into the ideology of 'individualism.' Upon reflection, however, I think it becomes as clearly wrongheaded as communism. Handing everything over to the market is as obviously a recipe for oppression as is handing everything over to the state. Where the communists conflate the market with oppression, the libertarians conflate the state with oppression, where I think it's empirically obvious that both state and market can both be oppressive and enabling, depending on the circumstances. I say this just so you know where I stand. All I can do is show the lines of reasoning that brought me around from beliefs much like yours. None of them are decisive, and even if you remain unconvinced, you'll at least have a better sense of what it is you're arguing against - which can only be a good thing. There's no trap, just reasons. Should I proceed? view post


posted 08 Mar 2005, 18:03 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Nothing firm was mentioned the last discussion I had with my editor at Penguin, but she did say that this time she wanted to coordinate the release with Overlook in the US. So I think the chances are pretty good. It would be nice to do an American tour as well... view post


posted 08 Mar 2005, 20:03 in Philosophy DiscussionAMERICAN POLITICS... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

That was me, BTW. I guess I should've used Notepad after all! view post


posted 13 Mar 2005, 18:03 in Author Q & AExcellent pointers to promote TTT by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Excellent ideas, one and all. I haven't checked out the TTT thread yet, but I can tell you the single biggest obstacle already: ME. :roll: I've drawn up many a 'to-do' list like this, but I just don't seem capable of the multitasking required to diligently execute them. I am a true absent-minded monomaniac (and it causes me endless troubles teaching as well, believe me!). For instance, I spent alot of time with Larry over at wotmania last summer, doing my best over the period of several weeks to take advantage of all the different opportunities to interact with the most excellent folks at that board, and I would be surprised if I finished a dozen pages that I've kept from that period. I think the time was well spent - very well spent - but it brought home to me yet again my inability to write while preoccupied. This is why I gotta be big: to be able to afford the assistant the I need to get big! :wink: Regardless, once the draft of TTT is out of my hands, I will definitely revisit all of this and run it by my publicist. I've been arguing the importance of the web for two years now, and I think there's already big changes happening in the way books are marketed - ways you may all be rolling your eyes at in the near future! At Time Warner, they actually had a meeting to discuss what I did with Larry! (creepy, when you think about it). The content of the website will be updated with material from all three books [i:342f7z71]sometime[/i:342f7z71] in the near future... Let me get back to this :wink: view post


posted 13 Mar 2005, 18:03 in Author Q & Aso what is Scott Bakker reading? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

When I quit smoking cigarettes... not a word for almost eight months! Otherwise, I rarely get 'blocked,' where I can't write anything, but I get distracted, where I can't seem to write much, or simply stupid, where I write all kinds of stuff I simply can't stand! And then there's the binges... :wink: The key to me has always been the same. Wake up at 5AM. And do not, under any circumstance 'wait for inspiration to come.' Inspiration is the product of pounding one's head against the computer screen, not watching Oprah. My problem is that 11 years of working midnights to put myself through school has made sleep a dicey proposition for me. Some time I can't get to sleep [i:18j3lfcd]until[/i:18j3lfcd] 5AM. view post


posted 13 Mar 2005, 18:03 in Author Q & AFrench Edition of TDTCB by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

That is strange about the page count. Do you think some stuff was cut out? I STILL haven't received my author's copies... view post


posted 13 Mar 2005, 18:03 in Author Q & AOn Inrithism by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

There's actually going to be a nice fat entry on this in the TTT encyclopedic glossary. Like real faiths, it isn't consistent, and it contains within itself any number of divergent threads. The big thing to remember is that Inrithism is founded on Sejenus's reinterpretation of the traditional Kunniat faiths, whereby each of the old gods are thought to be 'aspects' of [i:1xu7lpxh]the[/i:1xu7lpxh] God. It is a 'syncretic faith,' both in theme and in practice. The Inrithi have no 'saints,' primarily because they do not parse the worldy and the divine the way we do, but they do have 'Kahiht,' or 'Great Souls.' They might pray to a renowned ancestor the way a Christian might pray to a saint. Piety and the redemptive value of suffering are two of its central themes. view post


posted 13 Mar 2005, 20:03 in Author Q & AExcellent pointers to promote TTT by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Don't I know it! I feel horribly fortunate. Not many writers find themselves with a fan site within the first year of their first book. Other's have suggested that I try to 'organize' my fan base, but that just strikes me as... well... Like something [i:3h1pyst4]Kellhus[/i:3h1pyst4] would do! I'm in hock enough as it is :shock: A few months back I was horribly insecure about the future of the books - especially given my perennial problems interesting the bigger imprints in NYC. Now I think that sooner or later these books are going to be BIG, whether I want them to be or not. They're not going to be ASoFaI or WoT big - they're not accessible enough for that - but I think they're on their way to becoming 'must reads' for more cerebral epic fantasy lovers. Maybe [i:3h1pyst4]complacency[/i:3h1pyst4] is my problem... view post


posted 14 Mar 2005, 18:03 in Author Q & AExcellent pointers to promote TTT by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

High words of praise, EE! *gulp* Thank you, and thank you for pimping the books as well! As far as I'm concerned, it's all started [i]here[/i], on this board with everyone who posts on it. What is an 'Implementor on a WoT based MUD'? view post


posted 14 Mar 2005, 18:03 in Author Q & AFrench Edition of TDTCB by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Jacques! Too cool! I have to tell you, I was relieved when I found out you would be doing the translation. I didn't think they gave you any small fry... :wink: You should let everyone know some of the other writers you've translated. view post


Ad Astra 2005, Toronto posted 15 Mar 2005, 13:03 in Tour and Signing InformationAd Astra 2005, Toronto by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'll be in Toronto at the Airport Days Inn for the annual Ad Astra convention April 8-10. If it follows last years pattern, there'll be a signing session, as well as a couple of hungover panel appearances. You could also expect some real luminaries such as Robert Sawyer and Guy Gavriel Kay. Check out www.ad-astra.org for more info... view post


Radio Interview with Dragonpage posted 15 Mar 2005, 14:03 in Tour and Signing InformationRadio Interview with Dragonpage by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Michael and Evo - that crazy sci-fi duo - interviewed me for their Cover to Cover radio show, which is carried by several radio stations across the US, and should be aired 'toward the end' of this week (March 14th)! Though it's not up yet, I think the e-cast version of the show will be available at www.dragonpage.com very soon. view post


posted 18 Mar 2005, 16:03 in Author Q & Aso what is Scott Bakker reading? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The thing to remember is that we humans are barely consicous (it just seems big because its the only consciousness we know, and because the things we're not conscious of don't seem to exist), that most everything goes on behind the scenes. When you sit down and the words just seem to be there, that means that your brain's sub-modules have been churning away in your unconscious - like when you remember the name of someone the [i:2czwe3i4]day after[/i:2czwe3i4] wracking your brains trying to think of it. The key for me has always been to get my unconscious working - to immerse myself to the point where the book is the only 'problem' on my brain's plate (and to do it without entirely alienating my wife!). That's my theory, anyway! :D view post


posted 18 Mar 2005, 16:03 in Author Q & AFrench Edition of TDTCB by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

That's a phenomenal number of books, Jacques - phenomenal! I'm just glad that mine made an impression! I hope this question isn't too impolite, but what factors determine the standard fee for a translation? view post


posted 18 Mar 2005, 16:03 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

As Grandpa Plato would say, Only the dead have seen the end of war. Regarding the website, I actually hope to discuss this with Jack in the near future. I can't see much in the way of new content for awhile yet though. I actually have the completed draft of [i:3f20hb48]Neuropath[/i:3f20hb48] to rewrite after TTT is wrapped up. view post


posted 18 Mar 2005, 16:03 in Author Q & ATime for that very annoying question that many of us have by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

It looks like it'll weigh in exactly as I projected. Overall, about as long as TDTCB, but with 150 pages or so of appendices. Though I wish things would move along a little faster, I'm [i:2f3nr8xg]very[/i:2f3nr8xg] happy with how they're shaping up. So much so that I'm now officially convinced that I am sick, demented, madman. :twisted: This story really has a life of its own. It's downright creepy at times. view post


posted 18 Mar 2005, 16:03 in Author Q & AExcellent pointers to promote TTT by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

They never used to, Larry - not even a couple of years ago. Like I say, if JRRT had written LoTR in the age of the internet, things would have happened very differently. As for more wotmania stuff, I'd love to discuss this over the summer! Though I worry that I'm running out of first-born children to sacrifice :wink: EE: I guess that gives new meaning to 'my name is MUD'! :wink: What parts of Earwa seem to be generating the most interest? view post


posted 21 Mar 2005, 16:03 in Author Q & AExcellent pointers to promote TTT by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Sounds very cool, EE. I imagine the appendices to TTT would help things along :wink: view post


posted 21 Mar 2005, 16:03 in Author Q & AFriends... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

LOL! I would use reverse psychology. Tell them the book is likely too deep, too complex, too violent, and too graphic for them anyway. view post


posted 21 Mar 2005, 16:03 in Author Q & ACharacter? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Mith is right (as [i:26281094]usual[/i:26281094] :wink: ). I chose the name because he's kind of the great granddaddy of all the things that end up happening in the Second Apocalypse. Seemed appropriate, in an egomaniacal kind of way... view post


posted 21 Mar 2005, 16:03 in Author Q & ATime for that very annoying question that many of us have by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Not a stupid question at all, GH. My original answer was totally ambiguous. The actual story is about 150 pages shorter than TDTCB. TWP quite literally brings the narrative to the doorstep of Shimeh. Which is not to say that plenty doesn't happen! It's actually quite analogous to [i:13q51qmk]The Return of the King[/i:13q51qmk] in a sense. view post


posted 24 Mar 2005, 21:03 in Author Q & ACongratulations! by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

You'll have to ask Aldarion that one, Cynadar. I actually forget the context, though he does seem to take quite a beating in these parts... :roll: Welcome, to the board, BTW! view post


posted 24 Mar 2005, 21:03 in Author Q & AFrench Edition of TDTCB by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thank you for spreading the (profane) word, TH! It's strange, because I don't think anyone has bought the French language Canadian rights to the books yet. I still haven't got all this figured out yet... view post


posted 24 Mar 2005, 21:03 in Philosophy DiscussionAMERICAN POLITICS... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm still waiting to hear from Amadah, but in reply to your question of prosperity, Randall, I think you're entirely right. This comes back to my original question of what the [i:1rfvgs0f]purpose[/i:1rfvgs0f] of an economy is. I think it's clear that if it isn't working for everyone's benefit then it isn't working. For instance, what's the point of economic growth, when by and large it only benefits the top ten percent? Which has pretty much been the case in Canada and America the last 30 years. Sure household income is up for the vast majority, but when you factor in the number of people in the household working, and the number of hours worked, that increase all but vanishes for the bottom 80%. And the GDP has doubled in that time. Think about it. Anything with the word 'public' attached to it is in some state of fiscal crisis, and yet as a society, we're twice as wealthy as we were 30 years ago. view post


posted 26 Mar 2005, 13:03 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The website needs to be redesigned from top to bottom, that's for sure. Jack actually has a prototype, but he's doing it gratis while attending university. I actually have big plans, just precious little time to execute them. The idea was, first and foremost, to dedicate them to the books rather than to me, and secondly, turn them into an online resource. I want to get as much secondary, background material up as possible. I even have a historical atlas I want to put up. But as I've said, I'm a monomaniac. As soon as I try to take on multiple projects, my stress levels spike, and the wheels start to spin. I should get my wife to post about this sometime... :shock: I'm also high priest to the Great God Procrastidemus. So I guess what I'm saying is that these are great ideas, and would probably go a long way to helping the books, I just have no clear idea when I'll be able to throw myself at them 100%. I'm reluctant to incorporate much on the website as it stands, because it won't be standing long, and fleshing out the new website will take a substantial time investment. I'm paying my rent with my writing now, which means after TTT I have no choice but to throw myself at [i:2ilcz9sr]Neuropath[/i:2ilcz9sr]. Perhaps after NP... But then my leave of absence from Vanderbilt runs out, and I [i:2ilcz9sr]have[/i:2ilcz9sr] to finish my dissertation or risk kissing off my PhD. And then there's [i:2ilcz9sr]Aspect-Emperor[/i:2ilcz9sr] to consider... Aieeee! :wink: Am I the only one who's in the hole project-wise? Please tell me no. Regarding your questions, WL. 1) You've hit bottom with the Thoti-Eannorean question. I genuinely have no idea. 2) So far, the deepest the histories go is to the Fall, which is to say, the arrival of the Inchoroi in the last Age of Nonmen. At the moment, that feels plenty deep, and it precedes the Tusk by quite a few thousand years. I haven't been looking at the history of Earwa so much from the standpoint of an 'absolute observer,' as from from the standpoint of what is known or thought to be known at the time of the Holy War. This isn't a rule that I adhere to, just a tendency I seem to have largely followed. There are things from the time of the Tusk I do want to flesh out, such as the conflict between the Old Prophets and the Shamans, the question of how the surviving Inchoroi brought Chorae, the 'Tears of God' to the Five Tribes before the Breaking of the Gates, and the Cuno-Halaroi Wars (Halaroi is the Nonman name for Men). Stuff like that. 3) Nymerik is actually the King of Aorsi, and kinsman to Celmomas (my office is an absolute disaster and I can't find the chronicles, but Kuniuri, Aorsi, and Sheneor were once a single kingdom which was divided among three sons - all Anasurimbor). As for Celmomas's son, you actually learn a fair bit about him in TTT. view post


posted 31 Mar 2005, 21:03 in Philosophy DiscussionAMERICAN POLITICS... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:x04g7c7e]Scott, can something as nebulous as "economy" have a true purpose? I think that organizations, institutions, individuals, etc. can take part in the economy for a desired and specific purpuse. In the same way, I think that those same entities can enter into the economy with intent to create some sort of purpose for it. Still, it seems to be a highly fractured purpose. [/quote:x04g7c7e] To say that an economy has a purpose is simply to say there's things that economy [i:x04g7c7e]should[/i:x04g7c7e] do. Or you suggesting that there's nothing in general that an economy should do, Alric? For instance, should it not secure the needs of the individuals who comprise it? Should it not maximize their opportunities? Should it not reward creativity and hard work? And so on... view post


posted 31 Mar 2005, 22:03 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The atlas is in the form of colour bitmaps right now, with the various political regions indicated with colourized transparencies (they look cool), but the maps as a whole don't have enough resolution to allow closeups. I've started a more detailed 'base map' but it is a very time consuming process, and I've been obsessing over what I think needs to be obsessed over the most - the [i:3ahkpvz1]story[/i:3ahkpvz1]... :wink: The Gates of Earwa are exactly that: a series of fortified passes through the Great Northern Kayarsus, which are most definitely natural. Injor-Niyas has been closed to Men for a long, long time. So long, no really knows what's happened, or what's happening there - aside from the Consult. view post


posted 01 Apr 2005, 10:04 in Philosophy DiscussionAMERICAN POLITICS... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

There's much I don't understand in your reply, airhed13. You start off by saying that we shouldn't expect anything of our economy, but then you finish by saying that we [i:1jzhau30]should[/i:1jzhau30] leave it alone so that it can do what it does best - in other words, that we should expect it to create wealth. Should we expect anything of [i:1jzhau30]society[/i:1jzhau30]? Or how about a corporation? Or how about any institutional mechanism consisting of multiple individuals? It seems quite clear that we can and that we do. Also, what is 'the natural flow of commerce between parties?' What's 'natural' mean here? And what counts as an 'add-on,' which, as I take it, is something 'artificial' and imposed from the outside? How can we distinguish the one from the other? view post


posted 04 Apr 2005, 12:04 in Author Q & ABakker vs. Kellhus in Cranium by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Did I say that? :wink: Kellhus is hands down the most difficult, and aside from Conphas, the most fun character to write. But it really is a case of working those sections over and over. I think the philosophy background comes in handy - even though it doesn't give you squat in the way of answers, it lends a certain conceptual mobility, allows you to see the logical structure of the arguments people make, stuff like that. [i:38f58ycx]And[/i:38f58ycx] it makes it easy to cop a 'tone of profundity.' Otherwise, it really does feel like I'm wrestling in broth and noodles any time I cogitate. view post


posted 04 Apr 2005, 12:04 in Author Q & Aso what is Scott Bakker reading? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I remember my wife coming to me after reading an article about how, in terms of professions, poets were the most likely to commit suicide, philosophers were the most likely to divorce, and novelists were the most likely to be alcoholics. I set my drink down, blew a kiss to the girl across the room, put the revolver back into the drawer, and told her she had absolutely nothing to worry about! :wink: view post


posted 04 Apr 2005, 12:04 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Cool quote. As good ole Bill Faulkner used to say, the past is never dead, it ain't even [i:35t0o0vr]past[/i:35t0o0vr]. view post


posted 07 Apr 2005, 21:04 in Author Q & ABakker vs. Kellhus in Cranium by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Characters like the Emperor I just write in real time. :wink: view post


posted 07 Apr 2005, 21:04 in Author Q & AFrench Edition of TDTCB by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

They're probably somewhere in intertransit transit limbo then. I usually don't receive anything until long after I've forgotten I was supposed to receive something! I'll ask my agent if he's heard anything. Thanks, Jacques. view post


posted 08 Apr 2005, 11:04 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Sorry about the delay, WL. I started the first sentence of this response twice only to be terminally interrupted. 1) Men only tried to enter Earwa through the Northern Kayarsus, though no one knows why. The Cunuroi have no record of having to defend the gates from any race other than Men. 2) The southern Mansions were entirely obliterated. 3) This is something I've toyed with for years, but I've yet to come up with anything I'm happy with. It's what I call a 'high pressure' detail. It needs to be something uncommon, evocative, and threatening... An animal totem just won't do it. Your other questions I must refrain from answering for reasons of National Security. 4) The 20 year lapse was in the cards from the very beginning. Among other things, I wanted the First Holy War to be [i:1u8q5708]history[/i:1u8q5708] by time [i:1u8q5708]The Aspect-Emperor[/i:1u8q5708] begins. That's pretty much all I can say at the moment. I think the motives will become clear once the book comes out, if not at the end of TTT. view post


posted 11 Apr 2005, 15:04 in Author Q & AWill the Fanim finally get a break? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Welcome aboard, Fanim. It's too bad you're asking a question that's impossible for me to answer! :wink: I am curious, though, as to what you mean exactly by 'break.' Is it simply a matter of giving the Fanim a military victory, or do you think I'm somehow taking sides? view post


posted 11 Apr 2005, 15:04 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

'Mansion' is used both as a term to describe Nonmen cities, and much as the way 'House' is used - as an epithet for dynasties, families, etc. In my old notes the Nonmen also used totemic devices, but in the multi-form manner that characterizes much of their art. So for instance, a Nonmen representation of a wolf would likely show it occupying two or more postures at once, like sleeping/running. Having Nonmen blood means many things - things, which come to the fore when the Nonmen take a more active role in [i:1jerzw1i]The Aspect-Emperor[/i:1jerzw1i]. Sometimes I feel like you're the dirty old man in the strip bar sitting on sniff row shouting 'take it off!' :wink: view post


posted 15 Apr 2005, 14:04 in Author Q & AWill the Fanim finally get a break? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

That clears it up for me perfectly, Fanim. This is an excellent topic to raise, by the way. Character, theme, and story are the great motivators in narrative. You want what you depict to advance at least one of these in some way (I try to aim for what I call 'triple plays'), and if they don't then they [i:22azhamh]tend[/i:22azhamh] to come across as extraneous. So in [i:22azhamh]Dune[/i:22azhamh], for instance, it's not the need to provide 'equal time' that motivates the depictions of the Emperor and the Baron, but the plot. I'm just telling a much different story (and I'll also note that although it's patterned on the First Crusade, it definitely isn't a retelling). The Fanim really only impinge on the story through the historical narrative sections (which I see as being far more critical of the Inrithi), otherwise, I actually wanted them to be elusive and exotic 'outsiders' from the point of view of the main characters. Since in a lot of ways I'm trying to recapture the quasi-racist 'euro-biases' that marbled my adolescent reading (and obsessive rereading) of Howard, Burroughs, Tolkien, I do worry that people will read the conflict too literally, and assume I was actually endorsing those types. I originally thought this might be your concern. Some good questions, H. The Kianene were actually quasi-Inrithi before their conversion to Fanimry. As for the desert, I think the map shows that most of the nations, with the exception of Khemema, are not desert. Shigek and Eumarna are the two great breadbaskets of the empire. The presumption that many Kianene have 'gone soft' as a result of leaving the desert is indirectly referred to now and again. I actually used Don Engals most excellent [i:22azhamh]Alexander the Great and the Logistics of the Macedonian Army[/i:22azhamh] (which would be an RPGer's dream as far as source texts go) quite extensively throughout the course of writing, but the fact is that logistics don't make for much drama, so I follow the 'manna from heaven' tradition of military historical narrative. We do get an interior glimpse into the Fanim world in [i:22azhamh]The Aspect-Emperor[/i:22azhamh], Tattooed Hand. Like I say, in the historical narrative sections, I resort to quasi-racist cliches and types, both heroic and otherwise, trying to mix up assumptions, and to indirectly show how arbitrary and self-serving they actually are, even if they seem 'fair and balanced' to those sharing the selfsame prejudices. view post


posted 15 Apr 2005, 14:04 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

It's feeling pretty breezy around here! And somebody, please, wipe down the pole... :wink: To the dirty old man in the front row, the elongnation of the figures you mention simply refers to the way they were stylized. To the rest of you: just keep drinking. I pretty sure there's more than enough coming off to keep you interested through the next show. And if not, just remember, the bouncer has lots of these scars... I'm thinking about calling it [i:kp4y37cy]The Thousandfold G-String[/i:kp4y37cy] now! view post


posted 15 Apr 2005, 14:04 in Interviews and ReviewsEdmonton? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I probably won't find out what my tour schedule will be for the TTT release for a few months yet, DK. They sent me to Calgary last time. I'll post again as soon as I find out. view post


posted 19 Apr 2005, 15:04 in Author Q & AWill the Fanim finally get a break? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:37aa1cp6]I hope it didn't seem like i was criticizing, i was just wondering if i wasn't seeing something...[/quote:37aa1cp6] Criticism is one of my favourite things, especially when it hurts! I do, however, reserve the right to defend my work with rationalizations... :wink: As for other military source books, I've assembled quite a few over the years, but none that immediately strike me as recommendable. Let me ponder. [quote:37aa1cp6]You, sir, have clearly not watched Jerry Bruckheimer's reality TV production "Saving private Jessica Lynch"...[/quote:37aa1cp6] LOL! view post


posted 19 Apr 2005, 15:04 in Author Q & ATrade Paperbacks? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Apparently Penguin is considering a reprint of the original tppb, but that may never come to fruition. But Overlook's tppb version, which has the identical design, comes out the beginning of June. I imagine it shouldn't be hard to get through Clarkesworld... You know, it's funny, but I grew up reading mmpbs, and now the books don't actually feel 'like-for-real-published' until I get them in mmpb format. It's definitely my preference for reading. I end up twisting and dog-earing them until they look like cabbages. You should see my tLoTR copies! view post


posted 19 Apr 2005, 15:04 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Welcome to the board Triple-J! I'd be lying if I didn't say your question concerned me, because I am very keen to make things as realistic as possible within the given fantastic framework. No one has mentioned these concerns to me before, so at this stage, all I can do is explain what I was trying to do... and leave the question as to whether I succeeded or not for subsequent discussion. With Kellhus's physical abilities, I didn't think there would be a problem because it's stated several times that he's the product of a millenia long breeding project that focussed on both intellectual and physical ability. I thought it would be evident that his physical skills dwarfed those of the worldborn to the same degree as his intellectual ones. Otherwise, I couldn't help but note that your dissatisfaction with Kellhus's believability seems to grow in direct proportion to my slow retreat from his POV over the course of TWP - something for which I have my own narrative reasons. My thought was that I had shown enough of Kellhus's abilities to make his subsequent achievements at least prima facie believable - but there's also the question of whether [i:2yuafz1o]Kellhus is really a prophet[/i:2yuafz1o]... Could it be that you're interpreting this quite premeditated (on my part) ambiguity regarding his character as a shortcoming in my execution? view post


posted 28 Apr 2005, 16:04 in Author Q & AFeelings for our protaganist by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Kellhus is my fave, hands down. If you think about it, [i:3m8b1dy3]the[/i:3m8b1dy3] protagonist for the past century or more has been the interpersonally marooned individual trying to salvage meaning in a world that seems meaningless. This is the modernist hero. The cool thing about fantasy is that its the only genre where the world is indubitably meaningful (that's what makes it [i:3m8b1dy3]fantastic[/i:3m8b1dy3]). Kellhus let me turn the modernist hero right on its head. There's a certain satisfaction in that... :wink: view post


posted 28 Apr 2005, 16:04 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thanks for the kind words, Triple-J. Lots a crazy stuff happens in TTT! I am pretty obsessed with motivating characters and events, so if something does strike you as unmotivated, ask yourself what [i:1fepxmch]else[/i:1fepxmch] I might up to. There's innumerable ways to skin the motivation cat! [quote:1fepxmch]How much of a role would you say Mog Pharau himself plays in TTT?[/quote:1fepxmch] As much as he has to... :wink: [quote:1fepxmch]Can't think of a anything more disconcerting for Dunyain than not coming before.[/quote:1fepxmch] Which raises the question, 'What [i:1fepxmch]comes before[/i:1fepxmch] the darkness that comes before?' More darkness, of course... [quote:1fepxmch]Am I right in thinking the Mandate are not the only School/group of human sorcerers that has knowledge of the Gnosis at this present? [/quote:1fepxmch] Yes. :wink: view post


posted 28 Apr 2005, 16:04 in Author Q & ANow that I've finally gotten TWP, a couple things. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Just realized how late I am getting to this. Sorry for the delay, Grantaire - and all for a series of coy non-answers. I hope TWP is treating you well in the meantime! :twisted: The metaphysics are something that TTT actual covers a great deal of (short of any editorial axes), so I'm going to hold off on answering this one. Regarding the No-God's true nature - I doubt I'll ever be able to answer that question! :wink: As for the Dunyain and the impossibility of escaping past determination: for the Dunyain the question is never one of overcoming the past so much as it is of [i:11e1eu4c]overcoming the present[/i:11e1eu4c] by getting oneself into the [i:11e1eu4c]right relation[/i:11e1eu4c] to the past. view post


posted 28 Apr 2005, 16:04 in Author Q & AWill the Fanim finally get a break? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'd very interested on getting my hands on some translations of those. Any collection you know of, TH? view post


posted 03 May 2005, 17:05 in Author Q & AOn the subject of Chorae by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The logic of magic is analogistic: like affects like. If the arcane spoken is undone by the Chorae, it follows that the arcane speaker be undone as well. That was the original idea anyway. I hope to get into this much deeper as the books progress. view post


posted 03 May 2005, 17:05 in Author Q & AChorae bowmen by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Yeah, Chorae bowmen fire actual Chorae, either fixed on crossbow bolts or arrow shafts. I have no idea as to the aerodynamic feasibility of this, but hey! grant me a little suspension of disbelief! :wink: As others have said, Chorae are actually very hard to lose because of the Few's ability to see them. view post


posted 03 May 2005, 17:05 in Author Q & ATrade Paperbacks? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Purses, or mmpbs? :wink: An update on those tpbs coming out at the end of this month: I just received my author copies, and it turns out that Overlook went with the S&S UK covers (you know, the ones with Cat Stevens on the cover), and not with the Penguin Canada ones. Drag. view post


posted 03 May 2005, 18:05 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The Aporos is something I want to flesh out further in future books. The basic idea is this: the Quya first developed the Aporos in the prosecution of their own intercine wars, but it was quickly forbidden. The arrival of the Inchoroi allowed several renegade Quya to pursue their sorcerous interrogations, leading to the production of tens of thousands of Chorae, which were used throughout the Cuno-Inchoroi wars. The Aporos possesses a contradictory, or negative, semantics, and as such is able [i:35ovkmz6]only to undo[/i:35ovkmz6] the positive semantics of things like the Gnosis, Psukhe, Anagogis - even the Daimos. Aporetic Cants have no other effect. Salting is actually a kind of side effect. I would rather wait until TTT comes out before discussing the metaphysics - it has to do with the Mark. view post


posted 03 May 2005, 18:05 in Author Q & AWill the Fanim finally get a break? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Very cool, TH! Thank you as well, Mith. I will definitely check all this out my next research day at the university library. I'm particularly interested in the contemporaneous accounts - its a good way to get a feel for the medieval psyche. view post


posted 03 May 2005, 18:05 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I want to thank ALL of you for your support. Just recently, the statistics (apparently, only one out of ten new writers succeed) have started sinking home - this is a hard gig to make work - and I have no doubt that if wasn't for you all spreading the profane word, I'd be marking papers and 'educating' college students. Nobody wants that... :wink: view post


posted 10 May 2005, 16:05 in Author Q & AHow does the Consult fit? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Welcome to the board, Egaragoras! Outright 'inversion' was never my intention - too mechanical for my tastes - just to explore what real human beings might suffer if condemned by history and happenstance to wear various kinds of archetypal skin. It was my intention, on the other hand, to stay true to the [i:3jm0cy65]form[/i:3jm0cy65] of epic fantasy - how would you write a literary exploration of the form otherwise? Dragons and darklords forever, I say! :wink: As for the Consult, it should be remembered that we know very little of them by the end of TWP - and nothing at all of their [i:3jm0cy65]motivations[/i:3jm0cy65]. That changes in TTT... Rest assured, they're quite as f**ked up as everyone else. :wink: Some pretty interesting speculations, otherwise. view post


posted 10 May 2005, 16:05 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Yeah, I say that May date myself not to long ago, gyrehead. I was under the impression that it would be coming out in March in the UK. As far as I know (and as I've learned, I'm often the last to find out!) the Canada and US date will be set sometime in January 2006. The Nonmen were always long-lived, WL, but it was the Inchoroi who [i:1m4sr84f]made[/i:1m4sr84f] them immortal (the Womb-Plague and the final Cuno-Inchoroi war was a direct consequence of this). This is a tale for another day, however. :wink: view post


posted 10 May 2005, 16:05 in Author Q & AChorae bowmen by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:2alio09h]The missiles of pre-gunpowder antiquity in our world included armour piercing bodkins, smoke/fire arrows, even whistling arrows. I don't think a small trinket attached somewhere to the shaft or behind the business end of the missile stretches credulity. [/quote:2alio09h] It was one of those things I just took on faith. Strange the way the more the realistic the fantasy world, the more difficult it is to build! view post


posted 13 May 2005, 13:05 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I've actually been considering your first question myself. My original idea was for the Aporos to be a 'dead and ancient' branch of the esoterics. I'm still leaning in that direction, but I find the notion of a sorcery based on a semantics of contradiction and paradox almost too juicy to resist! As for the Dunyain, they themselves destroyed their own historical records to better immunize themselves from their 'darkness riddled' past. As a result, no one knows what their original intentions might have been. view post


posted 20 May 2005, 13:05 in Interviews and ReviewsEdmonton? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'll make sure that I palm you a fiver, Fell! :wink: Still no word on the tour specifics yet. I probably won't know anything until the fall. I'd actually like to get a chance to get up to U of A as well. view post


posted 20 May 2005, 13:05 in Author Q & ASome issues about chronology... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

This is part of a problem that was discovered a while back (does anyone remember by whom?) and I spent a good two months cursing and muttering like Gollum. It's actually a BIG problem (if remember aright, bigger even than what you depict), which is a result, I think, of all the various drafts I had on the go when I pulled together the final version. (I had a devilishly difficult time writing and rewriting the beginning of TDTCB and then woe with my copy-editor afterwards). As it stands, it's at the top of the list of 'Things to Do for the Revised Edition.' I still get a twinge in my gut when I think about it. I could have used you way back when, Bovine Buddha! (I absolutely love that name, BTW). view post


posted 20 May 2005, 13:05 in Author Q & AReleases by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Awesome. I [i:315bdc31]still[/i:315bdc31] haven't seen any of my author copies for any of the foriegn editions, though (aimless griping). I think I'm going to start introducing myself as 'Air Scoot Bakkair...' :wink: view post


posted 20 May 2005, 13:05 in Author Q & AA note on other races by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

No Nonmen POVs, at least not in PoN. This actually wasn't the case with the first draft of the book, interestingly enough. The world 'opens up' to a much greater extent in [i:1xgoy9c2]The Aspect-Emperor[/i:1xgoy9c2] - all the races will be embroiled by the end. This is largely just a coincidental by-product of the way the story evolved, but I've come to see it as cunning and manipulative on my part. :wink: There are some extensive entries regarding the Nonmen in the Encyclopaedic glossary to TTT, though. I'm keen to see what you all think about it! Going through and hammering sense out of the morass has turned out to be very enjoyable. Makes me want to start up a D&D session. view post


posted 20 May 2005, 13:05 in Author Q & AAbout Nonmen by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The Nonmen are generally 'good,' (in their own myopic, self-interested way), but the problem is that they are all going insane. They're immortals with mortal brains, and the problem is that the longer they live, the more the traumatic events they suffer crowd out their other memories. A group of them, called the 'Erratics,' actually actively seek out trauma as a means to remember. Since the Consult is good at providing horrifyingly unforgettable experiences, a number of Erratics have joined them. Mekeritrig is one of them. view post


posted 20 May 2005, 13:05 in Author Q & AScott Quoted by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hilarious! I gotta admit, 'Gee, I AM big!' dashed through my thoughts for a moment, but then I realized the quotes aren't 'vetted for bigness' in any way, but just contributed by individuals. Still, it's pretty gratifying, even if I am full of crap! :wink: view post


posted 20 May 2005, 14:05 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I actually haven't worked out anything much regarding the origins of nimil (which in my notes, I simply call 'Nonman steel'). The same goes for the motives of the Nonmen in sharing the Gnosis, though the first to do so (Gin'yursis, I think) was an exile, and so I suspect had personal motives. You're starting to tap bottom quite regularly, White Lord. view post


posted 23 May 2005, 16:05 in Author Q & ASome issues about chronology... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I [i:by3181li]want[/i:by3181li] to do a revised edition, but it all depends upon my publishers. [quote:by3181li]While we're on the topic, how many people have actually proofread your books before release? Apart from your friends and family (which are important as well), how many people "in the business" have actually read it? And, more importantly, how have you responded to their views and criticisms?[/quote:by3181li] For TDTCB, I've literally lost count. That book was [i:by3181li]scrutinized[/i:by3181li] - (and I even asked my copyeditors to pay close attention to the timeline!). As for criticisms, I'm an addict. I feel at sea unless I'm getting sharp critical feedback. I seriously consider everything, but since everyone's response is idiosyncratic in some respect, I'm inclined to pay most attention to the common criticisms that come up. [quote:by3181li]Still, have there been any "There's too much explicit violence/sex in this chapter"-opinions?[/quote:by3181li] In every book so far. I intentionally write the drafts 'balls to the wall' (no pun intended) in various respects, and then pare things back accordingly. There's lots of disgusting little things that were cut. view post


posted 23 May 2005, 16:05 in Author Q & AAbout Nonmen by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

That's actually a tricky question, Linguist. The simple answer would be 'Yes!' though the thematic differences probably couldn't be any more drastic. Elves in Middle-earth are obvious idealizations of Northern European Men, whereas the Nonmen in Earwa are desentimentalized [i:1n8tfvb4]caricatures[/i:1n8tfvb4] of these idealizations. Here, as elsewhere, I made the 'reality principle' my rule. The Nonmen are not simply 'burdened' by their tragic history, they are disfigured by it. As for your more specific questions, I'm going to play coy. There's lots to be learned in the Appendices of TTT, and I don't want to spoil anything! :wink: view post


posted 23 May 2005, 16:05 in Author Q & AA Question About Facts.. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Nothing, absolutely nothing, is set in stone until it finds itself published in the books. But otherwise, I've been working on the world for some twenty years, and though I rarely check my notes to answer questions (being the lazy ass that I am :wink: ), I'm not sure I've out and out made anything up in the course of answering questions. This doesn't make the questions any less valuable, because I find the whole Q&A process to be a great way to get me thinking about the world again (I tend to be either 'on story' or 'on world'), and it has the effect of firming things up. People [i:f70in10i]have[/i:f70in10i] hit world-building bottom several times. Especially that White Lord character... :wink: view post


posted 23 May 2005, 17:05 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Encouraging words, Diarmuid, and heartily appreciated. Things have been looky kinda sketchy as of late, and I keep trying to remind myself that the books haven't even been out for a year in the US yet. Part of the problem with this biz is that everything is so bloody deferred. It'll probably be three or four more years before I know whether I'll be able to hold down my end of a mortgage or not. After 20 years, the student lifestyle is wearing thin. :roll: view post


posted 23 May 2005, 17:05 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm already running into problems (of the groaning editor kind) with the sheer [i:f5z2yetl]length[/i:f5z2yetl] of the Appendices to TTT. These past few weeks have been blowing my mind, world-wise. I sometimes find it hard to believe I took all that time to cook this stuff up! When I write my Bio, I'm going to call it [i:f5z2yetl]Confessions of a World-junkie[/i:f5z2yetl].... view post


posted 23 May 2005, 17:05 in Author Q & AI have a very deep and philosophical question... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Only when I hear the song... It's a coincidence you would mention the big 'T': my wife and I drove through there yesterday, and were astounded to discover that Tilsonburg possesses not one, not two, but [i:2tc41rdx]three[/i:2tc41rdx] Horny Tim's. Canada's favourite American corporation. :wink: view post


posted 28 May 2005, 15:05 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thanks for the vote of support SEF. I still haven't heard anything back regarding the manuscript, so we shall see. I'd probably have better luck with whiskey. [quote:2ykd2ugi]My question is, when it comes to catching arrows, is Kellhus that fast or is he that precise?[/quote:2ykd2ugi] Both. He's been bred for exceptional reflexes and spatial awareness. [i:2ykd2ugi]Equilibrium[/i:2ykd2ugi] was a pretty cool flick, I thought. [quote:2ykd2ugi]Anyway, is the Encyclopaedic Glossary to TTT the only one you intend to compile, or can we expect others in the following series? [/quote:2ykd2ugi] It'll be a work in progress, until the end of my days, I suspect. [quote:2ykd2ugi]1. About The Sagas, what exactly are they? Is there any correlation with the northern European sagas? Just how accurate (historically) are they, and how widespread/popular? Also, is there any mention of Anasurimbor exploits in them? [/quote:2ykd2ugi] I'm afraid I'll have to leave this one for TTT. [quote:2ykd2ugi]2. You said all the Cunuroi in the south were exterminated. But do you include Zeum in the "south" as well, or only the Three Seas? [/quote:2ykd2ugi] Zeum as well. [quote:2ykd2ugi]3. From your comments about Inchoroi responsibility for the immortality of the Nonmen, and their brains that decay after five human lifetimes, is it right then that their original lifespan was confined to about 400 years? [/quote:2ykd2ugi] I don't have anything defiinite, but 400 hundred years has been what I've thought... How did you know that? view post


posted 28 May 2005, 16:05 in Author Q & AK or S?? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

My original idea was to have a layered nomenclature, with the Sheyic versions of different names rendering hard K's as soft C's (parallel to the difference between latinized version of Greek names, where things like the original Kyklops are rendered as Cyclops). But at some point in the naming frenzy I got lazy, and whatever systematicity I originally had got lost in the shuffle - I always told myself that I would 'straighten in out later' and change those hard C's (as in Cishaurim) into K's. But as a ranking priest of the Great God Procrastidemus, I was obligated to fulfill the demands of my sacred office and put it off. I've tried to straighten things out in the Encyclopaedia, but I'd be lying if I told you I was entirely happy. view post


posted 28 May 2005, 16:05 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

It's [i:10mg9op9]Cu'jara Cinmoi's[/i:10mg9op9] fault, actually, but I'll leave that for TTT... :wink: view post


posted 28 May 2005, 16:05 in Author Q & AAs a husband and father... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

As a fellow spoiler-phobe, Jora, I sympathize, but I think you'll come to find it's not as spoilerish as it might seem. Otherwise, welcome to the board! The same to you, Derek. I'm a husband, but not a father, though we do plan on starting a family. This means that I can only really imagine the difference in stakes you allude to between different types of scenes. I often find myself uncomfortable with what I write, but I usually take this to mean that I'm doing something right. I find it strange and troubling the way generic narrative can file away all the cutting edges, and make something inhumanly violent almost routine. So I try to make violence (in the non-historical sections of the book) as immediate and as troubling as I possibly can. I imagine that the stakes will change for me as well when I actually have children. view post


posted 28 May 2005, 16:05 in Author Q & ASome issues about chronology... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:2u8xdodp]Now, a follow-up question for Scott! You said that tDtCB was scrutinized, what about tWP then? Had you garnered more trust from your publisher about your judgement or was it simply due to lack of time?[/quote:2u8xdodp] Lack of time. I signed all these three book deals without any real conception of the work involved. I had 20 years for TDTCB! As for graphic depictions, I think it clearly comes down to [i:2u8xdodp]motivation[/i:2u8xdodp]. If it's graphic simply for the sake of being graphic, it simply becomes less effective, I think. And writing is all about using language effectively. view post


posted 28 May 2005, 16:05 in Author Q & AAbout Nonmen by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'd say the disfigurement is as much [i:2c4aeue2]spiritual[/i:2c4aeue2] as mental. Physically, they remain flawless. And no, there's no Cirdan Cruise Lines in Earwa. :wink: view post


posted 28 May 2005, 16:05 in Author Q & AI have a very deep and philosophical question... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Except that it's all gone nonsmoking. Healthy people have no business going to Tim's... view post


posted 06 Jun 2005, 12:06 in Author Q & AWhich works of literature inspired you? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thanks for the kind words, Ashmael. As for inspiration, the roots spread far and deep, but the biggest [i:5v28zg0e]literary[/i:5v28zg0e] influences for me would have to be Fitzgerald and a Canadian author named Ernest Buckler. But then there were so many authors I loved back in the day when I had time to actually read literature. view post


posted 06 Jun 2005, 12:06 in Author Q & AHinduism and Inrithiism by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I have a copy of the Upanishads which I reference from time to time, but otherwise Inrithism slowly grew from a melange of influences over the course of several years, and just sort of 'happened' to fall into a 'Hinduism + Catholicism' form. I never self-consciously set out to make it 'like' anything in particular. view post


posted 06 Jun 2005, 13:06 in Author Q & ASigns of PoN Addiction by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Fricken hilarious! Here's my answers to the first four... [quote:1e5cqfnp]1) Do you now drink wine from a bowl instead of a glass? [/quote:1e5cqfnp] Actually I started skipping both and going straight for the bottle some time ago. [quote:1e5cqfnp]2) Does never again having a good night's sleep seem like a steal for the Gnosis at twice the price?[/quote:1e5cqfnp] For us nonMandate types, the Apocalypse is relived every [i:1e5cqfnp]morning[/i:1e5cqfnp] (usually after a couple of cups of coffee...) [quote:1e5cqfnp]3) Are any of your pets now named Anasurimbor _______? [/quote:1e5cqfnp] No, though my cat is sometimes Anassonoccasion. [quote:1e5cqfnp]4) Have you ever said or thought "Knock it off, White Lord!" fearing that answering an abundance of questions is time spent not writing?[/quote:1e5cqfnp] Never, ever, to his face. :wink: view post


posted 06 Jun 2005, 13:06 in Author Q & AMultiplexing? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm not sure I understand the question, Sylvanus. When Kellhus falls in and out of the Probability Trance, the idea is that he's rolling back consciousness in order to exploit the modularity of brain function. Would that not count as 'multiplexing' as you describe it? view post


posted 06 Jun 2005, 13:06 in Author Q & AA question by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Welcome to the board, JJ 99uk! I've been out of the lit crit game for so long that I'm not really sure what might constitute a good primer (for me the big thing was the Bedford Critical Edition of [i:t6dc14h7]Heart of Darkness[/i:t6dc14h7], but I don't even know if that's still in print). But as long as you keep reading challenging works and asking yourself questions, it seems to me that your 'musicians's ear for literature' would have to keep developing. view post


posted 06 Jun 2005, 13:06 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hmmm, what would I say to Oprah... The evil queen of sentimentalism incarnate. :twisted: view post


posted 06 Jun 2005, 13:06 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:1wwy83mb]Just a quick question: Do the Nonmen share Men's prejudices against sorcerers? The impression I got is that they were/are deeply involved in the governing structures of the Cunuroi, so the opposite could well be true for them. Anything to this? [/quote:1wwy83mb] The Nonmen have no scriptural prohibiltion against sorcery. [quote:1wwy83mb]what can u say about the prophet Fane? Did he sanction the idea of the White Jihad?[/quote:1wwy83mb] The White Jihad was led by his son Fan'oukarji I, the first Padirajah. [quote:1wwy83mb]You said a while back that many Nonmen roam the Three Seas in search of trauma. I assume, then, that many (if not all) are present within the Holy War. Anything to this? [/quote:1wwy83mb] Nonmen don't tend to survive long in the South. Remember, the Tusk calls for their extermination as well. [quote:1wwy83mb]A question about gunpowder. Did you ever contemplate this evolution in Earwan warfare? I have mixed feelings about this, though I'd rather not see the jump in quality. To some extent sorcery is a fitting substitute for gunpowder. So what is your thinking on the matter? [/quote:1wwy83mb] Noooooooooooooooooooooooo! :wink: view post


posted 06 Jun 2005, 13:06 in Author Q & AI have a random question... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

It stands for 'Richard.' I was called Richard until I was about 4 or 5, then my pop had a falling out with my namesake grandfather, and I suddenly became this 'Scott' guy, whoever the hell he is... I don't trust 'im. view post


posted 06 Jun 2005, 13:06 in Author Q & AAs a husband and father... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Double peace. Thanks Derek. view post


posted 06 Jun 2005, 13:06 in Author Q & ASome issues about chronology... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

By 'motivation' I just mean those things that [i:1awl4tas]justify[/i:1awl4tas] turns, whether stylistic or otherwise, in the story. The rule of thumb is simply that the more justifications you have for any element, the better, since it means that it's doing multiple things - and that's the hallmark of effective writing. view post


posted 06 Jun 2005, 13:06 in Author Q & ABenjuka by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I've toyed with several ideas, but nothing concrete. A discussion about the possibility of fleshing it out came up on the board here, a while back - I'm not sure what happened. Yet another offering to the great God Procrastidemus, I suppose... :wink: view post


UK Dates posted 13 Jun 2005, 14:06 in Tour and Signing InformationR Scott Bakker in the UK by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

So it's looking like this: Sharron and I actually will be in London for about three days or so sometime late August or early September for an event or two... As soon as I find out anything more concrete, I'll post right away. view post


posted 13 Jun 2005, 14:06 in Author Q & AAdvice that works for incredibly successful authors! by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm going to have to start wearing diapers when I read these posts! I damn near crapped myself laughing (OK, so I farted, but I lit a match). Hilarious Super Frog, and Tol h'Eddes... Tol h'Eddes.... Too damn funny. view post


posted 13 Jun 2005, 14:06 in Author Q & AScylvendi magi? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Though the capacity to work sorcery is innate, it's actual use requires much training and education - something which favours literate cultures. Though its possible for preliterate peoples to practice sorcery (sorcerers hailing from oral traditions are called Shamans), the Scylvendi have such a narrow notion of what constitutes 'honourable practice,' that the few Few that are born among them all become herdsmen and warriors. They think warring with words is womanish. view post


posted 13 Jun 2005, 14:06 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:1ou8yuph]Any needle-wielding Dunyain in the books' future?[/quote:1ou8yuph] Noooooooooooooooooooooooo! Well... maybe. [quote:1ou8yuph]I have a question about those people used in kellhus' education in human expressions. Were they Dunyain who somehow failed conditioning?[/quote:1ou8yuph] Without giving too much away of the Dunyain and their organization, I would say yes. For the Dunyain, every generation is about [i:1ou8yuph]advancing[/i:1ou8yuph], closing on the absolute. The Encyclopaedic Glossary in TTT fills some of these blanks in. As for accidental intruders stumbling upon Ishual, you have to remember that it's in the long shadow of Golgotterath. Not many wandering humans about. view post


posted 13 Jun 2005, 15:06 in Author Q & AConcerning the Few by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Good questions, Esmi, and some great answers as well, WL! :wink: Just to add a little bit: I think in TDTCB you do get a lyrical description of what Achamian experienced as a child when he first glimpsed the onta. Otherwise, describing what a sorcerer 'sees,' both when looking at the world as is and when looking at the world as remade, is difficult, since the 'seeing' at stake isn't really visual, but moral and conceptual. TTT touches on these issues at several points. view post


posted 13 Jun 2005, 15:06 in Author Q & AChorae issues by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Good questions, all. Personally, I've always worried that the Chorae may come across as too ad hoc, as mere narrative conveniences that allow a happy (but not very credible) balance between the sorcerous and the non-sorcerous. But in point of fact, that role came after - the Chorae developed independently. From the outset, I've looked at each of the sorcerous branches in linguistic terms, as practices where language commands, rather than conforms to, reality. So the Anagogis turns on the semantic power of figurative analogies, the Gnosis turns on the semantic power of formal generalizations, the Psukhe turns on speaker intention, and so on. And much as language undoes itself in paradoxes, sorcery can likewise undo itself. The Aporos is this 'sorcery of paradox,' where the meanings that make sorcery possible are turned in on themselves to generate what might be called 'contradiction fields.' Since the metaphysics of sorcery actually plays a significant role in TTT, it would probably be better to postpone a more in depth discussion until then. view post


posted 13 Jun 2005, 15:06 in Author Q & AThe importance of being Kellhus by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:32tnklhp]I have greatly enjoyed the series so far, what really struck me is that for all his manipulations and "cruelty" I found that Kellhus was the only character who does not seem to doubt or question himself. He does not seem to regret only calculate. In truth this made me feel like I didn't doubt his actions and motivations, that he could be used as a measure for other men. [/quote:32tnklhp] Kelhus is a pretty deep rabbit-hole. I'm disinclined to 'explain him' because I feel like a cheeseball offering my own interpretations - that, and I'm also afraid some might take them as canonical (when the sad fact is that I lost control of the book's 'meaning' a long, long time ago). I will say, though, that the single biggest problem that arose in the first draft of TWP was that too many of my readers were [i:32tnklhp]falling[/i:32tnklhp] for Kellhus. Most of K's POV sections were inserted by me after the fact, just to remind everyone that the wheels were still turning. I wanted him to be crafty, but not [i:32tnklhp]that[/i:32tnklhp] bloody crafty! view post


posted 13 Jun 2005, 15:06 in Author Q & ANansur Houses by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

No problem, Dark Wraith! As far as noble houses go, I haven't set any numbers, but there must be at least several thousand of them across the Three Seas. All told, the caste nobility would likely run into the hundreds of thousands. But these are just guesses based on the roughly Hellenistic model I'm using for the Three Seas. There are five main castes: the nahat or hereditary priests, the momurai or merchants, the suthenti or caste menials, the kjineta or caste nobles/warriors, and lastly, slaves. view post


posted 13 Jun 2005, 17:06 in Author Q & AThe Afterlife by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Did the link WL provided answer your question, Symeon? view post


posted 13 Jun 2005, 17:06 in Author Q & AKianene by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Medieval muslims provide the primary reservoir of associations that I'm drawing on for the Fanim, yes. view post


posted 13 Jun 2005, 17:06 in Author Q & AOther authors you enjoy by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I still haven't had a chance to read the damn thing though. My 'must read' list tends to grow much faster than my 'have read' list. :roll: view post


posted 13 Jun 2005, 17:06 in Author Q & ADunyain and Poker influences. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thanks for the kind words, AleoMagus. Though I've personally played poker off and on for about twenty years, I've never actually explicitly considered Kellhus or his abilities in the light of it before. I suppose he would be a kickass player, but my guess is that he would have his potential poker buddies doing far more useful things before the chips even hit the table! :wink: view post


posted 13 Jun 2005, 17:06 in Author Q & ABenjuka by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Was that what happened? :roll: Probably for the best. The idea of an undergraduate wasting his or her summer send shudders up and down my spine... :wink: All hail Procrastidemus! view post


posted 13 Jun 2005, 17:06 in Author Q & AMultiplexing? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Well fish away! The idea for the Probability Trance as described comes (in part at least) from Daniel Dennet's Multiple Drafts Model of consciousness, where 'conscious experience' is the artifact of competition between multiple neuro-subprocessors. The Dunyain, the idea is, have developed the ability to direct and access those subprocessors - or 'Legion' as they call them - through the Probablity Trance. view post


posted 19 Jun 2005, 17:06 in Author Q & APsukhe vs The Gnosis by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

All I can say on this topic is one word. *Mum* :wink: view post


posted 19 Jun 2005, 17:06 in Author Q & AChorae issues by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I know this'll likely make me sound stupid, but just what in the hell is 'Firefly'? view post


posted 19 Jun 2005, 17:06 in Author Q & AHigh Ainon by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The ultimate source of chanv, at present, is entirely unknown. According to the word on the street in Carythusal, it's either cultivated by Jekki tribesmen on the slopes of the Kayarsus, or simply obtained by them from Xiuhianni traders from Eanna, or it's the product of the guano belonging to a mythical species talking bats. Not surprisingly, popular opinion favours the latter explanation. :wink: view post


posted 27 Jun 2005, 14:06 in Author Q & ALocal Writing Groups by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Sorry, SH. I'm sure they're out there, but I haven't the foggiest. All the workshopping I did in the day was online. view post


posted 27 Jun 2005, 14:06 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

That's all awesome news, though it's frustrating that it's too far away to see with my own eyes. I've always wanted to have a 'movie moment...' You know, how in the movies authors always accidently encounter towering display windows filled with their books. To bad this wasn't a movie... But then, taking a cap in your ass is never cool. [quote]However, something that seems a little odd is that I have never, in any store at any time, seen a copy of tWP. They're pushing tDtCB quite strongly, but they don't even stock tWP.[/quote] That would be because TWP doesn't come out until July 7th! :wink: [quote]I don't know how the sales are going, of course, but apparently your book is seen as something big by by the stores here in the Netherlands.[/quote] I knew I liked the Dutch for some reason... :wink: view post


posted 27 Jun 2005, 14:06 in Author Q & AThe importance of being Kellhus by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

It's not his fault he's so damned smart. Think about dealing with children, and how much you end up [i:o08z8iek]managing[/i:o08z8iek] them as opposed to engaging them. I'm very curious to see how this debate evolves after TTT... view post


posted 01 Jul 2005, 14:07 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

She's into affirmation and the power of positive thinking and all that crap, isn't she? It wouldn't be good. Successful people are pretty fond of taking responsibility for their success - and holding others accountable for their lack of it. It's a guilt-free recipe for living lavishly in a world where children starve. view post


posted 01 Jul 2005, 14:07 in Author Q & APsukhe vs The Gnosis by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

*mum* (nice try... :wink:) view post


posted 01 Jul 2005, 14:07 in Author Q & AThe importance of being Kellhus by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I've agreed to do a reading from TTT for a podcast, and I've settled on a pretty interesting Kellhus section. It'll have to wait until I'm finished the revisions (which will take a couple more weeks), but I think it should provide some juicy grist for the mill... view post


posted 01 Jul 2005, 14:07 in Author Q & AExcellent pointers to promote TTT by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Not yet... But I'm glad you asked! I just remembered that Penguin asked me to come up with one for their catalogue - last week... Such a bloody bonehead. I'll [i:3mogszxv]try[/i:3mogszxv] to remember to post it when I'm done. :wink: view post


posted 01 Jul 2005, 15:07 in Author Q & ALocal Writing Groups by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm not sure how I would describe my style, understood in the narrow, more technical sense. I'm a 'dense' writer, I know that (in both senses of the word!). More generally I see myself as part of a larger movement which is in the process of reconnecting popular culture to 'art.' I don't think I'm 'special' in this regard, though I do feel as though I've created something special with these books. They've felt 'bigger than me' for quite some time now. The key for me is to make the literary answer to the generic, rather than vice versa. The way I see it, there's at least two ways to challenge readers: you can confound their expectations, or you can expand them. I'm trying hard to stay in the latter camp. view post


Update... posted 01 Jul 2005, 15:07 in Tour and Signing InformationR Scott Bakker in the UK by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Life, as always, has found a way to screw things up. The good news is that my wife has just landed a plumb job with Oxford University Press. The bad news is that all our travel plans for this summer have been cancelled. We just have no idea what her schedule will look like. view post


posted 06 Jul 2005, 21:07 in Author Q & AParallels between Inri Sejenus and Jesus Christ by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Ah, such a clever trap. :lol: First Deerow says "I hope Mr. Bakker has more than coy answers to give on this one," which makes me evasive if I don't answer. Then Echoex says "no writer worth the paper he writes on would be so generous as to confirm or deny such a question," which makes me a hack if I do answer! I guess I'll settle for hack: The parallels you mention are intentional in several obvious respects, I think, but in an organic rather than a schematic sense. I never drew up lists of 'Jesus attributes' or anything like that, which I then self-consciously applied to Kellhus. All the parallels, to Christ, to Muhummad, and to Buddha all came to me in the course of writing - whatever seemed to work. So I guess you could say they're not [i:237isn01]intentionally[/i:237isn01] intentional. Hmm... Perhaps I should have said 'evasive hack.' :wink: view post


posted 06 Jul 2005, 21:07 in Author Q & AExcellent pointers to promote TTT by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hey, I owe Mith huge... He started a lot of threads in the early days. And if it wasn't for him, I wouldn't know the release dates for half my stuff! :wink: Speaking of which, did I ever send you a book, Mith? view post


posted 06 Jul 2005, 21:07 in Author Q & ABakker vs. Kellhus in Cranium by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Cnaiur was a close second in TWP. Otherwise, it always seems to change. This guy stymies me here, that gal stumps me there. view post


posted 06 Jul 2005, 21:07 in Author Q & Aso what is Scott Bakker reading? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm an on again off again fan of the Vinyl Cafe on CBC Radio... Sometimes the cheese flies pretty thick though! view post


posted 06 Jul 2005, 21:07 in Author Q & AWomen and the Schools by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Damn good question, CC. Sexism and institutional inertia are the implied causes I give in the book, but given the power involved, I suppose it stands to reason that someone would test that taboo sooner or later. Hmm... You might have just given me a good rationale for a couple of things in [i:3575ouqp]The Aspect-Emperor[/i:3575ouqp]. view post


posted 06 Jul 2005, 21:07 in Author Q & ALocal Writing Groups by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I think it started with the Enlightenment, generally, and the institutional entrenching of critical inquiry. Over time, this made European culture more and more self-conscious of the norms that governed artistic practices. It's hard to break a rule you don't realize you're following, and painfully easy to break a rule you know you're following. At some point, 'rule breaking' and 'originality' became conflated, and exploring the nuances of [i:43tojuuh]rule following[/i:43tojuuh] fell by the wayside. As a result, the 'aesthetic high ground' became less and less accessible to the masses (because specialized training was required to follow the proliferation of new rules), and popular culture was stripped of an important part of its spark. view post


posted 06 Jul 2005, 21:07 in Author Q & AThe importance of being Kellhus by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Yep... I don't know all the details yet. I asked maus99 to wait until I was finished with the final revisions. view post


posted 06 Jul 2005, 21:07 in Author Q & APsukhe vs The Gnosis by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Bring it up again after TTT comes out, and we'll discuss... Till then, *mum* :wink: view post


posted 07 Jul 2005, 19:07 in Author Q & AExcellent pointers to promote TTT by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Interesting... I've signed numerous books for Canadian distributors, and quite a few 'bookplates' (which are just stickers they affix to the books after getting me to sign them) for others, so it's entirely possible, I suppose. Otherwise, here's the catalogue copy for TTT, as promised: [b:1767lh6k]*TTT & TWP SPOILER ALERT*[/b:1767lh6k] [quote:1767lh6k] Only Shimeh remains. The Padirajah has been slain, and the heathen Fanim have fled in disarray. One final march will bring the Holy War to the City of the Latter Prophet. But so very much has changed... Using godlike insight and ruthless deceit, Anasûrimbor Kellhus has conquered the hearts of all, including the harlot Esmenet, who now shares his bed. Only the barbarian, Cnaiür, and the sorcerer, Achamian, continue to hazard doubts. But where Cnaiür topples ever deeper into madness and wanton violence, Achamian is compelled to yield the secrets of the Gnosis. Not only must he protect the man who stole his wife, he must teach the most powerful sorcery known to the greatest intellect to ever walk the earth. And he fears what might happen... The final reckoning is at hand. Faceless assassin will strike in the dead of night. Kings and Emperors will fall. The sorcerous Schools will be unleashed. And Anasûrimbor Kellhus will at last confront his father and the dread revelation of the Thousandfold Thought. [/quote:1767lh6k] I like this, but I think I would prefer something less formulaic for the actual cover copy. As always, all crits are welcome. view post


posted 11 Jul 2005, 18:07 in Author Q & ADeleuze and Guattari? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Never been a fan of [i:3r5fha1i]Capitalism and Schizophrenia[/i:3r5fha1i], actually (which is to say, the Guattari stuff). It was the earlier Deleuze of [i:3r5fha1i]Difference and Repetition[/i:3r5fha1i] and [i:3r5fha1i]The Logic of Sense[/i:3r5fha1i] that I found more interesting - though I'm not sure I would 'recommend' reading either of those books! D&R, especially, was one of the most difficult books I ever read. Despite the parallel concerns of the relation between anteriority and power, I just can't say I absorbed enough of the Deleuze and Guattari stuff for it to have played an actual formative role in my work. I'd be more inclined to say that the parallels are more the result of me taking the same departure point, which is to say, Nietzsche and Freud. In terms of French post-structuralist influences in a more general sense, I would have to say that early Derrida and the Foucault of [i:3r5fha1i]The Order of the Things[/i:3r5fha1i] (especially the "Man and his Doubles" chapter) are pretty important. But in a critical sense as much as anything else. The question of [i:3r5fha1i]veracity[/i:3r5fha1i], which is almost always translated into questions of power in the French post-structural tradition, is given quite a different spin in my books, I think... I have many, many problems with post-structuralism. I am a skeptic afterall. I'm not sure any of that helps! view post


posted 11 Jul 2005, 18:07 in Author Q & AThe importance of being Kellhus by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

But this is the paradox of the 'post-human,' is it not? Kellhus is [i:3cxfta2s]different[/i:3cxfta2s] - there's no doubt about that. To say that he's 'more' or 'less' is just a matter of emphasis. view post


posted 11 Jul 2005, 18:07 in Author Q & ABakker vs. Kellhus in Cranium by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I started with the novels. I'm the guy everyone hates on the 'How to get published' panels at SF&F conventions. I literally wrote fantasy because I was a workaholic and couldn't relax without feeling productive. Then I met a friend who's old college roommate was an agent. It was literally the old 'who you know thing...' Otherwise, I [i:1biacdny]prefer[/i:1biacdny] people call me 'Scott,' Joe! I suppose I'm old enough to qualify as a 'Mr. Bakker' now, but I feel too much like the 14 year old goofball I once was to not feel like a poser when people call me that. view post


posted 11 Jul 2005, 18:07 in Author Q & AExcellent pointers to promote TTT by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

You're at the top of the ARC list, Larry, never fear! I'm thinking they'll have them printed up sometime around October or so... I've got one reserved for you too, Mith. Things have certainly come a long way in a short time. When I received the first ARCs of TDTCB I literally had to go around hat in hand to get mods and reviewers to take them! I'm going to see if I can get my hands on some extras to send out this time around. It would probably go a long way toward building some buzz... If the book doesn't suck ass, that is! :wink: view post


posted 11 Jul 2005, 18:07 in Author Q & AThe Inchoroi and the Sranc by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

That's a good idea, Jora. Remind me again at the beginning of August (when I'll be finished revising TTT) and I'll see if I can't get the material for Jack, who's in the process of redoing the Prince of Nothing site right now. view post


posted 11 Jul 2005, 18:07 in Author Q & AThe No-God and the extent of the Barren Wombs by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Since the Nonmen no longer reproduce, it only affected humans. The idea has been that only the rare animal ever 'awakens' enough to develop a soul in Earwa, but that's not something I've ever explored to date. view post


posted 11 Jul 2005, 19:07 in Author Q & ADeleuze and Guattari? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Interesting thesis! Sometimes I get so caught up with the tension between the scriptural and the fantastic that I lose sight of all the other ways the question can be parsed. When you get a chance to read TTT, I think you'll see why I'm so interested (I almost feel like I played into your hands!). So by all means, fire away with your questions. An interesting sidenote: When Penguin Canada made their offer for [i:2fjlmbol]The Prince of Nothing[/i:2fjlmbol], the primary reason they cited was that it would be the first major epic fantasy release in Canada since Kay's [i:2fjlmbol]Fionavar Tapestry[/i:2fjlmbol] - which, if I remember aright, they originally published. view post


posted 18 Jul 2005, 14:07 in Tour and Signing Informationquestion by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Sorry for the late reply diarmuid: it's been a while since I've nipped into this forum! In answer to your question, all I pretty much do is answer the phone and say either yes or no to my publicist. Unfortunately, the phone doesn't ring all that much. view post


posted 18 Jul 2005, 15:07 in Tour and Signing InformationAny Chance of a Worldcon appearance? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I had no chance of making this year's Worldcon (too much rash, not enough scratch, I'm afraid), but the LA Worldcon is a definite possibility. I'm hoping to get invited to World Fantasy (which will be in driving distance), but I still haven't heard anything. I'd love to 'remote sign' your books, SK, but the sad fact is I'm horrible at keeping on top of that stuff, and I've actually received quite a few requests. So for the sake of consistency I have to say no. How about when we do meet up, I buy [i:2it156nb]you[/i:2it156nb] the pint! Are you going to the WFC? view post


posted 18 Jul 2005, 15:07 in Tour and Signing InformationR Scott Bakker in the UK by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Well, Penguin keeps making noises about a cross Canada tour... view post


posted 18 Jul 2005, 15:07 in Author Q & AThe importance of being Kellhus by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Nothing wrong with criticisms! More than anything, I hope this board grows into an exceedingly critical place. My books deserve to be raked over the coals. I was just saying that you're doing the same thing in your interpretation: Where others are focussing on what K has more of, you're focussing on what he has less of... Who's to say which emphasis is 'proper'? view post


posted 18 Jul 2005, 15:07 in Author Q & APrince of Nothing on TV/Big Screen by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Has anyone seen [i:23cktc97]Immortel[/i:23cktc97] yet? It's a CGI/live-action French SFF film that recently came out here. As interesting as I found it, I probably spent more time thinking about how PoN could be made in a similar fashion than anything else. It's the story that would make it difficult. Books can take you places movies can't, and PoN, I think, is one of those stories that turn in important ways on things that are inaccessible to the silver screen. But the sad fact is that so very, very, very few books get made into movies. I remember reading somewhere that even if your book gets optioned, the chances of it hitting the screen are still less than 1 in 100. This puts authors in a dilemma. Since the odds of a book making it to the screen are so small, shouldn't an author simply try to squeeze as much money as possible out of any offer for movie rights? If the chances are 99% that nothing will come of it, why fuss over questions of quality and control? I know I'll be an uptight prick regardless. Even if it is only 1%, I'm too much of a control freak to sign away something so cool. view post


posted 18 Jul 2005, 15:07 in Author Q & AThe Status of Women and Some Real World Comparisons by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thank you CC. This is one of those topics I seem to take quite abit of heat on. So many fantasy worlds follow the 'Patriarchy without tears' model, which aside from being silly, could actually be construed as genuinely pernicious. In any system where privilege is arbitrarily assigned, there's going to be tears. Since all the human cultures in Earwa are branches of the same 4000 year old tree, they're all patriarchal, even the Fanim, EE. The Sranc are a different story, though... :wink: view post


posted 18 Jul 2005, 15:07 in Author Q & AThe Daimos by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Pretty much on the money, CC! The Daimos is a subcategory of the Anagogis, and though the Gnostic Schools have flirted with summoning various 'Agencies' (to use the Nonman term for gods and demons), the Daimos is largely monopolized by the Scarlet Spires. It's a powerful weapon indeed. (Wait and see!) view post


posted 18 Jul 2005, 15:07 in Author Q & APrince of Nothing in Audio Book by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Not for the immediate future. I'm not so sure it would be safe to drive to... at least with the windows down. :wink: view post


posted 18 Jul 2005, 19:07 in Author Q & AFirst volley of questions by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:3byzl1l2] Hello again, Scott. I've been hard at it for the past week, and I think I've got a few pertinent questions to fire off, the first of which, of course, is whether I have your permission to use your answers in my actual paper. Naturally, a few well-placed quotations from the author himself that I attained through direct correspondence would make the presentation infinitely more glitzy (!), but I'll understand if you'd rather I not use them. [/quote:3byzl1l2] I haven't managed to copyright everything I say - yet. So by all means, quote at will. [quote:3byzl1l2]1. Being that I am working with The Prince of Nothing in the context of Canadian epic-fantasy, my thesis largely concerns the extent to which our fantasists promote or undermine the notion of a national "mythos". What role does the nation play in your work, and if the answer is none, why?[/quote:3byzl1l2] True story. Where I grew up on the north shore of Lake Erie we had 5 channels, one Canadian (out of London, ON), and PBS, NBC, ABC, and CBS (out of Erie, PA). Since I pretty much lived out-of-doors, I was typically keen on knowing tomorrow's weather. The problem was that we preferred the American channels (primarily because we only had to point the aerial in one direction to get four channels), and they only showed the weather up to the south shores of the Great Lakes. My little corner of Ontario was always a blank space between Michigan and Ohio, so I would literally extrapolate the lines and icons to figure out what I could expect. Years after, especially once I started living in Nashville, I realized that this was a good metaphor for my experience as a Canadian in general: an extrapolation from foreign shores. I think this makes Canada a quintessentially [i:3byzl1l2]modern[/i:3byzl1l2] nation, in that our identity as a nation is not a thoughtless inheritance, but rather a self-conscious construction. You have to [i:3byzl1l2]work[/i:3byzl1l2] to 'feel Canadian,' which is why there's this sense in which Canadian identity is perpetually stuck at 'year one.' It's a conclusion that must be continually justified (which is probably why Canadians talk about being Canadians more than any other nationality I know of...) And of course, this is the revelation that Kellhus brings the Three Seas: modernity. The self-conscious representation of what comes before makes its thoughtless repetition impossible. Beliefs and biases that were once simply assumed, such as the animus against homosexuality, find themselves dragged into the social game of giving and asking for reasons (where, since they require commitment to arbitrary authorities like the Bible or the Quran, they generally don't do very well). The old, traditional imperatives, including those dealing with ethnic and national identity, become more and more meaningless, and so we fall back on those imperatives that transcend our fractured cultural backgrounds: our biological drives, which is to say, our need to feed and to fuck and so on. Consumption, as opposed to salvation or submission, becomes the central structural feature of our collective life. Our universal animality rather than our distinctive cultural background becomes more and more decisive. 'Nation,' in my work, is one of many traditional categories that Kellhus threatens to collapse. [quote:3byzl1l2]2. I tend to regard TPON in opposition to Kay's Fionavar Tapestry, largely because Fionavar serves the older colonial idea that for Canadian writers to produce the "fantastic" they must reinvoke Celtic Britain in some way. Earwa, however, is a clear departure from this. To what extent is it an assemblage of world mythologies / histories, and to what extent is it your creation? To what extent is fantasy (your own included), then, determined by what comes before the author who writes it.[/quote:3byzl1l2] There's no way to communicate period, let alone create a 'fantasy world,' without referencing some shared set of associations. The question is one of fidelity - understood in a value-neutral sense. I self-consciously chose Tolkien's 'middleroad,' as opposed to Kay's high fidelity (quasi-historical) or Mieville's low fidelity (carnivalesque) use of extant cultures. Ultimately there's no escaping what comes before. We're all oracles, mouthpieces for forces--for pasts--greater than ourselves; it's only our brain's inability to see itself as a brain that generates the illusion that things are otherwise - that we possess these bootstrapped things called 'souls' or 'minds' that somehow stand outside of things. But then that could be my new book, [i:3byzl1l2]Neuropath[/i:3byzl1l2], talking. [quote:3byzl1l2]3. Religious, linguistic, racial, and philosophical differences create troubling sense of fragmentation and otherness in Earwa. This is in stark contrast to the unity and synergy of Fionavar. Why did you create the world to be as disparate as it is? Also, being that the people of the Three Seas descended from the Ancient North, which was something of a militarily dominant hegemony, Earwa really doens't have a "golden age" to look back to. Was this intentional?[/quote:3byzl1l2] To be embarrassingly frank, I set out to outdo Tolkien (not because I thought I could, but because I'm addicted to setting outrageous goals) in something that I call 'narrative transcendence': the peculiar ability of language to construct realities. But where Tolkien had concentrated on creating a mythical reality with historical overtones, I wanted to create a historical reality with mythical overtones. Thus the absence of a 'golden age' in the mythic sense. I took our own world history, with its murderousness, countless details, and numerous strata, as my model. [quote:3byzl1l2]4. The abscence of gods is striking in these books, considering their subject of holy war. This, in combination with the textual captions which begin and set the tone for each chapter, establish Earwa as a man-made, man-written (Ajencis, Sejenus, Seswatha) man-driven world that is devolving terribly - gloriously existential. In Kay, the characters not only meet but often copulate with gods! The suggestions that come to my mind that there are any governing metaphysics in Earwa are when the plains of Mengedda "vomit up" the dead (which stumps Kellhus a little at first, being the ultimate atheist) and when Mog-Pharau's servant appears at the end. Are there gods in this story? If so, why are they abscent?[/quote:3byzl1l2] The gods in our own past were essentially explanatory heuristics: rough and ready ways to explain natural and historical events. Our ancestors anthropomorphized their world: they explained the results of what were in fact blind processes in human terms. But since natural and historical events are random and human-activity is generally not, only certain 'character types' would work. So the gods were capricious or remote or jealous or mysterious, and never forthright or even-handed or articulate--you get the picture. This is why the Hundred Gods are aleatory agencies, both inaccessible and indiscriminate. But they play more of a role than you might think. Great questions, Ryan! Keep firing if you still got ammo... view post


TTT is finally DONE! posted 29 Jul 2005, 20:07 in Author AnnouncementsTTT is finally DONE! by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

First, my apologies to those waiting on responses from me. Aside from some serious computer crap, things have been absolutely nuts around here. I'm away for the holiday weekend, which means I should be able to get caught up next Tuesday. Second, I've just sent in the final draft of [i:3683ccs1]The Thousandfold Thought[/i:3683ccs1]. There's still the copyedits and the proofs to do, but the real work is finally done. I still can't believe it. The shipping date for Penguin, Canada is December 30th; the actual pub date is two weeks later. I imagine Overlook's timing will be identical in the US. Now the long worry begins... :wink: Third, I have a pdf file of the latest draft of TTT's cover - a very appropriate blood red - but I haven't the foggiest as to how to post it. What's the procedure? view post


posted 29 Jul 2005, 20:07 in Author Q & AeXXXtremely Important questions which require answers. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:dg52n9vp]1. In reading a lot of fantasy, I have been perplexed by one common thing. In fantasy, an arm is an arm, a foot is a foot, and an eye is an eye, but a penis is almost never a penis. Instead authors come up with a bunch euphemisms; including phallus, spear, sword, rod, sex, etc. What is with this? [/quote:dg52n9vp] Well, for one, it sparks threads like these! The problem with 'penis' is that it's an effeminate word. [quote:dg52n9vp]2. What is the origin of the "peach" in reference to vagina? Did one of your friends have sex with a peach then told you, "Hey, Scott, this thing is better than my girlfriend!"? Inquiring minds want to know! [/quote:dg52n9vp] I honestly can't remember... And if I could, I'm not so sure I would want to remember here. :wink: view post


posted 02 Aug 2005, 13:08 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Good to see you posting Q's again, WL! The book is done, and life once more runs through greased grooves... right down to my coy answers! [quote:3j1z57ix]1. Is it possible for unions between Sranc and Men to have offspring?[/quote:3j1z57ix] No. Though it is possible with Nonmen. [quote:3j1z57ix]2. Would Dunyain techniques be effective on the Sranc, or any other Consult creature, with regard to controlling their engineered impulses?[/quote:3j1z57ix] In principle, there's no reason why not. It's the overwhelming power of the drives that would complicate matters, I think. [quote:3j1z57ix]PS. It's great news that TTT is done, but also unfair to have readers like yours truly suffer nervous breakdowns in waiting months for the publication... [/quote:3j1z57ix] That's OK. I'm ready to be institutionalized myself. [quote:3j1z57ix]I second WL on the abysmal interval of finished book/waiting for publication. And it comes out two weeks before my general exams. So I have to wait even longer![/quote:3j1z57ix] 'General exams'? Is that what they call comprehensives/preliminaries at Harvard, TH? Sounds like you could use some thousandfold thinking! :wink: I'm afraid the mystery of the 'Dunyain feminine' doesn't come to the fore until [i:3j1z57ix]The Aspect-Emperor[/i:3j1z57ix], CC and Lucimay. view post


posted 02 Aug 2005, 13:08 in Author Q & ATTT cover by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'll check that out H. I tried sending the file to Jack before I left for the weekend, but I suddenly can't send any files for some reason. This computer is teetering on the brink of digital insolvency - which combined with my digital illiteracy makes the situation intolerable. I'm actually going to buy a new one this week. But I'll try and see if I can't get that pdf up first... view post


posted 02 Aug 2005, 13:08 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I've come close to being lynched for being coy about releasing details, could you imagine what would happen if I got coy about releasing the [i:2b7852dj]books[/i:2b7852dj]? I'd be like Frankenstein lurching for his life, while Mithfanion led the villagers with his pitchfork brandished... :wink: I think word of mouth is the key for these books - a hearty thanks to both of you, target and Regulus! The books have only been out for a year in the US, so far, and they've already established themselves. The important thing is that they continue to grow... I gotta stop gazing into the gift-horse's mouth! view post


posted 02 Aug 2005, 14:08 in Author Q & AA Divine Wind? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Earwan's are a navel-gazing lot. But besides lacking the cultural impetus to explore, they lack the technological werewithal to manage the open seas. Which is OK, because Earwa is BIG... Leaving the rest of the world unexplored was actually a self-conscious decision on my part. In ancient times, roads ended rather than forming a self-contained network. The worlds of our ancestors were fenced by ignorance and mystery. One of the things I don't like about Martin's or Erikson's worlds is that they feel [i:j3byvvhq]global[/i:j3byvvhq], which is to say, modern. view post


posted 02 Aug 2005, 14:08 in Author Q & ACities by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Good question. The most populous city by far is Carythusal, which has nearly a million people crammed in her walls during festivals and holy days. Most of the other great cities -north or south - boast populations in the low hundreds of thousands. view post


posted 02 Aug 2005, 14:08 in Author Q & AThe Nonmen by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Chalk it up to my needlessly allusive manner of describing things. Here's a clue: since the Inchoroi used the Nonmen as the foundation for their creation of the Sranc and Syntheses, you could use some of their features to get an impression of the Nonmen's appearance. view post


posted 02 Aug 2005, 14:08 in Author Q & AThe Daimos by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

grk... bug view post


posted 02 Aug 2005, 14:08 in Author Q & AThe Daimos by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm not sure I understand the question, Lord Sarku. The Ciphrang never walked the World, if that's what you're referring to. They're entities of the Outside, through and through. view post


posted 02 Aug 2005, 14:08 in Author Q & AThe Status of Women and Some Real World Comparisons by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Almost. More the Encyclopedic Glossary. view post


posted 02 Aug 2005, 14:08 in Author Q & AFirst volley of questions by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Everyone should be free of Canada! :wink: [i:m00t6wdf]Neuropath[/i:m00t6wdf] is a near-future psycho-thriller I'm presently writing to take a wee break from the fantasy. view post


posted 02 Aug 2005, 14:08 in Author Q & APrince of Nothing on TV/Big Screen by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thanks, Atropos! I agree, CGI characters would be a mistake. It was more the atmospherics and the setting I thinking about. Everything had this cool 'confusion of the ages' vibe I thought. view post


posted 02 Aug 2005, 14:08 in Tour and Signing Informationquestion by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The only contact numbers I have are for my editors, diarmuid, and I already work them over enough! :wink: Things continue to go well, and if TTT is successful in sealing the trilogy's reputation, I suspect my promotional schedule will begin filling up. The sad fact of the matter is that the more you need to be promoted, the less promotion you get. But as I say, things look like they'll pick up. I'm actually slated to be a Canadian guest of honour at Con-version '06. view post


posted 10 Aug 2005, 14:08 in Author Q & AeXXXtremely Important questions which require answers. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:39z0r29h]1) Do you ever sit in a plush, velvet couch, while cradling a glass of wine in your claw-like fingers and idly stroking a cat?[/quote:39z0r29h] You mean like Margaret Atwood? [quote:39z0r29h]2) If you could shout one word at God, what would it be?[/quote:39z0r29h] Bitch. view post


posted 10 Aug 2005, 14:08 in Author Q & ACnaiur's prowess by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

With Cnaiur, the question has to be, [i:bukxph0p]what do you mean by defeat?[/i:bukxph0p] Certainly there would be any number of extraordinary individuals who could defeat him in physical combat - its a big world. But for some reason, I see him as standing outside the circuit of victory and defeat. In a sense, he's always already defeated, which makes him unconquerable. view post


posted 10 Aug 2005, 14:08 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:4y4fdag8]I liked that the cover did not resort to the stereotypical "Babes, blades, and barbarians" strategy that most of those $2 fantasy series go for.[/quote:4y4fdag8] So what's Serwe? Chopped liver? :wink: Thanks, Deerow and Whiteline. I'm hoping that when TTT comes out the three books will a more commanding shelf presence. A little German flag of possibilities in the midst of herculean arms and jewel-encrusted thongs. view post


posted 10 Aug 2005, 15:08 in Author Q & AThe Status of Women and Some Real World Comparisons by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:372yi1ve]What would be the implication of making the Sranc, a beastial and brutual race, an unnatural, engineered race by evil (as far as we know now) into the only matriarchial/matrilineal/what ever you are planning to do with them that contrasts with partiarchy?[/quote:372yi1ve] So juicy I'm tempted to rework things, TH! For me, anyway, the question of gender as a thematic issue in the book turns on Kellhus's absolute instrumentalism. People want to attribute the development of gender equality in the West to notions of 'moral progress.' But the sad fact is that human values evolve according to the demands of specific social contexts. With birth control and the mechanization of labour, the biological differences between the genders are no longer functionally decisive. New gender roles are required, and since consumption is the primary organizing principle of our society, we - surprise, surprise - fasten on gender values that facilitate consumption. Why shouldn't women work? Why shouldn't women own property? We're simply wasting economic advantages otherwise... Far from being the product of moral progress, gender equality, when seen from this perspective, is the product of the functional demands of mass consumer society. There's nothing 'moral' about it. Women are simply more useful when treated as equals. This is the pivotal irony that I try to focus on with Kellhus and Esmi in particular. Simply by putting the rhetoric of emancipation in [i:372yi1ve]his[/i:372yi1ve] mouth, everything becomes problematized. He literally enslaves her with liberation. And what I do with the Sranc is simply an extreme version of this self-same problem. view post


posted 10 Aug 2005, 15:08 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:9e784xmq]What I'm interested in is whether the Outside will also play a role in the books. Up to now we have seen almost nothing of it, if you discount the demon in Iothiah. So I'd like to know if we'll ever get any POV scenes featuring the "agencies" from the Outside, or at least a (more or less ) clear picture of what they're up to (if anything) . . . [/quote:9e784xmq] Ciphrangic POVs? Lay this one on me again after TTT, WL... :wink: [quote:9e784xmq]Was The God Emperor of Dune an inspiration in any way Scott?[/quote:9e784xmq] Huge, Rider - though I didn't particularly like any of the books following [i:9e784xmq]Dune[/i:9e784xmq]. They literally changed my life. view post


posted 10 Aug 2005, 17:08 in Author Q & ACnaiur's prowess by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Reminds me of what it was like doing my M.A. If I read something about a bunch of professors getting massacred in Tennessee, I'll know what happened. :wink: view post


posted 10 Aug 2005, 17:08 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I actually just realized it about three weeks ago - but then who knows when it comes to the unconscious? I'm constantly getting outwitted by my brain. :wink: Good to hear from you too, Larry. Just so you know, the ARCs should be out in a couple of months... view post


posted 10 Aug 2005, 17:08 in Author Q & ACunuroi/Inchoroi numbers by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Call me, Scott, please. Since your latter question is covered in TTT, Priest, I'll have to take a let I'm afraid. As for the numbers of Chorae, no one is quite sure how many are extant. Because the Few can sense them, most scholars assume that the present day numbers haven't dwindled too much since the Cuno-Inchoroi Wars - it's primarily a question of distribution. There's some ten thousand or so estimated to be in the Three Seas. Then there's the famed 'Chorae Hoard' of Sakarpus, and the far greater hoard amassed by the Consult in Golgotterath. No one knows how numerous the Nonmen are, only that they are dreadfully outnumbered by Sranc and Men. view post


posted 10 Aug 2005, 18:08 in Author Q & ACities by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:tpmd1dtu]When you visualize the great cities of Earwa - Momemn, Carythusal, Sumna, Caraskand, Iothiah - what visual analogies have you come to associate them with from Earth? I'm of the understanding that you at no point set out to make it that simple aesthetically, but on some level, there must be some connections, correct?[/quote:tpmd1dtu] This is actually a tough question. The problem is that I've been living in and tinkering with Earwa for so long that I've long since stopped relying on real-world models. Everyplace seems to have it's own groove or vibe or whatever, and I'm continually cannibalizing realworld details that for some reason simply seem to fit. In broad terms, the original parallels are clear enough: Nansur/Byzantines, Scylvendi/Scythians, Fanim/Seleucids, and so on, but everything has become so hybridized that they now seem pretty unique - in my imagination, anyway. It's almost as though I started cooking Chinese, Indian, French, Mediterranean, and so on, but after years of experimenting, the dishes became too distinct for those categories to apply. It seems to be a very savoury world. view post


UPDATE posted 10 Aug 2005, 18:08 in Author Q & ATTT cover by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Sorry for the delay regarding the cover. The fact is, I no longer have it. My computer died last week, and I've yet to install the harddrive into this new beast. But I did manage to send it off to Jack before it fell into a coma and slipped away. Perhaps if you all deluge him with PM's.... :wink: *passes potato* view post


posted 10 Aug 2005, 18:08 in Author Q & AThe Status of Women and Some Real World Comparisons by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:h5hbyf3k]Is that how you bring out the irony? Playing on the dual level of the context of the book and the general context of the reader?[/quote:h5hbyf3k] Ayup. There's no escaping instrumentalization, which is just to say, there's no way to escape Kellhus, whether inside or outside the book. By posing our modern emancipatory rhetoric in Kellhus's mouth, its functionality - the way it constrains and directs our actions - becomes difficult to ignore. Truth becomes an obvious instrument of domination. Simply by [i:h5hbyf3k]recognizing[/i:h5hbyf3k] what he says as 'true,' the reader is placed in the same dilemma as Esmenet. Society requires that we repeat certain actions (all the ways of consuming and producing - or purchasing and working), and since belief and desire are central to how we act, society requires our assent to certain beliefs and actions. 'Emancipation' is revealed as something Nietzschean: as merely the [i:h5hbyf3k]latest[/i:h5hbyf3k] way to be enslaved - the one we can't conceive as slavery, because we lack the perspective to see our values as anything other than 'natural' or 'just obviously true.' Wait to you see the epigraphs I chose for TTT, TH. I think you'll like... view post


posted 10 Aug 2005, 18:08 in Author Q & AA few questions . . . by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

After [i:qip4xfqx]Dune[/i:qip4xfqx], [i:qip4xfqx]The White Plague[/i:qip4xfqx] and [i:qip4xfqx]The Jesus Incident[/i:qip4xfqx] are my two favourite Herbert books. I gotta dig back into that stuff. view post


posted 10 Aug 2005, 18:08 in Author Q & AAnasurimbors as high councillors by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:2mddwq87]Scott, I was wondering, do you feel either of the two brilliant Anasurimbors would make good advisors, good councillors to a King? It's a bit of an odd question I guess but one that popped into my mind anyway. Could for instance Moenghus be the wise councillor behind the King, or do thei personal characteristics and upbringing make them unfit (or lacking in wisdom)? [/quote:2mddwq87] As I think has already come up, the first question would be one of why any Dunyain would ever put their intellect at the disposal of another's intent. I think the differences in intelligence are such that it would simply be impossible for a Dunyain to be anything other than a de facto regent, though he might pose as an advisor. We are literally like children to them - the way we will undoubtedly be to some artificial intelligence some day. Once the differences in intellectual ability become too great, then the relationship simply HAS to become manipulative. view post


posted 10 Aug 2005, 18:08 in Author Q & AeXXXtremely Important questions which require answers. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Even still, it goes well with our penicles... view post


THE THOUSANDFOLD COVER posted 12 Aug 2005, 14:08 in Author AnnouncementsTHE THOUSANDFOLD COVER by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

OK, my editor sent me a new copy and I think I finally got this figured out. view post


posted 12 Aug 2005, 15:08 in Author AnnouncementsTHE THOUSANDFOLD COVER by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Strange... I can see the cover when I view this logged in, but not when I view it as a guest. Anyone? view post


Back from the Wilderness... posted 28 Sep 2005, 22:09 in Author AnnouncementsBack from the Wilderness... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'd like to apologize for my recent absence from the web. It all started when my old computer died, which was then aggravated when my new computer died, which was then sealed when I discovered I couldn't just plug my old harddrive (with my old e-data) into my new new computer. Add holidays, psilocybin, a serious case of procrastinitis, and I managed to stay offline for what has become a record length of time. Truth be told, after three years of being very active on the web, I found the break quite therapeutic. Life was starting to seem very 'loud' for some reason. Chalk it up to fear of attention, e-fatigue, social anxiety disorder - your guess is as good as mine. As a result, I've decided to try to strike a happy medium, and have resolved to largely restrict my web presence to answering questions and complaints here. Anyway, I can see that I have quite a mountain to climb, catch-up-wise. Bear with me - I hope to chip away at the long list of pm's and q's a few at a time over the next few weeks. For those who have been continually popping back looking for answers that never seem to come, I do apologize. view post


posted 28 Sep 2005, 22:09 in Tour and Signing InformationWorld Fantasy Convention by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

With bells on, Stegoking! Though, if the tardiness of my reply to this email is any indication, you and your wife might want to pack a lunch... :shock: view post


posted 11 Oct 2005, 17:10 in Tour and Signing InformationVisiting the US? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Looks like they might be flying me out to Vancouver for the TTT release this January or February. But I'm afraid that's the closest I'm going to get for the forseeable future. I'm too much a small-fry in the US to warrant much more than a bus ticket to Detroit. view post


posted 11 Oct 2005, 17:10 in Tour and Signing InformationBakka-Phoenix this June 12th by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

What Toronto needs is someone who can handle a fricken puck in a shoot out! view post


MADISON, WI posted 11 Oct 2005, 17:10 in Tour and Signing InformationMADISON, WI by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Just a reminder, I'll be at the World Fantasy Convention in Madison, WI, from November 3rd to the 6th, so smash open the 'Break in Case of Beer' piggy bank and slouch on down! I have to warn you, though, I'm in the process of finishing up Neuropath, which means that at some point, the conversation will take a decided turn to the depressing. I know that I'm on a couple of panels and have a reading, but not much more than that. view post


posted 12 Oct 2005, 12:10 in Author Q & AZarathustra by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The conversation would all depend on just [i:100y6kfx]whose[/i:100y6kfx] herd Zarathrustra was poaching... As for Cnaiur - well let's just say that things start to get interesting in TTT. What makes him unconquerable are all the ways he's been conquered. Hmm... sound like something Zarathrustra might say... view post


posted 12 Oct 2005, 12:10 in Author Q & Athe frist draft is away by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Definitely, Ryo. It might stop [i:t8rm3js3]some[/i:t8rm3js3] of the ringing in my ears at least. Send me a quick PM. view post


posted 12 Oct 2005, 12:10 in Author Q & AA Question About Villians by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I actually put quite a bit of thought into my villains, and what, given that villainy occupies a corner of every heart, could make them stand out. It wasn't so much a 'model' I had in my mind as a narrative goal - I wanted the buggers to be offside in genuinely creepy and - in the case of the No-God - awe-inspiring ways. That was what I was aiming for, anyway. view post


posted 12 Oct 2005, 13:10 in Author Q & AAdvanced Reader Copies? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

As for the Canadian ARC's, they only give me so many copies, all of which are already spoken for I'm afraid. I'm certainly willing to ask my publicist to send out more, but I would need something to rationalize the request, like a link to a review site or the like. I'm my Canadian publisher isn't going to be very interested in sending galleys to Texas! And I don't think my American publisher even prints any up whatsoever (they're a small outfit with (thank God) big distribution. So I'm afraid you're out of luck, superkeer - sorry man. Sylvanus, if you PM me I might be able to work something out. view post


posted 12 Oct 2005, 13:10 in Author Q & ATTT cover by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Overlook will be using the Canadian covers for the hardcovers, and the UK covers for the trades. This might sound stupid, but the thing I'm looking forward the most is having all three books together on my shelf. For 20 years, its been a vagrant daydream of mine, seeing the 'vision' realized - and in such a classy (I think, at least) way. Wow. I'll probably shed a tear! view post


posted 14 Oct 2005, 12:10 in Author Q & ABooks 1&2 as PDFs by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I have no idea what would be involved - or whether the spread of Dunyainism would be such a good thing! I'll have to ask my agent. About the former, that is... view post


posted 14 Oct 2005, 12:10 in Author Q & AThe genesis of Earwa by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Great question, banjax. There's no founding spark for Earwa, at least that I can remember. As a kid I was obessessed with historical atlases - from a fairly young age. I mean obsessed. In fact, I've only ever stolen two things in my entire life: a historical atlas from my local public library, and a historical atlas from my public school. At the same time - probably thanks to Papa T - I was obsessed with making fictional maps. D&D was simply grist for the mill. I've literally created a number of different worlds, and somehow, Earwa slowly evolved from these. Starting to feel geeky for some reason... view post


posted 14 Oct 2005, 13:10 in Author Q & ACharacter heights in Earwa by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Well my wife can certainly empathize, TH (she's 5'4''). I like to say that between the two of us, we have all the perspectives covered. I've always thought of both Saubon and Maithanet being around 6'3" view post


posted 14 Oct 2005, 13:10 in Author Q & ACnaiur's prowess by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I've waited so long to answer this question that I pretty much have no choice but to say 'wait for TTT...' Insult to injury :twisted: view post


posted 14 Oct 2005, 13:10 in Author Q & ACities by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The Seljuks don't feel right to me at all... For me their association set would fall somewhere between the Scylvendi and the Fanim. But the mismatch with the Seleucids is right. I clearly draw from a basic Arabic association set, I think, with a few Seleucid frills. Must you guys make me self-conscious of EVERYTHING I do? :wink: view post


posted 14 Oct 2005, 13:10 in Author Q & ABetraying the Gnosis by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I think TTT will add an interesting spin to these speculations. It becomes clear, I think, just why it's so difficult to steal the Gnosis. The answer partly lies in the very structure of sorcery. view post


posted 14 Oct 2005, 13:10 in Author Q & A"Pragma"-tist? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

You know, I'm still waiting for someone with a linguistic background to join just so they can chastize me on the liberties I take. I'm really quite sloppy I guess, cheerfully slapping together greek and latin, and so on. Anyone interested in making a side-bet? People are so keen to make literary yardsticks of what they know that it just seems inevitable. Pragma is the ancient greek word for 'deed' or 'act,' (which is probably why Peirce chose it to describe his philosophical position of 'pragmaticism.') view post


posted 14 Oct 2005, 13:10 in Author Q & AQuestion about the ending of TWP *Spoiler Warning* by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Well, if it makes you all feel any better, I'm actually not very happy with that section myself. The ambiguity is intentional. Since I use third-person centred, the character's mindset continually colours the prose. But the whole business with the heart actually played a role with Cnaiur that I subsequently axed. So now when I read it, I always feel the missing context. Could be you're feeling it too. view post


posted 14 Oct 2005, 13:10 in Author Q & ASorcery by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Can't touch ANY of this, Cause, not without spoiling a significant portion of TTT, and subsequently being lynched. But do tell me what you think in a few months time. view post


posted 14 Oct 2005, 13:10 in Author Q & ACities by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'll take that as a resounding 'YES!' :wink: Look, just how the hell am I supposed to come across as the way-smart, all-knowing, godlike authorial intellect in conditions like this? It's just not possible. You especially, TH! Maybe if I went to one of Goodkind's boards with promises of money... :lol: view post


New Favourite Review Quip posted 14 Oct 2005, 20:10 in Author Q & ANew Favourite Review Quip by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

My old one was from a library critic, who wrote that my books "read like Gene Wolfe that makes sense." Head sweller, that one. But my new favourite is from Jon Courtenay's [i:rss4j5rc]Guardian[/i:rss4j5rc] review of TWP. You might have to read it closely, but I think you'll quickly see why... "[i:rss4j5rc]The Warrior-Prophet[/i:rss4j5rc] is a good book; with more stringent editing it could have brilliant." I'm going to be chuckling until Christmas about this one. view post


posted 18 Oct 2005, 12:10 in Author Q & ACishaurim magic essentially anagogic?? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The Psukhe is quite different from Anagogic sorcery. There's actually quite abit about this and other sorcerous topics in TTT. Just a couple of more months! view post


posted 18 Oct 2005, 12:10 in Author Q & AWritten Language by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Yep. It's an alphabetic script and there is a way to transliterate the characters. The cover artist, David Rankine, has actually encoded (so he tells me) different things into each of the covers. view post


posted 18 Oct 2005, 12:10 in Author Q & APrince of Nothing on TV/Big Screen by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Yeah. You've touched on a couple of different issues that would worry me deeply if it came to that. Personally, the fact that so many things would have to be changed to make a story like PoN work on the big screen doesn't trouble me - different mediums have different demands - it's the prospect of losing [i:2pb7pwrb]control[/i:2pb7pwrb] over those changes to someone only motivated by money that freaks me out. I think I'd have a heart-attack if I saw a version with exploding carts and cheesy one-liners! view post


posted 18 Oct 2005, 12:10 in Author Q & AConcerning Chapter Quotes by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm inordinately proud of all the epigraphs - and doubly so of TTT's - even though so many are far too opaque or devious to bear on the story in obvious ways. Just can't help myself! :wink: view post


posted 18 Oct 2005, 13:10 in Author Q & AThe Nonmen by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

It's my M.O. and I'm sticking to it! :wink: The fact is, so long as people are interested in finding out more, I think I'm doing my job well. Suspense is a multidimensional phenomena. I'm afraid I'll never be the kind of writer that gives exhaustive descriptions of things and/or people. I know some people like it, but it makes me cringe too much when I encounter it in other writing. My sensibilities just run to the impressionistic, I guess. view post


posted 18 Oct 2005, 13:10 in Author Q & ACunuroi/Inchoroi numbers by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The composition of the Consult is discussed in TTT as well. I'm only now starting to realize just how many questions I managed to answer in the beast. It probably bodes well. I'm already bracing myself for the tidal wave of questions that'll follow though! view post


posted 19 Oct 2005, 12:10 in Author Q & AMoenghus and Skiotha (and more) by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Nonmen are totally hairless, yeah. The fight between M and S was actually recapped in an old version of PoN, and until you asked this, Mith, I'd completely forgotten that I'd cut it out. If I remember correctly, in the old version M crushes his throats. It's the way he verbally manipulated the situation that left its mark on Cnaiur. view post


posted 19 Oct 2005, 12:10 in Author Q & ABashrag & Achamian by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The Bashrag get a description (impressionistic again, sorry Mith!) at the beginning of TTT, so that'll have to wait. The suggestion is that Achamian's unconventional beliefs and feud with Nautzera are the only things that prevented him from being bumped up the 'administrative class' in Atyersus. Typically, the sorcerers who join the Quorum are the most accomplished, but that isn't always the case, especially as they get older. view post


posted 19 Oct 2005, 12:10 in Author Q & AWorldhorn & Heron Spear by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I actually can't answer any of these questions. The first because facts in Earwa have the same vexed relation to beliefs that they have here in the real world. The others because they would constitute out and out spoilers. As much as TTT reveals, the feature has yet to hit the stage. :wink: view post


posted 19 Oct 2005, 12:10 in Author Q & AAdvanced Reader Copies? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

My personal copies have arrived, but I'm still waiting on the box. Truth be told, I'm actually dismayed with them, so much so that I'll probably bury the bulk of them in a hole in the back yard, or raffle them off in a contest a few months from now. A typsetting error transformed all the sentence-ending em-dashes and a good number of the exclamation marks into question marks - which means that all the moments of dramatic confrontation, where people start shouting and cutting each other off, are marred with apparently unintelligible questions. Bums me out. I was really looking forward to shipping them out to reviewers and perhaps building a groundswell of buzz on the web. view post


posted 19 Oct 2005, 12:10 in Author Q & AZarathustra by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

You'll have to tell me what you think after TTT, Lucimay! :twisted: view post


posted 19 Oct 2005, 12:10 in Author Q & AA Question About Villians by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I always duck when I reread that scene... :lol: view post


posted 19 Oct 2005, 12:10 in Author Q & ASorcery by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Yes... er, no. view post


posted 19 Oct 2005, 12:10 in Author Q & Athree seas militray strenght by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Is it evil for me to actually [i:2qmxwap2]like[/i:2qmxwap2] to keep people guessing? I think I absolutely have to as far as the Consult is concerned. With the Three Seas, I'd also point out that there's military strength and there's [i:2qmxwap2]effective[/i:2qmxwap2] military strength, and a fair portion of the latter found their way to the Holy War, but certainly not all. Otherwise, there isn't an actual number I could give you that I wouldn't just be pulling out of my ass. view post


posted 20 Oct 2005, 12:10 in Tour and Signing InformationMADISON, WI by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Not yet, though I'm getting more questions like this from editors. My agent needs to read the thing, which means that I need to finish it! view post


posted 20 Oct 2005, 12:10 in Author Q & ANew Favourite Review Quip by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

In the philosophy biz, we call them 'performative contradictions.' The nontechnical term is 'Bush administration.' view post


posted 20 Oct 2005, 13:10 in Author Q & ACishaurim magic essentially anagogic?? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

What if I'm already dry? view post


posted 24 Oct 2005, 11:10 in Author Q & AScott, I'd appreciate your take on this by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I was actually at a science fiction conference hosted by a nearby university's philosophy department. Robert J Sawyer gave the keynote speech, after which, this VERY question came up - though with the somewhat nasty suggestion that what Rob wrote was not literature. The questioner, whom I'm assuming was an English professor, said that the problem with SF being a 'literature of ideas' was that the universality of the ideas involved had a tendency to 'flatten' the characters, to rob them of the particularity that fuels the identification that's the hallmark of 'real literature.' The problem is that interest, involvement, emotional punch are all relative to a reader's tastes and sophistication as a reader. With my own work, probably one of the most common complaints I run into is that none of my characters are 'likable.' I'm pretty sure that the probability of any reader making this complaint is directly proportional to the amount of out and out literary fiction they've been exposed to. The fact of the matter is that a good number of readers viscerally identify with flat characters - they literally prefer what, for other readers, are obvious cartoon versions of what it means to be human. Some move on to embrace particularity. view post


posted 24 Oct 2005, 11:10 in Author Q & ACunuroi/Inchoroi numbers by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

He's a character in [i]The Aspect-Emperor[/i]... :wink: I should have pub dates for both books soon, btw... I hope! view post


posted 24 Oct 2005, 12:10 in Author Q & ACishaurim magic essentially anagogic?? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Oh, there's an hour or two here and there... view post


posted 24 Oct 2005, 12:10 in Author Q & AAdvanced Reader Copies? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I've sent two out to test the waters (and nothing has arrived since). If both the reviewers share my misgivings then I'll probably cook up some way to give the rest away, and wait for the final edition before sending any out to other e-reviewers. view post


You should be afraid... very, very, afraid. posted 24 Oct 2005, 13:10 in Author Q & AYou should be afraid... very, very, afraid. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

This is from the October 24th, 2005 issue of TIME: [i:219049bn]Neuroimaging is also extending into the fields of politics and commerce. Tom Freedman, a former senior adviser to the Clinton Administration, along with his brother Joshua, a professor of psychiatry at UCLA, last year founded FKF Applied Research, a company that uses fMRI to study decision making. In the run-up to the presidential election, they found differences in brain activity between Bush and Kerry voters when they were shown political advertisements. The Freedmans are also studying leadership qualities, by looking at how people's brains respond to an image of someone they would be willing to follow compared with that of someone they wouldn't. Both studies could help politicians hone their campaign messages to appeal more effectively to voters.[/i:219049bn] In other words, neuroimaging is telling politicians how to better playact in order to nonrationally persuade voters - which is just to say, how to better manipulate them. From the tone of the article, this is apparently a good thing. But don't worry, it gets even better. [i:219049bn]Corporate America, meanwhile, is hoping brain scanning can help sales. "The big question for neuroeconomics is, How does the human brain make decisions like which car to buy or what to have for lunch," says Antonio Rangel, director of the neuroeconomics lab at Stanford. Research is showing that the limbic system, which governs emotions, often overrides the logical areas of the brain, suggesting that the "rational actor" theory of economics misses deeper sources of motivation rooted in unconscious feelings and interpersonal dynamics. Instead of aiming at consumers' logical decision making processes, companies could perhaps appeal to the fuzzier side of how people feel about themselves and others around them.[/i:219049bn] In other words, rather than presenting consumers a rational choice (which they rarely do as it is), marketers are honing more sophisticated conditioning techniques - they are intentionally trying to avoid the 'logical mind,' which demands pesky things like reasons and evidence for the claims being made. And again, this is apparently an exciting new thing, another blessing from Corporate America, which just happens to own and to advertise in TIME magazine. [i:219049bn]Steven Quartz, director of the Social Cognitive Neuroscience Laboratory at Caltech, is one of many experts moving into neuromarketing. He is helping Hollywood studios select trailers for new movies by scanning viewers as they watch a series of scenes to see which ones elicit the strongest reactions in the parts of the brain that are associated with reward expectations. Quartz, who works in partnership with market-research company Lieberman Research Worldwide, is similarly scanning consumers to identify emotional reactions to TV commercials and to products' packaging design.[/i:219049bn] Of course, Hollywood has to tow the line. But TIME isn't so blithe as to suggest that this isn't upsetting some people... [i:219049bn]Neuromarketing has its share of critics. Gary Ruskin, executive director of Commercial Alert, a nonprofit group that Ralph Nader set up to monitor commercial forces in society, sent letters to the U.S. Senate Commerce Committee in July 2004 calling for an investigation into the practice. Commercial Alert says it fears neuromarketers could "peer into our brains" and control our buying behavior. Joshua Freedman of FKF says such fears are misplaced. "Some people view this like Frankenstein and brain control, but I think that science, by trying to understand what goes on in human brains, should be very freeing by helping people understand how they make decisions."[/i:219049bn] Start a paragraph with a critical worry, but rather than explore the reasons why that worry might be legitimate, conclude the paragraph with a reason why it's obvious alarmist prattle. This is progress, after all, and the knowledge gained will be there for everyone to use. This, of course, begs the question of just who will actually use this information. The average consumer has no inkling the myriad ways they're manipulated as it is (because of the 'autonomy default assumption,' everyone always thinks it's the other guy who's being played). Now we expect them to keep abreast of the latest developments in neuromanipulation? But just in case this bankrupt justification isn't enough, TIME thought they should provide another... [i:219049bn]"This technology is unstoppable," says Stanford's Rangel. That is precisely what motivated Mazziotta to set up the atlas project in the first place: with the proliferation of scanning, there was a flood of information about the brain but nowhere to put it. "Up to now there has been no way to compare imaging work done in one lab to another, or from one person to another. We needed to have some way to organize all this data." The trick now is to figure out how best to use it.[/i:219049bn] In other words, put your bucket down, there's no way to stop this house from burning. Of course, the issue here isn't one of whether the 'technology is stoppable,' but one of how we, as a society, should regulate its commercial use - just as we do every other technology. The trick IS to figure out how to best use it... But hey, Corporate America has your best interes - wait a second! That's right, they're mandated by law to serve only the interests of their shareholders, and no one else. It's just easy to forget, I suppose, what with all those ego stroking, glad-handing, utterly disingenuous commercials they beam into your home day and night. view post


posted 25 Oct 2005, 14:10 in Author Q & AYou should be afraid... very, very, afraid. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

You're the perfect person for this Echoex! [quote:2h1z293j]After all, what is advertising but the study of consumer behaviour, its results, and its theories manifested in sensory stimuli that has the very goal of bypassing rational behaviour and appealing to some emotional need? [/quote:2h1z293j] Isn't this the very definition of manipulation? It's about pushing buttons, not making a case. [quote:2h1z293j]Ultimately, there's an element of caveat emptor. Your job as a consumer is to see beyond the emotional appeal and make a sound judgement. [/quote:2h1z293j] There's the [i:2h1z293j]principle[/i:2h1z293j] to consider as well. By treating us as brains, corporations are 'cutting out the middeman' and treating us out and out like [i:2h1z293j]mechanisms[/i:2h1z293j]. Given the dominant institutional role played by corporations in our society, this is something that needs to be carefully considered. Things are bad enough. As it stands, marketing largely treats us as animals, as something to be conditioned - trained. Think about it. This is literally what it does, now that it has pretty much given up informing and arguing. 'Branding' really is an appropriate name. When you realize that you have a society bent on manipulation then suddenly the question of how 'consumer beware' fits into the moral calculus almost seems beside the point, doesn't it? Remember, [i:2h1z293j]caveat emptor[/i:2h1z293j] is pretty much the rationalization used by conmen. I think it's clear that once marketing starts intentionally circumventing rational decision-making that it has become a kind of institutionally sanctioned con game. It seems clear that we should do either one of two things: regulate the technologies and techniques used, or effectively (and all the weight falls on this word) educate consumers. Since the latter would involve teaching them critical thinking, and since that would mean lots of kids asking their parents lots of hard questions, we can pretty much guarantee it's not going to happen. view post


First Draft of Neuropath DONE! posted 26 Oct 2005, 12:10 in Author AnnouncementsFirst Draft of Neuropath DONE! by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

OK. So this is totally bizarre for me. I've actually finished a ms [i:2o9kpp2q]months before[/i:2o9kpp2q] I expected to, rather than months after. I have angered the Great God Procrastidemus. This means I'll be digging into [i:2o9kpp2q]The Aspect-Emperor[/i:2o9kpp2q] months earlier than planned as well. view post


posted 26 Oct 2005, 13:10 in Author Q & AYou should be afraid... very, very, afraid. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Just for clarity's sake, Echoex, how would you define the difference between conditioning others and rational engaging them? Which approach do you personally use with your family and friends, and why? [quote:3ixmpq1e]All marketing circumvents rational decision-making, Scott. That's why we buy Levi's instead of grow our own cotton. Someone tells us they can provide a service or a product in exchange for currency, and the value-laden benefit is that we get a warm, shit-smothered feeling for agreeing.[/quote:3ixmpq1e] You make it sound as though marketers circumvent our rational side for our [i:3ixmpq1e]own good[/i:3ixmpq1e]. Is that what you're suggesting? [quote:3ixmpq1e]Consider this thread, even. It's fear-mongering. Guerrilla marketing. You're appealing to our basic need for privacy. This incites fear. Fear is an emotion. We agree with you because you've scared us. You've essentially manipulated us into agreeing with you. Now, if this was true, true marketing, you would have provided us with a 'call to action'. Some 'rise up and fight' statement to rile us against The Man. But you're a writer and I'm a marketer and we are where we are because of who we are.[/quote:3ixmpq1e] To agree with me for fear's sake would be irrational. It's an inducement to believe (one mastered by many politicians, past and present), but it isn't a [i:3ixmpq1e]reason[/i:3ixmpq1e] to believe. The question, Echoex, is whether the fear follows from the reasons (which it does in this case), or whether the fear does the work of reasons. This is not a fine distinction: it really marks the difference between engaging others in the attempt to reach rational consensus, or pushing buttons in the attempt to get people to do what you want them to do. The first, for example, is the supposed cornerstone of our democratic institutions. Are suggesting that this [i:3ixmpq1e]shouldn't[/i:3ixmpq1e] be the case? [quote:3ixmpq1e]Personally, I think neuroeconomics is a great idea. I look forward to the day when retailers know EXACTLY what I want to buy so I don't have to rummage through pounds and pounds of junk mail. I just hope my synapses remember to order the Victoria Secrets Catalogue like I asked them to. [/quote:3ixmpq1e] What you're talking about is so-called 'narrow-casting,' which I'm neither for nor against. I'm apprehensive about the idea of corporations possessing marketing dossiers on me (any of you who have Air Mile cards or some such, you should know one of their primary purposes is to track your consumption). But like you, I would appreciate being left out of all the marketing dragnets I find myself in. Think of your argument here, Echoex. You're saying that neuromarketing will make your life more [i:3ixmpq1e]convenient[/i:3ixmpq1e], banking on the implied assumption that whatever is more convenient is obviously good - which is false. Some conveniences are horrible. The question here is pretty important: do we want to live in a society whose most powerful institutions literally treat us as mechanisms? As soon as corporations begin treating us like brains, they're no longer treating us like people, end of story. Your answer seems to be: If it makes life marginally easier, then hell, yes. Are you really arguing this? view post


posted 26 Oct 2005, 13:10 in Author Q & AScott, I'd appreciate your take on this by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I with you all, believe me. But some people literally identify with stereotypes. For them, the flaws suffered by Akka and Esmi make them despicable. I always laugh when I encounter comments to this effect, because I can't help but wonder what these people think of [i]themselves[/i], since we're all peevish and self-centred in various ways. view post


posted 26 Oct 2005, 13:10 in Author Q & ACunuroi/Inchoroi numbers by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Yep. view post


posted 26 Oct 2005, 13:10 in Author Q & AWorldhorn & Heron Spear by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I have nothing down description-wise. But yes, it is a sorcerous artifact. view post


posted 26 Oct 2005, 13:10 in Author Q & ANew Favourite Review Quip by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

:lol: Fricken hilarious! view post


posted 27 Oct 2005, 03:10 in Author Q & AYou should be afraid... very, very, afraid. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The big move to associative as opposed to informative advertising started happening after WWII. Think of the typical adds you see from those days: chock full of claims regarding quality and performance. That's not to say they weren't often out and out deceptive. But at least they made [i:3hn8pjpp]claims[/i:3hn8pjpp] that you could evaluate. How the hell to do you evaluate 'positive identifications'? Most adds you see nowadays have very little cognitive content. And they work. I find that more scary than anything else! The title stuff strikes me as a red herring. What does it have to do with the question of whether we should be afraid of neuromarketing? view post


posted 27 Oct 2005, 15:10 in Author Q & AA Prince of Nothing Wiki by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Wouldn't this site count as a wiki of sorts? What does a wiki need to be 'proper'? view post


posted 27 Oct 2005, 15:10 in Author Q & AScott, I'd appreciate your take on this by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:37tobrs5]I was arguing instead that the genre itself has in general certain limitations as to scope and focus and that these limitations can affect the enjoyment of the characters for those (such as myself) who tend to look for inner completeness of Character. [/quote:37tobrs5] And the primary limitation, if I take your meaning right, has to do with the abstraction from real world contexts. I think this is an appealing argument: it seems plausible that abstraction from real world contexts would have a corresponding effect on character. But I think this is simply an added danger faced by speculative fiction writers, not an inevitabilty. The fact is, places like Earwa are [i:37tobrs5]very real[/i:37tobrs5], despite being fantastic. Personally, I think the problem is primarily institutional. I think the system is rigged to funnel many of those with the ability to represent the complexities and ambiguities of life into 'serious literature.' I'm actually going to post a column I wrote following that question to Rob Sawyer on a different thread... view post


You should be ashamed... Very, very, ashamed. posted 27 Oct 2005, 16:10 in Author Q & AYou should be ashamed... Very, very, ashamed. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

NOTE: Harboutfront is in Toronto. The International Festival of Authors is a BIG deal, bringing in luminaries from the world over, and gaining all kinds of press coverage. They usually have only one token genre writer in attendance any given year (I think it was Kostova this year). I wrote this to [i:3cryih0w]The Globe & Mail[/i:3cryih0w], one of the festival's primary sponsors, knowing all the while that they would never use it. From Harbourfront to Hinterland (and Back Again) This past weekend, at the same time as the International Festival of Authors at Harbourfront, the Philosophy Department of Brock University hosted an interdisciplinary conference on ‘The Uses of Science Fiction.’ The keynote speaker was none other Robert J. Sawyer, one of Canada’s bestselling authors, and a tireless proponent of both genre fiction and science education. At the end of his keynote talk, Rob was asked a variant of the old 'but is it real literature’ question. The problem with much science fiction, the individual suggested, is that it’s too invested in ideas. The idea becomes a tyrannical thing, flattening the characters, and snuffing out the particularity that makes literature ‘real.’ After commenting on the vexing nature of defining the term, Rob suggested that the best way to determine whether a work was ‘real literature’ or not was to simply ask readers what it was about: If they answered with a plot summary, then there was a good chance it wasn’t literature. If they answered with something other than a plot summary, then there was a good chance that it was. This, without a doubt, has to be one of the better definitions going. In many ways, we humans are painfully predictable. Since we have difficulty with complexity, we tend to simplify things with evaluative labels. Since we’re egocentric, we tend to rationalize things in flattering ways. Since we’re social, we tend to be keenly attuned to the vagaries of status. These tendencies are so fundamental that most of us are entirely unaware of the ways they dominate our day to day lives. But dominate they do. And taken together, they become variables in a very strange, and sometimes very troubling, calculus of human interaction. Take me, for instance. I write epic fantasy. While I was in grad school, however, I would always say ‘speculative fiction’ whenever I was asked what I write. For me, ‘epic fantasy’ was the genre that dare not speak its name. The only people I dared say it to were those who looked at least as geeky as I did. It wasn’t until I was published that I screwed up the courage to shout it from the rooftops. (At the time I told myself I was doing it for affirmation’s sake, as a way to ‘own’ my label, but as Rob pointed out in his talk, using euphemistic labels is self-defeating once you’re published, because the inevitable follow-up question is, "Where would I find you in the bookstore?" Now I’m inclined to think the whole ‘owning my label’ thing was just a flattering rationalization.) Twice, now, I’ve been invited to participate in local literary book festivals, and almost without exception, every time people hear me utter those words, ‘epic fantasy,’ their eyes hesitate, click to the surrounding crowd (as though looking for a fire exit), then click back in pity and embarrassment. Once, one woman suddenly shouted "Bob!" over my shoulder, then said, "I’m sorry, but I must speak with Bob." Since writing epic fantasy is what I do, I obviously think it’s the most important writing on the face of the planet. At the same time, I’m keenly aware of the status others attribute to the label ‘epic fantasy,’ that educated people whose opinion I otherwise respect, simply assume that I write formulaic tales about living lawn ornaments. As a result, I’ve developed an arsenal of defensive rationalizations, and I’ve copped an attitude of iconoclastic disdain. When I saw the photo of Jonathan Safran Foer on last Wednesday’s Globe Review, for instance, I was seized by paroxysms of wicked laughter. The velvet blazer, the scarlet-and-lime scarf, the Sears catalogue stare–everything seemed to confirm my compensatory animus. The shitty thing is, I know I’m doing this. I know I suffer a classic, Nietzschean case of ressentiment. But I can’t help it, not after seeing just how deep the pigeon hole goes. Which brings me back to Rob’s excellent definition of literature. It reminded me that literature is not so much a set of rules as a kind of personal event. It’s the readers, not the characters, who conjure truth and transformation out of mere words. It’s the rewriting of real assumptions. And this is why I think that in North American culture, the truly important literature, the transforming literature, is happening in the hinterlands and not at the harbourfront. In genre and not the literary mainstream. It’s Rowling, not Salinger, that’s on the pyre now. I worry that a greater part of the world is drifting away, that as the years pass, our culture is becoming more and more ornamental, more and more a kind of vast flattery feedback mechanism. I worry that events like the International Festival of Authors, which openly profess to occupy the cultural heights, simply reinforce and perpetuate the calculus of status, self-congratulation, and labeling that convinces the up and coming Jonathan Safran Foer’s of the world to write only for those already schooled in ‘serious literature’ and so least in need of it. I worry that the shame that made me hide what I wrote is an example of a more general incentive to sing yet more songs to the choir. There’s a telling difference, I think, between overturning to cater and catering to overturn. view post


posted 27 Oct 2005, 19:10 in Author Q & AScott, I'd appreciate your take on this by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:53voxvl2]because I sense a great possibility for the merging of complex, 'true' characterizations with the tropes so common to speculative fiction.[/quote:53voxvl2] As far as I'm concerned, pulp genre fiction stands among the last great literary frontiers. Literature is type of communication, which means that it's a type of circuit between author and reader, the culture of composition and the culture of reception. This is why I think much of what passes for 'mainstream literature' isn't actually literary at all, but rather a form of writing that religiously conforms to a very specific set of expectations. A 'holier than thou' genre, in effect. I'd be interested to hear what you think of my little column. view post


posted 27 Oct 2005, 22:10 in Author Q & AYou should be ashamed... Very, very, ashamed. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Think about it in these terms. Imagine that you could describe an individual's preferences as a circle. If you compared that individual's preferences with those of another, you would find that their circles would overlap to some degree. Their circles could be almost identical, which is to say they could have almost identical tastes, or their circles could be almost entirely disconnected, which is to say they could have very similar tastes. The point is, the area where the circles overlap, no matter how big or how small, would represent those tastes they have in common. Now imagine sampling a million different people and superimposing a million different circles. The more people you sample, the smaller the space of maximal overlap - the preferences held in common by all one million people - would become. Since selling to more people means making more profit, the primary incentive for corporations is to aim for that band of maximal overlap. There's a powerful disincentive to experiment, to stray outside the 'slot' - if you forgive a hockey euphemism. Think of McDonald's, or Romance novels. Now this analogy does a good job, I think, at explaining a number of different tendencies in mass culture. Why paper's aim at a grade eight reading level, just for instance. In other words, it does a good job illustrating what is the assumed antithesis of literature. Given this, you would think that it would do an equally good job at explaining what's at stake in works we're told count as 'literature.' But it [i:1t4me2dg]doesn't[/i:1t4me2dg]. In fact, the literary mainstream, it seems to me, is just as invested in 'finding the slot' for their readership as is any other genre of fiction. Literary writers by and large write for literary readers - end of story. They're in the business of satisfying consumer expectations, no different than McLiterature, and they're every bit as dismissive of those things that fall out of their slot of maximal satisfaction. Now what I'm talking about is a [i:1t4me2dg]different[/i:1t4me2dg] kind of literature. Take our million circles sketched across our sheet of paper, and add a third dimension - add depth. Now if you look at them head on, you'll see the same thing you saw when they were two dimensionally represented. But if you move your head to left or to the right, or whichever way, you'll quickly notice what might be called [i:1t4me2dg]angular slots[/i:1t4me2dg]. These would be roundabout ways in which preference sets that seem to be antagonistic when mapped two dimensionally, actually possess reconciliatory paths when navigated from a different direction. This is pretty much what I'm trying to do by writing genre fiction. Now as far as I'm concerned - and I realize that this is a self flattering rationale - this is what [i:1t4me2dg]true[/i:1t4me2dg] literature does: it takes issue with preferences, not out any bankrupt formalist commitment to 'deconstruction' or rule-breaking for its own sake, but for the [i:1t4me2dg]sake of expanding perspectives[/i:1t4me2dg] - to warp the circle, perhaps, but to [i:1t4me2dg]expand[/i:1t4me2dg] it certainly. Genre, I'm saying, is the next great frontier of literature, because what we presently called 'mainstream literature' has exhausted its audience. They're simply too well-trained for the situation not to devolve into a McLiterary one. It's the writing that cuts across preferences that will be remembered, mark my words! This is also why I take the love it/hate it response my books seem to incite as an indicator of artistic success. As soon as people who obviously never encountered anything like my books before stop posting one star reviews on Amazon, I literally think I'm starting to fail. It's the stranger's hand I'm most interested in shaking. view post


posted 30 Oct 2005, 13:10 in Author Q & ADunyain blind spot? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thank you RiderOnTheStorm. I'd like to bitch about everyone waiting on AFC before reading my books, but I'm one them! Given the complexities of causality, I would think they would have to make the error every once and awhile, or even regularly, depending on how far they press their analyses. But then, they would also incorporate the possibilities of this into their contingency plans. You could say this is partly why they're so obsessed with isolation. view post


posted 30 Oct 2005, 13:10 in Author Q & AYou should be ashamed... Very, very, ashamed. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

We haven't moved all that far from pedigrees and provenances, I guess. The thing is, when literary types 'go slumming' in genre, it's typically not seen as genre fiction, but an out an out appropriation of generic forms for a literary purpose. It's similar to, but not identical to, white surburban kids dressing up as gangbangers. 'Respectable' people don't mind the clothes so much, so long as they can see the skin. A trite analogy, I know, but I really think it captures something of the dynamic. Here in Canada, my publisher had high hopes of garnering a dual audience for my books. But no one 'serious' would even review it, once they realized the skin actually matched the clothes. Hmmm... That does sound bitter, doesn't it! :roll: view post


posted 30 Oct 2005, 13:10 in Tour and Signing InformationMADISON, WI by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

At the moment, an infinite number. I still haven't received my box, and since negotiations are presently underway for AE, I don't feel comfortable calling up and griping. view post


posted 30 Oct 2005, 22:10 in Tour and Signing InformationMADISON, WI by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Nope. There are no corrected ARCs. Only the one print run. That's why I was so keen to find out how much a problem the punctuation errors were. I was expecting about thirty, but I've only received three. view post


posted 31 Oct 2005, 16:10 in Author Q & AYou should be afraid... very, very, afraid. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

That's a great way to pose the problem, Sylvanus. It's what I was trying to get across with my clumsy con man analogy. I think it's obvious that we should be deeply concerned with the way things are trending in marketing. But being critical is the easy part. The hard part is determining the appropriate social response. Just to put a spin on the debate, here, people should remember my old rants against expressivist theories of art, and my suggestion that writing be considered a form of 'consensual manipulation.' I get the feeling it could complicate my position. :roll: view post


posted 08 Nov 2005, 14:11 in Tour and Signing InformationMADISON, WI by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I had about two or three hangovers to sleep off, but I'm feeling a bit more human today. I had a fantastic time. Apparently everyone is raving, saying it was the best WFC in ten years. It was great meeting you as well, William. I never had a chance to thank you for putting the screws to that dickweed on the philosophy panel. He was like a deer in the headlights. view post


posted 08 Nov 2005, 14:11 in Tour and Signing InformationVisiting the US? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'll be getting the tour details very soon... view post


posted 08 Nov 2005, 14:11 in Author Q & ADunyain blind spot? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

They cultivate what they need in the vale below. view post


posted 08 Nov 2005, 15:11 in Author Q & AThe Thousandfold Thought - Paperback? Large print? Hard... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Yeah. After all the editions, the Penguin Canada is still my favourite. They really take pride in their books. view post


posted 08 Nov 2005, 15:11 in Author Q & ANot a question, just congratulations! by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thank you, Nemesis! I still think Martin has me licked in the storytelling department! That man knows how to spin yarn. view post


posted 08 Nov 2005, 15:11 in Author Q & AKhellus and transhumanism by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

There's parallels, certainly, but the issues which I take to be central to transhumanism (as I understand it) are actually more front and centre in [i:1s8l8sgn]Neuropath[/i:1s8l8sgn]. Though I know that transhumanists pride themselves on their secularism, I have to say that it smacks of religion to me. And when it comes to 'wireheading,' it gets out and out scary. Put it this way: if Kellhus is an example of our transhumanist future, we are in deep doo-doo. For me to really understand the position, I think I would need to know how it is that transhumanists overcome meaning skepticism (while still maintaining their commitment to the sciences), and what the basis for their developmental optimism is. It seems plain to me that the more we Discover, the less Human Creation becomes. In other words, it seems that there's a deep contradiction in the central categories of transhumanism. But I really don't all that much about the position. view post


posted 08 Nov 2005, 15:11 in Author Q & AThe Inchoroi and the Sranc by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I think they're referring to the Encyclopaedic Glossary at the end of TTT, shockwave. I think. view post


posted 09 Nov 2005, 14:11 in Author Q & AThe Inchoroi and the Sranc by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Yeah. When I realized Whitelord knew the world better than I did (!!), I asked him if he would proof the appendices to TTT, which is out this January. view post


posted 09 Nov 2005, 14:11 in Author Q & AThe Thousandfold Thought - Paperback? Large print? Hard... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I think they figure the harder they laugh at me on the cover, the more impressed they'll be by what lies within. :shock: view post


posted 09 Nov 2005, 14:11 in Author Q & ANot a question, just congratulations! by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Sometimes I think I substituted blood for ink in TTT... :twisted: view post


posted 09 Nov 2005, 14:11 in Author Q & AQuestion! re: Advance Reader Copy by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

It's probably legit. Though Penguin has only shipped me 3 so far, I'm assuming they've shipped many others out, as has Overlook by this point. They'll be a few hundred different things, here and there, but by and large it's the same. And if I ever get big, $12 will seem like a bargain. view post


posted 11 Nov 2005, 13:11 in Tour and Signing InformationVisiting the US? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'd positively love to get down there, but the sad fact is that I'm not nearly big enough to warrant that kind of coverage. Maybe if TTT goes bonzo... You might try turning off your auto login function. The site's been bedevilled by a hacker and I think Jack has a new girlfriend... :wink: view post


posted 11 Nov 2005, 13:11 in Author Q & ANot a question, just congratulations! by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Well, I [i:267b5dy0]feel[/i:267b5dy0] like a virgin... view post


posted 11 Nov 2005, 13:11 in Author Q & AQuestion! re: Advance Reader Copy by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

No rules that I'm aware of... I'm not sure how much weight they carry in the book collecting world. I [i:14yukcsy]think[/i:14yukcsy] first editions are more highly valued. view post


posted 11 Nov 2005, 13:11 in Author Q & AThe Thousandfold Thought - Paperback? Large print? Hard... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

That's the thing. Authors have the biggest stick of all. I can see the title of my next book, [i:3hs4nqcb]Larry, Larry, Quite Contrary: The Unauthorized Biography[/i:3hs4nqcb]... :wink: view post


posted 14 Nov 2005, 16:11 in Author Q & ANot a question, just congratulations! by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Well, Achamian likes me... view post


posted 14 Nov 2005, 16:11 in Author Q & AHow can I get an autograph/paragraph ? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Sorry, Kevin, but I'd feel too cheesy selling my handwriting. Besides, wouldn't it be like giving away hair and fingernail clippings... I'm convinced that at least a couple of people have a little doll of me that they stick with pins every now and again... :wink: view post


posted 14 Nov 2005, 16:11 in Author Q & ARecomended Ancient Miltary History? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I've waded through quite a bit of forgettable stuff. [i:24ln3hlq]Ceasar's Legions[/i:24ln3hlq] comes to mind as memorable. But I'm sure there's others who have better recommendations than me. view post


posted 14 Nov 2005, 16:11 in Author Q & AKhellus and transhumanism by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Of the two people who've read NP so far, one was depressed for a week, and the other went to the gym immediately after finishing to run ten or so miles just to get the endorphins pumping. Good signs. view post


posted 18 Nov 2005, 20:11 in Tour and Signing InformationVisit a local hero? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

We'll actually have a number of chances over the next couple of months, vedes. Tonight at 7PM, for instance, I'm doing a panel on genre writing at the London Arts Project - just down from the Central Library. I know that I'll be doing a book signing for Oxford Books sometime in January, and my publicists says she cooking up a couple of in-town events for around the same time. I'll post the details here, as soon as I find out. view post


posted 18 Nov 2005, 20:11 in Author Q & AHow can I get an autograph/paragraph ? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The [i:2lyqmhdd]last[/i:2lyqmhdd] thing you want is me blaming you for my @#^$%$@ squash game... Trust me. :twisted: view post


posted 18 Nov 2005, 20:11 in Author Q & ANot a question, just congratulations! by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Well it takes two to tango. Whacky author. Whacky readers. Go figure. :wink: view post


posted 18 Nov 2005, 20:11 in Author Q & ATechnical trouble by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm not sure what the difficulty is, Ryo. Jack's been AWOL for the last little while. I think he's finally realized that women are oh-so-much-more interesting than computers. Now if only the same could be said for men. view post


posted 18 Nov 2005, 20:11 in Author Q & AKhellus and transhumanism by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Not for awhile, I'm afraid. I don't even have a publisher for it yet! view post


posted 18 Nov 2005, 20:11 in Author Q & ARecomended Ancient Miltary History? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

{i]Ceasar's Legions[/i] is by Stephen Dando-Collins. What did you think of that McNeill book, TH? Any good? view post


posted 18 Nov 2005, 20:11 in Author Q & AMilitary Philosophy by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

This question actually strikes at the heart of several big thematic axes I'm grinding throughout the books, Harrol. Since I feel cheesy interpreting my own stuff (which is not to say I don't enjoy the vanity of doing so!), I'll just say that it's the intersection of the two approaches I'm interested in, the [i:3i40ud14]interplay[/i:3i40ud14] of intellect and belief - not just in war, but in society as a whole. Belief [i:3i40ud14]empowers[/i:3i40ud14], there's no question about that. The issue is one of whom and for what end. view post


posted 25 Nov 2005, 14:11 in Author Q & APrince of Nothing gone in 40 years by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Isn't there something that libraries and book collectors spray on the pages of books published after a certain date to neutralize the acidity? Otherwise, I do hope to do special editions (I have something biblical in mind) at some future date. Baby steps for now, though... view post


posted 25 Nov 2005, 15:11 in Author Q & ABattle of Titans by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

It's an old comic book tactic, burying the ultimate fate of certain things in ambiguity. I think the Wathi doll is cool as well, though my favourite part, writing-wise, is the section where Serwe watches it animate for the first time - proving that Kellhus is one of the few. view post


posted 25 Nov 2005, 15:11 in Author Q & AEpitome by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

What I would add to Twaleph's excellent reply is that in the dialogue you quote, Esmi, Kellhus is referring to each culture's claims to [i:212a0a8w]moral superiority[/i:212a0a8w] over it's competitors, and there's a real question whether anything resembling morality exists for the Dunyain. view post


posted 25 Nov 2005, 15:11 in Author Q & AThe Motivation of a Dunyain by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

'Death comes swirling down' is one of Homer's favourite stock phrases in the Illiad. Just part of my convoluted nod to the father of all epics. As for the motivations of the Dunyain, RAFO! :wink: Remember too that the Dunyain do not pretend to have overcome the darkness that comes before, only to much further down the road to the absolute than the worldborn. There's much more on this is TTT. view post


posted 01 Dec 2005, 18:12 in Author Q & AThe Motivation of a Dunyain by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I think it would make a great title for book. :wink: view post


posted 02 Dec 2005, 17:12 in Author Q & ADo we have a date? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

As far as I know, the official dates are January 1 for Canada, January 19 for the US, and May 16 for the UK. But the loops tend to miss me quite abit, so I could be mistaken. view post


posted 02 Dec 2005, 18:12 in Author Q & ABattle of Titans by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm hearing some bad things about AFFC... It's bumming me out. view post


posted 02 Dec 2005, 18:12 in Author Q & AThe Motivation of a Dunyain by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The truly beautiful thing is when they ask me for clarification, I'll just say... RAFO! view post


posted 09 Dec 2005, 14:12 in Author Q & ABattle of Titans by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'll be reading it over the holidays. But as far as hearsay goes, I seem to be hearing some lukewarm stuff, mostly of the 'he's losing control of the story variety...' But it's generally good reading a highly anticipated book with low expectations. view post


posted 09 Dec 2005, 14:12 in Author Q & APrince of Nothing gone in 40 years by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Still a small fry, Stego, what can I say. Someday though. Someday. I think TTT might lure a few lambs into the wolf-pack - enough to make me worthy a fancy folio or compendious tome. Like I say, something Biblical. view post


posted 09 Dec 2005, 14:12 in Author Q & AAspect-Emperor status by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I've been cooling my heels for the past couple of weeks, waiting for criticisms of the first draft of Neuropath to trickle in - or rumble in, as the case may be! I've been working at AE in the interim, but the only thing I have completed is the prologue. The rest is all snippets and scenes - which is the way I write, filling things in nonlinearly. I'm gone for the remainder of December, but when I return, I plan to take January to cook up a final draft of NP, then settle in for long, concentrated write. I'm very excited about AE - which is actually a problem, because I'm very excited about NP as well, and I'm one of those people who can literally only do ONE thing at a time. The contract with Orbit UK has already been agreed upon, and the contracts with Penguin and Overlook will probably be wrapped up soon. The delivery date I'm giving is January 07, which should put the pub date somewhere late spring, early summer. view post


posted 09 Dec 2005, 14:12 in Author Q & ARPG? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

This is something I would love to do, but the problem is that the publishers of these games are typically only interested in series that have LARGE built in audiences. Maybe someday. I think Earwa would make a wicked role-playing world. I haven't even revealed half of it... view post


Holidays 2005 posted 09 Dec 2005, 14:12 in Author AnnouncementsHolidays 2005 by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm off shortly for my holiday vacation, and likely won't be checking in until January. Just wanted to thank you all, and wish you a happy holidays and a clear-eyed, open-hearted new year. A free trip around the sun, and we share it every year. :wink: view post


posted 28 Dec 2005, 14:12 in Author Q & AAspect-Emperor status by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:39nm10ci]BTW Scott any plans for a book tour after TTT comes out by any chance?[/quote:39nm10ci] I know I'm flying out to Calgary and to Vancouver, but there seems to be some confusion as to when. As per usual, I'll likely only have hard details come the eleventh hour. Nothing from Overlook about American dates yet. I'm hoping they at least fly me down to NYC. view post


posted 28 Dec 2005, 15:12 in Author Q & AWhy can't Kellhus plan? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

This is interesting. Usually the complaint is that he's too [i:36sa578n]good[/i:36sa578n] at maneuvering! Kellhus does get caught flatfooted on more than one occasion, and he does make mistakes, as you would [i:36sa578n]expect[/i:36sa578n], given the complexities he's dealing with. The ambush of the Imperial Navy is only obvious in retrospect. You could look at losses suffered by the greatest generals in history and compile long lists of 'it-should-have-been-obviousnesses.' The fact is, you don't know what you don't know, which is precisely why things that seem totally obvious in hindsight can be completely invisible to foresight. Think of the internet. Kellhus suffers this as much as we worldborn. Otherwise, some of your questions I'm not sure I understand, and I suspect turn on the fact that Kellhus's actual plan is not yet known by the end of TWP. Without knowing his mission, how can you assess the rationality of his course of action? Why do you think he didn't know there were other skin-spies? As for revising his plans regarding Sarcellus, he had to simply because it was now apparent they knew he could see them. Remember also, that he's playing for time through much of TWP. He's trying to manage a volatile situation, which forces him to be reactive in certain cases. As for returning and being killed, remember that the Pragma who intially received Moenghus's dream willingly committed collective suicide. view post


posted 28 Dec 2005, 15:12 in Author Q & AQuestion about the ending of TWP *Spoiler Warning* by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Tonnes of material was cut from TDTCB. Not so much from TWP, and even less from TTT. Reworking this material is a pet dream of mine, but I honestly don't know when I'll ever find the time. I'm on the treadmill now. Gotta keep writing if I want to eat! view post


posted 28 Dec 2005, 15:12 in Author Q & AYou should be afraid... very, very, afraid. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Just because something wrong has been practiced for thousands of years doesn't make it any less wrong. Manipulation has been around as long as rape and murder. What makes things particularly troubling now is the way 'bypassing the logical mind' is being intstitutionalized, the resources commanded by these institutions (corporations have far more control over our lives than governments), and the technological sophistication of their tools. Modern advertising literally constituted the greatest propaganda effort in the history of the human race. Never in our history has any society employed so many talented individuals in the attempt to manipulate mass human behaviour. Add to that the fact that we are at an unprecedented juncture in our history, one where we need our 'logical mind' more than ever. view post


posted 31 Dec 2005, 19:12 in Author Q & AYou should be afraid... very, very, afraid. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:30ifzpm1]The ploys of advertisers are indeed clever and insidious but can we honestly say that a high school education does not supply the critical skills needed to see through them? And even with the widespread introduction of user-pays education most of us have the opportunity to go beyond high school and enter tertiary education. Of course if someone does not exercise (or even develop) these critical skills then that is their choice. If we need a "logical mind" I believe that the current institution is doing a good job to develop it.[/quote:30ifzpm1] I think they're doing a good job [i:30ifzpm1]convincing[/i:30ifzpm1] people they're critical thinkers. I think it's patently obvious that highschools are doing anything but teaching people how to think critically. The same pretty much goes for universities, outside of bona fide critical thinking courses. Have you ever taken a critical thinking course? If so please tell me just where and how those skills are learned anywhere else in the education system. view post


posted 31 Dec 2005, 20:12 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWas Cnauir gay? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I just gotta say... You know, even the best trained therapists in the world have a hard time puzzling out personalities with extended [i:2tf8k5d6]real time[/i:2tf8k5d6] Q&A. This is why I've always found readers' attempts to guess 'personal truths' from an authors' work hilarious in direct proportion to how seriously they take their pet theories. Being enigmatic is part of my job. :wink: view post


posted 01 Jan 2006, 13:01 in Author Q & AAspect-Emperor status by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I know I'll be at Bakka Books for a launch in the very near future. The problem is that I went on holiday earlier in December, and my Penguin publicist was on holiday when I got back. All I know is that I got dates lined up, lots and lots of dates. I'll find out specifics tomorrow, I assume. Happy New Year all! view post


posted 09 Jan 2006, 23:01 in Author Q & ADo we have a date? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

A happy early birthday then! I have no clear idea as to why they pushed it back - I almost wonder if it has something to do with Overlook's release date and the substantial overlap between the two markets. All I know is that I jump from my seat every time a delivery truck drives down the street. I want me books! I'm keen to see what the hardcover trilogy will look like. view post


posted 13 Jan 2006, 14:01 in Author Q & ATears of God by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

People rationalize, [i:11p4wyx6]especially[/i:11p4wyx6] in times of war. Whatever helps them becomes 'good.' The more it helps them, the more 'good' it becomes. Look at guns in the US. Since it was the widespread ownership of firearms that allowed the revolutionaries to so quickly muster militias (and making it very difficult for the British to control any territory, even after scoring military victories), guns were enshrined in the Constitution. And now, they've become quasi-sacred fetishes for millions, despite the off-the-chart murder rates. As a result you have a nation dedicated to life and liberty, bedazzled by Jesus Christ's turn-the-other-cheek teachings, with mass ownership of hundreds of millions of weapons specifically designed to efficiently kill humans. There's no contradiction too big. The primary function of belief is to [i:11p4wyx6]serve[/i:11p4wyx6] the status quo. Other things, like consistency, veracity, and so on, tend to be more incidental than not, I think. view post


posted 13 Jan 2006, 14:01 in Tour and Signing InformationAny tour news? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

All I know now is that it's been pushed back to March. Because of all the election-driven media clutter, I've been told. As soon as I get an honest to goodness itinerary, I'll post it. view post


posted 13 Jan 2006, 19:01 in Author Q & ATears of God by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The 'American Dream' is the classic example, strained even more by the deepening class stratification in the US. When it comes to functionally deceptive beliefs, though, I think the constellation of assumptions belonging to 'individualism' is far more pernicious. People tend to get a little riled when they hear that though - precisely what you should expect from a naturalized belief system. :wink: view post


posted 26 Jan 2006, 18:01 in Tour and Signing InformationAny tour news? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I STILL don't have a complete itinerary for the tour. I should have it very soon though. What I do know is that I'll be having a book launch on the afternoon of February 4th at Bakka Books in Toronto. And that I'll be giving a talk and a reading at Fanashawe College here in London, ON, on February 16th. So far, the prospects of a US tour don't look so good. Only the big fish merit those, I'm told. As for signing books, I have no problem at all, aside from the cheesy lines I tend to come up with. view post


posted 26 Jan 2006, 18:01 in Author Q & AJust finished TTT by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

*POTENTIAL INDIRECT SPOILERAGE* I'm glad you enjoyed it, EE. This is always a time of pins and needles. As for your question, I think I should defer answering. The [i:2xphlvo2]scope[/i:2xphlvo2] and limits of Kellhus's powers is actually part of mystery. What is it, exactly, that you find over the top, Grallon? Did you think it unrealistic? If so, I'm not sure how I could have better motivated Kellhus's ascendency, given the time Achamian spends worrying over the Gnosis + Kellhus combo... Or is your concern narrative? I know some people complain that Kellhus is too powerful for the story, to which I always reply: 'Which story would that be?' It seems to turn on an unwarranted assumption as to where things are headed. Trust me... :twisted: As for your question, the Dunyain were never aware of the Celmomian Prophecy. I think you'll find some of your other musings confirmed/disconfirmed in the Encyclopaedic Glossary. view post


posted 26 Jan 2006, 19:01 in Author Q & ACorrespondences by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Inspiration-wise, the correspondances are certainly not one to one the way you line them up, Grallon. Kellhus, for instance, actually owes very little to Paul Atriedes, though the skin-spies are obvious rip-offs of Herbert's face-dancers. The Scylvendi owe nothing to the Huns, but quite abit to the Scythians and Sarmatians. I see Shigek as decidedly more Egyptian than Mesopotamian. And the Inchoroi owe nothing to the Tleilaxu. Otherwise, the world is meant to be a blur of our own. The significance, I would argue, lies in the many differences. view post


posted 26 Jan 2006, 19:01 in Author Q & APrince of Nothing on TV/Big Screen by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I've toyed with the idea of various graphic versions - not necessarily in out and out comic book panel format. But like I say, I intend to be VERY persnickety about who and how anything from PoN gets adapted - IF that arises as a possibility. Only the future will tell. view post


posted 26 Jan 2006, 19:01 in Author Q & AScott a rare honour for you. . . . . you get the cookie by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I already have more than enough conceptual cavities, D, but I thank you nonetheless! Very cool beans. view post


posted 26 Jan 2006, 19:01 in Author Q & ARegarding the Dunyain by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

This is actually answered in the glossary of TTT, so in a sense, I guess I [i:vz31j28o]am[/i:vz31j28o] RAFO-ing you! Sounds disgusting... view post


posted 27 Jan 2006, 16:01 in Author Q & AJust finished TTT by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

In other words, you took Kellhus's initial assertions (regarding the superstitions of the world-born) at face value? I thought it obvious, given the various kinds of sorcery - think of the Daimos! - that Kellhus was 'wrong' in some crucial respect. Marbled in the books' thematic subtext there's a war of worldviews going on (an inversion of the one going on in our own world, actually). The ambiguities you note in Kellhus - whether he's a material manipulator or an agent of divinity - are entirely intentional, and central to what I'm trying to accomplish. There are actually many, many clues. In a sense, I'm inclined to say the book actually [i:284vhsar]did[/i:284vhsar] work for you, Grallon, even if the ending left you dissatisfied! :wink: [quote:284vhsar]Would you ever consider writing at length about the Cuno-Inchoroi Wars?[/quote:284vhsar] I have a stand-alone plotted out for the First Apocalypse, but nothing on the workbench for Cuno-Inchoroi Wars. I got enough on my plate as it is! view post


posted 27 Jan 2006, 17:01 in Author Q & ASpoilerful question about the trilogy's end by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Tough crowd! This is a [i:380gpy3b]war[/i:380gpy3b] story about the rise of a master manipulator. I'm not sure it's fair to generalize from the story to Earwa as a whole. The only difference between it and our own world, I would say, is that it's moral turmoil is an out and out objective feature of the world. As for Esmenet and Achamian, their story is far from over. These are the kind of books, I think, that look [i:380gpy3b]really[/i:380gpy3b] different depending on what your reading perspective happens to be. If, for instance, interior narratives leave you cold, you will think the attention paid to Esmenet and Achamian's relationship tedious. Or if you find it easier to identify with ideal types, rather than psychologically complicated characters, you will think no one is 'likable.' If you think ease-of-reading trumps realism, you'll think the names are 'too hard.' If you think fantastic action sequences are infantile, you'll think the story is fluff. And the list goes on and on. All I can hope is that the story is compelling enough to convince some readers to take a step sideways, perhaps find a new perspective. But for whatever reason, I simply can't seem to write anything that asks the reader to stay put. For better or worse, I'm trying to write something bigger than any pair of eyes. It's inevitable, I think, that it looks ugly from a variety of angles. Hubris, I know... :wink: view post


posted 27 Jan 2006, 18:01 in Author Q & ACorrespondences by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

In discussions on this topic I actually use GGK to represent one extreme, where the author relies heavily on existing systematic associations to weave their setting, and Mieville to represent the other, where associations are exploited more opportunistically. I prefer Tolkien's 'middle-road' myself, but I certainly don't think there's any right or wrong way to do it. It all depends on the product. view post


posted 27 Jan 2006, 18:01 in Author Q & APrince of Nothing on TV/Big Screen by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Adaptations are so rare that no one below a certain level of popularity actually searches for them. All you can do is keep your hook in the water. view post


posted 27 Jan 2006, 20:01 in Author Q & ASpoilerful question about the trilogy's end by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Consider yourself sort-of-successfully manipulated then... :wink: view post


posted 28 Jan 2006, 16:01 in Tour and Signing InformationAny tour news? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Since Penguin's flying me out to Vancouver, there's a chance I'll be going to Seattle, but it depends on what Overlook says... view post


posted 28 Jan 2006, 16:01 in Author Q & ASpoilerish question regarding Sorcery by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The idea is that sorcery is primarily discursive, and as such, tied to the ability to see (there's a long tradition in continental philosophy critiquing the centrality of visual metaphors in Western philosophical discourse). The psukhe, on the other hand, is primarily emotive. So the idea would be that where sorcery captures fragments of the God's intellect, the psukhe expresses instants of the God's heart. Since the former is cognitive, which is to say, admits of being more or less true, it necessarily falls short. Since the latter is not cognitive, it is indistiguishable from the God's own world. I'd have to go digging to find your answers regarding the Mysunsai, Zara. I want to say they're based in Invishi, but I'm not sure. They actually buy children. view post


posted 28 Jan 2006, 16:01 in Author Q & ASpoilerful question about the trilogy's end by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

You have to remember that I spent years in philosophy. Though I bristle on occasion, it's the absence of critical resistance that freaks me out the most. The books are far from perfect from my perspective as well, but - and perhaps this is just flattering rationalization on my part - they seem to be all more profound for those imperfections. I just got the feeling that these books, though they likely won't win any awards or make any bestseller lists, will be around for a long time to come. They really do feel bigger than me. view post


Tentative Schedule posted 07 Feb 2006, 16:02 in Tour and Signing InformationTentative Schedule by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

So here it is, with many details still pending. Thursday, February 16th - Reading at Fanshawe College, London ON Wednesday, March 1st 7:30 pm - event with University of Toronto reading series Monday, March 6th - Calgary -event in Calgary (details to come) Tuesday, March 7th - Victoria 7 pm -event with Bolen's Books, Thursday, March 9th - Vancouver 7 pm - event with the Vancouver Public Library with White Dwarf Books Friday, March 10th -Overlook Press to get back to me with possible event in Seattle this evening Wednesday, April 5th - London ON 7 pm - Oxford Books with the London Public Library If anyone has suggestions with things I could do while visiting any of these cities, please feel free to pm me. view post


posted 07 Feb 2006, 16:02 in Author Q & ABashrag by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

:shock: I had to check the glossary myself - I can't believe I forgot the entry for Bashrags, and what's worse, I think White Lord actually pointed this out to me when he critiqued the draft. Man o' man, how someone as scatterbrained as me managed to pull this off is beyond explanation. I'll have to pull together a list of addenda for the mmpb... The Bashrags are roughly analagous to trolls - in keeping with my shameless blur of Tolkien. The Bashrag are the only viable result of several botched attempts by the Inchoroi to create slave warriors able to physically overcome the ancient Nonmen Ishroi. The redundant skeletal structure, understood in out terms, was the only way they could coax the mass and strength they needed out of the Nonman genome. Even in this pre-apocalyptic age, their understanding of their own Tekne was far from complete. view post


posted 07 Feb 2006, 16:02 in Author Q & AAlso read TTT and puzzled - Warning : spoilers ! by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Lot's of questions! It's been a bloody busy week. In response to your original query, Twaleph, the idea is that in Earwa the supernatural worldview trumps the materialist worldview much the way the materialist trumps the supernatural in our world. The 'battle of worldviews' you mention is intentional on my part, but my hope was that TTT would put it to rest in an elegant as opposed to an awkward way. Personally, I'm not so sure. The Chorae Hoard is how Sakarpus managed to survive the First Apocalypse. The No-God circumvented it, saving his limited sorcerous resources to overcome the South. One of the ideas behind anarcane ground simply follows the notion that the boundaries between the World and the Outside are variable. Some, taking the distinction between wakefulness and dreams as their analogy, believe anarcane ground to be Holy ground - places where the God has, for whatever reason, focussed his attention - dreams lucidly - thus rendering the co-option of his Song by sorcery difficult if not impossible. Ooops! Running late for my daily squash spanking... view post


posted 07 Feb 2006, 19:02 in Author Q & AState of Canadian literary culture by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I read that article this past weekend, and I was planning on contacting him. Apparently Vaughn is himself a genre writer, so though I know he focusses on Martin (likely because its such a glaring example of the problem he's referring to), I think he knows our pain first hand. The funny thing is I was planning on approaching the Post anyway, having given up on the Globe ever giving me a chance to make my argument. If the front door is locked... view post


posted 07 Feb 2006, 19:02 in Author Q & ASpoilerish question regarding Sorcery by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Couldn't have said it better myself, Twaleph. Man o' man, did I cook up a complicated little story or what? That's what happens when you scribble for 20 years without any real thought of publication. Regarding the Third Sight (which refers to the way Cishaurim see without seeing), the idea is that Psukari can actually see [i:yuen3hbt]souls[/i:yuen3hbt] - those things invisible to the naked eye. Souls 'shine' to the degree they reflect the 'proportion of the God.' So the implication is that the Dunyain somehow reflect the proper proportion... view post


posted 07 Feb 2006, 19:02 in Author Q & AA TTT question -possible spoilers inside, you've been warned by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Big questions. Since all this does come back to haunt the narrative, I'll try to keep my questions short and sweet. 1) The Inchoroi come from the Void, not from the Outside - for some reason it never dawned on me that people would think otherwise, though it seems clear enough to me now. 2) Let me just give you some puzzle pieces, if only to whet your appetite for AE. Everything in Earwa universe is intrincally, objectively, [i:2hzhzc6l]moral[/i:2hzhzc6l] (it is a fantasy world). And there are very real consequences for the kind of life anyone leads, whether they think themselves innocent or not. This makes 'saving one's soul' a very real dilemma, with very real motivational power. I should say that I'm personally reluctant to clarify the metaphysics too much, since for some reason it feels more realistic to have it all be fuzzy (real world supernatural metaphysical schemes are certainly replete with contradictions and ambiguities) and it seems - to me, anyway - that it detracts from the ambience I'm trying to conjure. It's almost as though the 'out there' needs to remain mysterious for the profundity the here and now to ring true. Does anyone else get that feeling? view post


posted 07 Feb 2006, 19:02 in Author Q & AA Question about the Glossary (Spoiler Warning) by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Of course no one knows, not even the Inchoroi. Particle weapons are certainly a possibility. :wink: view post


posted 07 Feb 2006, 19:02 in Author Q & ARPG? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

My brother and I actually did quite a bit of work modifying the AD&D system to make it more realistic and economical. This is one reason why I would insist that anyone purchasing the RPG rights take my brother on as a creative consultant. For some reason, I don't think many gaming companies would be down with that. It would probably strike them as nepotism. But the fact is, I'm intensely jealous of all this stuff, and since I developed so much of it with my brother, I know that the resulting product would not only be something I could believe in, but would make for a much better game as well. We developed quite a wicked little system. view post


posted 07 Feb 2006, 19:02 in Author Q & ABakker's Theory of History? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The 'great figure' theory is definitely the most conducive to narrative - you gotta have characters! A narrativist approach such as Tolkien's is almost inevitable. Add to that my strange love affair with Harold Lamb... But if you think about it, the organizing principle of history in Earwa as opposed to Middle-earth is actually more hermeneutic and Braudelesque: not only are their interpretative questions, the impersonal has a powerful role to play in the production of events as well. I think this explains why my stuff feels more historical and less mythic than Tolkien's. view post


posted 07 Feb 2006, 19:02 in Author Q & AJust finished TTT by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thanks guys! I aim to please, in my own demented way... :wink: As for figuring Kellhus out, I'm afraid that interpretative underdetermination combined with our natural inclination to cherry pick would make settling the question impossible. Thus, the spectre of narrative suspense... Only drawn out for freakin' years. Sorry about that. I AM working! view post


posted 07 Feb 2006, 20:02 in Author Q & ANeuropath by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

We haven't approached anyone with NP, yet. But my agent is very excited; he wants to give it to his film agent (I'm very lucky, btw, to belong to one of the most prestigious SF&F agencies in the english speaking world) first. So we'll have to see what happens. But I still have to finish the damn rewrite. A couple more weeks. Just a couple... I want this thing to be perfect. view post


posted 07 Feb 2006, 20:02 in Author Q & ACishuarim by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

As for the last question (thank you EE, for answering the first two!), I went with the phalanx primarily because it was more generic. It's a delicate balancing act, trying to decide what hisotrical associations to draw on, how specifically, what to bend and twist, and so on. The problem is that the more complicated the world is, the more you tend to rely on preexisting analogues, simply because it would be impossible for any reader to 'get' the world otherwise. You need to draw on preexisting associations, while trying to keep them at arms length. Going with generic as opposed to specific analogues helps. view post


posted 07 Feb 2006, 20:02 in Author Q & AA Prince of Nothing Wiki by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Very cool Arwyl. You do realize that things are going to keep getting bigger and bigger. Maybe you could recruit some of the world-junkies :wink: around here to help! view post


posted 07 Feb 2006, 20:02 in Author Q & ASpoilerful question about the trilogy's end by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

What can I say, I'm a Hobbesian. I really do think that pre-modern life was brutal, short, and characterized by arbitrary violence and exploitation. Censuses of preliterate societies, for instance, suggest that our idyllic pictures of humans 'living in harmony with each and nature' are romantic tripe. Our generation is the anomaly - and in so many ways. It was good talking at the book launch, btw. It was a pretty thin crowd! view post


posted 07 Feb 2006, 23:02 in Author Q & ACnaiur (spoilers for TTT) by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I was afraid of this question, simply because I knew that anyone who asked would likely [i:3c0oq8o5]hate[/i:3c0oq8o5] my answer. All I can say is that I thought long and hard about that ending, and had dozens of discussions about it with those who read the first draft. As it stands, I think it's perfect, it's the way Cnaiur's arc simply [i:3c0oq8o5]has[/i:3c0oq8o5] to end. Beyond that... view post


posted 07 Feb 2006, 23:02 in Author Q & AState of Canadian literary culture by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Amen to that, Shryke. I think the 'great divide' between literature and genre fiction is an entirely arbitrary historical artifact, and one that has it's roots more in the education system than the 'evil corporations' (which is not to say I think corporations are good!). view post


posted 17 Feb 2006, 16:02 in Tour and Signing InformationTentative Schedule by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

There's some awful holes in the tour schedule, I admit. The only thing I can do to remedy (why does the word 'rectify' always make me uncomfortable?) the problem is to write better books and become a big bad ass author man. Some day I will get me a real live American book tour. Chicago and Milwaukee would be too cool. view post


posted 17 Feb 2006, 16:02 in Author Q & ASome questions about the moon,witches and the Inchoroi. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Welcome to the board, Linnea! I hope you understand if my responses are somewhat abbreviated. It seems like this week has been even busier than last! Yes, Earwa does have a moon. And yes, the Nail of Heaven is an especially bright pole star. Regarding biological warfare, the suggestion is that the Inchoroi have long ago ceased understanding their own technology. This is a function of their moribund state as well as their immortality. The idea is that they've inherited an arsenal from their past, much of it damaged, and that those genomic weapons they do get off the ground, are the result of centuries of blind tinkering, cannibalizing, and scrounging. The Womb-Plague (see the Cuno-Inchoroi Wars in TTT), for instance, is an example of an ad hoc microbial weapon. This I think, applies to your following Inchoroi questions as well. As for witchcraft, this issue does come up later. The most I'll say is that it's an informal 'folkloric' form of the Anagogis. As Ketyai, Conphas would have dark hair - and if it's any consolation, I miss him too! I simply loved writing him. view post


posted 17 Feb 2006, 16:02 in Author Q & Awhat are the Inchoroi by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The entry in TTT's gloassary is pretty much as far as I'm willing to go at this point, Redclaw. In terms of revealing the world, the show has just begun! view post


posted 17 Feb 2006, 16:02 in Author Q & AWorldhorn & Heron Spear by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

No comment. :wink: view post


posted 17 Feb 2006, 16:02 in Author Q & AAchamian [Spoiler] by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Longwinded, descriptive titles just happen to be the convention of Achamian's day, just as it was at certain points in our past. Otherwise, I'm afraid I'm going to have to lay a dreaded Wait-and-see! on you, kremen. :wink: view post


posted 17 Feb 2006, 16:02 in Author Q & Ado chorea last by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Chorae definitely do survive. As for recruitment, most schools have networks of informants always on the lookout for potential child 'recruits,' - a process which is difficult because, as Twaleph says, it's up to the child to betray the ability. Many of the Few never practice sorcery, and some are recruited by the Thousand Temples to serve in the College of Luthymae. view post


posted 17 Feb 2006, 16:02 in Author Q & ACnaiur (spoilers for TTT) by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

All I'll add is a reminder of the scene between Kellhus and Cnaiur following the Battle of Anwurat. How does a Dunyain read someone with multiple, contradictory intentions? view post


posted 17 Feb 2006, 16:02 in Author Q & AThe Nonmen Quya (spoilers) by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I would love to answer these questions, Twaleph, but they involve what I think are some of the juicier info-morsels in AE. I almost feel ashamed to say this, but I designed the TTT glossary to be as much as teaser as anything else. Old habits die hard, I suppose... view post


posted 17 Feb 2006, 16:02 in Author Q & AAkka and the Ciphrang - TTT spoilers by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Yeah, I've come to the conclusion that I was way too coy about what I call Achamian's 'mithril-shirt conceit.' The idea is that the Ciphrang was already dying when it reduced Achamian to his Skin-ward, which is a common 'Ward of last resort': useless against a determined assault, but effective when an enemy thinks they have actually overcome you. view post


posted 17 Feb 2006, 16:02 in Author Q & ASome questions regarding Tryse, Cunuroi and Miracles by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Mith, your questions are usually too good! I sometimes think you [i:2qj2oc5p]purposefully[/i:2qj2oc5p] ask questions you know I'll demure on, hoping that you can use subtle clues in my response to triangulate the true answer. :wink: It's a version of the 5th Ammendment paradox, where citing the 5th to avoid incriminating yourself is precisely what incriminates you! view post


posted 17 Feb 2006, 17:02 in Author Q & AA question about NonMen TTT(semispoilerish) by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

400 years sounds right - I'm feeling too lazy to look it up (there's a lot of questions this week!) Regarding the Inchoroi, perhaps the better question should be one of whether they were 'erratic' [i:tfvnscsa]before[/i:tfvnscsa] they arrived in Earwa... view post


posted 17 Feb 2006, 17:02 in Author Q & AMaithanet (TTT Spoilers) by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Maithanet is in his late twenties. Clues to his youth are sprinkled here and there. I actually had a rationale for this (Moenghus subjecting him to continuous desert sunlight to prematurely age his skin), but I couldn't find anyplace to insert it where it didn't feel potted, so I decided to just leave it indeterminate. view post


posted 17 Feb 2006, 17:02 in Author Q & ASpoilerful question about the trilogy's end by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Love without desperation? Certainly not for people as emotionally scarred as Achamian and Esmenet. view post


posted 17 Feb 2006, 17:02 in Author Q & AState of Canadian literary culture by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The idea that a certain, narrow kind of identity-claim has become the central criterion for what counts as 'serious literature' in Canada is as embarrassing as it is wrongheaded, I think. It seems to shout insecurity. view post


posted 17 Feb 2006, 17:02 in Author Q & AJust finished TTT by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Just wait! *evil cackle* view post


posted 17 Feb 2006, 17:02 in Tour and Signing InformationTentative Schedule by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Didn't I wipe out your slaves a few thousand years back? I tend to be pretty specific with my goals. The question is whether I can be consistent in meeting them. I look at PoN as my [i:1ltlu8xf]Hobbit[/i:1ltlu8xf], remember. The main course is yet to come! view post


posted 28 Feb 2006, 11:02 in Tour and Signing InformationTentative Schedule by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I've asked my publicist to find out if that is the case, but so far I don't know. It would be very cool, though. I think I owe him a dozen or so beers... :wink: view post


University of Toronto, March 1st posted 28 Feb 2006, 11:02 in Tour and Signing InformationUniversity of Toronto, March 1st by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Just a reminder: 7:30PM, March 1st, I'll be reading at Hart House at the University of Toronto. I even got a haircut. view post


THE TORONTO STAR posted 28 Feb 2006, 11:02 in Interviews and ReviewsTHE TORONTO STAR by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

One of the Canadian big boys has finally reviewed the trilogy - just to make me feel guilty for all my grousing, I suspect. My spirit animal is the squeaky wheel... :wink: Check it out: [url:3u9rjkv6]http://www.thestar.com/NASApp/cs/ContentServer?pagename=thestar/Layout/Article_Type1&call_pageid=971358637177&c=Article&cid=1140824434946[/url:3u9rjkv6] Holy moly. view post


posted 28 Feb 2006, 11:02 in Author Q & AWho is on the cover of the french TDTCB? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I have no idea who the hell any of the people on any of the books are. My guess, for the UK and US trade, is Cat Stevens. For the French translation, I'd say a punk rock version of Elric... view post


posted 28 Feb 2006, 11:02 in Author Q & ANot smart enough by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Have you taken any philosophy classes, Redclaw? It would be worthwhile for it's own sake. Remember that I wanted the book to be like the real world, which is to say something that never bottoms out meaning-wise. Certainly there's a constellation of themes and problems that I deliberately worked into the story and world, but I lost control of the bugger's 'underlying thought' a long time ago. Which is a good thing. I wanted the book to dwarf any one reading. view post


posted 28 Feb 2006, 12:02 in Author Q & AAkka and the Ciphrang - TTT spoilers by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Iyokus is definately NOT dead... :twisted: view post


posted 28 Feb 2006, 12:02 in Author Q & ARPG? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Like I say, all of this depends on the interest of some game publisher, first, and my pathological possessiveness, second. I'd have to be certain that it was in good hands, no matter what the format. As it stands, I think it's fair to say that some enterprising souls are adapting material from the books to spice up their campaigns. It would be interesting to see what people have been coming up with! view post


posted 28 Feb 2006, 12:02 in Author Q & AJust finished TTT by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

A lotta death doing a lotta swirling... :wink: As far as I can tell the [i:28npmdf6]only[/i:28npmdf6] unambiguous victory belongs to Kellhus. view post


posted 28 Feb 2006, 12:02 in Author Q & ABack-er or Bake-er? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Richard... I was originally named after my grandfather, but then he and my pop had a falling out. Needless to say, this made me one confused little tot. view post


posted 28 Feb 2006, 12:02 in Author Q & ASpoilerful question about the trilogy's end by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:tpgqgs7i]All that, and it's just damn cool to boot! War Cants & Wracu & Heron Spears...how cool is all that!!! It's philosophy & intense social commentary ...wrapped in bacon. Tasty![/quote:tpgqgs7i] But is good for the [i:tpgqgs7i]heart[/i:tpgqgs7i], Cu Roi... :wink: I guess the real question is whether it's unrealistic in its anti-sentimentalism. This is one of the things I'm not inclined to the bite the bullet on. If anything, I think I was too [i:tpgqgs7i]kind[/i:tpgqgs7i]. Modern life has robbed us of many things, sure, but I for one, would not want to go back. Like I think I said in some interview somewhere, I wanted to show people the wages of their wonder. Sounds pompous to me now, but I stand by it. view post


posted 28 Feb 2006, 12:02 in Author Q & ARPG? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Cool beans! :D view post


posted 28 Feb 2006, 12:02 in Author Q & AA soulful question [WARNING: TTT Spoilers Inside] by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm reluctant to clarify [i:27pfrcpe]the[/i:27pfrcpe] metaphysics of the world, because as I've said, metaphysical indeterminacy is a feature of the [i:27pfrcpe]real[/i:27pfrcpe] world, which means that the metaphysical indeterminacy of Earwa is one of the things that makes it realistic. Besides, one of the [i:27pfrcpe]morals[/i:27pfrcpe] of the story is that uncertainty is our friend... :wink: That said, the rule of thumb is that the Inchoroi slave races do not have souls. It all comes back to the first epigraph in TDTCB. Actually, there's several epigraphs that bear on the issue of identity and souls. And please, Raest, call me Scott. The way I look at it, you've spent [i:27pfrcpe]hours[/i:27pfrcpe] listening to me drone on and on - more than enough to put us on a first name basis. If anything, I should be calling you Mr. Raest! view post


posted 28 Feb 2006, 13:02 in Author Q & AKant and the Dunyain by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Wouldn't you know it, I was in the midst of finishing my longwinded response, where I told Peter how I always Ctrl+C all my posts before submitting them, and instead of hitting Shift+P to write his name, I somehow hit Ctrl+W and lost everything - poof! So let me summarize: personally I think Foucault's [i:x9odvam5]The Order of Things[/i:x9odvam5] has had a bigger influence, unJon, though you've inspired to crack open DP once again. Regarding Kant: the opening epigraph to TWP, the famous 'philosophy's precarious position' one from [i:x9odvam5]Foundations[/i:x9odvam5], expresses precisely the relation you mentioning, Peter. The Dunyain are related to Kant the way Hegel is: they see transcendental subjectivity as a type of historical achievement. They are more Kantian than Hegel insofar as they see the formal as preceding the real, as opposed to being part and parcel of it. This is why they think history is the enemy, rather than the engine, of their movement to the Absolute. One way of looking at Kellhus's revelation is in Hegelian terms. Brief, I know, but I seem to have accumulated quite a few questions in the past couple weeks! view post


posted 28 Feb 2006, 13:02 in Author Q & AMass-Market Paperback by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Too true, Alterego. But for new authors, inexpensive mmpbs are pretty much a necessity. This is why, I think, my 'US market share' (why do I shudder saying that?) is so much smaller than my Canadian or UK one. Especially when it comes to series, mmpbs also help to leverage sales of tpbs and hcs. Since I grew up reading mmpbs, they remains my personal favourites. To be honest, I never quite felt like a 'published author' until I received the first of Penguins too cool mmpb versions of TDTCB. view post


posted 28 Feb 2006, 13:02 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWas Cnauir gay? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

What are 'slash sites,' Linnea? view post


posted 28 Feb 2006, 13:02 in Author Q & Ado chorea last by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Yes, the depth of the Mark is proportional to the amount of sorcery cast, and the severity of the Chorae is proportional the depth of the Mark. view post


posted 28 Feb 2006, 13:02 in Author Q & AWorldhorn & Heron Spear by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

No comment. :wink: view post


posted 28 Feb 2006, 13:02 in Author Q & AWoe comes... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

This is actually a tough question, one that forces me to do some on the fly rationalizing. At the time, I was thinking that the Sranc have a 'racial memory' of Seswatha, something implanted by their Inchoroi masters. The problem is that their ability to detect the 'Seswatha-within' smacks of the supernatural, which cannot be the case for the Sranc (except for a handful of rare exceptions). So I guess the idea would be that the skin-spies, given that their ability to duplicate others requires an exquisite sensitivity to their body language, are able to detect the imprint of Seswatha in the body language of Mandate Schoolmen - that in the course of the Grasping, Achamian and the others all inherit minute but characteristic 'ticks' belonging to Seswatha. I think I might work that into TTT. You touched bottom with this one Mog-Pharau! view post


posted 28 Feb 2006, 13:02 in Author Q & ASome questions regarding Tryse, Cunuroi and Miracles by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

It's just that I'm hoping that AE will have hundreds of little 'a-ha' moments, and answering your questions could close down on several of those. This site isn't that big membership-wise, but it literally receives thousands upon thousands of hits. I remember my jaw hit the ground when Jack gave me the statistics last summer. But there's also the issue of 'keeping my possibilities open' - this is particularly the case with one of your questions. Unlike with PoN, I have no prior draft of AE, so in many cases I have far more liberty to create new material and add the odd, surprising wrinkle here and there. And here you come with your ironing board questions! :wink: view post


posted 28 Feb 2006, 13:02 in Author Q & AThe Language by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thank you, sb! Share the love, I say. Spread it like peanut butter. view post


posted 28 Feb 2006, 14:02 in Author Q & AState of Canadian literary culture by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Well, the [i:1besagug]Toronto Star[/i:1besagug] finally reviewed me, and it looks like the [i:1besagug]Globe and Mail[/i:1besagug] might do so as well. But this is one crow I'll happily eat! It's one of those crazy capitalist positive feedback loops, where the better your bargaining position, the easier it is to improve your bargaining position. I tell you, if I do end up amassing some cultural capital, I plan on spending a good portion of it making the case for genre, and critiquing academically anchored literary culture. People need to start writing for [i:1besagug]other[/i:1besagug] people, not just versions of themselves. It's what writing does to real people in real time that makes it 'literary,' not it's resemblance to a certain narrow body of historical conventions - [i:1besagug]that's[/i:1besagug] supposed to be why genre is so bad. I actually tried to get in touch with RM Vaughan, but no such luck. view post


posted 28 Feb 2006, 14:02 in Author Q & ASome questions about the moon,witches and the Inchoroi. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I actually received quite abit of resistance to the notion that the Inchoroi were a technological species. Some of my prepub readers thought it was a BIG mistake, but it was part of the plan from the very beginning. And so far, I think I've encountered complaints about everything [i:3dtc9y4z]but[/i:3dtc9y4z]! view post


posted 28 Feb 2006, 14:02 in Author Q & AThe Nonmen Quya (spoilers) by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

All I can say is that AE will put the [i:3m8kqgly]whole[/i:3m8kqgly] world into play. :twisted: view post


IFWA Rocks! posted 11 Mar 2006, 15:03 in Author AnnouncementsIFWA Rocks! by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I just got back from my Canadian book tour, and I wanted to post a special announcement for all the wonderful people of the Imaginative Fiction Writers Association in Calgary, Alberta: Thank you all for your company and great conversation, and thanks especially to Randy and Anna for all your logistical help. I'm presently cooking up some devilish ways I can repay your generosity at the writer's workshop this summer. IFWA rocks! You guys really have something special happening out there - but I suspect you know that. view post


My ENTERTAINMENT TONIGHT Interview posted 11 Mar 2006, 15:03 in Interviews and ReviewsMy ENTERTAINMENT TONIGHT Interview by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

So it was only ET Canada, but it was pretty cool all the same. It turns out that CJ Moore's boyfriend is a big fan of the series. The interview was about 20 minutes long, and will apparently be used for a special on Canadian writers on Bravo Channel, with some snippets of me talking about Fantasy and Psychothrillers on ET proper. I thought it went very well, given that it was first TV interview ever. I had them all laughing several times. But then I do look rather funny... Since my television viewing habits are sporadic at best, do let me know if you happen to catch it. I'm pickled tink about this. Does anyone know who Neil Gaiman's tailor is? view post


The Tour Dust Settles... posted 11 Mar 2006, 15:03 in Tour and Signing InformationThe Tour Dust Settles... by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I just returned late last night, and I wanted to give a hearty thanks to all those who dared the chill Canadian night to listen to me pontificate about the Truth of Literature the end of the world as we know it... (Sorry about the earworm... :wink: ) It was very cool being able to thank Steve Erikson in person. I bought him enough beers to send him wobbling home. And he gave me some sound advice. I'll be back to catch up on the Q&A thread soon. I have to finish scrapping with Vandermeer first. view post


TORONTO, March 31st to April 2nd posted 14 Mar 2006, 23:03 in Tour and Signing InformationTORONTO, March 31st to April 2nd by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I've been crazy-busy for the past few days, but I thought I should pop in and post my schedule at Toronto's most excellent Ad Astra SF&F Convention, otherwise I would forget, like I always seem to do. The Convention runs from March 31st to April 2nd, and I plan on warming a seat in the bar all three of those days. If you recognize me, feel free to berate, interrogate, congratulate, or just say hello. Really, I'm just another dude. I have a panel Saturday morning at 11AM entitled, "Changing your Mind" - I have no bloody clue as to what that's about. Then I have a signing session from 3:30 to 5 that afternoon. Then on Sunday at 1PM, I have a panel entitled "SF Everywhere, but Still We Don't Get No Respect." Since I primarily write F, as opposed to SF, I guess that means I [i:2btwu064]really[/i:2btwu064] don't get any respect! I hope some of you have a chance to make it. Ad Astra really is a cool time. view post


posted 15 Mar 2006, 16:03 in Author Q & AFan art for the PoN by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Hmm. It's a good question, but I guess I'm unsure how to go about this without spending an inordinate amount of time typing - the questions are really starting to pile up fast! Actor analogies maybe? I don't think that would work because with the exception of Esmenet, no one seems to fit. You do know, that part of the reason I shy away from descriptive inventories is that I want readers to decide these things for themselves. So I guess my question back to you, Edge, would be what do you [i:hk0uqn1u]want[/i:hk0uqn1u] them to look like? view post


posted 15 Mar 2006, 16:03 in Author Q & AA Prince of Nothing Wiki by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

[quote:o0houoty]The biggest danger of a wiki, since there is an encyclopedic section in TTT, is plagarism. I would not want a PoN Wiki to become, or even to start with, an unauthorised copy of your work! [/quote:o0houoty] So long as no one is binding them and selling them I'm not sure I would care. I think intellectual property laws [i:o0houoty]should[/i:o0houoty] be leaky - especially if it inspires others to be creative in their own right. What I would like to do, someday, is my own version of the Silmarillion - a big encyclopedic scrap book of all the stuff I've accumulated over the years. view post


posted 15 Mar 2006, 16:03 in Author Q & ASpoilerful question about the trilogy's end by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Yeah, it was in the cards from the very beginning, Stormchaser, which I think a reread would show quite clearly. I have given my pledge, here and elsewhere, that I WILL NOT deviate from my original narrative outline for the Second Apocalypse. This really isn't a matter of aesthetic scruples for me, but just a consequence of having lived with the story for some twenty years. I literally feel as though my life would be for naught if I don't do it the best way I possibly can, which is very likely not the most lucrative way I could do it. I'm tempted to say that if the ending pissed you off, just wait for the ending ending! :wink: view post


posted 15 Mar 2006, 16:03 in Author Q & AConsult vs Mandate by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

It was a cold war more than anything else, with neither side possessing the resources to really do more than bruise the other. I'm inclined to be coy about this, because I'm thinking about writing a novella prequel on this period, something that could lay the groundwork for TDTCB - make it more accessible. I'm thinking about calling it [i:g97uancp]An Atrocity Tale[/i:g97uancp]... view post


posted 15 Mar 2006, 16:03 in Author Q & AA question concerning your cat. by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Thanks Edge! But please do call me Scott - I mean, we're talking about my cat now. When my wife and I first got Scully as a kitten we had a week-long scrap about what to call her. She wanted something chickish, like 'Fluffy' or something, and I wanted something offsidish, like 'Fridge' or 'Toaster' or something retarded like that. One night while watching X-Files (yes, we were huge fans), we started squabbling again, and between a pause in our mutual barrages, Muldar happened to say 'Scully.' We looked at each other in wonder, grabbed our kitten, and fell in love all over again! view post


posted 15 Mar 2006, 16:03 in Author Q & AEanna? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Yeah, I actually think many writers do damage to their worlds by revealing too much, both historically and geographically. For our ancient ancestors, 'terra incognita' always loomed large on their horizon, as a perpetual source of hope and dread. Really, that's just a way of saying the cookie jar has no bottom! :wink: view post


posted 15 Mar 2006, 16:03 in Author Q & AA Prince of Nothing Wiki by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Ah, who needs employment... :wink: Sounds, very interesting, though I think my agent would choke if he heard me say that! The thing is, I'm [i:1t123w34]committed[/i:1t123w34] timewise, in a big way, now that I have these contracts for AE. It'll be three years before I have the luxury of considering any other big projects. view post


posted 15 Mar 2006, 16:03 in Author Q & AInrau's sorcery by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

This question really morphed! Yes, Inrau IS damned. And this is the basis of his conversion. There's always hope that the scriptures just overlooked some kind of loophole, or that by praying [i:3kkxcpk5]real[/i:3kkxcpk5] hard... Part of the problem is that we see Inrau primarily through Achamian, and if you think about it, Achamian tends not to go into the details of his damnation - or that of any of those he loves. For instance, why doesn't he ever wonder about Inrau's [i:3kkxcpk5]soul[/i:3kkxcpk5]? This omission becomes more and more explicit the more implicated Achamian becomes in Kellhus's world. Think of TTT. I wanted this to be the one thing he cannot grasp without the protection of vague intellectual abstraction. view post


posted 15 Mar 2006, 17:03 in Author Q & AAspect-Emperor status by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Never fear, Mith! I've been working on AE all this time, mostly hammering out scenes and details. Note that the dates I gave correspond exactly with the 18 month schedule. In my original Penguin contract, the time from inception to [i:3jyxhhxq]publication[/i:3jyxhhxq] was a year. You do know you're using the wrong sports analogy for the publishing world, and that's why you end up getting so bummed by the shifting schedule. It's not like football, where the games over when you run out the clock. It's more like baseball, were the game itself determines the time spent. Although there are a number of exceptions, some notorious, I think this actually works best for the readers in the end. Don't you think? The more scheduling accountability you impose on the writing process, the more you risk distorting it, it seems to me. view post


posted 15 Mar 2006, 17:03 in Author Q & AMen v. Nonmen by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Keep this up, WL, and I'll have to put you on retainer. Long time no see. How you've been keeping? view post


posted 15 Mar 2006, 17:03 in Author Q & ATTT Encyclopedia by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Yeah, definitely wait before reading the Glossary. I actually think I screwed more than a couple things up while putting the thing together, simply because I was so paranoid about spoilers. Some things I left out, that I should have put in, and some things I put in, that I should have left out. The problem is that I get lazy from time to time, and start relying on my memory instead of consulting my notes. Well, okay, so I'm lazy pretty much all the time. view post


posted 15 Mar 2006, 17:03 in Author Q & AAkka and the Ciphrang - TTT spoilers by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Regarding the mark, the idea is that passion is not cognitive, which is to say, neither true nor false OF anything, unlike statements or images. This is why recalling the 'Passion of the God' is never incomplete, whereas recalling the 'Thought of the God' must be false somehow, and so marked. That's the rationale, anyway. view post


posted 15 Mar 2006, 17:03 in Author Q & ABack-er or Bake-er? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I pronounce 'potato' as 'potato,' 'tomato' as 'tomato,' 'either' as 'either' (people usually laugh at that one), 'nuclear' as 'nuclear' (and not, as GWB does, as 'nookewleer'), and lastly, 'about' as 'go screw yourself Larry!' :wink: view post


posted 15 Mar 2006, 17:03 in Author Q & AA thank you to Scott by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Damn, and I try so hard to be [i:1814qo4b]virtual[/i:1814qo4b]... :wink: Thanks, EE. It was great meeting you as well! I hope I wasn't too depressing, you know, with all that end of the world blather. view post


posted 15 Mar 2006, 17:03 in Author Q & AState of Canadian literary culture by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Yeah, I'm not quite so sanguine as Rob. At that Brock conference, it was pretty clear to me that the guy was taking direct aim at him. I also think the wall doesn't seem so high to him simply because he's been able to establish himself as a pundit [i:2aj706c5]despite[/i:2aj706c5] his genre credentials, and I think that's a function of his tenacity and impressive skills as a speaker as much as anything else. Every publcist I worked with on my recent Canadian tour commented on how the people who typically line up to interview or profile authors at various media, weren't at all interested in speaking to me. Literary writers with far, far fewer readers have a far easier time than do genre writers. It really speaks to the power of words to pigeonhole. I mean if it's this difficult to crawl out from under a literary epithet, could you imagine a racial or a sexual one? view post


posted 15 Mar 2006, 17:03 in Author Q & ACishaurim explanation by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I think I need to put you on retainer as well, EE! Now, if only you an Whitelord had law degrees... :wink: view post


posted 15 Mar 2006, 17:03 in Author Q & AWhy are Kellhus and Moenghus of the Few? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

The idea is that pertains to a certain kind of [i:3ks4ob5r]ability to remember[/i:3ks4ob5r]. Since memory, like other cognitive capacities, seems to be somewhat heritable, so is the ability - but only somewhat. The thing with the Dunyain, however, is that they have spent millennia breeding for certain cognitive capacities. I'm afraid there's not much I can say, Ikiru. :wink: Otherwise, you're allowed to call me whatever you want, Ikiru - this actually isn't my board. I just prefer Scott. view post


posted 15 Mar 2006, 17:03 in Author Q & AInchoroi, Souls, the Outside [TTT Spoilers] by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

This is a good question, and these are all issues I've settled in my own mind (which isn't always the case), but as I say, since metaphysical systems in the real world are open, vague, and apparently inconsistent, I think I would actually do damage to the world by laying out a comprehensive, canonical metaphysics. It's like the old horror film trope: sometimes what you don't see can be the most vivid thing of all. view post


posted 15 Mar 2006, 18:03 in Author Q & AThe Nonmen Quya (spoilers) by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

Why is everyone so curious about Eanna all of a sudden? view post


posted 15 Mar 2006, 18:03 in Author Q & ARPG? by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

When I was in Vancouver I had a chance to meet up with an old member of our old D&D crew (Arsenal, on the board here), and he showed me reams of old material while the two of us drew down 'what are those hairbags doing here' stares in swank bar of the hotel I was staying at. It blew my mind. It was revisiting a childhood home I'd forgotten about. Those games really were something special. view post


posted 15 Mar 2006, 18:03 in Tour and Signing InformationTORONTO, March 31st to April 2nd by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I'm not sure who owes what to whom, but when it comes to beer, I'm always inclined to split the difference... :wink: Keiths or Newcastle, in reverse order. view post


SFFWorld and The Warrior-Prophet posted 16 Mar 2006, 18:03 in Author AnnouncementsSFFWorld and The Warrior-Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

I've been meaning to post this for a couple of days now, but everything has been a big hurly burly. The most excellent members of SFFWorld have voted [i:bkjw5ycl]The Warrior-Prophet[/i:bkjw5ycl] THE Best Book of 2005! Is that too cool or what... view post


SF Site and The Warrior-Prophet posted 16 Mar 2006, 18:03 in Author AnnouncementsSF Site and The Warrior-Prophet by Cu'jara Cinmoi, Author of Prince of Nothing

SF Site, which is a premier genre webzine, has posted their [b:32cyum0v]Best SF and Fantasy Books of 2005: Reader's Choice[/b:32cyum0v], and [i:32cyum0v]The Warrior-Prophet[/i:32cyum0v] finished 6th overall - not bad considering it almost made the top ten last year on the strength of the Canadian release alone. I'm still pinching myself. I truly never believed these books would be so popular... view post


  •  

The Three Seas Forum archives are hosted and maintained courtesy of Jack Brown.