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posts by Aldarion Sorcerer-of-Rank | joined 16 Jun 2004 | 481


posted 17 Jun 2004, 13:06 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I'm not going to spoil anything about tBotNS, but I will say this: keep in mind that Severian is not always telling the truth. There is much, much more to the story that is revealed in the last two volumes that make the entire journey much more than what it seems. Just thought I'd help out, seeing as Wolfe is one of my favorite authors. And as for what I'm reading now, I'm starting a re-read of Gabriel García Márquez's [i:1smpeysy]Cien años de soledad[/i:1smpeysy] (yes, in Spanish). One of my all-time favorites. Also am planning a re-read of TDTCB in the next few days, not to mention reading more Márquez, Kathleen Goonan (Light Music), Ian MacLeod (The Light Ages), and Carol Emshwiller (The Mount) - all nominated for this past year's Nebula for Best Novel. And speaking of which, I did finish reading Elizabeth Moon's Nebula-winning [i:1smpeysy]The Speed of Dark[/i:1smpeysy], which is about autism and the moralities of "curing" this condition via gene therapy. Although it had it's weak spots (I thought the ending was rushed a bit), as a whole, this is a very moving work and one that deserves its comparison to Daniel Keyes's classic [i:1smpeysy]Flowers for Algernon[/i:1smpeysy]. view post


My thoughts on TWP posted 20 Jun 2004, 15:06 in The Warrior ProphetMy thoughts on TWP by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Since I'm very tired from working a graveyard shift and don't want to fool with converting from HTML to BBCode tags, I'll just provide a link to my review I made over at wotmania's Other Fantasy section: [url:2imytoug]http://www.wotmania.com/fantasymessageboardshowmessage.asp?MessageID=96922[/url:2imytoug] I will say that I enjoyed it greatly and I just sense that things are about to boil over completely into what should be a very enjoyable mess in TTT. What are the thoughts of others here who've read TWP? view post


posted 20 Jun 2004, 23:06 in The Warrior ProphetMy thoughts on TWP by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I'll need to re-read that section before I know for sure (I suspect it's because they are from another planet/world, but I'm unsure right now if their powers are the result of a "science" or something else), but I thought it was interesting to learn that the Scylvendi's Dead God apparently is the No-God. This should be very interesting once TTT is published. view post


posted 25 Jun 2004, 23:06 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I hate to say it, but when I read Martin's [i:1zfdjts1]A Storm of Swords[/i:1zfdjts1] for the first time in early 2001, I was actually [b:1zfdjts1]bored[/b:1zfdjts1] by the time I reached the infamous Red Wedding scene. I just found it to be just another event, just another plot device that didn't move me as the reader. Oh, when I re-read the series in 2002, I found the third book to be more enjoyable from a technical standpoint, but I still find SoS to be the weakest in the series so far. But that's just me, I guess, seeing as others have raved about the book and series for a variety of reasons, most of them reasoned out. And as for current, current readings, I just finished Ian MacLeod's [i:1zfdjts1]The Light Ages[/i:1zfdjts1] last night and thought the book was as good as advertised. Reminded me of China Miéville's [i:1zfdjts1]Perdido Street Station[/i:1zfdjts1] in its industrial setting, but MacLeod takes a different approach, using fluid prose to describe the social class antagonisms in a way that reminded me of Charles Dickens's [i:1zfdjts1]Bleak House[/i:1zfdjts1] and [i:1zfdjts1]Hard Times[/i:1zfdjts1]. Very highly recommended book to read if you get the chance. Also, I'm halfway finished with Gene Wolfe's latest story collection, [i:1zfdjts1]Innocents Aboard[/i:1zfdjts1], and again I'm amazed with his abilities to create a memorable and disturbing scene with just a few words. As good as Wolfe the novelist is, Wolfe the short story writer may be just as good or even better. view post


wotmania Interview with Scott posted 27 Jun 2004, 20:06 in Interviews and Reviewswotmania Interview with Scott by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Scott and I have been working on this interview for the better part of a week now. Hope you guys enjoy the finished product! [url:3nn83ccj]http://www.wotmania.net/fantasymessageboardshowmessage.asp?MessageID=98054[/url:3nn83ccj] view post


posted 27 Jun 2004, 20:06 in Interviews and Reviewswotmania Interview with Scott by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Can't wait to see the reactions to some of your responses, especially the bit about Tolkien and the New Weird. Should provide more grist for the debates, yes? As I said before, it was a real pleasure working on this with you. We'll have to do this again sometime, right? :D view post


posted 27 Jun 2004, 21:06 in Interviews and Reviewswotmania Interview with Scott by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

That it might, although some of these questions are just an extension of what I asked him at the Nashville book signing last week. Of the other interviews I've conducted with authors, I must say that this one "clicked" the most, maybe because we got to meet in person before beginning the interview process. Probably helps a lot in terms of the flow of conversation. But to be fair, email interviews are probably the hardest type of interview that an author can do, seeing as pre-prepared questions can really put a crimp into the direction the author and interviewer might want to go with it. What you're reading is actually something like five or six email exchanges that later were edited by Scott and I before being posted. I think that plays a huge role in making an interview "presentable." But this is just only the perspective of the interviewer. Hopefully Scott will reply back with his perspective. I just know I had a blast doing this and would love to do another in the future. view post


posted 28 Jun 2004, 12:06 in Interviews and Reviewswotmania Interview with Scott by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

No problem, glad to be of some assistance. Oh, and feel free to call me Larry, if you wish. view post


posted 28 Jun 2004, 12:06 in Off-Topic DiscussionAges by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Since I turn 30 in less than three weeks, I thought I'd just go ahead and vote in that category, seeing as it'd be more truthful in the future than voting in the other bracket. But it'll be interesting to see how many are older than me that visit here. I'm hoping I'll still be in the "spring chicken" category when this is all said and done. ;) view post


posted 29 Jun 2004, 19:06 in Off-Topic DiscussionAges by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Nice bell curve so far on the ages ;) Hrmm...surely Scott isn't the only person who visits here who's older than me, right? Right? I think I'm starting to develop gray hairs as we speak :P view post


posted 30 Jun 2004, 13:06 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Sovin Nai":1i0uilsn]My god, you guys are windy! I think I'm giving up on this thread...[/quote:1i0uilsn] I have to agree, even though I didn't post here until now ;) And to think I [i:1i0uilsn]thought[/i:1i0uilsn] I had a basic grounding in philosophy, only to realize that I just received a brief runthrough of the medieval Mysticists before heading straight to the Philosophes and out the door! But a very interesting series of replies so far. I'm surprised that I can almost comprehend all this. Did grad school stuff actually stick? :o So keep up the good work, fellas, and I'll just continue to lurk and learn. view post


The value of a life posted 01 Jul 2004, 00:07 in Philosophy DiscussionThe value of a life by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

This is a direct result of a conversation I had at work last night with a co-worker, although it is strongly influenced by a dozen years of questioning my attitudes toward this topic. I'll begin by stating that I am opposed to capital punishment in any situation whatsoever. Last night, a co-worker and I were discussing a 1st degree murder case in Nashville where a woman ran through a police barricade and ended up killing two officers. I mentioned that there was some question as to whether or not she lost control of the car and that the hitting of the officers was incidental to the attempt to break through the barricade. My co-worker argued that because it was the police, special laws apply, including the possibility of imposing the death penalty for any case in which a police officer dies as the result of the criminal committing another felony, such as robbery. This led to the pending execution of a Memphis criminal, Phillip Workman, who was given the death penalty in 1981 because a police officer died in a shootout after Workman was caught fleeing from a store that he had robbed. The evidence that has come to light seems to indicate that the bullet that killed the officer came from another officer, yet the state has argued successfully so far that due to the circumstances, Workman's death sentence was still valid. I argued that the application of the death penalty in certain 1st degree murder cases should be replaced with mandatory life without parole, noting not just the famous Stanford statistics of 1 in 7 death penalty cases being overturned completely, but also focusing on the message that it sends when we execute someone 20-30 years after their crime was committed. I suggested that maybe a different approach should be tried, maybe establishing on a larger scale a prison works industry, where the inmates can produce things that can be sold to consumers to create some sort of good out of the bad that they have caused by their deliberate actions. The co-worker countered with the argument that he, and many other Americans, do not want their tax dollars to go toward the maintenance of these violent offenders. He brought in the Bible as support for the common belief about the legality of the death sentence, despite recent urges from religious leaders (especially the Quakers and now the Catholic Church) to have such sentences commuted to life without parole, on grounds of moral decency. But his reply brings up a larger question: Just how much value do we grant to a human life? Is there a certain dollar amount that should be placed on a person's contributions (or conversely, on the damage that he/she has caused society)? What does it say about societies that do weigh monetary concerns into the equation of how to treat its citizens, not just the criminals but also those who are deemed "less fortunate?" Are some humans "naturally" going to be "worth more" than others? And bringing it back to the death penalty, what effects does such a sentence have on the average citizens, knowing that such a recourse is available? Just curious to hear thoughts on this. view post


posted 01 Jul 2004, 01:07 in Philosophy DiscussionThe value of a life by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Linda: Welcome, glad to see you around these parts as well! :D SN: I understand your mixed feelings. Years ago, I too felt much the same. I'm certainly not the type who's going to condemn anyone for arguing that there are merits to capital punishment (in fact, it'll be interesting to see what list of merits that can be drawn up), but over the years, my value system that I've constructed just has led me to conclude that I cannot support such a system, not just because of the possibility of errors in the system, but also because I have seen some adverse effects in the average populace. When it's easier to have someone executed, it can often lead to a desensitation of a society's emotions regarding the act of ending the life of a human being. The "turn up the juice" signs outside a prison before an execution are just disturbing and makes me wonder what lessons, if any, people have learned from the believed necessity of ending another's life for crimes against society. view post


posted 01 Jul 2004, 02:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionAges by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

True, that you are, Linda. But it's not like a generational difference between us, remember? So I'm still older than most, right? Come on more "old" people! :P view post


posted 01 Jul 2004, 13:07 in Philosophy DiscussionThe value of a life by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Wil":3najt8bp]Quite honestly I am in favor of the death penalty, but let me say this first: I do not think that "special laws" should apply because it was a police officer that was killed. Don't get me wrong, I have a great respect for law enforcement, but I don't feel that we can change the rules for them.[/quote:3najt8bp] But here lies a major problem - the [i:3najt8bp]enforcement[/i:3najt8bp] of the laws vary according to person and situation. In such a case, death penalty opponents would argue, there is room for subjectiveness to creep into the system that decides which punishment to mete out. I'll address this in more detail below. [quote:3najt8bp]I agree with the fact that our judicial system needs a major overhaul. There are many major failings, one of which is the overcrowding of our jails and prisons. Not to mention the conditions that the prisoners live in. Many live in better conditions then they did when they were free. I feel that the death penalty is necessary in this case because there simply isn't enough room or money to house all these criminals. There needs to be some way to reduce the numbers of said criminals and rehabilitation works only in some cases. [/quote:3najt8bp] Let's look at these sentences (nothing personal, just pointing out what you state here is what many others have stated before): You mention the overcrowding of our jails and prisons. Yes, Americans jail more people as a percentage of the population than any other "free" and "democratic" nation. Yet over 50% of these people are non-violent offenders. Overcrowding thus has little to nothing to do with those serving time for violent crimes, if these statistics are to believe. Likely, there are other explanations for this overcrowding (such as mandatory sentencing) and other possible solutions (a move toward a greater focus on rehabilitation and treatment rather than incarceration). As for the quality of life "going up" for some, what does this have to do with the death penalty? Yes, the majority of those who commit crimes come from the lowest and least educated groups of citizens (and non-citizens). Yet conditions are not as cozy as what many have been led to believe. I know of those cases for special equipment, but often that is purchased for control purposes (take away certain things, such as exercise equipment, and the potential for rioting increases exponentially. I work in a youth residential treatment center, which functions similarly to a minimum-security prison in many ways. We've learned from past experiences not to restrict freedoms too much among the residents, because if the means of defusing energy and frustration are removed, it becomes like a powderkeg). And now the issue goes toward money. If only a relatively small minority (say 25%) of prisoners are there for the killing of another human being, irrespective of motives or methods of killing, then wouldn't the argument that prisoners need to be executed more often due to overcrowding become a thorny issue? Only a small number of those convicted of murder ever receive the death sentence, because often the murders were done in acts of passion. That is why the courts have differing degrees of murder. But I will agree on the need to reduce those who are in prisons, albeit in certain situations (non-violent) and for other options (such as mandatory treatment/rehabilitation). [quote:3najt8bp]I do believe that there are crimes that deserve death; the killing of an innocent for one, and mass murder for another. Both these crimes are very detrimental to society, and thus should be punished harshly. I don’t believe that the death penalty should be used for revenge or anything like that, but to remove a threat from society, one that can, if left unchecked, threaten to destroy society as a whole. [/quote:3najt8bp] But why not life without parole? Isn't that a harsh enough sentence, to sentence one to live, suffer, and die without ever leaving a maximum-security prison? It seems to be an effective punishment in Western Europe and in 12 American states. What purpose could the death penalty serve but to act as a symbol of reprisal/revenge? That's a question I've had for years on this issue. Why execution and not incarceration? Side note: I would highly recommend Michel Foucault's [i:3najt8bp]Disclipine and Punishment[/i:3najt8bp] as a nice primer book on the move from public punishment to private. He cites Beccaria quite a bit, if I remember correctly. [quote:3najt8bp]As to the question “can we put a price on life?” I think that some ways we can, and do. The worth of your life is decided when you look at what said person has given to society as a whole. One who simply leeches of society, I feel, is worth less then someone who contributes a great deal. Since we are such social creatures, and put a great weight on the community, I feel it is valid to judge someone based on what they contribute.[/quote:3najt8bp] But what are the implications of such a question? Look at how you answered. I'm not attacking you for having such an opinion (in fact, I'd commend you for thinking things through more than many do on this issue, on either side), but there's a sense that those who commit violent acts are often viewed as somehow being "less than human" than those who were victimized (the active victim, and the passive victims, such as the offended society that is sickened by such a criminal act). It is not an attitude exclusive to this topic. No, it extends out into virtually every branch of human interaction. Has for millenia and probably will continue to do so. Is it right? Is it wrong? Or is it morally neutral to do so? I would think it would depend upon the person judging, the situation being judged, and the foreseen consequences of such a judging. Nice reply, Wil. Should be interesting to see how this dialogue continues. Oh, and before I forget, I also recommend highly Norman Mailer's [i:3najt8bp]The Executioner's Song[/i:3najt8bp], a story about the life and death of Gary Gilmore, the first American executed after the reinstatement of the death penalty in 1976. view post


posted 01 Jul 2004, 13:07 in Philosophy DiscussionOn The Warrior Prophet by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

TakLoufer: Very cool to hear. My mom is an English teacher and I'm considering heading back to school part-time in the near future to work on getting English teaching certification (to go with my endorsements in history, political science, geography, and psychology). I'm beginning to think I'm a glutton for punishment, considering how checkered my teaching career was ;) Best of luck and I must say that I'll continue to read these type of threads, as they make me think in a good way about Life, Universe, and Everything. Sorry, just had to make that Adams reference! :P view post


posted 02 Jul 2004, 12:07 in Philosophy DiscussionThe value of a life by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[i:3pkfgx40]Only[/i:3pkfgx40] in industrialized nations? Actually, one could make the argument that life is more [i:3pkfgx40]personalized[/i:3pkfgx40] in the rituals and customs of pre-industrial societies than is the case today in a more alienated, "mass" society that offers up the image of the Individual to replace the village or Tradition. I'll have to search through some of my old research materials for a couple of papers I wrote in college and grad school on symbolism and death, but I do recall that there was a lot of symbolism attached to a birth as well as to a death. So I would have to disagree most strongly with the assumption that life was viewed as "cheap" in any culture, pre-industrial or not. And as for the other point, about whether or not opposition to capital punishment should be grounded on moral reasons, one could argue that the main impetus for actually having such a system of punishment would be due to moral outrage and a demand for an eye-for-an-eye type of justice. After all, on a purely pragmatic level, prisons that house prisoners that are never to be granted parole can do just as well in preventing further violent acts as execution would, with less change of an innocent person being killed by the state for a crime he/she did not commit. I guess I should state here that I reject Objectivism (not Ayn Rand's ill-conceived "school", but a historical approach toward evidence and causation) in favor of a more Subjective approach that accounts for human emotions in the equation of human interactions. view post


posted 03 Jul 2004, 23:07 in Philosophy DiscussionThe value of a life by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Sovin Nai":11s42ref]Alright, let me clarify. What I mean is this: 1. I don't have any moral objections to killing a human being in retribution for a killing. I don't believe in the forgiveness policy.[/quote:11s42ref] I'm curious now. Which forgiveness policy are you talking about? A Christian (in all its forms) policy? A Jewish one? Muslim? Other Theistic beliefs? Utilitarian ideas on forgiveness? Which? Or do you mean forgiving just because some other Agency (whether it be a God, State, or Tradition) says you have to because it heals others? Just seeking clarification. Hrmm...this belief in a forgiveness policy could make for an interesting discussion of its own. [quote:11s42ref]2. That leaves the value of life to be considered, which is nil in the context in the world. People die every day. There is nothing that special about any human life.[/quote:11s42ref] I'd disagree with that last comment. Whether or not something (a life, an action, a process, etc.) is "special" or not depends on associational values that we, as members of societies, place upon ourselves, others, and on objects. I would argue that any life that has its corpse disposed of in any form of ceremony would be considered "special," although probably for vastly differing reasons if compared across space and time with previous and present cultures. [quote:11s42ref]In regards to the life is cheap comment, I did not mean that it is percieved as cheap by less industrialized nations (though it would seem to me, purely on specualtion, that it would be), so much as the fact that it just is. A lot of people die by means that would be preventable with development or better control and order.[/quote:11s42ref] A lot of people, in "rich" and "poor" nations alike, die each and every day, whether from preventable causes or not. What I sense lying behind your words is a belief in something analogous to what historians have called the Whig Model of History - that belief that nations/cultures/societies/people are on a scale of sorts from "primitive" to "advanced," with suffering and "lesser" forms of social organization at one end and bounty and "democratic" social forms at the other end. This model has been discredited in recent decades, especially among cultural historians and others who've noted that the amount of material possessions has little to nothing to do with human quality of life. In fact, there's some evidence emerging that indicates that human health has deteriorated among "advanced" nations in comparison to "primitive" ones. One example cited is the vast increase in mental disorders and illnesses in urban areas, an increase that is well above any accounting for underreporting in less industrialized/urban areas. So yeah, there might be more cases of physical disease like typhoid fever and malaria that kill others, but this seems to be offset by the sheer mental misery that afflicts a much greater percentage of urban dwellers. So I guess in the end, it's all a wash. [quote:11s42ref]Sorry if anyone finds this offensive. I respect life and others, but when someone takes a life I believe they forfeit theirs.[/quote:11s42ref] No offense taken here, far from it in fact. Years of grad school tend to instill a very tough skin, especially among social science fields ;) It's been nice debating and counterpointing here. Not enough people these days bother to take the time to explore their own beliefs, not to mention those of others. I guess that's what I am finding refreshing about this topic and forum in particular - actual honest discussion and exploration of themes. view post


posted 03 Jul 2004, 23:07 in Philosophy DiscussionThe Case of the Blind Brain and Other Strange Tales by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Okay, reading this and [i:o8sn1a36]almost[/i:o8sn1a36] being able to follow some of the subcurrents that are implied has made me acutely aware that I need to read up more on this. So if you guys would please help me here, what are some of the texts that would explain "mental monism," among other things? I have a feeling that I should know this under another guise, but it's eluding me now... So any help/suggestions would be greatly appreciated - thanks! view post


posted 04 Jul 2004, 21:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Almost halfway through Ricardo Pinto's [i:37shku0i]The Chosen[/i:37shku0i]. This is certainly a different breed of fantasy. It's deliberate without dragging, with a very richly layered tapestry of cultural traditions that seem to go beyond surface similarities to certain cultures (although the ones that did come to mind when reading this were pre-Columbian Maya and Toltec, as well as shades of Han China). Seems like the main character, Carnelian, might be of a different persuasion than what you find in most other fantasies, yet it's all done with great care. Nice counter to Matt Stover's two Caine stories, which I enjoyed as well, even if it sometimes reads as a Steven Segal movie improved twofold with more intelligent dialogue. ;) view post


posted 04 Jul 2004, 21:07 in Philosophy DiscussionThe Case of the Blind Brain and Other Strange Tales by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Ah, just the typical confusion when jargon synonyms are used. I'm a bit familiar with Subjective Idealism, but that's more in relation to epistomological approaches toward constructing metanarratives to describe possible outlooks on the historical world. Thanks for the book recs - I'll see if I can spare some money when I go up to Nashville again on my Monday off from work. view post


posted 05 Jul 2004, 01:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Excellent choices whichever way you go. I really enjoyed reading both of them a couple of years ago and need to re-read them sometime soon. view post


posted 05 Jul 2004, 20:07 in Philosophy DiscussionThe value of a life by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Sovin Nai":6wqshwyq]Thanks. Re forgivness: I mean that I feel forgiveness is up to each and every person and there is much to be said for not forgiving. I have seen too many people forgive and forgive and get hurt by the same person again and again. If someone chooses not to forgive, I think it can be just as justified, perhaps more so, and healthy as forgiveness.[/quote:6wqshwyq] Thanks for clarifying this for me. I agree for the most part with what you've said here. Forgiveness means little in the long run if the offending party isn't sorry and makes no attempt to be penitent and to redress the harm he or she has caused. Yeah, forgiveness should not be doled out like free ice cream days, so I think we're in agreement here. [quote:6wqshwyq]Re life is cheap: Given the number of people who die every year from every different sort of cause, there is not enough weight behind one person's life to offset the punishment of death. In response to Wil, I see what you are saying, and I suppose I agree. However, most convicts have contributed little to society, and so that does not factor into my death penalty stance, I guess.[/quote:6wqshwyq] I don't believe I can agree with this, however, although I understand where you're coming from here. I guess it's just because I don't have this idea of a model that can judge just how much or how little a person is worth (which is the reason why I posted this in the first place, to discuss if there really can be such a model established). Then again, I'm one of those who tend to divorce a person's perceived "worth" from the application of such a punishment as the death penalty. I just wonder why it's even necessary in a world that's shown that plenty of wealthy nations can have abolished capital punishment without suffering dire consequences. Maybe I'm just more worried about the impact such a state sanction regarding killing a person can have on a nation. view post


posted 05 Jul 2004, 20:07 in Philosophy DiscussionThe Case of the Blind Brain and Other Strange Tales by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I swear, if Causation is ever argued here to any large extent, I'll boycott this part of the site. I still have too many nightmares of Foundations of Graduate Study in History to ever, [i:2el5tevo][b:2el5tevo]ever[/b:2el5tevo][/i:2el5tevo] want to even think about the Causation arguments again. But if this section will avoid that for my sake, I'll be more than happy to read up on some of the things being discussed and more importantly, I'll think about what's being said here. Deal? ;) view post


posted 06 Jul 2004, 01:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Just returned from my monthly excursion to the bookstore. Here's what's on tap: Sean Stewart, [i:1cj214dv]Perfect Circle[/i:1cj214dv] Jeff Vandermeer, [i:1cj214dv]Secret Life[/i:1cj214dv] K.J. Bishop, [i:1cj214dv]The Etched City[/i:1cj214dv] Charlie Stross, [i:1cj214dv]Singularity Sky[/i:1cj214dv] Various, [i:1cj214dv]Cosmos Latinos: An Anthology of Science Fiction from Latin America and Spain[/i:1cj214dv] Richard Morgan, [i:1cj214dv]Broken Angels[/i:1cj214dv] Stanislaw Lem, [i:1cj214dv]The Cyberiad[/i:1cj214dv] Hopefully I'll have a bunch of great books to recommend to others in the near future! view post


Now listening to... posted 06 Jul 2004, 04:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow listening to... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Just thought it'd be interesting to see what music the people here are listening to at any given time they feel like replying. I'll start things out by saying that I am enjoying the recently-released Velvet Revolver CD, which stars the singer of Stone Temple Pilots (Scott Weiland) with ex- everybody but Axl Rose members of Guns'n'Roses. Nice blend. Makes me feel nostalgic for [i:j6vwypes]Appetite for Destruction[/i:j6vwypes]. So what are you listening to now? view post


posted 06 Jul 2004, 04:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Cool. I've been meaning to buy it for almost a year now, but something would always come up. So when I saw it in the bookstore tonight, I just had to have it. Of course, my toughest decision will be which book to read first, seeing as just about all of them are receiving critical acclaims in Locus and elsewhere. Seems like now is just such an exciting time to be a fantasy reader. view post


posted 06 Jul 2004, 04:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow listening to... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Yep, Nirvana is definitely good to listen to. Before this, I've been listening to bootleg live performances by Jimmy Page (with Paul Rodgers, 1988) and Page/Plant (Nashville, 1998 - a concert I went to, no less!) and have been in hard rock heaven. I love bootlegs. view post


posted 06 Jul 2004, 05:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Yep, VanderMeer's an interesting character. Can't wait to see how much he entertains me with [i:21vzsl73]Secret Life[/i:21vzsl73]. view post


posted 07 Jul 2004, 09:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow listening to... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Outkast coupled with Mozart? Very eclectic! As for country...you should try living in the Greater Nashville Metropolitan Area. If you think country's bad enough from a distance, being around its epicenter is a lot worse. That being said, there's actually a few "Country" artists that transcend the crappy field and are worth listening to: Johnny Cash, err...Johnny Cash...and uh, Johnny Cash! ;) view post


TWP hitting Bestseller List posted 07 Jul 2004, 22:07 in Interviews and ReviewsTWP hitting Bestseller List by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

This week's [i:m5n938u3]Locus Online[/i:m5n938u3] has TWP listed with a nice photo spread: [url:m5n938u3]http://www.locusmag.com/2004/Monitor/Bestsellers0705.html[/url:m5n938u3] Needless to say, but cool. view post


posted 08 Jul 2004, 03:07 in Philosophy DiscussionDrug Legalization by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I'll say more on the drug legalization bit later, but for now, one of my first cousins (and the one closest in age to me) was just arrested in a massive sting operation. She might be serving more than a few months this time. But work beckons and I better get ready. Will reply more later. view post


posted 08 Jul 2004, 21:07 in Philosophy DiscussionDrug Legalization by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I was wondering where a reply of mine had gone ;) Okay, time to address the drug bit from a personal perspective: I am of many minds when it comes to drug legalization. I personally think something is wrong with society and the justice system when over 50% of the inmates serving time are there for drug use and/or simple possession. Yet I think it would be highly irresponsible to just legalize them all without establishing certain agencies in a much greater depth than we've had before. I'll illustrate what I mean by discussing my cousin Amy. She's 30 years old, single, has a 3 year old son. Ever since she was 13, she's been a drug user/abuser. She started with pot, but decided she wanted something stronger. So she started to use crack cocaine and heroin. Now I knew about her pot use, but not about the others, so I didn't say anything back then. Maybe I should have, I don't know. Things were relatively okay until after she graduated from high school in 1992. She was an honor roll student and had a decent enough personality. But she decided to rebel. She decided she wanted more than the occasional hit or shoot-up. She dropped out of college. She went through literally dozens of jobs over the next few years. Started to sleep around, probably prostituting herself for drugs. Her parents didn't know how to handle the situation. She started to threaten them, making insinuations that she might burn down the house and kill them if they didn't leave her alone. Her personality became odious to most of us in the family. I couldn't tolerate being around her for more than a few minutes, just because of the bad vibes she emits when on drugs. She started to go deeper into the habit, stealing things to feed her cravings. She was caught and arrested on many occasions for simple possession or petty theft. She'd serve a few months, somehow get out on probation, and begin doing it all over again. In 2000, she became pregnant with a sometime-boyfriend. She was arrested for testing positive for crack while pregnant. She served about five months in prison, let out just to give birth to her son. She had to have a monitor bracelet clipped to her when she was granted a furlough to attend our grandfather's funeral in April 2001. She did try, back in 2003, to break the habit and succeeded for about 4-5 months. Yet she was back at it in January of this year and had to serve a few more months. She was just let out at the end of June, only to be arrested in a massive sting operation a couple days later. This might finally be her first felony offense, since she's likely to be charged with transport as well as possession. She's been very distant to her son when she's on drugs and had to surrender custody to her parents. She's still been very erratic in behavior and last year assaulted her mother while she was driving my cousin home after she couldn't get home from another's house. You might have noticed that I didn't mention anything about rehab in the above paragraphs. That's because she really hasn't been ordered into a real long-term rehab program, nor have steps been done to confront the causes of the behaviors that have led to drug abuse. I personally think that both sides of the Drug Debate have been lacking in the discussion of how to deal with the social causes of drug use. I have no problems with people smoking the occasional fatty (even if I can't, use to bad lungs - reason why I don't smoke cigs), but there just isn't an effective rehabilitation setup in the US. I think a lot of that has to do with American mindsets regarding drug use. They seem to see it as a criminal/shouldn't be criminal thing, not failing to see the socio-cultural aspects of drug use and abuse. Look at the number of abuses regarding prescription drugs. There's something major that going on mostly under the radar of the drug wars and something should be done. I personally think that there probably should be a greater social engagement with the issue, because it's a social matter and not just a personal one. Then again, it's just my opinion. view post


posted 08 Jul 2004, 22:07 in Philosophy DiscussionDrug Legalization by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

It's a disesase, in the end. It just ruins so many lives and not just the drug user's. It should be treated as such and options should be made available (and maybe mandatory) for repeat occurrences. view post


posted 08 Jul 2004, 22:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionAges by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

And almost exactly 10 years younger than me, apparently ;) Wait until you reach 30. I can :P view post


posted 08 Jul 2004, 22:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Still hasn't arrived? :( That sucks. Then again, I'm still awaiting arrival of my order from almost two weeks ago of [i:12x197pe]Breaking Windows[/i:12x197pe], an anthology of the best short stories that have appeared on [i:12x197pe]Fantastic Metropolis[/i:12x197pe] over the years. view post


posted 08 Jul 2004, 22:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

When did it ship again? Said it could be as long as 16 days when I've ordered from there before. view post


posted 08 Jul 2004, 23:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Was there a tracking number? Usually if a book gets lost, you can demand a refund or a reshipment from Amazon US. Amazon CA probably has a similar policy. view post


posted 09 Jul 2004, 00:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow listening to... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Because I don't classify Dylan as being strictly any genre? ;) I will admit he has made some great songs that are of the Country persuasion (Lay Lady Lay being just one example, all of Nashville Skyline being another, not to mention parts of John Wesley Harding and Time Out of Mind), but he deserves his own genre, yes? :P That being said, I have a nice 2002 bootleg of Dylan playing Brown Sugar. Weird, yet good. view post


posted 09 Jul 2004, 20:07 in Interviews and ReviewsLondon Free Press Article by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Toga party theme, Scott? ;) *somehows envisions pyres lit, Satyric dances, and Dionysian excesses* Does this sound about right? :P view post


Addendum to the wotmania Interview: Re: Monkeys posted 09 Jul 2004, 21:07 in Interviews and ReviewsAddendum to the wotmania Interview: Re: Monkeys by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

We just added in a separate post an off-the-wall question that we ask authors as part of the Interview - one regarding monkeys and their application and naming. Scott just sent me his answer today and here's the link: [url:3eb66vrp]http://www.wotmania.net/fantasymessageboardshowmessage.asp?MessageID=99970[/url:3eb66vrp] Hope this makes people laugh...particularly those who have any animus toward a certain writer and a certain political leader ;) view post


posted 09 Jul 2004, 22:07 in Interviews and ReviewsLondon Free Press Article by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Don't think of it as vomit. Think of it as... Libations being offered to the Toilet Gods! view post


posted 10 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Interviews and ReviewsLondon Free Press Article by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Piss-grease? Sounds more like a [i:14b7yvk3]Lord of the Flies[/i:14b7yvk3] re-enactment party than anything else then... Man, I'm tired if I'm conjuring up images from that book now. Night (or morning)? ;) Have fun tonight, regardless of whatever projectiles are vomited out :P view post


posted 11 Jul 2004, 00:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionYour top 5 fantasy series... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

You ask a tough question... Well, I am not going to [i:335mg6p8]rank[/i:335mg6p8] them in a particular order, but the five Epic Fantasy series that I've enjoyed most are, in alphabetical order: Bakker Erikson Martin Tolkien Oh wait, that's only four. Well, I've read more, but those are the only ones that I'm currently still enjoying. So yeah. view post


posted 11 Jul 2004, 00:07 in Philosophy DiscussionFree Will by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I meant to answer this a couple of days ago and I still aim to, but I need some more time to think things out. If I'm not careful, I'll start writing and then try to somehow "prove" without sufficient evidence something like a Grand Unified Theory or something. But I will try to answer this at length sometime in the next day or two. view post


posted 11 Jul 2004, 17:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Clarkesworld Books":3jzzrwv4]Currently reading Mortal Love by Elizabeth Hand. Secret Life by Jeff Vandermeer is excellent. Enjoy! -Neil[/quote:3jzzrwv4] I agree wholeheartedly. It was one of the best collections I've read in quite some time. On par with Wolfe's latest and that's high praise coming from this Wolfe fan :D view post


posted 12 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Interviews and ReviewsLondon Free Press Article by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

And here I was, expecting you to quote from The Clash's "London's Burning"! ;) Sounds like a good time was had, if I'm reading your cryptic comments correctly. view post


posted 12 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Interviews and ReviewsLondon Free Press Article by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Oh lord... That sounds as funny/weird as the time when one of my best friends was in New Orleans for a conference. She and some friends ended up drunk on Bourbon Street and she tried to dance The Robot for money, only to have the street performer whose spot she relieved for a bit tell her that she was hopeless. C&W...must have thought you were back in Nashville on Second Avenue ;) Sorry, just felt like I had to say that. Hopefully rest (and possibly more alcohol?) will clear away that apparently nasty hangover. view post


posted 13 Jul 2004, 00:07 in Interviews and ReviewsLondon Free Press Article by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

C&W - Country and Western Oh, and congrats on that mention by the way. view post


posted 13 Jul 2004, 02:07 in Philosophy DiscussionFree Will by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

So after thinking about this for a bit, here are just a few of the many thoughts I've had on this topic. A problem with approaching this topic is that all too often people tend to bandy about the word "is", as if we can "prove" or "disprove" that free will exists. "Is" just might be one of the most deadly and cutting words we have, as its very use presumes the existence (or nonexistence) of something. So with that in mind, I proceed with trepidation into revealing some of my thoughts regarding free will. I believe that a belief or disbelief in free will is not as important as how people [i:1f5tqfz4]apply[/i:1f5tqfz4] their beliefs to a given situation. Free will, like the idea of God, is not ultimately "provable" and to presume as such would tend to lead people down the fallacy of applying scientific methods to metaphysical discussions. So I eschew the notion that we can "know." Sometimes, ignorance is more than bliss; it's a way of life (and one that can have benefits for people and societies). Scott actually touches upon this some in TWP (the chapter quotes in particular are direct). Maybe we should just own up to our inability to know everything and just do what we can with what we have to create what we might out of this world that we [i:1f5tqfz4]can[/i:1f5tqfz4] know and understand. So if a belief in Free Agency helps a person construct a world-view (I prefer using the German [i:1f5tqfz4]Weltanschauung[/i:1f5tqfz4], despite its misapplication by Hitler, due to its subtle undertones of a connection with a person's life. But world-view will do for those who don't understand German.) that is beneficial for them and others, then that's a good thing. Same for the person who takes a belief in a foreordained destiny and creates something positive out of that. So I guess I'm saying that how we apply our beliefs is much more important than trying to "solve" those beliefs. view post


posted 13 Jul 2004, 03:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionSex by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I know of one female poster here, Linda, but that's kinda because I invited her over here. She's read the series though, I believe. My guess would be to give them time. This is a small forum still, despite the recent upsurge in members. I'll see what I can do to recruit more to this site. view post


posted 13 Jul 2004, 03:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Toxic Hell (Taco Bell) view post


posted 13 Jul 2004, 03:07 in Interviews and ReviewsAddendum to the wotmania Interview: Re: Monkeys by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Nah, I wonder if I can get Goodkind to reply :P As if. I have my standards and they preclude any interview invitations to someone whose beliefs and attitudes I find to be odious. view post


posted 13 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Interviews and ReviewsAddendum to the wotmania Interview: Re: Monkeys by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

So I couldn't resist taking Scott's reply and turning it into the basis for a Quickpoll (probably only up for today, maybe tomorrow): [i:3lyaj6c9][b:3lyaj6c9]Which monkey is the better writer?[/b:3lyaj6c9] The one who recreated Hamlet One of those working in D. Adams' HGttG Terry Goodkind I don't get it[/i:3lyaj6c9] As of right now (9:33 AM CDT), the Terry Goodkind monkey is winning in a close race, with just over 32% of the votes cast. I wonder how many Goodkind fans will be mad at me for posting this.[/i] view post


posted 13 Jul 2004, 18:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow listening to... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Amen to that G'n'R statement. view post


posted 14 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Interviews and ReviewsAddendum to the wotmania Interview: Re: Monkeys by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

My favorite Goodkind joke was the time that I wrote a Quickpoll where the choices for a more interesting read were between the next SoT book and The Illustrated Guide to Grass Growing. The Illustrated Guide won. view post


posted 15 Jul 2004, 12:07 in Literature DiscussionOther Literature Forum by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Cool. One question: Would it be in bad form if I were to "syndicate" some of my reviews I've written for wotmania? I'd be glad to share my thoughts on books if people want to read them. Any takers? view post


posted 15 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & AOn the subject of Chorae by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":2sp90qgq]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.[/quote:2sp90qgq] And all of the sudden, I had this mental image of Bill Hall (sorry, Nashville-area weatherman for those not in the know - you remember him, Scott?) talking about how the local magic-influenced low pressure system might be affecting the fishing and chorae casting ;) And yes, I'm sleep-deprived and need sleep now. view post


posted 16 Jul 2004, 01:07 in Literature DiscussionOther Literature Forum by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Will do later this week. view post


Review of two anthologies of the "New Weird" posted 16 Jul 2004, 03:07 in ReviewsReview of two anthologies of the "New Weird" by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Recently, I received and read two anthologies,[i:4rfwxty1] Conjunctions 39: The New Wave Fabulists[/i:4rfwxty1] and[i:4rfwxty1] Breaking Windows: A Fantastic Metropolis Sampler[/i:4rfwxty1]. While each is different in content, style, and format, each purports to represent a sampling of what is now being called the New Weird, a hybrid style that combines elements of sci-fi, fantasy, horror, and other assorted odds-and-ends in a way that projects a certain attitude toward the speculative fiction field that is very different from, and in some cases antagonistic toward, the Tolkien-influenced fantasy forms. [i:4rfwxty1]Conjunctions 39[/i:4rfwxty1] is a more formal anthology. Published by Bard College (side note: very prestigious liberal arts school), [i:4rfwxty1]Conjunctions [/i:4rfwxty1]aims to be around the cutting-edge of new literature. Published twice a year, for the thirty-ninth issue, they asked noted horror writer and frequent contributor Peter Straub to guest edit that issue. He chose to focus on the burgeoning movement that China Miéville, among others, had started to call the New Weird. However, not all of the picks were strictly new writers. In fact, a great many included (Gene Wolfe, M. John Harrison in particular) were chosen more to show an evolution in this movement's direction than just to highlight new writers. As many have said elsewhere, [i:4rfwxty1]Dangerous Visions[/i:4rfwxty1] this is not. And yet...there's just something about this collection that should appeal to those here who enjoy reading non-conventional fantasy stories. In particular, I found Neil Gaiman's "October in the Chair" to be a bridging sort of fable, one that purposely envokes the magic of Ray Bradbury's prose and drags it kicking and screaming (or maybe being led gently back would be a more apt description) into a mileau that is itself a progeny of the dystopic langscapes that dot many of Bradbury's stories. Kelly Link does an excellent job with "Lull" of creating false moments of security before exploding the full force of the story in our faces. Miéville forsakes Bas-Lag to create the vivid and ultimately chilling "Familiar". Karen Joy Fowler displays her talent for characterization in the excellent "The Further Adventures of the Invisible Man." The other authors included are Jonathan Carroll, John Crowley, Andy Duncan, Joe Haldeman, Elizabeth Hand, Nalo Hopkinson, John Kessel, Jonathan Lethem, James Morrow, Patrick O'Leary, Paul, as well as two essays by John Clute and Gary K. Wolfe. Certainly a worthwhile collection of stories, even if it is uneven and unfocused in terms of intent. [i:4rfwxty1]Breaking Windows[/i:4rfwxty1], in contrast, is a much more focused collection of stories, interviews, and essays. This first collection from the Fantastic Metropolis website, edited by Luís Rodrigues, certainly has the style and attitude of the New Weird, at least those elements of it that are featured on the site. This printed collection serves as a quasi- Best of Fantastic Metropolis for its first couple of years (through early 2003). As such, all of the material I mention here can be read for free on its site. Michael Moorcock begins the collection with an essay he wrote for a Christmas edition of FM. In it, he explores the subversive possibilities of speculative fiction and how "sanitized" the field has become since the 1950s. He gives a nice overview of genre developments and how it relates to contemporary literary movements and attitudes. Whether you agree with his views or not, Moorcock's "Christmas Editorial" is well worth a read. Jeff VanderMeer then follows with an essay on what he calls "the Shadow Cabinet," which is an anti-canon of those works that are too imaginative for easy mass consumption, yet which are well worth the effort needed to explore the ideas and images that they conjure in the reader. L. Timmel Duchamp closes the editoral section with a short essay on the passions that can be invoked in a private (and even sometimes rebellious) reading of a work, rather than the following of a public reading trend. The stories that follow vary wildly in tone and effect. I personally found Andew S. Fuller's "(All That Happens) Before the Epilogue" to be a great read, not just because of its experimental use of the English language, but because he manages to envoke a variety of emotional responses from me over the course of his story. Zoran Zivkovic (of [i:4rfwxty1]The Fourth Circle[/i:4rfwxty1] fame) has an excerpt from The Book printed here, one that serves to make me want to buy it ASAP. Yet some of the other stories reflect weaknesses in their styles. For some authors in the collection, the imagination, while vivid, is not properly harnessed to the structure of the story to create the desired effect. For others, the characterization is just not strong enough to carry the plots. But as a whole, these stories read like beginning efforts toward something grand. Finally, [i:4rfwxty1]Breaking Windows[/i:4rfwxty1] closes with some reviews and interviews, many of which cast the stories before in the context of the movements from which they sprang (or which they are rebelling against). Zivkovic gives a very thoughtful review of Arthur C. Clarke's Childhood's End that is much more positive than the one I gave it. Miéville gives an updated list of fifty books that socialists should read in the spec fic field. And then are some intriguing interviews with Dan Pearlman and Tony Daniel to close out the collection. So which of these two collections should be read first? I believe that [i:4rfwxty1]Breaking Windows[/i:4rfwxty1] does more to place the New Weird in an editorial context and would serve as a good introduction to what that movement has been about. However, [i:4rfwxty1]Conjunctions 39: The New Wave Fabulists[/i:4rfwxty1] contains some really moving stories and probably will be the better-suited read for those who want samples of authors that have already established themselves in the field. But I certainly do recommend both collections to people here who enjoy reading non-traditional fantasy stories. view post


The Speed of Dark, this year's Nebula winner posted 16 Jul 2004, 03:07 in ReviewsThe Speed of Dark, this year's Nebula winner by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I read an excerpt of this book back in April when I was trying to handicap (err...bad choice of words, as you'll see below) the finalists for this year's Nebula for Best Novel. I thought it was really good, but sadly the excerpt was only a couple of pages long in length. But onto the story, and what a story it is. Set in the near future (around 2040), the story revolves around Lou Arrendale, an autistic person who is working under an ADA-like provision for a major research company. Told from his point of view, the story can be jarring for those who have not had any experience with people with mental disabilities. I, however, think it captures the mindsets of many autistic people quite well (having some experience trying to relate to an autistic schoolmate). The plot revolves around two main centers: Lou's interactions with a group of "normals" with whom he fences on a weekly basis as well as the efforts of a boss at his company to make the Section A autistic employees undergo (via coercive measures) an experimental treatment that promises to "cure" their autism. Lou is faced with a very difficult choice, one which will have profound resonances (I use the word with careful thought, considering Lou's discussions of music affecting his pattern recognitions) on his friendships and on his relationship with the world around. Many reviewers have compared this book favorably to Daniel Keyes's [i:10jufxnb]Flowers for Algernon[/i:10jufxnb], especially with its portrayal of people with disabilities. As a new employee for a local agency that works with people with mental disabilities, I thought Moon did an excellent job of presenting the hurdles that people with mental disabilities face in their struggles to be as "normal" as they can be while still maintaining their personal sense of Self. It is very obvious that Moon bases a lot of dialogue on her own daily interactions with her teenage son, who happens to have autism. I thought it was very important that Moon makes clear that autism is not a disease or a dehumanizing condition (think about the recent news stories that have postulated that something in infancy causes most autism, a belief that has been largely debunked by current research). As a novel, I thought she did an excellent job in presenting the various preconceptions that people have toward people with autism. While some of the characters might seem a bit "off," I suspect this is just part and parcel of how the story had to be told. The only real weakness in the story was at the end, as I felt she rushed the ending a bit, not really providing a very smooth transition. But this is a minor quibble. [i:10jufxnb]The Speed of Dark[/i:10jufxnb] (I should note the title comes from a question Lou asks about the relationship of darkness to light, a theme that is expounded upon throughout the novel) is definitely deserving of its Nebula Award. In fact, I would recommend this book even to those who claim to dislike science fiction, because the underlying theme of how people with mental disabilities cope with the world around them is something that all of us should keep in mind as we interact with those who have these unique gifts and challenges. If [i:10jufxnb]Flowers for Algernon[/i:10jufxnb] revealed attitudes toward the mentally disabled that were prevelant in the 1960s, then [i:10jufxnb]The Speed of Dark[/i:10jufxnb] is poised to stand as a marker for how people at the beginning of the third millenium view people with mental disabilities. A definite must-read. In fact, multiple reads might be in order. view post


posted 17 Jul 2004, 20:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionHappy Birthday Aldarion! by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Ha! I thought I had managed to avoid having a Birthday Thread devoted to me! :oops: I guess I thought wrong ;) Thanks everyone. It's been a pleasant 30 years, for the most part. And now time to get ready for Confession. Really. view post


posted 17 Jul 2004, 23:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionHappy Birthday Aldarion! by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Old? Not yet. Just creaky, as in my knees popping all the time ;) view post


SFF World Interview posted 19 Jul 2004, 02:07 in Interviews and ReviewsSFF World Interview by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

SFF World just published a rather extensive interview with Scott. Very nice, I must say: [url:1bubi48o]http://www.sffworld.com/authors/b/bakker_scott/interviews/200407.html[/url:1bubi48o] view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 02:07 in Author Q & AYour education by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Let me guess: Sex, drugs, and rock'n'roll for high school interests? :P view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 12:07 in Author Q & AYour education by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Probably because I too am now in my thirties ;) On a more serious note, sounds like your fiancée must have made a tremendous positive impact on your life. How cool! :D view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Author Q & AYour thoughts on Postmodernism in The Book of the New Sun by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Chateleine was Thecla's title, Scott ;) Nice to see that I'm not the only one who enjoyed the narrative of the Soldier novels more than the New Sun ones. Makes me oh so eager to buy the third Soldier novel whenever Wolfe completes it (rumor is that he's working on it now, seeing as his latest novel, The Wizard, has already been turned in). One thing about New Sun (and Wolfe's other major novels) that I noticed is that he does veer away from "orthodox" po-mo in his treatment of the Divine. I almost suspect that he uses many of the deceptive turns-of-phrases just to highlight his own take on the Divine (which is most certainly a Roman Catholic-oriented view). It seems as though there is a certain Truth that Severian and others just fail to understand. But that's more like an exception that proves the rule, with "proves" being used in both senses of the word and phrase ;) By the way Scott, have you read [i:2xkrhxfk]The Knight[/i:2xkrhxfk]? I think there's even more po-mo in its construction than even in the New Sun books. Certainly an interesting take on the Quest novel, that's for sure. view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Author Q & ALanguage by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Speaking of fictional languages (having only just now seen this thread), has anyone read Ricardo Pinto? On his site, he and a linguist friend created a detailed language (Quya) that has eight declensions, trial form of address, and all sorts of interesting ways to express opinions. Never thought I'd see declensions discussed when reading about the background for a fantasy series! [url:ibpz3pqe]http://www.ricardopinto.com/quya/grammar.pdf[/url:ibpz3pqe] view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & ALanguage by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Look on the bright side, Terry Goodkind didn't steal it for his books...at least not yet ;) view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & AYour thoughts on Postmodernism in The Book of the New Sun by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I've read Shadow and Claw four times now (and the others 2-3 times) and I'm still having difficulties trying to decide just what I exactly like and dislike about how Severian was drawn. On one hand, I thought Wolfe did a great job of inverting the order of events (notice how Severian just only waits until the end of the series to detail some of the events between his raising to Journeyman and his "escape" from Matuchin Tower) to create multiple false images of Severian, but then I also felt that sometimes, even in his lies, Severian came across as being a bit too pat. Hard to specify examples as to why I feel so, but there's just something I feel I've overlooked. And that feeling is part of the story. Wolfe just purposely wants us to consider [b:1cdc0jgn]our[/b:1cdc0jgn] role in the story, our beliefs in ourselves as textual detectives, just to illustrate how incomplete and misleading we can be toward ourselves. At least that's my take on it. Mind you, I'm not going to do what some have done and write Ph.D. dissertations on Meaning found in the New Sun novels. I have enough on my mind, preparing to retake the GRE in the near future for a re-entry next year to grad life, this time part-time in Counseling. ;) view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & ALanguage by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Hold on, going to test something: [img:1she4khc]http://216.77.188.54/coDataImages/p/Groups/59/59016/folders/75464/1148770goodkind.jpg[/img:1she4khc] There, does that express your opinion as well? ;) view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & ALanguage by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Now aren't you glad you're not receiving [i:143y1au5]that[/i:143y1au5] sort of attention from fantasy fans? ;) view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & AYour thoughts on Postmodernism in The Book of the New Sun by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Too harsh? Not really. Like you, I was exposed to the perniciousness of postmodernism (hell, even the way we spell it signifies something, remember?) when in grad school. I won't deny that I was attracted and still am to its reworking of traditional epistomological methods of examining texts and evidence. But I will grant that a lot of po-mo authors do come across like the Son in Aristophane's vicious satire of Socrates, [i:23l6h6bk]The Clouds[/i:23l6h6bk]. So pretentious at times as to come across arguing that the sun really must be decentered because its effects just can't be universal or even Objectified. I'm of two minds about postmodernism. It has provided some interesting insights into how we construct meanings, but I think some have carried it so far as to lose some touch with common cultural groundings. Maybe I'm just more at ease with the post-structralism of Foucault than I am with Derrida or Lacan. I'm 7 years removed from grad history and it's still a puzzle to me. But as for employing po-mo techniques in fantasy/sci-fi, I'm all for it, just as long as the authors realize that they aren't reinventing the wheel. Sometimes a story is just a story and must be a story for it to be a story. If that makes any sense ;) I love language manipulation as much as anyone, but if an author can't tie story elements together to create something that holds meaning, it just isn't worth it for me. May explain why I have such a violently negative reaction to reading William Carlos Williams's poetry. I do believe, however, that Wolfe is too much of a storyteller to fall completely into the trap of setting up puzzles within puzzles without no explanation or rationale. He comes periously close at times (Dr. Talos's Play near the end of Claw being a prime example), yet there's just enough context given for the educated reader to puzzle together a coherent understanding, even if it might be incomplete. But at first read, that play was just utterly confusing to me, even though I knew who Meshia was. But one final thought: Maybe Wolfe was purposely wanting to short-circuit the process, letting us presume profoundity even when it's not solidly present. I just don't know. Now if you can explain [i:23l6h6bk]The Fifth Head of Cerberus[/i:23l6h6bk] or [i:23l6h6bk]Peace[/i:23l6h6bk] to me sometime, I'll be a happy camper. Otherwise, I'll be re-reading them later this year. view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & ALanguage by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

What part about the religious aspect worries you? I can understand some people being squeemish about the sexuality, but what religious elements might be troublesome to those outside the Puritanical sects? view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 16:07 in Author Q & AWomen In the Three Seas by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Interesting. Going to have to think more upon this before replying in depth. Now my long-buried cultural historian's training is come back to me and I might just want to weigh in. But not now. I hate it when the bee is passed to another's bonnet! ;) view post


posted 19 Jul 2004, 16:07 in Author Q & AYour thoughts on Postmodernism in The Book of the New Sun by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Jernau Morat Gurgeh":3pckse9a]It's somewhat frustrating to read this great conversation between you two. I feel like I lack the language to discuss this in the terms that you are discussing it. Nevertheless, I have opinions, oh yes, and am utterly fascinated. My (layman's) two cents will have to wait until after a meeting though...but I am now sure I'll be thinking about this instead of work. One thought...Severian the narrator is already a multitude. Through the chronology of the story Severian evolves from being alone in his head, to being joined with Thecla (or the memory of Thecla as he saw her), to being joined with all the foremer Autarchs. But it's this final "Severian as legion" who is telling the story. On my second read, this realization colored my understanding and interpretations of the early parts of the story. I feel like I need to get my loaner copy back and re-read it now. It will only be my third time. Thanks for making me think.[/quote:3pckse9a] You're welcome! Scott and I have just been exposed to postmodernist techniques in our fields (philosophy for him, cultural history for myself), so I guess that explains the "high-faluting" talk we've been engaged in. But something you said brings up a key point: Despite Severian having many personalities within (considering that the story is written about a dozen years after the events), why is it that it's only that one Central voice that seems to speak? What does that have to say about how Severian's relationships with those he meets? By the way, have you read the other Sun novels? There's an interesting twist to this combination in the Short Sun series. view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 13:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionWhat is/was/will be your college major? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

BA Honors in History (University of Tennessee, 1996); MA in Modern European Cultural History (University of Tennessee, 1998); teacher certification classes, no degree (Austin Peay State University, 1999). After 5 years of teaching of one sort or the other (history/geography/government/interim English on the high school and middle levels), I decided to take a break from teaching. Currently working two jobs. One as a residential counselor in a 24-hour monitored youth treatment center for boys with emotional disturbances, the other as a part-time caretaker for people with mental disabilities. Recently decided (maybe with some help of my 30th birthday leading to some reflections) that I'd like to go back to grad school, this time to earn a MA in Counseling, with a specialization in working with teens that have been abused and who have learning/emotional difficulties as a result. With that in mind, I'll be studying again for the GRE this fall and hopefully will enroll part-time (still hoping to keep my current jobs) at probably Middle Tennessee State University in Fall 2005 to work toward that degree. So yeah, that's my college history, present, and future. Enjoy. ;) view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Author Q & ALanguage by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":1422wyh7]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:1422wyh7]certainty[/i:1422wyh7] is the disease, and that most religion, like nationalism and dogmatism of almost every stripe, is simply a symptom.[/quote:1422wyh7] Ah...maybe it's because I'm used to seeing religion discussed as being akin to a philosophical school, but I really didn't notice anything overt there. But for those that aren't used to that...well, yeah, that could lead to some anger. But I'd maintain that the majority of those who will read your books will be those who've already been exposed to more than just what a particular religious creed instructs. And yes, certainty is indeed a mass mental disease, but I'd qualify the above by saying most [i:1422wyh7]applications[/i:1422wyh7] of religion, just because certain other religious applications can lead to searching out for more views and then possibly toward attempts to understand others without ever being truly "certain" about things. Other than that, I agree with your sentiments. view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionWhat is/was/will be your college major? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Graduate Record Exam The grad school version of the SAT, with the added pleasure of an extra section devoted to analogies and mind games. It's not going to be easy making the same scores this time. If I can make a 1300+ again on the Math and Verbal sections, I'll be a very happy camper. view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Author Q & AHow were you introduced to fantasy? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Psst...read the interview we did last month. It reveals most of what you want to know ;) view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionWhat is/was/will be your college major? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

The Verbal part won't be tough. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if I improve my scores there, having had to concentrate on grammars when learning the structures of Spanish and Haitian Creole. The Math part will take about a month or two of refresher-type exercises, nothing else. Can't study much for the third part (and most schools ignore the scores there). I'm not too worried about failing to be accepted into the school I'm considering. Only question would be is if I could get a free ride. view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Author Q & AHow were you introduced to fantasy? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Not exactly, I guess. I'm sure Scott will answer this sometime soon. view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionWhat is/was/will be your college major? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I was a [i:169nh2u2]cultural[/i:169nh2u2] history student, which meant I had to take all sorts of classes on social systems, intellectual histories (which is the closest I've come to Philosophy classes, by the way), literatures, languages, even somewhat on mass psychologies. It's like being a general practitioner, except the field is very, very tough for most. It's also the history field that's most influenced by postmodernism, even if I'm not exactly a comfortable fit in that school of thought. But my main focus was religious symbolism and ideology of the Nazi era. view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionWhat is/was/will be your college major? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Don't have much time to reply here, but here are some links for you: [url:bstxihkr]http://www.colorado.edu/English/ENGL2012Klages/pomo.html[/url:bstxihkr] [url:bstxihkr]http://www.blackwell-synergy.com/links/doi/10.1111/0018-2656.00123/abs/;jsessionid=afjRukWDDjxf[/url:bstxihkr] These should be enough to give you a certain general idea of what postmodernism attacks. For the record, I'm sympathetic toward most of the aims of po-mo, but I'm not "orthodox," due to certain stances I take in regards to the application of religion and value. view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Author Q & AWomen In the Three Seas by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Okay, this is definitely too much for me to resist (no matter how many chores I need to do before sleeping this afternoon!), so time to hang myself on a noose of my own making. Scott, if I'm understanding him correctly, I think the only thing that's keeping his position from falling into relativism is there seems to be a concept of Transgression implicit in the actions being discussed. It sounds like the choices being made are known to be "wrong" on a theoretical/moral sense, but that these choices are justified to fulfill an extingency. I might be wrong, but I suspect that's what's underlying this. I seem to recall Foucault discussing Trangression in a historical context in one of his books (I want to say the one with counter-memory). As for feminism in history, I agree with the notion that current feminist critiques are starting to move away from the "add woman and mix" concept. Recently, there have been some excellent critiques of social and cultural history that integrate female perspectives without trying to overthrow (explictly, that is) concepts of the past. I would suggest reading some of Leonare Davidoff's essays on gender and history for starters. Then possibly read Anna Clark's [i:2krckr9z] The Struggle for the Breeches: Gender and the Making of the British Working Class (Studies on the History of Society and Culture , No 23) [/i:2krckr9z] (I've met her and she's wonderful to talk with on this subject), in which she adds to E.P. Thompson's works on the English working class. Damn, there's a lot I'd love to say here, but my books are stored elsewhere and it's been ages since I've read the ones that have come to mind! Hope this helps a bit. view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 15:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionWhat is/was/will be your college major? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

By no means an extensive list, here are some books you might need to read (don't worry, they're mostly intelligble ;)): Carlo Ginzberg, [i:gwt7mczp]The Cheese and the Worms[/i:gwt7mczp] (mircohistory of a certain heretical Italian peasant and how his beliefs reflect certain cultural uncertainties) Natalie Zemon Davis, [i:gwt7mczp]The Return of Martin Guerre[/i:gwt7mczp] - proof that history is indeed stranger than fiction. Michel Foucault, most anything, but especially [i:gwt7mczp]The Archaeology of Knowledge; The Order of Things; Discipline and Punish; A History of Madness;[/i:gwt7mczp] and works on counter-memory and language, sexuality, and religion and culture. These are some cultural history/po-mo critiques that should help you gain a wider understanding of the conflict po-mo causes in the historical field. And if you're really brave... Jacques Derrida, [i:gwt7mczp]On Grammatology[/i:gwt7mczp], at least for the anti-Preface preface ;) view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 17:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionWhat is/was/will be your college major? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Good start. But try to read his [i:3dgwyeyf]The Order of Things[/i:3dgwyeyf] just afterwards, so you can see how he changed his mind ;) view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 17:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionWhat is/was/will be your college major? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

One of these days, I'm going to post my grad syllabi (and one I wrote for a proposed class) just to give you guys some excellent non-fiction to read. After all, I think my 90+ book recommended list might not be enough for the two of you ;) view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 17:07 in Philosophy DiscussionThe problem of evil by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Just a semantical bit to make things interesting: Originally, to be "perfect" meant that nothing more could be done; the object was complete and whole. Humans can't by that definition ever be perfect because of our paths from birth to death. God is held to be immutable, to be Above the trials and tribulations of life/death, according to some. Just something to consider. view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 17:07 in Philosophy DiscussionThe problem of evil by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I know, but I was thinking of God when writing about the original meaning of "perfect." view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 18:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionWhat is/was/will be your college major? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

In lieu of me having to search for hours for everything, let me start by recommending two very different books for you to read: E.P. Thompson, [i:1ji6c34a]The Making of the English Working Class[/i:1ji6c34a] Modris Eksteins, [i:1ji6c34a]Rites of Spring[/i:1ji6c34a] One is THE seminal social history text, the other a fascinating cultural analysis of World War I. And speaking of WWI, read this book by one of my professors: Vejas Liulevicius, [i:1ji6c34a]War Land on the Eastern Front : Culture, National Identity, and German Occupation in World War I (Studies in the Social and Cultural History of Modern Warfare) [/i:1ji6c34a] This book has so many of the topics discussed in a seminar class I was in that I could almost recite the results even before he discussed them in the book. Great read. view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 18:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionWhat is/was/will be your college major? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Well, I didn't have most of these to read until I was in grad school, so what does that say for ya? ;) One of these days, I'm going to have to donate my history books to the local library, just so a curious person such as yourself can find and read them for enjoyment and education. view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 18:07 in Author Q & AFight! Fight! Fight! by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Just curious: Scott, by any chance have you read Torquato Tasso's epic poem, [i:hcpxipkr]Jerusalem Delivered[/i:hcpxipkr]? There's much of that raw emotion in that poem, although it's been greatly diluted with the love interest sections. view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 18:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionWhat is/was/will be your college major? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I might just sort through them and mail them directly to you, if I do that ;) view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 18:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

bowel movement (sorry, but I've had IBS before :oops: ) view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 18:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionWhat is/was/will be your college major? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Not for sure. I was (sad to say) broke much of the time and I sold most of my books back after the semesters were over, at least the ones I could get any money for. If I had to guess, maybe 100-150? And a lot of those are textbooks given to me by my graduate advisor when he retired, so probably only about 60-70 books of the sort I'm thinking about. view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 18:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionWhat is/was/will be your college major? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Well, I had 9 bookshelves full of books, plus an extra 150-200 stacked on a closet shelf or on top of the other bookcases. Now I'm probably over a 1000 books and probably need to rent a Storage unit somewhere ;) view post


posted 20 Jul 2004, 20:07 in Philosophy DiscussionThe problem of evil by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Yes, I'm sure of it. For one reason: each and every one of us has the potential for some sort of change, for better or for worse. If perfection is taken to be analogous to immutability (as the older definitions of per fæctum seem to say), then humans, with the potential for change, could not be perfect. Mind you, I'm referring to a very specific definition, one that is not usually employed today when discussing "perfect." view post


posted 21 Jul 2004, 16:07 in Author Q & AFight! Fight! Fight! by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Not for sure. I'd try Project Gutenberg [url:22ap3zts]http://www.gutenberg.net[/url:22ap3zts]. It's an almost 500 year-old epic poem originally written in Italian and was Tasso's attempt to be as good as Ludovico Ariosto (one of my three all-time favorite storytellers in poem form). But it's long: My English poem translation ran about 400 pages. view post


posted 22 Jul 2004, 00:07 in Philosophy DiscussionAyn Rand by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Don't let Daniel Goldhagen hear you saying that, because he'll try to convince you that the Germans were willing volunteers in Hitler's policies, including the Final Solution. Needless to say, I disagree quite a bit with this. I don't have the time to go into much detail (maybe later - I did concentrate my grad studies on the Nazi era and Hitler's religious beliefs), but there's quite a bit of evidence that hints at general wariness of Nazification than previous research had indicated. But I digress. But more later, if I have the time. view post


posted 22 Jul 2004, 13:07 in Philosophy DiscussionAyn Rand by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Needless to say, I do agree with most everything you said above. I will add, however, an approach toward understanding our society and those of the past: Discourse. Dirty word, I know, for some, but I think there's something valid about that approach toward examining societies. Then again, so speaks the very tired night shift worker who read Parts 1&2 of Foucault's [i:3rdvxwks]The History of Sexuality[/i:3rdvxwks] last night ;) view post


posted 23 Jul 2004, 02:07 in Author Q & AYour thoughts on Postmodernism in The Book of the New Sun by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I read it years ago. It's an old interview, from the early 1990s, with a Christian magazine, I believe. As such, I believe Wolfe is revealing quite a bit of the Catholic beliefs that he's used in his writing, at least in a symbolic sense. But I can certainly see where parts of it are baffling. He certainly seems to be stumbling when trying to explain Christianity's social importance. I come close to agreeing with him and then he just seems to go off-track and I too am left scratching my head and wondering. view post


posted 23 Jul 2004, 02:07 in Philosophy DiscussionDo you believe a God exists? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I'm not going to recite the Nicene Creed here, ya know ;) view post


posted 23 Jul 2004, 13:07 in Author Q & AYour thoughts on Postmodernism in The Book of the New Sun by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Also, now that I've glanced at OF and had to do some unpleasant work there: Did you find that link from a post made on OF yesterday? Just curious, because I just had to close the topic because two people (both of whom I know are infamous for belittling others with contrary opinions) had strayed from that into comments of a somewhat personal nature. I hate it when people just can't stick to the original topic enough to avoid going into (or near, in this case, but threatening) ad hominem attacks. But that's for another topic, yes? view post


posted 23 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Author Q & AYour thoughts on Postmodernism in The Book of the New Sun by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote:h817bfwe]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 the art of sound decision-making (!!). [/quote:h817bfwe] If only that were truly the case *sigh*. I've learned, time and time again to my chagrin, that regardless of what I (or other teachers) taught about how to make good reasoning decisions, all too often, the students would rather listen to the world about them, where shows like [i:h817bfwe]Crossfire[/i:h817bfwe], [i:h817bfwe]Jerry Springer Show[/i:h817bfwe], and [i:h817bfwe]The O'Reilly Factor[/i:h817bfwe] seem to send the message that yelling and insulting is the better way of making an argument. Such a twisted world we live in. view post


Things I will not accept in an argument posted 24 Jul 2004, 13:07 in Philosophy DiscussionThings I will not accept in an argument by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Here are a few things, that if heard within the context of an argument, will lead to me immediately bearing down upon that person: * Human nature - I absolutely, categorically, without exception will not accept that as an answer. If someone ever says to me, "well, it's human nature," I'm likely to proceed to ask them to define "it" and also to defend against the countercharge that there's no such thing as a common "human nature." * Good/Evil - Unless qualified by statements that indicate the person is talking about concepts of good/evil, I tend to want further elaboration if someone were to say, "That's an evil thing" (for example) without providing explanations. * "I don't know" - If I can, I tend to get that person to try to think of reasons why he/she is saying what she/he believes * Relativism - I do not accept Relativism as an answer, except in a few rare situations. Acknowledging differences of interpretation is one thing, but just saying that it's all relative is lazy debating in my books. Are there other things that people say/do in debates/discussions that cause you to question closely their reasoning? view post


posted 24 Jul 2004, 13:07 in Author Q & AYour thoughts on Postmodernism in The Book of the New Sun by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

About damn time someone tasked you - you've tasked me enough recently ;) view post


posted 24 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Philosophy DiscussionThings I will not accept in an argument by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Nice points, because I've seen all three in a recent series of discussions at another site I post at. Thankfully, in one thread at least, the conversation is largely managing to avoid those points you mention. Sadly, I've noticed those more and more over the years. But yeah, I suspect we could go on and on for quite some time. Be interesting to see how much in common peoples' lists are, though. view post


posted 26 Jul 2004, 13:07 in Author Q & AWhat do you listen to? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Tool... OK, now you're frightening me, Scott, listening to "Prison Sex" and so forth when writing philosophy ;) But no Zeppelin? :o view post


Well Scott, you wanted some discussion of your Interviews ;) posted 26 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Interviews and ReviewsWell Scott, you wanted some discussion of your Interviews ;) by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[url:3w067k2p]http://p198.ezboard.com/fdeadcitiesver3o19082frm7.showMessage?topicID=40.topic[/url:3w067k2p] This was posted at Dead Cities, where I post from time to time. This might lead to some debate, if a certain few there read it. view post


posted 26 Jul 2004, 19:07 in Interviews and ReviewsWell Scott, you wanted some discussion of your Interviews ;) by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Yes. He's a regular there. view post


posted 26 Jul 2004, 19:07 in Author Q & AWhat do you listen to? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":6vtrcudy]I don't just listen... :shock:[/quote:6vtrcudy] Oh lord... If you tell me you're dancing around doing a war dance buck naked, I'm leaving! :P view post


This is awesome! posted 27 Jul 2004, 16:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionThis is awesome! by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[url:10xvxqyp]http://www.shoutfactory.com/av/common_people.wma[/url:10xvxqyp] Mind you, I have eclectic tastes ;) view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 16:07 in Philosophy DiscussionStatistical Sprirtuality by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Very interesting, but how does that relate to multiple meanings that might be derived from the same type of event? For example, what if that rainbow were to shine after a rainfall following the downfall of say a dictator? I know it's an extreme example, but how does your proposal deal with those who look at the world in completely different ways? view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 16:07 in Literature DiscussionDont be ashamed (Harry Potter) by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Not ashamed at all. Read and enjoyed all five books. I can think of many worse things for children (and adults) to be reading - like Goodkind ;) view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 16:07 in Author Q & AKarma? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

And to think I was about to ask if you were secretly discusssing logocentrism in your stories! Can you tell who's been busy reading through Derrida's [i:1lbcwkc8]Of Grammatology[/i:1lbcwkc8] recently? ;) view post


Can we really tell history "as it was"? posted 27 Jul 2004, 16:07 in Philosophy DiscussionCan we really tell history "as it was"? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Just thought I'd ask this question to see the response generated. Despite being part of the "apostolic succession" from Leopold Ranke, the founder of the "scientific" historicist school (Ranke to Meinecke to Rothfels to my grad advisor, Arthur Haas, to myself), I just can't believe in [i:2o4ipklt]wie es eigentlich gewesen ist[/i:2o4ipklt]. So many interpretations that we today can make of the past. But beyond that, there are some serious questions as to how much we can ever understand the [i:2o4ipklt]mentalité[/i:2o4ipklt] of those even as recent as a hundred or two hundred years. Anyways, thought I'd just leave this incomplete so others can question and give their own declarations of understanding. view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 16:07 in Author Q & AKarma? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

You're revealing too much now, Scott. You might just talk one of those contest people into believing that they must relate [i:3b4zwnbx]differance[/i:3b4zwnbx] to TDTCB in a very detailed way! ;) 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 then (but to be fair, I'm reading an early work of Derrida's, even if it's the "corrected" edition). But I am finding his discussion on the tyranny of writing to be very thought-provoking. Part of it is starting to worm its way into how I'm conceiving part of a writing I'm doing. But I don't think I want to get into that discussion of how symbols are related to oral/written cultures just yet - it'd only detract from the overall focus. And then's there's the thought of post-literate cultures and the methods of communication that they use to convey meaning...or to break it down into possible "untruths." I suspect we're nearing the point where even photos cannot be trusted, due to Photoshopping techniques of creating forgeries. Then again, I'm still scarred by reading Danielewski's [i:3b4zwnbx]House of Leaves[/i:3b4zwnbx] this past fall. That work is haunting in a way that I haven't seen a fiction ever be done before. Might be the most original (and baffling) thing I've read. And what did I say about getting off-track? ;) Anyways, thought you'd enjoy the thoughts spilling out, so deal. view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 17:07 in Literature DiscussionDont be ashamed (Harry Potter) by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

To be fair, a lot of what I dislike about Goodkind is his bald display of his (to me) odious politics. I'm very much a Democratic Socialist-type of person politically and his right-veering Libertarianism, tainted as it is with Ayn Rand's despicable ideology, is about enough to make me foam at the mouth in rabid anger and disgust. Now you understand why I rarely talk politics at wotmania? view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 17:07 in The Darkness That Comes Beforeodd by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

From what I've heard, the US edition of TWP will be out between January-June 2005. As for the dinosaur bit, there's a Robert Bakker (I think Robert is his first name) who's a very famous palentologist. view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 18:07 in Literature DiscussionDont be ashamed (Harry Potter) by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

If he's anything like his interviews, he's not a very pleasant human being and that matters a lot to readers these days. Somehow, the thought of a site like this existing with Goodkind coming around to discuss philosophy and life and Sabbath is just laughable. view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 18:07 in Literature DiscussionDont be ashamed (Harry Potter) by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Threadjacked - it's easier to type ;) And sorry about that - I did answer saying that I like reading the HP books, so...it's Grantaire's fault! :P view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 18:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow listening to... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Zeppelin, Velvet Revolver, some more bootlegs of Paul Simon/Bob Dylan singing "Sound of Silence" together...things like that. Oh, and I really need to listen to some more Nick Cave. He just has that [i:2xp09x6z]voice[/i:2xp09x6z] - only Leonard Cohen has that same type of voice. Well, maybe Shatner, but Shatner's like god, except for something else ;) view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 18:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow listening to... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I'll put it this way about Velvet Revolver - the singing reminds me of the heaviest songs on STP's [i:2kk8sny6]Core[/i:2kk8sny6], the guitar playing is a bit between [i:2kk8sny6]Appetite for Destruction[/i:2kk8sny6] and [i:2kk8sny6]Use Your Illusion[/i:2kk8sny6] in sound - but not many ballads - only one would could, I'd think, while another is mid-tempo. Bass is really heavy on a few. I'd recommend listening to "Slither" or "Big Machine" if you're wanting to get an idea about their sound. view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 18:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

snow glass apples view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 18:07 in The Darkness That Comes Beforeodd by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Hate to say it, but Canadians (especially those in Ontario) speak English better than most Americans, even Nashvillians such as myself ;) view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 18:07 in Literature DiscussionDont be ashamed (Harry Potter) by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Let's try not to discuss that. I mean, who really wants to know about the masturbatory posting habits of people there? ;) view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 18:07 in Literature DiscussionDont be ashamed (Harry Potter) by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

For the most part, yes. As for OF... maybe soon, but more like for a vacation of sorts. I need a week or two of relative quiet to write this blasted paper into a form where I can begin to see the light at the end of the tunnel. I do have high hopes for it, though. Might post some of the ideas I'm exploring in a day or two (once I finish writing the introduction) and see if what people write helps narrow my focus more. But if you want a sneak peek of sorts, read my response in the Karma thread in Q&A. There you can see what I'm wrestling with ;) view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 19:07 in Literature DiscussionDont be ashamed (Harry Potter) by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Sometimes I wonder if I do as well ;) view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 19:07 in Author Q & AKarma? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":1tq7s8ul][quote:1tq7s8ul]Would you mind expanding on what you mean by this? Especially the bit about a 'self-moving soul'. [/quote:1tq7s8ul] 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:1tq7s8ul]free will[/i:1tq7s8ul] - 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:1tq7s8ul]its timelessness[/i:1tq7s8ul], the fact that it does not seem to fall within the 'circuit of before and after.'[/quote:1tq7s8ul] And here's where I thought of Derrida's discussion of writing and its tyrannical control of the discourse (if I'm understanding him right, that is). If I remember correctly, Derrida discusses mathematics as being a method in which discourse can side-step the temporality of writing. Or maybe I'm misunderstanding things quite a bit (as I often suspect I am as I'm reading Derrida). I really need to re-read Part I of [i:1tq7s8ul]Of Grammatology[/i:1tq7s8ul] to see if I can follow better his arguments on logocentrism. Needless to say, yet another layer to the narrative text? ;) [quote:1tq7s8ul]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:1tq7s8ul] [quote:1tq7s8ul]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.' 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:1tq7s8ul] [quote:1tq7s8ul]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?[/quote:1tq7s8ul] view post


posted 27 Jul 2004, 19:07 in Author Q & AKarma? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":31yoq7fr][quote:31yoq7fr]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:31yoq7fr] I actually think that the [i:31yoq7fr]Archaeology[/i:31yoq7fr] 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![/quote:31yoq7fr] I'll certainly take you up on that! (See above reply) As for my readings of Foucault so far, I've noticed what you're saying about his move away from the Structuralist model (did notice that Derrida zinged him on that one). Thing is, I haven't read the earlier Foucault until now - I really thought what he did with [i:31yoq7fr]Disclipine and Punish[/i:31yoq7fr] was incredible, but that might be one of his more accessible works, now that I think about it. I'm curious about this formalism problem - anything specific you can point out to me? I'll ask more later - received my copy of Miéville's latest novel just now and will be reading that tonight before dipping back into Derrida and then Foucault. view post


posted 28 Jul 2004, 04:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionGay marriage: for or against its legalization in the US? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Before I can be persuaded fully to be in favor of this, I want to see a complete overhaul of the custody system. Because if we have a situation in which there isn't an expected husband/wife duo, we better have a legal provision for how to divy up custody in case of divorce. Otherwise, all hell might break loose. view post


posted 28 Jul 2004, 17:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Two hundred pages in, Iron Council is excellent. I'll say more when I finish reading it sometime tonight/tomorrow morning. view post


posted 29 Jul 2004, 13:07 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow listening to... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I saw the Stripes in concert back in June 2003 when they came to Boca Raton. Great, great show! If you can find them, look for live concert bootlegs online. Well worth the d/l time. Especially love their cover of Dylan's "Love Sick", which they also performed at the concert I attended. view post


posted 29 Jul 2004, 20:07 in Interviews and ReviewsWell Scott, you wanted some discussion of your Interviews ;) by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Matt Stover is the author of a couple of authors starring a character named Caine that are known for being quite violent and yet thought-provoking, plus he's written a few Star Wars novels (like Shatterpoint, which I haven't read) and was recently hired to write the novelization to Episode III. He's a character, that's for sure. view post


posted 29 Jul 2004, 21:07 in Literature DiscussionWhat would you say are the must-reads of literature? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Loaded question. In one sense, I'd say nothing is for everyone, but that many things are for many people. But if you were to ask for books that were meaningful for individual people here, I might reply as follows: For religious/cultural purposes, works like the Bible and commentaries on it and other religious texts. Freud's [i:1ynz2s5v]Civilization and Its Discontents[/i:1ynz2s5v], even if I disagree with most of Freud's conclusions. The idea of a Thanatos/Eros duality is interesting. Modris Eksteins, [i:1ynz2s5v]The Rites of Spring[/i:1ynz2s5v], if only to see the outrage that causes among many historians ;) Michel Foucault, [i:1ynz2s5v]Discipline and Punish[/i:1ynz2s5v] - this is my favorite of the many works of his I've read Carlo Ginzburg, [i:1ynz2s5v]The Cheese and the Worms[/i:1ynz2s5v], fascinating microhistory that presages the current battles in cultural history today. Natalie Zemon Davis, [i:1ynz2s5v]The Return of Martin Guerre[/i:1ynz2s5v] - sometimes "reality" is stranger than fiction. E.P. Thompson, [i:1ynz2s5v]The Making of the English Working Class; Customs in Common[/i:1ynz2s5v] - THE founder of modern social history, if any can claim that title. Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels, [i:1ynz2s5v]The Communist Manifesto[/i:1ynz2s5v] - look for an annotated edition and do not read Stalinism into it, as it's a totally different creature. I'm often sympathetic to Marxism, especially neo-cultural Marxism, so that's a bit of bias to consider (imagine me admitting this elsewhere ;)) And those are a few of the non-fictional texts. I probably can and should name at least a couple hundred of those before even attempting the fictional (damn those categories of writing!). view post


posted 29 Jul 2004, 21:07 in Interviews and ReviewsWell Scott, you wanted some discussion of your Interviews ;) by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Well, I've only read [i:2817bcr4]Heroes Die[/i:2817bcr4] and [i:2817bcr4]Blade of Tyshalle[/i:2817bcr4], his two Overworld novels starring Caine, and I thought they were a cut or two above the norm for fantasy/sci-fi hybrids, although many are offput by the creative use of profanity to tell a tale. Not too often have I read "Fuck me like a virgin goat" being used ;) I'd say try [i:2817bcr4]Heroes Die[/i:2817bcr4]. Stover's not as bad as Goodkind, attitude-wise. I'll post a Goodkind comment in the Other Literature section soon. view post


Terry Goodkind engages in rape fantasy? posted 29 Jul 2004, 22:07 in Literature DiscussionTerry Goodkind engages in rape fantasy? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

A reader at wotmania posted this, but I don't know the source (was it an email mail list thing?) Read and be amazed: [i:2sqk5822]Readers are rare people. I feel a special connection with them. I try always to do my best for them; I try to write the truth. Fantasy allows me this. The Sword of Truth is a cry of defiance into the descending storm of tyranny. It is a cry for this very special group of people-people able to understand: readers. My study of history has taught me that no civilization can endure the kind of self-indulgent destruction of social fabric and family structure we are witnessing. Sooner or later an enemy will come, as they always do, and they will be ruthless. They will hold a blade to our throats. They will pillage and murder and rape us because we have failed to value the hard won gift of freedom and to honor our responsibility to preserve the flame of its true meaning. As Richard says, anarchy wears the robes of tolerance and understanding. And you still think I write fantasy? The barbarians are at the gate, my friends, and they are us. [/i:2sqk5822] The thought that I've been raping Goodkind because I disagree vehemently with his politics makes me rather nauseous ;) view post


posted 29 Jul 2004, 22:07 in Literature DiscussionTerry Goodkind engages in rape fantasy? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Actually, I don't disagree that much with that particular comment. "Truth" can be as easily revealed in what we now call myth or fantasy as in non-fiction. It's all in the Readings we engage in. But I doubt Goodkind was thinking of that ;) view post


posted 29 Jul 2004, 22:07 in Literature DiscussionWhat would you say are the must-reads of literature? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

No, I wouldn't call them the three main writers of postmodernism, because that is a field that encompasses most every social science/humanities subject. I would say that they are the three main French writers that helped influence the philosophical/historical elements of post-structuralism/postmodernism, but there's so many more that are more important to their respective fields. But those three are a good enough primer for what I said above. If you're interested in how these techniques have been applied to cultural history, I can see if I can draw up a list for you, but that might take a while. Good luck on that project. view post


posted 29 Jul 2004, 22:07 in Literature DiscussionTerry Goodkind engages in rape fantasy? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Pompously masochistic might fit even better, since I suspect he enjoys receiving harsh criticism, using it as justification for his comments. view post


posted 29 Jul 2004, 23:07 in Literature DiscussionWhat would you say are the must-reads of literature? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[url:3ix4mxpq]http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0394729277/ref=pd_bxgy_text_1/104-7409833-3282338?v=glance&s=books&st=*[/url:3ix4mxpq] Buy this, if at all possible. Darnton's book is excellent, as is Natalie Zemon Davis's [i:3ix4mxpq]Fiction in the Archives[/i:3ix4mxpq]. Those are two that come to mind now (and I just placed an order for the Darnton and the two E.P. Thompson books I used to own, but sadly I sold them all for porridge back in the mid-90s. view post


China Miéville's Iron Council posted 29 Jul 2004, 23:07 in ReviewsChina Miéville's Iron Council by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

China Miéville is a fascinating and frustrating author. While many laud him for his vivid imagination, his flowing prose that changes styles to match the landscapes, and for his intermingling of political values within the context of a fantastic world, critics have noted that his characterizations are often broadly drawn, the transitions are awkward, large sections of his novels could be heavily edited or removed for the story's benefit, and that the plots fail to match up to the sheer power of his imagination. [i:2cj2m1ch]Iron Council[/i:2cj2m1ch] should provide fodder for both camps. I enjoyed this story best of his three Bas-Lag novels. I thought Miéville worked hard to get the story running and the opening part is indeed interesting, set as it is in a quasi-Old West (in comparison to New Crobuzon) where the workers for a transcontinential railroad trust go on strike. Miéville does an excellent job examining the social conditions that likely would have existed. In fact, reading this section reminded me a lot of certain social histories of the industrial period that I've read, so much so that it seemed at times as if Miéville had lifted a page from Guy Kay's handbook for fantasizing real-world situations. But I thought it was done deftly and with a great attention to detail. The shift to New Crobuzon was difficult to follow at first. The city has gone to seed since PSS and while there are passing references to the events of that story and of The Scar, there is only one character from those novels that makes a reappearance, in a chilling section that reveals quite a bit about prole frustrations against the totalitarian direction New Crobuzon has taken in the past twenty years. The city is at war with a shadowy power, Tesh, and the militarization of society has begun apace. The working cl... err, the citizens of New Crobuzon are so disillusioned that they are finally ready to rise up against their dictatorial Mayor. It's around the middle of the book, when Miéville indulges in a very long (around 100 pages) flashback to the origins of the Iron Council mutiny, that I thought the story dragged. As wonderous as the descriptions of the new creatures were, for example, I just felt that about 80-90 pages could have been excised and the same point could have been made better as a result. It was frustrating reading that. After that, things do get back on track, if you'll pardon my pun. There is a closing scene that reminds me of the 1870 Paris Commune, albeit with a different twist. There's one laugh-aloud element about a citizens' force that just conjures all sorts of strange and conflicting elements. The ending was typically sad and conflicted. I really can't say much without spoiling the story, but I thought the way Miéville concludes the story of Iron Council was a bit disjointed and unsatisfactory. But it's to be expected I guess in a Miéville tale. Would I recommend this to others? Most certainly, especially for those who enjoyed PSS over The Scar. For those who didn't like either story, I did see improvement in Miéville's pacing, but again with too many concerns for me to try to persuade those detractors from reconsidering their decisions not to read Miéville's later works. For myself, it was a good read, but not my favorite 2004 release. There's enough promise here, though, to hope that as Miéville matures as a writer, he will develop better plotting sequences to channel his imaginative powers in a stronger fashion. view post


posted 29 Jul 2004, 23:07 in Literature DiscussionWhat would you say are the must-reads of literature? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I must confess that I'm hesitant to recommend certain books because they pre-suppose an in-depth instruction in historical theory, the type of learning that takes place through learning techniques of critical analysis and how to "read" a text. But hopefully these books won't be too confusing. view post


posted 29 Jul 2004, 23:07 in ReviewsChina Miéville's Iron Council by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

To be honest, there's so little mention of anything that happened in that book that you can safely read ahead to IC after PSS. The only reference I caught was to the pirate attacks of a few years before. But it's up to you. I liked The Scar a bit more than PSS for characterization. view post


posted 29 Jul 2004, 23:07 in Literature DiscussionWhat would you say are the must-reads of literature? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Problem is, we were instructed in critical analysis by having a few professors ripping our attempts at critique apart. There's not really any books I read on this, more like I was instructed in this over the course of a couple dozen courses in college. So if you really wanted to learn how to critique texts, you'd have to have someone trained in it such as Scott or myself (depending on what you want to deconstruct) challenge you constantly on how you're interpreting the texts. I just haven't had much time to devote toward doing that with people online, but I was fairly vicious in grad school. view post


posted 30 Jul 2004, 00:07 in Literature DiscussionWhat would you say are the must-reads of literature? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

While I'm thinking of it, got an email address that has some free space? I'll email you a copy of a paper I wrote in grad school that'll illustrate my point. Sadly, when I re-typed it a couple of years ago, I left off the bibliography, but the books are in the footnotes. view post


posted 30 Jul 2004, 00:07 in Literature DiscussionWhat would you say are the must-reads of literature? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

It's sent. Enjoy. view post


posted 30 Jul 2004, 00:07 in Literature DiscussionWhat would you say are the must-reads of literature? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Already responded. Sigh, reading through that paper brings back memories of weeks of reading 12-16 hours a day through texts in English and German (using the dictionary, of course) and then writing the rough draft over 30 hours in a two-day period. And now I'm doing this craziness again by writing what amounts to a historical critique of fantasy? Weird. view post


posted 30 Jul 2004, 00:07 in Literature DiscussionWhat would you say are the must-reads of literature? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I liked it, but I was doing so many different things at once that I just depleted a lot of energy. For example, I took 18 hours of classes and here's what they were: German 101 (Beginning) Political Science 355 (Latin American Politics in the 20th Century) Economics 100 (Economic thinkers) History 482 (English Revolution) History 251 (Honors American History) History 330 (Early English History) I had 5 papers and a translation project due in a week's period. I only got 3 hours of sleep over 4 days working on all that during finals period. I was driven home (a 3 hour drive) by a friend, where I promptly went to my bedroom, collapsed on the bed, and did not wake for almost 17 hours. That's how bad it was. view post


posted 30 Jul 2004, 00:07 in Literature DiscussionWhat would you say are the must-reads of literature? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

That was my [i:x92is0of]undergraduate[/i:x92is0of] course load for the first part of my Junior year. My MA classes involved about triple to quadruple the work each semester compared to that. view post


posted 30 Jul 2004, 01:07 in Literature DiscussionWhat would you say are the must-reads of literature? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

And to think that I used to think that I slacked off in college for only studying/reading texts for only 3-4 hours a day/night rather than the 6-10 hours some would have put into that. It's all a matter of perspective and how you handle things. I pushed myself hard and I guess things turned out okay. view post


posted 30 Jul 2004, 01:07 in Literature DiscussionWhat would you say are the must-reads of literature? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

For a thesis? 50-150 pages, double-spaced. I cheated and didn't write a thesis, because I had decided after my first year to take the terminal MA program and then go into education. Otherwise, I would have had to wait 6 months before finishing my MA, because I certainly would have done the thesis in a few months' span, considering the plan was for that paper to be the genesis of what would end up being my dissertation. That's why I see so many holes in it. view post


posted 30 Jul 2004, 01:07 in Literature DiscussionWhat would you say are the must-reads of literature? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

For myself, it wasn't as much dodging as trying to keep myself relatively sane. Don't regret my decision one bit. I'm much better off working with disadvantaged children than I would have been working as a history professor now. view post


posted 30 Jul 2004, 12:07 in Literature DiscussionR.A. Salvatore's DemonWars Saga by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Speaking of Salvatore, here's an interesting interview he did with wotmania's webmaster earlier today: [url:38x58575]http://www.wotmania.net/fantasymessageboardshowmessage.asp?MessageID=102750[/url:38x58575] He even references Scott in passing to a question about Scott's comments on epic fantasy, and it's very favorable. Too bad Scott's off enjoying the upcoming nups because I believe he'd love to read this. view post


R.A. Salvatore mentions Scott in passing posted 30 Jul 2004, 14:07 in Interviews and ReviewsR.A. Salvatore mentions Scott in passing by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Mike, the webmaster over at wotmania and my boss, just posted an interview with R.A. Salvatore this morning. Among a great many things, he had this to say: [b:ff25qjml][i:ff25qjml]How much would you agree or disagree with Scott Bakker's comments on epic fantasy, which we conveniently have quoted directly from our own interview with him here at Wotmania: "Unfortunately, 'epic fantasy' has even less cache than 'SF' - I would guess it's presently somewhere between 'porn mag' and 'harlequin romance.' Perhaps this will change, and 'epic fantasy' will gain something of the camp cache presently being enjoyed by, for instance, 'space opera' - afterall, the rehabilitation of the marginal and devalued is a very postmodern thing to do. Either way, the thing, it seems to me, is to be wary of the implicit judgments in the terms we use. I find it amusing that the people most likely to complain that SF&F is a 'literary ghetto' are often those most likely to devalue other regions of the barrio, particularly when it's as commercially successful as Jordan's work. It's cool to be an iconoclast, I guess. It makes us feel oh-so individual, when in fact we're simply being aristocratic." Let me repeat his last two lines: “It's cool to be an iconoclast, I guess. It makes us feel oh-so individual, when in fact we're simply being aristocratic."[/b:ff25qjml] Now that’s beautiful. I’ve never met Mr. Baker, nor have I read his work. After reading the entirety of that interview, I’ll have to find some time to remedy that.[/i:ff25qjml] view post


posted 31 Jul 2004, 03:07 in Philosophy DiscussionCan we really tell history "as it was"? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Or perhaps argued (as I and others have done when undergoing training) by cultural historians. Needless to say, this was a loaded question I asked above. As a self-described heretical historicist, I look at history as being not a monolithic entity that many have envisioned it being over the years, but as a fragmented sets of narratives and discourses that people have had with themselves and their understandings of what's transpired before them. In such a view, the "victors" can only present but one compelling image of an isolated past event/series of events, not anything approaching true [i:2qau99vi]historia[/i:2qau99vi], which are the meaningful stories that we tell to translate and to transfer our understandings to our friends, families, and later descendents. The study of historical events and recordings is important, however, for whatever messages we can decode (or misread) of the past, because of the value that we place on transferring as much of our values as possible to those who follow after us. But unlike historicists before me (and I was trained in what my grad advisor joked was the Apostolic Succession of historicists from Leopold Ranke through Friedrich Meineicke down to my advisor and then myself), I reject the notion of there being a "Truth" that can be found about the past. Instead, I see there being multiple truth-values that hold weight and are valid for the inspirations they inspire in people, regardless of how "true" the events ever were. But in that, I'm not breaking any new ground. Instead, I'd argue that I'm just merely bringing history back to [i:2qau99vi]historia[/i:2qau99vi], or to the sets of Stories that we tell to translate and transfer our cultural values to our progeny. view post


posted 01 Aug 2004, 21:08 in Literature DiscussionTerry Goodkind engages in rape fantasy? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Luckily for you, Goodkind has recently announced there will be a trilogy that will close out the SoT series, called [i:1bznrvfh]Chainfire[/i:1bznrvfh], the first of which will be published in early 2005. view post


posted 03 Aug 2004, 12:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow listening to... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

One of my best friends sent me a mix CD for my 30th birthday recently. She really put a lot of thought behind it. But it's interesting to see songs as varied as "You Are My Sunshine" and "Go, Speed Racer, Go!" on there, not to mention stuff from Elvis Costello. If this keeps up, I'll end up being as much of a musical whore as another good friend of mine from college! view post


posted 03 Aug 2004, 21:08 in The Warrior ProphetFor a US Reader -- by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

He does have an affiliate program, where a percentage of money can be returned to the sites that host a banner for his site. And let me second the recommendation. I received my copy of Erikson's limited-edition novella, [i:3k6fqyjd]The Healthy Dead[/i:3k6fqyjd], plus the second issue of [i:3k6fqyjd]Argosy[/i:3k6fqyjd] a couple of days after shipment. Arrived in great condition and I certainly will be purchasing some hard-to-find books from there in the future. view post


posted 04 Aug 2004, 20:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Goodkind ;) view post


posted 04 Aug 2004, 20:08 in The Warrior ProphetFor a US Reader -- by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Maybe as a link, say as to "Bookstore"? I guess you could email Neil Clarke and ask, or he might see this sometime in the next few days and respond. But I'd imagine creating a link to his site would still get around the ad issue. I understand - I have things set on wotmania to be ad-free because of my Admin account there. view post


posted 04 Aug 2004, 20:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Kobe view post


posted 04 Aug 2004, 20:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I still think everyone needs a job like mine, where I basically get paid to read. And so concludes this installment of Larry Rubs It in on Everyone Else :P view post


posted 04 Aug 2004, 20:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Iron Chef view post


posted 04 Aug 2004, 20:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

And don't forget getting to read dozens of classics for free because my grandmother bought them back in the day :D view post


posted 04 Aug 2004, 22:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Mr. Myagi from Karate Kid view post


posted 06 Aug 2004, 00:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow listening to... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I'm reacquainting myself with the beauties of P.J. Harvey's music, in particular "Down by the Water," which I loved when it came out all those years ago...damn, has it been 10 years already? :o view post


posted 06 Aug 2004, 00:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Well, I used to be a teacher (and there's a slight possibility that I might go back to that profession soon), but for the past few months, I've worked as a residential counselor at a 24-hour supervised residential treatment center for boys aged 8-18 (youngest current is 10, though) that have emotional disorders, including premature sexual acting out. I work the 11PM-7AM shift Wed-Sunday nights and most of the time, the residents are asleep and we just stand/sit at our stations and read between the times we rotate or walk the hallways monitoring the residents. My second job, a part-time one, is working with a few individuals with mental disabilities. When I work there (as a sub of sorts), it's from 3-11 PM and I do things like help them get dressed, bathed, administer medications (I'm licensed to dispense meds in Tennessee), as well as cooking and cleaning. I only work there maybe 3-5 times a month, but it's enjoyable for the most part. So with all that work and little activity to do, I just have plenty of time to read, thus the joke about me getting paid to read. But I might be changing duties soon. I just learned that at the residential treatment center, there seems to be a need for an extra teacher or two. I'm tempted by the money (double my current salary), but I don't know if I'm ready to go back into teaching, if at all. I do want to go back to grad school and earn a second MA, this time in rehabilitative counseling. view post


posted 06 Aug 2004, 00:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionQuotes by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Translated, my sig quote says: Everyday is Monday. view post


posted 09 Aug 2004, 01:08 in Literature DiscussionWhy read fantasy? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Why read fantasy? Such a difficult question, believe it or not. There are a multitude of reasons and I'm discovering this as I'm working on a paper that will place Fantasy within a cultural historical frame. But there weren't any particular authors, come to think of it, that decisively influenced me one way or the other. Part of the reason might be because I consider certain works to be exactly the same as fantasies in scope, terminology, and impact, yet aren't labelled as much by most. view post


Just a totally stupid question, but I have to ask! posted 09 Aug 2004, 20:08 in Author Q & AJust a totally stupid question, but I have to ask! by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I'm wondering - have you ever seen that sketch on [i:10ezip0u]Monty Python's Flying Circus[/i:10ezip0u] where they had a football/soccer match between the ancient Greek and German philosophers? Like I said, a totally stupid question, but just curious if you (or others out there reading this) have seen this most excellent skit! :D view post


Critique this phrase posted 09 Aug 2004, 21:08 in Philosophy DiscussionCritique this phrase by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[i:21js88ps]Fantasy is a medium in which the proletariat can expresses their desires and fears in such a way as to diffuse bourgeois fears, while still communicating their anger and frustration to present and future fellow proletarians.[/i:21js88ps] And before you ask who wrote that, that is me just summing up what I've gathered from reading a few Marxist writers of cultural and social history. view post


posted 09 Aug 2004, 23:08 in Author Q & AJust a totally stupid question, but I have to ask! by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I agree. That bit with Nietzsche, Confucious, and Marx just cracked me up. view post


posted 09 Aug 2004, 23:08 in Author Q & AJust a totally stupid question, but I have to ask! by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Again, from Monty Python: [b:2pbtafy3]Philosopher's Beer Drinking Song[/b:2pbtafy3] [i:2pbtafy3]Immanuel Kant was a real pissant who was very rarely stable. Heidegger, Heidegger was a boozy beggar who could think you under the table. David Hume could out consume Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, And Wittgenstein was a beery swine who was just as sloshed as Schlegel. There's nothing Nietzsche couldn't teach ya 'bout the raisin' of the wrist. Socrates himself was permanently pissed. John Stuart Mill, of his own free will, after half a pint of shandy was particularly ill. Plato, they say, could stick it away, 'alf a crate of whiskey every day! Aristotle, Aristotle was a bugger for the bottle, and Hobbes was fond of his Dram. And Rene Descartes was a drunken fart: "I drink, therefore I am." Yes, Socrates himself is particularly missed; A lovely little thinker, but a bugger when he's pissed.[/i:2pbtafy3] view post


posted 10 Aug 2004, 00:08 in Philosophy DiscussionCritique this phrase by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

In the way that I understood the connection, it's the storytellers, those who related their life experiences via fantastic stories, that are the bearers of what became proletarian/plebian culture. So basically, yes. Of course, it's interesting, seeing as I also posted this on OF, that so many were quick to presume that [b:3dj3kx6z]I[/b:3dj3kx6z] was a Marxist. That's not exactly true, needless to say, although it's not completely false either. view post


posted 10 Aug 2004, 00:08 in Author Q & AJust a totally stupid question, but I have to ask! by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

It is. MP is still my all-time favorite comedy troupe. The Philosopher's Soccer/Football Match is just an overlooked gem in comparison to the Dead Parrot Sketch or the Lumberjack Song. view post


posted 10 Aug 2004, 00:08 in Philosophy DiscussionCritique this phrase by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Fantasy is not meant to be a driving force. In fact, traditional Marxist accounts have tended to view Fantasy as being little more than religion in terms of being like an opiate, because of the perceived tendency for fantasy to diffuse societal tension. 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. Is it merely an "escape," or could fantasy be seen as an oblique criticism of bourgeois society? It's an interesting approach and while I'm hesitant to embrace it (seeing other factors playing important roles as well), I must say that it has me intrigued. But be careful about presuming a convergence between proles and bourgeois, because that creates a false blurring of the past, when there were very real and significant differences. I'm looking at this from the perspective of those writing 150-250 years ago, not of working class authors of today. view post


posted 10 Aug 2004, 00:08 in Author Q & AJust a totally stupid question, but I have to ask! by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

That you do, because their skits are often better than the movies, because entire shows would be devoted to weaving 2-3 skits in and out of the surrounding action. view post


posted 10 Aug 2004, 12:08 in Philosophy DiscussionCritique this phrase by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

E.P. Thompson's [i:2fmv8slo]Customs in Common[/i:2fmv8slo], Robert Darnton's [i:2fmv8slo]The Great Cat Massacre[/i:2fmv8slo], Foucault's [i:2fmv8slo]"Society Must Be Defended: Lectures 1976[/i:2fmv8slo], and about to re-read Carlo Ginzburg's [i:2fmv8slo]The Cheese and the Worms: The Cosmos of a 16th Century Miller[/i:2fmv8slo]. From these, I'm starting to get the sense that in order to place Fantasy within a historical context, one is going to have to accept that there really isn't one Fantasy type. Instead, it seems (and my readings are confirming this suspicion) that one must first look at the divisions within the cultures under question before even considering analyzing the fantasy that was produced. In some senses, it's a glorified way of remembering the intended audiences for said fantasy works - Vergil's Aeneid might have similar structural techniques as that employed in The Odyssey, but there are a great many differences in tone and intent for the stories that have to be considered. Furthermore, and back to the part you selected, recent research (and Darnton's book is already a classic in the field after a mere 20 years) has indicated that the peasant classes and their urban proletariat heirs often used allegorical stories to relate in coded form their daily experiences in an idealized state. For example, in many of the earliest written-down fairy tales (before the Grimm brothers or Andersen bastardized and sanitized them) dealt frankly with issues such as starvation, official corruption, the complex negotiations between neighbors and the frequent backstabbings that followed such deals, and rigid social structures. When I finished reading Darnton's book, I reflected upon many of the older fantasies I've read and realized that there is quite a bit of allegorical commentary and critique of then-present social/cultural conditions embedded within the story frames. All of this reading is starting to help me with my proposed essay on the historical connections that fantasy has with real-life conditions. Thought you'd be interested in this, especially since you were the one who suggested that I not be afraid to take a historicist approach toward the topic ;) view post


posted 10 Aug 2004, 13:08 in Philosophy DiscussionCritique this phrase by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":1rudp812]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.[/quote:1rudp812] Interesting way of phrasing that - never thought of expressing ideological kinships in biological terms. I'll do my best to be careful about the categorizations. In fact, I'm really intrigued by the possibility that a large percentage of popular fantasy originates from times of crisis, such as demographic pressures, famines, and adaptations to technological revolutions. But I'll have to tread carefully here as well, as my reading of Thompson has shown, discussing social conditions can be quite treacherous indeed. I'm just relieved that I seem to be closer to finding a good method of attack for this thorny problem we've been discussing for a month now! One interesting side effect of these recent readings is that I'm remembering again what it is about neo-Marxism that has fascinated me so much over the years. I wonder if that's a confession I should make in public ;) view post


posted 11 Aug 2004, 01:08 in Philosophy DiscussionCritique this phrase by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Grantaire":2f3w1d2e]Ok, now I've been thinking about this all day (hey, it was band camp for twelve hours, nothing better to do :wink: ), so I've come up with some thoughts at least. If you see fantasy as having been a genre through which the proletariat can write unpunished criticism of the bourgeosie society, what do you think are the roots of fantasy? I don't believe that society has always been split along those lines, at what point did it become as such, and if fantasy existed before then, what was it like and how did it evolve? Also, I think that fantasy couldn't be the sole domain of the proletariat, do you suggest that the bourgeoisie was not party to reading or writing of fantasy?[/quote:2f3w1d2e] I suspect Scott and I have had quite a few people thinking at quite a few sites for quite a few days over these issues ;) If I had to guess at the roots of fantasy, I would have to say it all goes back to [i:2f3w1d2e]historia[/i:2f3w1d2e], the Art of storytelling. Before being divided into "fiction" and "non-fiction" and later into various disciplines, [i:2f3w1d2e]historia[/i:2f3w1d2e] included those elements that enabled a society to pass along its wisdom, learning, and fears (among other things) to successive generations via the use of stories, many of which are metaphorical in nature. From this, the [i:2f3w1d2e]phanein[/i:2f3w1d2e] (Greek for "unveiling, revelation", which is the root word for things from phantasm to fantasy) approach of using symbols and imaginative descriptions to be a method of imparting important truth-values. This is neither Patrician nor Plebian in its origins. However, and this is where I'm influenced by all the training I received from neo-Marxist historians comes in, at some point (likely around the time that cultures evolved into structures more complex than familial/clan relationships to deal with ever more complex social problems) there came to be a division between those who had the power and those who didn't have much political say. Traditions developed in both camps and each were used to support/tear down (depending upon the situation) the then-current socio-political situation. For example, a legend that the Caesar family was descended from the Trojan Aeneas became the germ for Vergil's epic poem, [i:2f3w1d2e]The Aeneid[/i:2f3w1d2e]. While it uses tropes such as gods/goddesses, fantastic voyages, mysterious benefactors/enemies, and magical weapons, the intent of that poem was to glorify the Emperor's mythical ancestors. Shakespeare did much the same in [i:2f3w1d2e]Macbeth[/i:2f3w1d2e] with the parade of kings that were descended from Banquo were shown in a vision. But that is just one connection between fantasy and contemporary socio-political affairs. Another would be the fairy tales that I mentioned above - those are descendents of an ancient oral tradition, one that was starting to die out in the late 17th century, although vestiges of this culture are still around in isolated pockets, such as the Applachian Mountains of the United States. All I was doing by summing up in a sentence what I had gleaned from the authors I mentioned earlier is just proposing one thread out of a tapestry. My intent was to get people to think about those connections and to make statements that would show that thinking has progressed beyond a simple yes/no. In some ways, I think the debates Scott and I have started at three different forum (well, him mostly starting it in email with me and then urging me to start writing about it and posting it elsewhere ;)) have had a very positive effect at the places where this discussion (in its many forms) has taken place. It's been a very cool and posture-free experience and likely has given quite a few a lot more to think about the next time they read a Tolkien, a Salvatore, a Vergil, a fairy tale, or any other story that they might read. Because let's face it, isn't it about time that people involved in the Fantasy/Literature debate consider this from a Historicist position as well as a literary criticism one? view post


posted 11 Aug 2004, 01:08 in Philosophy DiscussionCritique this phrase by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Well, just started it in part at OF and it's been raging for a month or so over at SFF World. Those are the other two sites besides this one. view post


posted 11 Aug 2004, 02:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

(Don't Do It) - Frankie Goes to Hollywood! :P view post


posted 11 Aug 2004, 04:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Jethro view post


posted 11 Aug 2004, 16:08 in Author Q & AJust a totally stupid question, but I have to ask! by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

All the more reason to look forward to that book then! :D *makes mental note to retrieve his MP tapes from storage* view post


posted 11 Aug 2004, 17:08 in Author Q & AConcerning Chapter Quotes by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

In other words, you'd be tickled pink if some people were to ponder those quotes and write thoughts on them the same way Jordan fans write thousands of "theories" over minor plot points? ;) view post


posted 11 Aug 2004, 17:08 in Author Q & AConcerning Chapter Quotes by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

That reminds me - I need to start the groundwork on that book discussion I mentioned before. I'll see if I can have something posted in a few minutes. Right now, some joker on another site posted a quote asking how anyone could ever [i:3jopvfgl]know[/i:3jopvfgl] the meaning of life. I have to respond, ya know ;) But I certainly will make that post within the hour. By the way, how do you feel about certain of those chapter quotes appearing in wotmania's OF Quotes of the Moment? Think a few dozen of them would spark interest? I've had a feel ask about Gaiman and Wolfe in particular based on them, so hopefully this can be another subtle way of promoting your work - what do you think? view post


posted 11 Aug 2004, 18:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Goat ;) (and for explanation, read William Blake's Proverbs of Hell) view post


posted 11 Aug 2004, 19:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

charivari (gotta love my reading of E.P. Thompson, huh? ;)) view post


posted 11 Aug 2004, 20:08 in Author Q & AConcerning Chapter Quotes by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I'm SO adding that comment as well to the OF Quotes of the Moment - thanks! :twisted: view post


posted 12 Aug 2004, 13:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Well.... (charivari is a term for "rough music," when people would bang the drums and make noise outside a hated person's home as a symbolic act of protest against a bastardly deed) (Oh, and well... is my word response as well :P) view post


posted 13 Aug 2004, 01:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Shake view post


posted 13 Aug 2004, 02:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Vomit (I'm lactose intolerant) view post


posted 13 Aug 2004, 02:08 in Philosophy DiscussionCritique this phrase by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="drosdelnoch":4ffxth4b]As far as I understand the statement and I could be wrong its just saying that the Fantasy Authors are writing hidden messages within thier work that refers to the situation in which they are living as a message to future generations. Much in the same way the McCarthyism was used in a large number of 1950's film such as Forbidden Planet (the AI in the film was shown to be a giant red bear in the lasers.) I really think that this is cobblers, you could look at any peice of writing and claim to see hidden messages. Tolkiens Lord of the Rings is still thought of to highlight the second world war. In a limited leatherbound edition of LotR there was a special foreward by Tolkien that denied it saying that the novel was written before the second world war and that he'd been using a large number of notes to write the novel as he wanted. Its just jumped up little twits that seem to constantly go on about this.[/quote:4ffxth4b] What I was writing was a paraphrasing of others. As to what I myself think, I believe that those who compose stories tend to include subconsciously (if not consciously and with full intent) matters in their lives that act as a statement on the times in which they were written. Also, Tolkien's comment is almost irrelevant. Interpretation and meaning go far beyond an author's intent. Once the last period has been placed on the work, the author has very little to no say as to how his/her work will be interpreted. It's the history of interpretation that's really fascinating to me. Besides, if you want to go the controversial route, do you think the Bible as a whole has changed in much of its interpretative value over the millenia? ;) view post


posted 13 Aug 2004, 13:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

capitalist (swine) view post


posted 13 Aug 2004, 19:08 in Author Q & AGreat Book by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Just who are you calling a muckracker? Hrmm? *throws muck at you* I'll be sure to do my best to give you a controversial writing to sink your teeth into soon, Scott. Something about pinko-commies, Smurfs, and fantasy being only a form of historical dialogue. Sound like a fun topic? ;) view post


posted 13 Aug 2004, 19:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Pork barrell view post


Somehow I doubt this was the inspiration for TWP posted 13 Aug 2004, 22:08 in The Warrior ProphetSomehow I doubt this was the inspiration for TWP by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[url:1smyw9uw]http://www.angelfire.com/hi/junglebeast/jackyl.html[/url:1smyw9uw] And yes, I'm bored :P view post


posted 14 Aug 2004, 20:08 in Author Q & AGreat Book by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":2lc4cub8][quote:2lc4cub8]Just who are you calling a muckracker? Hrmm? *throws muck at you* [/quote:2lc4cub8] *ducks muck and flips Larry the bird* Oh, no one in particular... :wink:[/quote:2lc4cub8] And Author/Reviewer relations have now been set back two decades by these latest developments... :P view post


Scott, have you heard of this journal? posted 16 Aug 2004, 14:08 in Author Q & AScott, have you heard of this journal? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[i:3qmxx4j6]Studies in Fantasy Literature: A Scholarly Journal for the Study of the Fantasy Genre[/i:3qmxx4j6]. I received a copy of the first issue this weekend and while small (only four articles), it looks like the sort of place that might accept my paper. Just thought you'd be curious about this. view post


posted 16 Aug 2004, 20:08 in Author Q & AScott, have you heard of this journal? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[url:3qiw16te]http://sifl.seele-brennt.com/one/[/url:3qiw16te] That's the publisher's web address, with a synopsis of the current issue. True, I should aim higher at first (at least), but it's been a while since I've hunted for academic journals, so it's going to be hard at first for me to learn which is the equivalent to the American Historical Society, the Journal of Central European History, and so forth. Any others to suggest for me to consider? I need to know so I can purchase an issue or two. view post


posted 16 Aug 2004, 20:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

No Holds Barred (gotta love cheesy Hulk Hogan movies! :P) view post


posted 16 Aug 2004, 20:08 in The Warrior ProphetSomehow I doubt this was the inspiration for TWP by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

In many senses, wrestling is but philosophy in motion - the titanic battle to define one's character, the search for the truth of who is screwing whom, and the epic quest to achieve some semblence of immortality. For philosophers, what isn't there to love about wrestling? ;) view post


posted 16 Aug 2004, 20:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Check view post


posted 16 Aug 2004, 20:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Is it bad when I didn't need a dictionary or help to read the Latin passages in [i:32ya928p]The Name of the Rose[/i:32ya928p]? And I second the [i:32ya928p]Foucault's Pendulum[/i:32ya928p] suggestion as well. As for what I just finished reading, I just did a re-read of TDTCB, TWP, and Zoran Zivkovic's [i:32ya928p]the Book/the Writer[/i:32ya928p], which was oddly good. I'll write a review sometime this week. view post


posted 16 Aug 2004, 21:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

sex view post


posted 17 Aug 2004, 04:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

sticky view post


posted 17 Aug 2004, 04:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionWhat is/was/will be your college major? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Early Modern, huh? I did a dual focus concentration in Early Modern and 20th Century Cultural/Religious History for my MA (but no thesis) and if you want, I can recommend some wonderful books for that period. Nice to learn that there are more of us history major/grad student types around :D view post


posted 17 Aug 2004, 17:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

nest view post


posted 17 Aug 2004, 22:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

girly view post


posted 17 Aug 2004, 22:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

whipped view post


posted 17 Aug 2004, 23:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

chains view post


posted 17 Aug 2004, 23:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Either peace or war? Interesting. My family is originally from County Carlow, Ireland, and our motto is: Cor unum, via uno - one heart, one way. view post


posted 18 Aug 2004, 00:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionWhat is/was/will be your college major? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

While I don't have my books in front of me, here are a few authors/books for you to consider: Natalie Zemon Davis, [i:3i8pw0fz]Fiction in the Archives[/i:3i8pw0fz] Davis, [i:3i8pw0fz]The Return of Martin Guerre[/i:3i8pw0fz] Carlo Ginzburg, [i:3i8pw0fz]The Cheese and the Worms: The Cosmos of a 16th Century Miller[/i:3i8pw0fz] Keith Wrightson, most anything. Christopher Hill, too many books to list here. Lyndal Roper, [i:3i8pw0fz]Oedipus and the Devil[/i:3i8pw0fz] I'll try to list more tomorrow - might head to my grandmother's, where I have my books stored. As for the Industrial Revolution, who can read E.P. Thompson's [i:3i8pw0fz]The Making of the English Working Class[/i:3i8pw0fz] or [i:3i8pw0fz]Customs in Common[/i:3i8pw0fz] and not think that there's a sad, tragic, and sometimes riotous story there? view post


posted 18 Aug 2004, 18:08 in Author Q & AScott, have you heard of this journal? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Sadly, I can't make it. My job is keeping me too busy and I won't be able to take off for vacation until next May, plus the salary is too low for me to do much more than pay my bills and a few books a month. Maybe in 2006, even though it's in LA. Thanks for the suggestions though. I'll see what I can do to get those. view post


posted 18 Aug 2004, 19:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Bruce Lee view post


posted 18 Aug 2004, 20:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

grasshopper view post


posted 19 Aug 2004, 02:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

-man! (said in a Beavis-sounding voice) view post


posted 19 Aug 2004, 20:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[i:1kj2tnlf][color=blue:1kj2tnlf]House[/color:1kj2tnlf] of Leaves[/i:1kj2tnlf] view post


posted 19 Aug 2004, 22:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionBook Club Talk by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

If one is started up here, I'm willing to help/participate the best I can. As for your questions, aren't you glad that I took the Socratic approach? And yes, Cnaiür and Kellhus in the same scene makes for excellent drama, c'est ne pas? :D view post


posted 19 Aug 2004, 22:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

elephant view post


posted 19 Aug 2004, 23:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

stripes view post


posted 20 Aug 2004, 03:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

word view post


posted 20 Aug 2004, 13:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionBook Club Talk by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Grantaire":1va3xu2b]Larry- thanks, I know you'll probably be able to suggest plenty of interesting books too. And oh my yes, those are terrific scenes. Those are two of the best fantasy characters I've read any time recently. Wil, I don't have an exact plan hammered down yet, but I probably will in the next day or so (or tonight, depends if I'm reading TDTCB all night :wink: ). I'll pm you when I come up with my plan.[/quote:1va3xu2b] Damn straight I will. As a matter of fact, I'll suggest two rather obvious ones: Martin's [i:1va3xu2b]A Game of Thrones[/i:1va3xu2b] and Erikson's [i:1va3xu2b]Gardens of the Moon[/i:1va3xu2b], seeing how so many here are fans of both series in addition to PoN. And if you need more help, I'll glance at some UBB/PHP-style boards that have done book club-like threads before. wotmania's, while good, is probably not suitable for this format. view post


posted 20 Aug 2004, 13:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Eagle view post


posted 20 Aug 2004, 13:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow listening to... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

It was rainy this morning, so I popped in Clapton's [i:3d37t7ff]Pilgrim[/i:3d37t7ff], which is like comfort music for sad moods. view post


posted 20 Aug 2004, 13:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I just finished Octavia Butler's [i:dkb38u6f]Wild Seed[/i:dkb38u6f], which just confirmed for me yet again that she is one of the best spec fic, check that, best damn writers still alive today. Sean Stewart's [i:dkb38u6f]Passion Play[/i:dkb38u6f] was also very excellent. Maybe when I have more time and less tiredness, I'll write out some short reviews of their books and more. view post


posted 20 Aug 2004, 19:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionBook Club Talk by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="legatus":z8mkwau5][quote="Aldarion":z8mkwau5]...c'est ne pas? :D[/quote:z8mkwau5] In this context, shouldn't that be [i:z8mkwau5]n'est-ce pas[/i:z8mkwau5]? What? Inane French grammar quibbling isn't the thrust of this thread? Silly me :P In any case, I certainly like the idea of a book club. For the most part, I hope the book choices end up leaning towards the fantasy end of the spectrum, but I'd be interested in reading and discussing a wider range of genres as well.[/quote:z8mkwau5] Considering almost all the French I know, I picked up from either Latin class or from learning how to communicate in broken Haitian Kreyòl, just be amazed that I was even that close :P view post


posted 20 Aug 2004, 19:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionBook Club Talk by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I'd suggest it be at least bimonthly, based on personal experience of trying to get even a large readership to cooperate with reading one a month. I also think it should be open to suggestions, top 3 voted upon in a poll, and then the winner being discussed at the beginning of the month, at least 6 weeks after a poll has ended. For example, say we nominate some books this upcoming week, make a poll for the Top 3 on next Wednesday, and announce a winner a week from today. The earliest we should hold that discussion should be the first Monday in October. As for the type of books, it doesn't matter much to me, although I guess the various forms of speculative fiction should be the main focus. view post


posted 20 Aug 2004, 19:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

sheep ;) view post


posted 20 Aug 2004, 19:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionBook Club Talk by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Yep, at the minimum. view post


posted 20 Aug 2004, 19:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

(sheep) buggerers ;) view post


posted 20 Aug 2004, 20:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionBook Club Talk by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Test drive the format with the more popular ones, just to work out any perceived kinks. That's why I chose Tolkien's [i:1muqr2cz]Fellowship of the Ring[/i:1muqr2cz] to be the first OF Book Club discussion back in November 2001. Since then, I've continued to make modifications to how the books are chosen, the questions asked, and so forth. view post


posted 20 Aug 2004, 20:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Egypt ;) view post


posted 21 Aug 2004, 03:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

conspiracy theory view post


posted 21 Aug 2004, 12:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Ai! view post


posted 21 Aug 2004, 23:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Simon (and Garfunkel) view post


posted 22 Aug 2004, 12:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

assassinated view post


posted 23 Aug 2004, 14:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow listening to... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Because I'm in a very dark mood now... Nick Cave, "Wonderful Life" view post


posted 23 Aug 2004, 20:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Foucault's Pendulum view post


posted 24 Aug 2004, 06:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Poe (and maybe the singer as well as the writer ;)) view post


posted 24 Aug 2004, 11:08 in The Warrior ProphetAny plans for a hardcover edition of The Warrior Prophet by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[i:2leyggxo]Publishers Weekly[/i:2leyggxo] recently announced that TWP will be available January 2005 in Hardcover in the US. I would take that to be fairly solid, considering the nature of that company. view post


posted 24 Aug 2004, 11:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

wrestler (OK, so I loved watching ECW back in the day :P) view post


posted 24 Aug 2004, 16:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Socrates (who was in Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure, I think) view post


posted 25 Aug 2004, 00:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

The Bangles (Walk Like An Egyptian) :P view post


Books that have induced a mindfuck posted 25 Aug 2004, 01:08 in Literature DiscussionBooks that have induced a mindfuck by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I posted this in edited form at OF, but I thought I'd gauge reaction here to this guy's list that I found and saved some time ago: [url:340v6tne]http://everything2.com/index.pl?lastnode_id=88698&node_id=1016184[/url:340v6tne] And for the record, I've read 82 of these books and own 3 others that I'll read shortly. I'm just sad that [i:340v6tne]Run, Spot, Run![/i:340v6tne] didn't make it into the list ;) view post


posted 25 Aug 2004, 18:08 in Literature DiscussionBooks that have induced a mindfuck by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Sure thing, Jake. Here's the post I made riffing off of that earlier one: [url:11ykjqhi]http://www.wotmania.net/fantasymessageboardshowmessage.asp?MessageID=106070[/url:11ykjqhi] view post


posted 25 Aug 2004, 18:08 in Literature DiscussionStephen Erikson's Books by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I second the GotM-MT recs. Just started re-reading GotM a night ago and it's better than it was the first two times through (although I liked it both prior times). As for finding TWP, another option to Amazon.ca and at a similar rate or cheaper is to go to [url:rtidpq7v]http://www.clarkesworldbooks.com[/url:rtidpq7v] and look there. It's listed for $19 and only $2.50 or so by media mail, $5-6 by Priority (which arrives in 2-3 days usually, depending on where in the country you live - he ships from NJ). view post


posted 25 Aug 2004, 18:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

bellbottoms view post


posted 25 Aug 2004, 21:08 in Literature DiscussionBooks that have induced a mindfuck by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

If there's any book I read that would really qualify as a mindfuck, it'd be Mark Danielewski's [color=blue:2jwapepn]House[/color:2jwapepn] of Leaves. Now that was seriously warped in a good way. view post


posted 25 Aug 2004, 21:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Red Light, Green Light! (anyone else remember this game?) view post


posted 26 Aug 2004, 12:08 in Literature DiscussionStephen Erikson's Books by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

If you want it in hardcover, Overlook is scheduled to release it in the US in January 2005. Penguin Canada only has it in tradeback for the time being. I will say that the tradeback is of very high quality. Now what I want is TTT, obviously, and I'll need for it to be signed to complete my collection. I wonder if I can talk Scott into doing that for me? ;) view post


posted 26 Aug 2004, 12:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Just started re-reading Erikson's GotM for the third time a couple of days ago. Even more enjoyable this time around, considering all the events that have taken place in the five books to date. Can't wait for April 2005 to get here - Bonehunters, here I come! :D view post


posted 27 Aug 2004, 01:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

lout view post


Problems with Book Reviews posted 27 Aug 2004, 14:08 in Literature DiscussionProblems with Book Reviews by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Alric and I recently started a blog for the discussion of issues related to SF/Fantasy and we thought many of you might be interested in two recent entries, especially the latest one, which is on the difficulties of finding a good review. Here's the link: [url:3anpc1qk]http://ofblog.blogspot.com/2004/08/some-problems-i-see-with-reviews.html[/url:3anpc1qk] Let us know what you all think, please :D view post


posted 27 Aug 2004, 14:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow listening to... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Live bootleg of Aerosmith and Jimmy Page performing "Train Kept A'Rolling," one of THE rock'n'roll songs to listen to, if you haven't already. To get two guitars to imitate a train whistle is impressive, to say the least :D view post


posted 27 Aug 2004, 14:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

cheese view post


posted 27 Aug 2004, 15:08 in Author Q & AAre Kellus/the dunyain not as "enslaved" as anyone by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

You're just lucky one of us hasn't asked you how the Dûnyain would play the game of Rock, Paper, Scissors :P view post


posted 27 Aug 2004, 15:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

SBD view post


Curious: What's the strangest fan request you've received? posted 27 Aug 2004, 15:08 in Author Q & ACurious: What's the strangest fan request you've received? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Besides some of the ones I've made in recent months, that is ;) I've heard Jordan talk about fans asking him to teach them how to Channel and I think some asked Tolkien if he knew any Hobbits on a personal basis, but I just wondered if you've met the Kooks of fandom just yet. view post


posted 27 Aug 2004, 15:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Your comment on Martin just gave me an idea for a new post - thanks! :D view post


When do you think Martin's next book will be released? posted 27 Aug 2004, 15:08 in Literature DiscussionWhen do you think Martin's next book will be released? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Almost a year ago, we ran a contest at OF trying to guess the date (link below). Sadly, we were very optimistic. But what date do you think it'll be released, whether in the US or Britain? [url:2ukmy15f]http://www.wotmania.net/fantasymessageboardshowmessage.asp?MessageID=72410[/url:2ukmy15f] As for my revised guess, I'm going with the third Tuesday in June 2005. That's more than a year later than my original guess :P view post


posted 27 Aug 2004, 15:08 in Literature DiscussionWhen do you think Martin's next book will be released? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Ah hell, I forgot which forum I was in. Any chance of this being moved to the Other Literature section? view post


posted 27 Aug 2004, 16:08 in Author Q & ACurious: What's the strangest fan request you've received? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I'd settle for a detailed description of Kellhus's Guide to Picking Up Women and Marrying Two and Keeping Them Happy, in two easy volumes :P view post


posted 27 Aug 2004, 16:08 in Literature DiscussionWhen do you think Martin's next book will be released? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Thanks :D Care to make a prediction on the AFfC release date? view post


posted 28 Aug 2004, 01:08 in Book ClubOfficial Book Club discussion nominations by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Just to get things going smooth, I'll recommend in a set order of preference, the two books I prefer we discuss first. Both have been available for some time, even if only certain Americans among us have one in paperback ;) George R.R. Martin, [i:2k9923lx]A Game of Thrones[/i:2k9923lx] Steven Erikson, [i:2k9923lx]Gardens of the Moon[/i:2k9923lx] Those should work nicely. view post


posted 28 Aug 2004, 01:08 in Author Q & ACurious: What's the strangest fan request you've received? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Propositioned, huh? You think that happens to Bob Jordan or George Martin? Maybe it's a Canadian thing, since you guys seem to forego the massive gut, Jordanesque pimp canes, Martin-like slickers, and the beards that oh so many American fantasy writers seem to adopt as part of the Image ;) As for the anti-fans, well...they are what they are. Gotta love them, because God knows we'd have to wring their pencil necks otherwise! :P view post


posted 28 Aug 2004, 02:08 in Book ClubOfficial Book Club discussion nominations by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

No, but a good many of us have the UK/Canada paperback. By the way, you do realize that the majority of the posters here are English, Scottish, or Canadian, yes? ;) The US paperback release for GotM is set for January 10th, 2005. view post


posted 28 Aug 2004, 12:08 in Book ClubOfficial Book Club discussion nominations by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Well, the thing with Wolfe is that there are two books-in-one for the Book of the New Sun series: Shadow and Claw (first two) and Sword and Citadel (second two). At least that's how it's published now in the US. But I certainly wouldn't mind discussing Wolfe - I've even written a detailed walkthrough for the first book, Shadow of the Torturer. While I certainly am not against covering lesser-known books, the reason why I nominated the books that I did was so we could test the format (whatever it ends up being) by using a "popular" book. I don't know what Grantaire has in mind, so I guess we'll just have to wait and hear from him first as to the parameters of the discussions and the nominations. As for future books, anything by John Crowley or Umberto Eco would be cool :D view post


posted 28 Aug 2004, 12:08 in The Warrior ProphetAny plans for a hardcover edition of The Warrior Prophet by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

That's a problem that I think has plagued sales of both TDTCB and Erikson's GotM on Amazon - so many of us imported that it has masked the overall sales strength of the two series. I almost feel guilty because I doubt I'll buy a hardcover version of TWP - mostly because I received an autographed copy of it during release week in Canada from Scott's publicists so I could review it for wotmania. I did buy a hardcover of TDTCB to replace the mass-market paperback I had imported (I gave that copy to a friend of mine at work, who's enjoying it for the most part, I think). But Amazon is not always a reliable indicator of sales. I'd say more, but I think it'd be best to ask an author or two about that - they know more than I do. view post


posted 30 Aug 2004, 12:08 in Author Q & AGreat Book by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Nah, Scott knows I could kick his ass :P Gotta love friendly bantering between author and fans/critics, huh? ;) I'm tired. I had to physically restrain three teens the past two days, including having to pick one up (at around 160 lbs.) and toss him to his bed to keep him from assaulting another resident. I'm aching, but it worked - finally. Sleepy bye-time. Ciao. view post


posted 30 Aug 2004, 13:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

pranks :twisted: view post


posted 31 Aug 2004, 02:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

cockroach (which will be part of a prank I'll eventually pull on a sleeping co-worker :twisted: ) view post


posted 31 Aug 2004, 03:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow listening to... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

The Yardbirds (a band more famous for the guitarists who left the group - Clapton, Jeff Beck, Jimmy Page) - than for their own songs (which I think are underrated in their goodness), especially their cover of "Smokestack Lightning" and "Train Kept A'Rolling." view post


posted 31 Aug 2004, 13:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Knevil ;) view post


posted 31 Aug 2004, 20:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

insane (in the membrane) view post


posted 31 Aug 2004, 20:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow listening to... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Rainy Day Women #12 and #25 or A Hard Rain's A'Gonna Fall type of day? Or would Subterranean Homesick Blues fit even better? ;) And yes, the Yardbirds are great. Aerosmith often will play one of their songs live in concert, because Stephen Tyler was really into what Keith Relf did as a singer. view post


posted 31 Aug 2004, 20:08 in The Warrior ProphetSomehow I doubt this was the inspiration for TWP by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Fantasy, wrestling, and prostitution - whoever would have thought I could have linked them all together and it make any sense? :P I'm still waiting for Scott's response in the Q&A section about the prostitution/Pimp bit ;) view post


posted 31 Aug 2004, 20:08 in The Darkness That Comes BeforeBest character by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Thanks - now I have this mental image of Alice Cooper as a Scylvendi warlord. Maybe we should point this out to Scott and see if indeed AC was the inspiration for Cnaiür ;) view post


posted 31 Aug 2004, 21:08 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

marijuana ;) view post


posted 01 Sep 2004, 07:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

different (think MP) view post


posted 01 Sep 2004, 15:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Willis view post


posted 01 Sep 2004, 19:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Sybil view post


posted 01 Sep 2004, 21:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

theatre view post


posted 01 Sep 2004, 21:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionMisheard lyrics by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Jimi Hendrix: 'cuse me while I kiss this guy in place of: 'cuse me while I kiss the sky. Can't forget that one, ya know ;) view post


posted 01 Sep 2004, 21:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

craft view post


posted 01 Sep 2004, 22:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

bitch ;) view post


posted 02 Sep 2004, 14:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

tums view post


posted 07 Sep 2004, 03:09 in Book ClubAlright, our first book club discussion is going to be by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

The weekends are the worst time for me, personally. Lately, I've been working longer shifts on the weekends (12 hours on Saturdays, 16 hours on Sundays), plus the occasional Monday night thrown in as well. I'll try to participate, however, seeing as I have read the book. Nice call on the first. view post


posted 07 Sep 2004, 13:09 in Author Q & AConcerning Chapter Quotes by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Ah, sounds like some of the critiques I heard from my professors...alas, grad school is but a fond memory now. Oh wait, there is that pesky paper I have to defe...err, write in the near future, yes? ;) view post


posted 07 Sep 2004, 13:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I made it through largely "unscathed" because I read into it and replied False to almost every single question. What I [i:xjfoep3x]believe[/i:xjfoep3x] and what I [i:xjfoep3x]know[/i:xjfoep3x] can sometimes be two separate things and I'm almost always mindful of that. As to what this says about my religious beliefs is up to others to decide ;) view post


posted 07 Sep 2004, 13:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionWhat other sites are you active on? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

A few... Here, wotmania, SFF World, the SOIAF site occasionally, Dead Cities, Neil Gaiman's site board, a spanish-language site, visit William Gibson's site from time to time (only posted once there, though). Now in terms of sites where I visit for information and no posting...let's just say the numbers go well into the dozens, in two languages at that! :D view post


posted 07 Sep 2004, 13:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Dudette view post


posted 07 Sep 2004, 16:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

pal view post


posted 07 Sep 2004, 19:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionWhat other sites are you active on? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

That reminds me - hopefully tomorrow I'll have time/energy to write a piece on the Hugos. I have been thinking today about what to say and it might be interesting to others, but alas I'm very tired (worked last night - on my usual day off) and am heading to bed now. Oh, and I forgot to add that I do post occasionally at the Malazan forum, but not very much these days due to other matters. view post


posted 07 Sep 2004, 19:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

blue view post


posted 08 Sep 2004, 07:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":1tudlu8o][quote:1tudlu8o]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:1tudlu8o] 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:1tudlu8o]rational[/i:1tudlu8o] man.'[/quote:1tudlu8o] Which brings up one of the bigger fallacies out there: saying "rational" as if it were an entity or something clearly delineated rather than as a tool or process for evaluating the world around. Some of the best fun I've ever had was in trying to get others who took that stance to define what is and what isn't "rational." :twisted: I'm just of the belief that "reason," when carried far enough along the path, usually just leads to "I don't know further" or "I can't explain this." Sometimes, it just seems that the hardest thing for people to do is to accept that there are just things that are and will be unknowable and/or nonunderstandable. For making [i:1tudlu8o]meanings[/i:1tudlu8o] out of this, Reason and Science (as entities of perception) probably should take a back seat to Tradition and Myth and Religion. Otherwise, it'd be like using a hammer to drive a screw in - not a pretty result. view post


posted 08 Sep 2004, 07:09 in Literature DiscussionWhat subgroup of speculative fiction do you prefer? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

To paraphrase Beavis and Butt-head: The one that doesn't suck ;) view post


posted 08 Sep 2004, 11:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Grantaire":2dlym1ag]Larry, who says that those are the sole things that can create meaning? Who says that things even [i:2dlym1ag]need[/i:2dlym1ag] meaning? Sure, we desire for it, but is it crucial enough that we would put religion ahead of science?[/quote:2dlym1ag] Re-read what I said. I didn't say that those were the [i:2dlym1ag]sole[/i:2dlym1ag] things that create meaning, but in terms of creating interpretations and applications, those just happen to be better suited than scientific/rational discourses. Why? I'd suspect it'd have to do with the different rôles each has. I don't need a yes/no dichotomy to utilize something like the tooth fairy for a situation. If a ritual is created and embedded with a meaning that distracts, that deflects, that even sometimes comforts, in a situation of loss, then that is an effective ritual. Whether or not it is "rational" or not is beside the point. It is outside the scope of what the scientific method should be applied toward. In terms of religion, I would argue that it is crucial, in precisely the manner I mention above. The Marxist labelling of religion as "the opiate of the masses" is very telling, but for differing reasons than what they would have concluded. Humans like patterns, they seek for patterns, they [b:2dlym1ag][i:2dlym1ag]create[/i:2dlym1ag][/b:2dlym1ag] patterns. Patterns from as simple as how one walks around others to as complex as how humans interpret the world around them. It might be that I'm "contaminated" by almost four years of dialogue with an anthropology grad student who is my closest friend/confidant, but all too often people do rush in and dismiss Ritual in the debate of how to view the world. A truth of the matter is that all too often, the disruption of Ritual by a whole new faith-value system leads not just to the expected short-term chaos of readjustment, but also to increased feelings of helplessness and searching for understanding. Science is a very valuable tool. The application of this toward questions of How, When, and Where is the best out there. There is much that it explains. But in terms of providing comfort in one's life, it often is worse than useless. Worse because for some, it strips away built-up Meaning and leaves nothing behind. I'd say more, but I better leave it for the essay on Fantasy that I'm about to (finally) write ;) view post


posted 08 Sep 2004, 14:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":bbt9giwv]Something has 'meaning' when it has a 'point,' which is to say, when it's [i:bbt9giwv]purposive[/i:bbt9giwv]. 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:bbt9giwv]give life a point[/i:bbt9giwv], why should we look to [i:bbt9giwv]tradition[/i:bbt9giwv], 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?[/quote:bbt9giwv] In this day and age? Tough to say, other than the alterations done to earlier shapings. I see in my reply that I failed to state that there's much more to Ritual than just comfort or social bonding, so I guess I better elaborate a bit more here (even if it opens me up to more probings ;)): We humans process a helluva lot of information. In order to make sense of it, we tend to construct (or Shape, which might be a better word for this) structures that help us make sense of these situations. Now, a great many of these structures are based on simple survival - superiority in numbers, specialization of tasks, focus on coping strategies that ensure the least resentment and the most happiness for various situations. This is, I know, a simplistic model, but I think the basics are mostly true. From this, I believe Traditions arose, belief-patterns that became embedded in the cultures in which we grew up. It is something that goes beyond mere language, into a larger [i:bbt9giwv]Historia[/i:bbt9giwv] that shapes the ways that we come to view the world. Now Traditions can be broken, can be altered somewhat, but in breaking or transgressing them, there is some implicit acknowledgement that Tradition is something substansive, if not exactly known or understood. Of course, Tradition is largely negative in the eyes of many, defining what should not be as much as what is. But yet Tradition, as multifaceted and as illogical as it might appear, offers something that goes much beyond the present. Taking drugs for their own sake would not fit into a Ritual, because there is an implied statement that the drug usage is not for the connection into a set of beliefs and Weltanschauungen, but more for an individual's attempt to create his/her own statement, her/his own organization of meaning. Rituals and Traditions are much, much more than just people bonding (and this is where I depart from certain anthropological views). They are the foundation upon which our very own identities are built. While I'm not going to embrace Freud's Ego/Id/Superego model, there is indeed some conflict and cohesion to the Individual/Society. In a world in which we want to stand apart and have difficulties differentiating between "I" and "you," between "we" and "they," there are going to be some interesting clashes. In certain cultures, take the Quechua-language descendents of the Incas, there are two forms for "we" - "you and me" and "the others around me, but not you". It is a distinct contrast to Anglo-based concepts of societies, which tend to be more "me, but you can be included in the we" than group-based identities. But this is getting afield from what you were stating in your question, yes? Why should we look toward Tradition if it's going to be fraught with conflicts? Because, despite of (or maybe even because of) its seeming incompatibilities, it's the very foundation and origin for "us." For example, how would you describe yourself in non-physical terms? What do you [b:bbt9giwv]do[/b:bbt9giwv]? Why do you do [b:bbt9giwv]it[/b:bbt9giwv]? How do you greet a stranger and is it the same as greeting a friend? Why do we not kill the old ones when they become chronically infirm? How do we nurture children and educate them? Why is education considered (on the surface at least) to be so important? Why kneel at certain times and stand at others? Why do we elect/place others in front of (or behind) ourselves in perceived importance? Why do we name children the ways we name them? Those are just a few of the myriad questions we confront and answer, almost without thinking, each and every day. Tradition might not be logical or free from internal conflicts, but it's the way we confront the world and no better solution has been developed yet of helping our progeny deal with the difficulties of the universe around them. So that's why I tend to sidestep the question of whether or not one can "prove" the existence of a God (or Gods) and look instead to how these beliefs (or non-beliefs) have helped shaped the moralities and the codes of conduct that various societies have developed over the millenia. view post


posted 08 Sep 2004, 15:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I'm going to start reading Rhys Hughes's [i:3004a7un]The New Universal History of Infamy[/i:3004a7un] tonight at work, followed by Tim Pratt's [i:3004a7un]Little Gods[/i:3004a7un]. Both are under 200 pages, so I should finish both tonight or tomorrow at the latest. Then I'll read the F. Brett Cox and Andy Duncan edited [i:3004a7un]Crossroads: Tales of the Southern Literary Fantastic[/i:3004a7un] and hopefully complete a re-read of [i:3004a7un]Ilium[/i:3004a7un] by Monday morning. view post


posted 08 Sep 2004, 15:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

190 proof ;) view post


posted 08 Sep 2004, 15:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":vu08cckh]I think you might be trading off two different senses of tradition to make your point, Larry: tradition as the collection of social [i:vu08cckh]habits[/i:vu08cckh] 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'?[/quote:vu08cckh] Only two? ;) Yeah, I know I was doing that, in part just to illustrate the problems of the word. Or something like that ;) No, to be more serious, I see what you're saying here, Scott, but there's a problem that I see that I'm not sure can be addressed without utilizing these various senses of tradition. It's that of "Can Religion exist without a Tradition?" Or must the two be instrangible? But I believe I can make a case for having to take Tradition into account when attempting to comprehend the "point of it all" just by noting that the very presumption of the idea (discredited or not) of "a point to it all" would ipso facto have to be related to that person's relationship to his/her culture and that culture's sense of Tradition. I just don't know if we could separate the "individual" from the "tradition." In fact, I'd be afraid if we could in fact do that, because it seems to me that there is a strong correlation between an individual's mental well-being and his/her perception of her/his place in society, or at least the solidity of that placing. But that's just idle speculation, right? ;) view post


posted 08 Sep 2004, 17:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":888mzgbi]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:888mzgbi]product[/i:888mzgbi] - 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.[/quote:888mzgbi] Damn, I knew I should have used more smoke! :P You're basically correct in restating what I was implying. I do realize that the end result is not going to be "traditional," but instead a dialogue with that tradition, whether it be one of continuity or a discontinuity that also falls back upon having a tradition from which to trangress and/or depart. Now why should we trust it? That's very difficult to answer, because my own answer is bound to be chock full of ambiguity. But if I had to take a stab at it, tradition doesn't so much as provide an answer as it does provide a framing for the natures of the questions being asked. How's that for a non-commital answer? :P view post


posted 08 Sep 2004, 18:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

weapon view post


posted 08 Sep 2004, 22:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":1m7wzsro]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:[/quote:1m7wzsro] Yep, based on quite a few comments we've made in other posts in the past, I'd have to agree. And you certainly have the most apt description of my approach toward things I've ever read :D view post


posted 09 Sep 2004, 14:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Somehow, I suspect a discussion on Value and Meaning will be next up on the agenda ;) view post


posted 09 Sep 2004, 14:09 in Philosophy DiscussionIs the idea of a "god" inherent in our minds? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

And yet, despite (or perhaps in direct relationship to) all this, it seems as though "modern" societies are undergoing a crisis of meaning, trying to find something tangible or intangible even that they can rescue from this oft-bewildering flood of new developments. Sometimes, they choose to blind themselves to what's developing (literal Creationists tend to fall into this group, at least in my opinion), while others might try to integrate as much as possible to create a synthesis of the older beliefs and the newer theories of how existence came to be. Needless to say, this perceived crisis of meaning should keep whole teams of philosophers busy in the coming years, yes? ;) view post


posted 09 Sep 2004, 23:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Posh Spice ;) view post


posted 10 Sep 2004, 12:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

That's why I prefer to just go beyond the mundanity of it all and just appreciate what I appreciate and not worry overmuch about whether or not it's a "false veneer" or not. Whether it's a stimulation of the senses for a greater Purpose (and Behaviorists do seem to imply in their arguments that there is Purpose, but with evolutionary pressure replacing a God-like force/being) or if it's a delusion, I'd still rather just go, "damn! That's one very attractive woman walking down the street." Sometimes, I just gotta let Little Head think for Big Head just to maintain whatever semblence of sanity I may or may not have, regardless of any evolutionary pressures ;) view post


Time for that very annoying question that many of us have posted 10 Sep 2004, 13:09 in Author Q & ATime for that very annoying question that many of us have by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

You can blame this on me glancing at Martin's website yet once again: :twisted: How close are you to completing TTT, in terms of drafts and/or fragments? Or is this one of those dealbreaker questions that will automatically lead to me getting smacked silly for being impertinent? :P Or how about a vague "I'll announce it when it's complete, or well before Martin announces his next book is complete" type response? ;) It's Friday, give me a break or something :P view post


posted 10 Sep 2004, 14:09 in Philosophy DiscussionIs the idea of a "god" inherent in our minds? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

You've been around me too long, haven't you Jake? ;) Nice reply there. Needless to say, I do wonder how one could discuss all of the possible pertinent points (say that three times fast! :P) in one measly wittle post. Wanna try, though? :P view post


posted 10 Sep 2004, 14:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

pause ;) view post


posted 10 Sep 2004, 14:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

drop view post


posted 10 Sep 2004, 15:09 in Philosophy DiscussionIs the idea of a "god" inherent in our minds? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I don't blame ya! I was just teasing, as you know. By the way, enjoy my latest two reviews before logging out, okay? ;) view post


posted 10 Sep 2004, 15:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

rochambeau (as in what I'll do to you next time you mess with me setting up the stop, drop, and roll bit :P) view post


Susanna Clarke's Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell posted 10 Sep 2004, 15:09 in ReviewsSusanna Clarke's Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

By now, many of you have read the hype. Some of you might have read the reviews (and I'm going to provide a link to [url=http://www.scifi.com/sfw/issue385/excess.html:2360u9i4]John Clute's excellent review[/url:2360u9i4], which offers cautious praise with some astute commentary on where the novel falls short). Now I'm going to provide my impressions of the novel. This is a very, very good first novel. As such, I think Clarke more than exceeds what many readers should expect from a typical first novel. She balances her use of language, humor, characterization, and scene vividness very well. It might be that her years as an editor for various non-fiction departments of Simon and Schuster have helped, although there are some issues that could have been addressed within the novel. The story is set in the early 19th century, as two practicing magicians (the first in almost 300 years) have emerged. The fussy Mr. Norrell has met his match in the dashing and gregarious Jonathan Strange. Theirs is a strained relationship marked by jealousies and petty behavior. Clarke does a good job comparing and contrasting these personality types in a variety of scenes, using the dialogue and scene narratives to develop these characters rather than relying on heavy-handed exposition. In reading this almost 800 page novel, one is struck by just how close Clarke comes to reproducing the tone and Zeitgeist of the early 19th century. For an author who professes a love for 19th century English writers such as Jane Austen and Charles Dickens, her use of the English language resembles and expounds upon their efforts. In fact, reading this novel has given me a vague yearning to re-read Dickens, Austen, Anthony Trollope, Wilkie Collins, and other 19th century English novelists that I enjoyed. Also, Clarke wryly works in references to Ann Radcliffe and Matthew Lewis, whose Gothic stories were a major sensation during the time period of the novel (1806-1817). So the language is really good, full of humor, biting wit, and with excellent characterization and memorable scenes. What are the weaknesses of this novel? If I had to point out anything in particular, I'd have to go with what Clute says in his review - there's too much of a good thing here. A surfeit is not always good for the reading mind, and there are places where a little bit of trimming could have made this wonderful story almost flawless, especially in the first section of the novel. Now one caveat about this novel: it is part of a larger whole. Although Clarke has made this clear in interviews, the book blurb fails to mention that this story is not complete once you reach page 782. There is more to be written, presumably a trilogy, since that is the number on the contract Clarke signed with Bloomsbury. But don't let this stop you from reading one of the more magical books to be published this year, one that envokes all sorts of pleasant memories of other excellent stories, at least for this reader. view post


posted 10 Sep 2004, 15:09 in ReviewsSusanna Clarke's Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Yep. I trust Clute's opinion more than I do most any other reviewer, as he does so many of the "little things" right in terms of what I want in a review. Should be interesting to learn how many here (and at OF) have read/will want to read this book. Very difficult to live up to that amount of hype, but it sure comes very close in all facets. Hopefully, I'll be feeling well enough to see her in person next week in Nashville. Should be fun - second author signing. The first was quite memorable ;) view post


posted 10 Sep 2004, 17:09 in Author Q & ATime for that very annoying question that many of us have by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Ya know, that makes excellent sense for it to be published in Fall 2005 for a few reasons: 1) More time for the paperback/HB cycle to develop in the US for TDTCB and TWP 2) More edit time, just in case 3) Just so you can have some sanity left ;) Thanks for not killing me over that question, but at least it was me and not someone demanding a synopsis ASAP, right? ;) As for the Hegel bit...you're on your own - a few pages was enough for me back in my undergrad days :P view post


posted 11 Sep 2004, 12:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Not just pretend, but obfuscate! And yes, some foot-stomping ;) And somehow, I think this all ties in to the Meaning of Life. Speaking of which, I suspect the Monty Python troupe was onto something there with their conclusion, yes? :P view post


posted 11 Sep 2004, 12:09 in Author Q & ATime for that very annoying question that many of us have by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Those sites already do receive ARCs, as do others like Cheryl Morgan's [i:2wv2evx6]Emerald City[/i:2wv2evx6] (which just won a Hugo for Best Fanzine) and a few others of a blog/review nature. It's just surprising that more of the major SFF sites that revolve around messageboards don't receive more ARCs. Needless to say, I'm working on changing that, because I certainly review the books I've been sent (all two of them, including one from Scott) and I know wotmania is one of the largest fantasy-type websites in terms of page views (at around 25-30K daily). But the publishers don't tend to think along those lines, I've noticed. And I do agree that the extra time might be a boon more than anything else. What's 4-5 months if it means more quality editing and more demand? :D view post


posted 11 Sep 2004, 21:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

nightcrawler view post


posted 11 Sep 2004, 23:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

sucks ;) view post


posted 13 Sep 2004, 16:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

rice view post


posted 15 Sep 2004, 12:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":1ex3fppd]I take nihilism to be the position that there is no such thing as value - like the evil porn stars in [i:1ex3fppd]The Big Lebowski[/i:1ex3fppd]. :P [/quote:1ex3fppd] This had me chuckling, probably because I slept way too early and woke way too early as a result. I just started to imagine porn star arguing about the relative and objective values of their profession and how important of a role they play in a society. Think this is a sign of advanced dementia? ;) [quote:1ex3fppd]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:1ex3fppd] [quote:1ex3fppd]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:1ex3fppd]that's[/i:1ex3fppd] 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:1ex3fppd]is the problem![/i:1ex3fppd][/quote:1ex3fppd] And if we can't do much more besides stomp our feet in mud puddles, can we at least have some fun and create "meaning" out of that stompage? ;) view post


posted 16 Sep 2004, 13:09 in Author Q & AOther authors you enjoy by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Scott, just thought I'd thank you for managing to bring two talented authors to my attention. I just read and finished Sweet's novel and loved it. Probably will write a review of it sometime in the next day or two. Also, I happened to be searching through the PoN site the other day and saw a link to Karin Lowachee's page. I'm about halfway finished with [i:249306l1]Warchild[/i:249306l1] and am thoroughly impressed with how she tells a story. 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. view post


posted 16 Sep 2004, 21:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionThis is awesome! by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Because Shatner was the one doing the spoken word? ;) view post


posted 17 Sep 2004, 00:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Ricki (Lake) :P view post


posted 17 Sep 2004, 00:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionTop 5 Sci-fi Series/ books by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I'll just name 5 that I don't think have been named yet, but in no certain order: Jeff VanderMeer, [i:287jxejw]City of Saints and Madmen[/i:287jxejw] Margaret Atwood, [i:287jxejw]The Handmaid's Tale[/i:287jxejw] Mikhail Bulgakov, [i:287jxejw]The Master and Margarita[/i:287jxejw] Zoran Zivkovic, [i:287jxejw]The Fourth Circle[/i:287jxejw] Elizabeth Moon, [i:287jxejw]The Speed of Dark[/i:287jxejw] Nope, no series there ;) view post


posted 17 Sep 2004, 01:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

high ;) view post


posted 17 Sep 2004, 02:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

flooding view post


posted 17 Sep 2004, 14:09 in Author Q & AOther authors you enjoy by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I know, because he posted about it! As for freaking Jack out, I somehow doubt it, unless you were to come on to him or something like that. Then again, he'd likely take it as a compliment :P view post


posted 17 Sep 2004, 14:09 in Philosophy DiscussionBattleground God by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

No, I haven't yet seen it (mostly because I hate visual media like TV and movies), but that bit of dialogue has certainly persuaded me to buy it on DVD. Now finding the time to watch it might be a problem though, considering I tend to work and sleep and little else most days... But thanks for the tip and for a means of answering those pesky nihilists around here! :twisted: view post


posted 17 Sep 2004, 14:09 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Word that Comes to Mind by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Joan of Arc view post


posted 25 Sep 2004, 01:09 in Author Q & AProbably the simplest question, though I haven't seen it yet by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Go here: [url:fftsvi3d]http://www.princeofnothing.com/author.htm[/url:fftsvi3d] view post


The Warrior Phophet? posted 25 Sep 2004, 01:09 in Author Q & AThe Warrior Phophet? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Amazon's crack misspellings team strikes again! [url:3oxmwp9v]http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/1585675601/qid=1096076799/sr=8-2/ref=sr_8_xs_ap_i2_xgl14/104-7409833-3282338?v=glance&s=books&n=507846[/url:3oxmwp9v] view post


posted 25 Sep 2004, 19:09 in Author Q & AThe Warrior Phophet? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Like the guys at Overlook, who still have you listed as R. Scott [i:1zp2akb7]Barker[/i:1zp2akb7]? ;) Man, you just can't catch a break, can you? :P view post


posted 25 Sep 2004, 21:09 in Author Q & AThe Warrior Phophet? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

No kidding. I have a very anglicized spelling of an ancient Irish name and people still mispronounce/misspell it all the time! That being said, you know many are curious as to how to pronounce your last name, right? view post


posted 28 Sep 2004, 16:09 in Author Q & AToronto readings? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[i:1q5lwwvt]The Lion in Winter[/i:1q5lwwvt] is a great movie - I remember seeing that my sophomore year in college for a history class. I really need to get that on DVD sometime. Have you seen the Thomas More play/movie, [i:1q5lwwvt]A Man for All Seasons[/i:1q5lwwvt]? If you haven't, I highly recommend that one. One of my favorite movies to watch. If only more movies these days would just take the time to develop dialogue and characterization in such a fashion... view post


posted 28 Sep 2004, 17:09 in Author Q & AToronto readings? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

No, this one stars Paul Scofield as More and has as supporting cast Orson Welles, Robert Shaw, Wendy Hiller, John Hurt, Vanessa Redgrave, and Susannah York. Movie won 6 Oscars in 1966. It's based on Robert Bolt's play of the same name, and Bolt wrote the screenplay as well. I highly, highly recommend this. view post


International Spec Fic posted 05 Oct 2004, 01:10 in Literature DiscussionInternational Spec Fic by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Hey, just thought I'd poll people here for any outstanding works of fantasy, sci-fi, or horror that you know of that's been published outside North America or Great Britain. Just wrote a new Blog entry discussing this and would love to have input from readers here about it. Thanks in advance! [url:1te94ktd]http://ofblog.blogspot.com/2004/10/just-how-universal-is-speculative.html[/url:1te94ktd] view post


Besides the one obvious review, ever had this happen, Scott? posted 13 Oct 2004, 06:10 in Author Q & ABesides the one obvious review, ever had this happen, Scott? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote:zco39gtg]The People Have Spoken, and Rice Takes Offense By SARAH LYALL Published: October 11, 2004 Lestat, the vampire narrator of Anne Rice's most recent book, "Blood Canticle,'' begins the novel with a harangue against its readers. "What the hell happened when I gave you 'Memnoch the Devil?' " he asks crossly, referring to an earlier novel by Ms. Rice that some readers, to put it mildly, did not like. "You complained!" Many people did not care much for "Blood Canticle" (Knopf) either, as Ms. Rice found to her mounting horror when she began scrolling through dozens of virulently negative reviews of the book on Amazon.com. "I cannot stress to you how bad this book is, and I have been waiting for it for so long!'' wrote a reviewer from California. Wrote another reviewer, "I have read almost every one of Anne Rice's novels, and I have to say this is the worst one.'' A third was more specific. " 'Blood Canticle's' biggest problem,'' that reviewer said, "is that it is seriously lacking in creative writing, sense of continuity and character development.'' Ms. Rice, the best-selling author of 25 books, including the lush and original "Interview With the Vampire,'' has a passionate following and an unusually intimate relationship with her audience. She reacted to the criticism with shock and horror, although when the positive and negative reviews were averaged, Amazon gave "Blood Canticle" three stars out of five. Many authors are upset by the snide tone of some Amazon reviews; Ms. Rice decided to do something about it. She posted a blistering 1,200-word defense of her book on the site, laying in to those critics who, she said, were "interrogating this text from the wrong perspective." "Your stupid, arrogant assumptions about me and what I am doing are slander,'' she wrote. "You have used the site as if it were a public urinal to publish falsehood and lies.'' Ms. Rice seemed particularly incensed by reviewers who implied that she had not worked hard on the book, the 10th in her "Vampire Chronicles'' series, or that she had written it merely to fulfill a "contractual obligation,'' as one reviewer said. Nor was she thrilled by the suggestion - often made by people who adored earlier books in the series but said they felt that the quality had deteriorated - that "Blood Canticle" might have benefited from some tough love. "Anne, you really should have an editor, or at least someone that would read your book before you send it off to print,'' one reviewer wrote. No way, Ms. Rice replied. "I have no intention of allowing any editor ever to distort, cut or otherwise mutilate sentences that I have edited and re-edited, and organized and polished myself,'' she wrote. "I fought a great battle to achieve a status where I did not have to put up with editors making demands on me.'' In a telephone interview, Ms. Rice elaborated on the point. "People who find fault and problems with my books tend to say, 'She needs an editor,' '' Ms. Rice said. "When a person writes with such care and goes over and over a manuscript and wants every word to be perfect, it's very frustrating.'' She added: "When you take home a CD of Pavarotti or Marilyn Horne, you don't want to hear another voice blended in. I feel the same way about Hemingway. If I read it, I don't want to read a new edited version.'' Writers like Ms. Rice, who produce many books and consistently bring in a great deal of money for their publishers, are often given far wider editorial latitude than other authors. Ms. Rice has been a best seller for Knopf since 1976, when it published "Interview With the Vampire.'' Later Rice books have not done as well as "Interview,'' but they still sell about a half-million copies apiece in hardcover, said Paul Bogaards, a Knopf spokesman. He said that "Blood Canticle'' had sold about 375,000 hardcover copies and that Ms. Rice always "has a built-in audience waiting for her next novel." An executive at a rival publishing house, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said publishers often took a hands-off editorial approach with stars like Ms. Rice and Stephen King, another prolific, best-selling author, particularly as their careers matured. "Ultimately it's the author's book,'' the executive said. "With an author of a certain stature, they're the artist; we're the amanuensis.'' Ms. Rice said that she had been moved to respond to the Amazon postings because many of them included personal attacks on her health; on her state of mind since the death in 2002 of her husband, Stan; and on her writing ability. She said that she received hundreds of e-mail messages of support, many from writers with their own stories of being "savaged and trashed'' on Amazon. Although reviews of "Blood Canticle'' were not universally glowing, Ms. Rice said she was pleased with the book, and a number of readers gave it lavish praise on Amazon. "She has such a built-in fan base; that's why controversy ensued,'' said Sessalee Hensley, the fiction buyer at Barnes & Noble, where, Ms. Hensley said, "Blood Canticle" had sold 20 percent more copies than Ms. Rice's previous vampire book, "Blackwood Farm." "Everyone is so passionately involved that if, for instance, it's not the way they thought Lestat would act, they are going to say 'It's the worst book I ever read,' '' Ms. Hensley said. Ms. Rice said that her work was headed in a new direction and that "Blood Canticle'' was definitely the end of the vampire series. "Yes, the 'Chronicles' are no more!'' she wrote in her Amazon posting. "Thank God!''[/quote:zco39gtg] It's from Monday's NY Times and after glancing at the Amazon reader reviews in question, are fans really that vicious these days? :( view post


posted 13 Oct 2004, 19:10 in Author Q & ABesides the one obvious review, ever had this happen, Scott? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

True, I too was a bit irritated by that comment, although I will sympathize with her on the personal attack issue - comments about dead relatives really should be out of bounds when it comes to discussing why one thinks a book sucks. And yeah, authors often don't have the best picture of how the completed project is going to be taken. As for pissing people off, I just read where someone at wotmania was disappointed because TDTCB read mostly like a prologue - but I don't think that was the sort of pissing people off stance you wanted, huh? ;) However, I do expect any day now to hear some complaints about the rape scene. Man, I feel weird, being positive about the likelihood of an author receiving negative comments, groundless or not :P view post


posted 19 Oct 2004, 15:10 in Philosophy DiscussionScience disenchanting the world. by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Very interesting debate going on here. Too bad I really don't have much to add to it now other than this seemingly innocuous question: What bothers me about trying to grasp the full significance of truth-claims is that in one very real sense, we have to approach this from a certain understanding, an understanding that isn't necessarily going to be what people want from this. This leads me to address the question of truth-claims thusly: 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? Just how applicable can something of a rational standpoint be toward something that just might possibly be inherently irrational? Something just tells me that in the end, it just comes down to limits and the relationships we develop with limits, both imposed and superimposed, both "natural" and "artificial," but that might be getting off-track a bit, yes? view post


posted 20 Oct 2004, 05:10 in Philosophy DiscussionScience disenchanting the world. by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

One very quick bit (I can't respond at length now because I have a monitor strapped to my left index finger and it's hell to type - it'll be removed in the afternoon): Be careful about making blanket statements about intelligence, Grantaire - people are intelligent in more ways than one. Some can cope with these questions in a fashion that causes them less worry - because they literally see the world differently. I've learned that lesson from just working and being around people of all sorts over the years. But "horse sense" is for another topic, yes? ;) view post


posted 26 Oct 2004, 13:10 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow listening to... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Just downloaded U2's newest single, "Vertigo," and it sounds promising enough for me to eagerly await their new CD coming out in a month's time. view post


posted 03 Nov 2004, 14:11 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow listening to... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Well, I just purchased a new exercise bike and for the music I'm listening to for that is Jimmy Page and Robert Plant's 1998 CD, [i:jrynhyco]Walking Into Clarksdale[/i:jrynhyco]. A very, very underrated album, sadly. One of my favorites, in part due to the nice textures and rhythms Page has going for him with the guitar. view post


Scott, tell me this won't be your excuse for delaying TTT ;) posted 04 Nov 2004, 21:11 in Author Q & AScott, tell me this won't be your excuse for delaying TTT ;) by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Did you read what Martin posted the day after the US election? :o Here's the link: [url:xornsd27]http://www.georgerrmartin.com/nextbook.html[/url:xornsd27] If he really believes this, this might be one of the more, ahem, "original" excuses I've ever heard. view post


posted 04 Nov 2004, 21:11 in Philosophy DiscussionAMERICAN POLITICS... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Well, I did vote Tuesday and sadly, I couldn't have voted for my #1 choice. Roger Calero of the Socialist Workers Party (they weren't on the ballot in TN). My #2 choice, the Green Party, also wasn't on the ballot in my home state. I almost went with Nader (like I did in 2000), but instead capitulated and voted for Kerry, the first time since I developed sense in college that I voted for a candidate more conservative than I am. I'll say more later, hopefully. Need to eat soon. Starving. view post


posted 04 Nov 2004, 22:11 in Author Q & AScott, tell me this won't be your excuse for delaying TTT ;) by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Poor cat, being blamed for everything ;) I'll have to pop in there sometime later tonight. Been really busy this week developing a workout plan. Lungs checked out fine - it was sleep apnea and I'm responding well to medication. Already back to normal breathing, so back to working out and losing this paunch :D Great to hear that the writing is going well - I guess 11 months or so isn't too far away, right? Right? :P view post


posted 22 Nov 2004, 15:11 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Well Scott, it seems there are a few things at play here: 1) The bigshots aren't willing to take on another second rights deal. From what I have inferred from the numbers, Tor's probably a little disappointed with the relative lack of sales for Erikson's US re-release of [i:2wwcvude]Gardens of the Moon[/i:2wwcvude]. 2) It takes time to build that groundswell these days for non-American authors writing fantasy/SF. Took Erikson 4 books to get a US deal, so this might be par for the course. 3) Mass-market paperback right now might be getting things assbackwards, actually. The main buyers of MMPBs are those who've heard the buzz about the earlier release and just are waiting, but usually those numbers are dependent upon how well the hardcover version sold. Publishers have to sell a lot of MMPBs to recoup the costs in comparison to hardcovers. If I remember correctly, it isn't all that much more expensive to produce a hardcover than it is a paperback, so publishers would have to sell many more copies of a MMPB than a hardcover or softcover tradeback to break even. It's one of the reasons why today there are fewer and fewer releases ever going to MMPB, if I understand things correctly. You've read Miéville and know how popular he is now in SF/fantasy circles. But it wasn't until his fourth novel, [i:2wwcvude]Iron Council[/i:2wwcvude], released back in July, that he was available in anything over than softcover tradeback. The MMPBs of PSS and [i:2wwcvude]The Scar[/i:2wwcvude] weren't released until 2-4 years after the original tradeback releases. It took a lot of word of mouth for there to be sufficient demand perceived for his publishers to release MMPB editions. I'm guessing the same might be holding true for you. Hate to say it, but you might have to be patient and pray that the current "viral" approach continues to spread. Also, if $25 is too risky, would it be feasible to see if Overlook might follow Penguin Canada's example and release the books in tradeback form? $13-16 in that form might be just enough to generate a few more new sales. Besides, tradeback appears to be the way that most fantasy/SF publishing is going these days, mega-sellers excepted. I highly doubt there'll be new releases/re-releases of Wolfe's work in MMPB format, the same for Charles de Lint. Yet they seem to be doing well enough, right? So maybe it's just a matter of staying the course, pushing for tradeback editions as a compromise, and hope that the quality will be spoken for enough by people such as myself that eventually the MMPB versions will come? view post


posted 22 Nov 2004, 16:11 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Well Mithfânion, the problem with second rights is the same as getting a used car - they just aren't worth as much, money-wise, to the publisher. While the author can make more money with very little to no writing for the reprinted story, the publishers just aren't willing to shell out as much money, in part because of differing legal obligations to the first rights holder/publisher. As for new Wolfe being published in MMPB form, very surprising, considering his "literary" reputation and the relatively small number of sales (around 30K or so a book since the Sun cycle books, if I remember correctly). Then again, I did read where Tor has decided to market him as a big-name author again (printing 50K books for The Wizard). view post


posted 23 Nov 2004, 13:11 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Traditionally, yes, that was indeed the case. But now in the age of mega advances for a few top players, companies just aren't patient enough to develop new talent. It's more of a throw shit at the wall strategy, to see which authors will stick/sell quickly with a minimum of promotion. This "microwave" approach really has been a major factor in the decline and fall of the "midlist." Actually, it might be a good thing to be a decent priority for a mid-level publisher at this time, because you're less likely to get lost in the shuffle. But long-term aspirations certainly don't address today's needs/desires, do they? view post


Does this reviewer's comment scare you, Scott? posted 30 Nov 2004, 12:11 in Author Q & ADoes this reviewer's comment scare you, Scott? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

From a Nov. 29th comment on Amazon in regards to TWP: [i:2gabxgnf]Very ambitious scale for this particular novel. Reminds me quite a bit of Terry Goodkind's Sword of Truth novels with a bit more character development.[/i:2gabxgnf] view post


posted 30 Nov 2004, 17:11 in Author Q & ADoes this reviewer's comment scare you, Scott? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Could be worse. The reviewer could have said that the story reminded him of Robert Jordan's characterization skills in the last few WoT books ;) view post


posted 30 Nov 2004, 18:11 in Author Q & ADoes this reviewer's comment scare you, Scott? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I work for da Peeps, man, da Peeps! :P And bah to that implied dig...you know my section is mostly anti-WoT, right? ;) view post


posted 30 Nov 2004, 21:11 in Author Q & ADoes this reviewer's comment scare you, Scott? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

That, or maybe the BEM show (Bakker, Erikson, and Martin) ;) That reminds me, I forgot to send you a link to a Quickpoll we ran Thanksgiving weekend about what we were most thankful for this past year. The choices were rather amusing. Here's a copy of the titles: [i:1bb5izy0]Goodkind announcing end to SoT soon (11.28%) Jordan announcing "Two more books!" (20.35%) Martin to finish AFFC before Bush leaves (27.43%) Shatner starring in new TV series, CD (4.87%) Firefly has been pushed back 5 months (0.88%) Erikson still not fat, no beard in sight (12.83%) Bakker doesn't need pimp cane at signing (2.88%) Bonaduce working hard for his money (0.88%) Roast goat (4.20%) Dude... isn't it Christmas time already? (14.38%)[/i:1bb5izy0] You [i:1bb5izy0]almost[/i:1bb5izy0] were more popular than roast goat, but the goat wins in a shocking upset. Kinda puts things in (silly) perspective, yes? :D And before you ask, the comments about you and Erikson were digs at Martin and Jordan's big bellies and bushy beard, as well as the pimp cane Jordan poses with in the photo that goes with his later books :P view post


Hope you appreciate this, Scott posted 02 Dec 2004, 12:12 in Author Q & AHope you appreciate this, Scott by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Just started the nominations round of the annual OF Awards (winners to be announced Jan. 3rd or 4th) and I think you might get a kick out of this: [url:3fjmwxwl]http://www.wotmania.net/fantasymessageboardshowmessage.asp?MessageID=115342[/url:3fjmwxwl] Look for the part near the bottom for Most Fan-Friendly Author. Enjoy! :D view post


posted 02 Dec 2004, 14:12 in Author Q & AHope you appreciate this, Scott by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Firstborns like lollipops? You planning on remaking [i:dzvgd3wn]The Ten Commandments[/i:dzvgd3wn]? ;) As for IC, it was the pacing - it was terrible for me. Miéville started out strong, developed his characters better, it was quasi-Romantic in style then (I thought of Zola's [i:dzvgd3wn]Germinal[/i:dzvgd3wn] for the strike scene) and then - poof! A very long interlude of a flashback (about 150 pages) and then back to the story. All good vibes gone. And then the end sequences, while some of them were good, just felt like Miéville had painted himself into a corner and then he did the Big No-No, there's something that happens that prevents a more logical ending - he used a deus ex machina-type intervention that almost led to me throwing the book down in frustration. I'm trying not to get into plot specifics, because the book is probably still worth reading, but it's definitely a step or two below The Scar or PSS in my opinion. His characterization skills have improved, but the transitions - yeesh! And considering that I've really enjoyed all the other books published in 2004 that I've purchased, it became the worst by default, but my parenthetical comment was meant to reflect that. It's only merely decent and not good to great, as I was hoping. There, answer your question? Oh, and back to the OF Awards: If you and the others here want to vote for the finalists yet don't want to bother with registering at wotmania, I can set up something where you all can PM me with the votes to be counted. Would that work? view post


posted 02 Dec 2004, 14:12 in Author Q & ADoes this reviewer's comment scare you, Scott? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

:D Power the power of the goat! Ah, that's a nice one. Too bad I'm stuck with a college nickname of The Lord of the Llamas, after I jokingly closed an email many years ago by quoting the Sesame Street song, "Me and My Llama" and then saying that I guess I'd just be their lord or something :P view post


Ever dressed up like this author did, Scott? posted 02 Dec 2004, 17:12 in Author Q & AEver dressed up like this author did, Scott? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[img:psnbsgat]http://www.dragonmount.com/Images/RJ_pirate1.jpg[/img:psnbsgat] Recognize that poor schmuck? ;) view post


posted 02 Dec 2004, 18:12 in Author Q & AEver dressed up like this author did, Scott? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Ah, c'mon, you know you have those pics of you dressed as Cnaiür lying about somewhere! :P view post


posted 02 Dec 2004, 21:12 in Author Q & AEver dressed up like this author did, Scott? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

On second thought, I don't know if I want to see a picture of [i:1ntihosa]that[/i:1ntihosa]! :P And really? Wow. Just...wow. :o view post


posted 02 Dec 2004, 23:12 in Author Q & AEver dressed up like this author did, Scott? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

It's called auditioning for Chippendale's. That, or starring in porn. That's how you top that experience ;) view post


posted 05 Dec 2004, 20:12 in Author Q & AEver dressed up like this author did, Scott? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Rather write about it, huh? So... Does that mean that we can expect Hung the Barbarian to make a cameo appearance in TTT? ;) view post


posted 05 Dec 2004, 20:12 in Author Q & AHope you appreciate this, Scott by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I thought the rave reviews just overlooked (or refused to admit in a spell of rah-rahism) that this story just has horrible, horrible transitions. It's the power of Miéville's imagination that made me have any favorable impressions. The individual scenes often are spectacular, but the whole is just a poorly cobbled together entity. When I said it's probably worth reading , I meant that there's some value in some of the scenes, including the rebellion within New Crobuzon - think Paris Commune, cerca 1871. As for AG, I did like that book (maybe because I got that joke about Rock City, being a native Tennessean and all), but I'll agree that it isn't the best thing since Faulkner. It was an enjoyable read, but far from Gaiman's best in my opinion. Then again, I'm one of those who thought [i:oi06il2n]Neverwhere[/i:oi06il2n] is an underrated work of his... view post


posted 07 Dec 2004, 06:12 in Author Q & AHope you appreciate this, Scott by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Well, I'd say you have some of "that" already ;) I think it takes 2-4 years for most authors to build the groundswell of support for the hype machines to kick into gear (with a few media-driven exceptions to the contrary). So...TDTCB was published in Canada in 2003....this is the end of 2004...TWP is getting rave reviews (mostly) on the net....look out 2005? view post


Congratulations! posted 07 Dec 2004, 07:12 in Author Q & ACongratulations! by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Although you might already have read this, I just saw where TDTCB made [i:18lisvvq]Publishers Weekly[/i:18lisvvq]'s Best of 2004. Nice :D [url:18lisvvq]http://www.publishersweekly.com/article/CA484543.html[/url:18lisvvq] So, how does it feel to be on the same Best of list as Gene Wolfe? ;) Edit: I just saw where PW also has TDTCB on its [i:18lisvvq]The Best and Overlooked[/i:18lisvvq] awards - sometimes, being recognized for quality is a two-edged sword, huh? view post


posted 07 Dec 2004, 15:12 in Author Q & ACongratulations! by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

At least you're not taking the Terry Goodkind approach toward all this ;) And maybe TDTCB, warts and all, really is liked by many fantasy readers more than most other books, so I'd think it's an accomplishment in and of itself. And think of it this way - if they enjoyed TDTCB, whadda think will happen when they read TWP? :D view post


posted 07 Dec 2004, 17:12 in Author Q & ACongratulations! by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Well, you did at least get me a copy (autographed, no less!) the week after TWP was released, so one reviewer at least got the word out in appropriate time ;) But yeah, it sometimes takes a few months for it all to trickle out and back. I guess it's like a toilet - sometimes, it just takes a bit for the good shit to get out and about :P Then again, if you're thinking that the review copies need to go out well in advance of the street release date, there's this certain internet reviewer who'd love to have a copy... ;) view post


posted 07 Dec 2004, 21:12 in Author Q & ACongratulations! by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Even better, here's a link to the Best of in SF/F/H that I copy/pasted to wotmania: [url:3hdijkk9]http://www.wotmania.net/fantasymessageboardshowmessage.asp?MessageID=116251[/url:3hdijkk9] As for the Best and Overlooked: [i:3hdijkk9] FICTION The Darkness That Comes Before: The Prince of Nothing Book One R. Scott Bakker (Overlook) Bakker's challenging debut, the first in a new trilogy in the Tolkien tradition, gratifies those weary of formulaic epic fantasy and deserves a broader audience.[/i:3hdijkk9] view post


posted 08 Dec 2004, 22:12 in Author Q & AMetaphysics and such by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Well, I second the notion, but then again, you already know how fascinated I am by metaphysics and their applications ;) By the way, I'm still awaiting that firstborn, as per agreement :twisted: view post


Wanna vote in this year's Awards? posted 15 Dec 2004, 17:12 in Literature DiscussionWanna vote in this year's Awards? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Hey, not only am I a semi-regular here, but I'm also the main moderator/administrator over at the Other Fantasy section of wotmania. We're about to start voting for our annual Awards and I thought I'd open it up this year to others who are not registered at the site. So if you want to vote, just either email me at the address in my Profile here or send me a PM and I'll add your votes to the tally. [url:3f7co3em]http://www.wotmania.net/fantasymessageboardshowmessage.asp?MessageID=117112[/url:3f7co3em] view post


posted 17 Dec 2004, 13:12 in Literature DiscussionWanna vote in this year's Awards? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Well, it's a finalist list (I know, I know, I should have mentioned this earlier, but I was extremely busy with my personal life), so just 0 to 3 in ranked order of the ones listed. But if you want to attach to that a personal top 3, that'd be interesting for me to read at the very least. view post


posted 17 Dec 2004, 15:12 in Literature DiscussionWanna vote in this year's Awards? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Thanks :D I just tabulated them and I really do appreciate you taking the time to vote. When I announce the winners over at OF, I'll be sure to post a link here. view post


posted 21 Dec 2004, 03:12 in Literature DiscussionWanna vote in this year's Awards? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Pfft! :P You know what I meant, Jake! I've been the de facto lead since the section started in 2001, but don't think for a moment I've forgotten it's not just a one-man show, despite the number of people who seem to think it is ;) Besides, remember that starting in January, you'll have a good shot at the limelight ;) view post


posted 01 Feb 2005, 01:02 in Author Q & AWhat are you most looking forward to? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

But what I really want to know is this: Will we see dwarf tossing in TTT, or at least Scylvendi-style mayhem on parade? But I'd settle for a good fart joke mixed in. So... what are the odds of seeing [i:2dbyvcfg]that[/i:2dbyvcfg], Scott? ;) view post


And this is how viral marketing works, right? posted 01 Feb 2005, 02:02 in Interviews and ReviewsAnd this is how viral marketing works, right? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Just to give an idea of how interconnected things are, thought you'd like a few links I just found, Scott, that refer to your works: [url:19it0ljn]http://foros.cyberdark.net/nforos2.php3?cod=4&mens=921273[/url:19it0ljn] - Spanish-language site that refers to how you won the 2005 OF Awards in multiple categories. [url:19it0ljn]http://www.ga-forum.com/showthread.php?t=4227[/url:19it0ljn] - Commentary on our interview, with an interesting joke involving [i:19it0ljn]Quantum Leap[/i:19it0ljn] ;) [url:19it0ljn]http://tb.syntheticstream.com/Forums/ShowPost.aspx?PostID=401179[/url:19it0ljn] - And a bit referring to your SFF World Interview. [url:19it0ljn]http://geekhorde.blogspot.com/[/url:19it0ljn] - And a blog whose January 15th entry refers to your SF Site interview. Plus, the name of the blog just amused me. ;) [url:19it0ljn]http://www.eternalnight.co.uk/interviews/2004/laumiller.html[/url:19it0ljn] - Being mentioned in another author's interview is a good thing, yes? [url:19it0ljn]http://www.publishersnewswire.com/booknews/article_0091.shtml[/url:19it0ljn] - Publisher's Newswire is pretty good for mentioning books, yes? [url:19it0ljn]http://www.placesforwriters.com/archives/profiles/[/url:19it0ljn] - [i:19it0ljn]Writer manages life of fantasy and reality posted at 16:54 EDT, Wednesday, July 07, 2004[/i:19it0ljn] - Sounds like someone liked your newspaper interview as well, Scott [url:19it0ljn]http://www.emcit.com/emcit103.shtml#Learning[/url:19it0ljn] - Looks like Hugo-winning columnist Cheryl Morgan's impressed with your writing as well. Ah, I could continue, but don't these links (and the references to a few interviews you've done in the past) give you an ego boost? :D view post


posted 01 Feb 2005, 23:02 in Interviews and ReviewsAnd this is how viral marketing works, right? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Glad you enjoyed it, Scott. As for Tolkien, I suspect it still would have taken a few years for the word to filter down/up/into the literati circles - it seems like really good stuff takes at least a year or two to circulate enough for word of mouth to be converted into the "next big thing." As for Bakula, I think that'll happen if Enterprise ever becomes half the show Quantum Leap was. ;) view post


posted 02 Feb 2005, 01:02 in Author Q & AWhat are you most looking forward to? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":2jnd9ko5]My [i:2jnd9ko5]life[/i:2jnd9ko5] is one long, sad, fart joke, Larry. Otherwise I believe dwarves should be pitched... And mayhem... Mayhem? Ayuh. :wink:[/quote:2jnd9ko5] Although Meatloaf sang that two out of three ain't bad, I'll settle for any combination of the above, even if it involves a dwarf making a fart joke and pissing off Cnaiür and being tossed for his troubles ;) view post


posted 02 Feb 2005, 18:02 in Interviews and ReviewsAnd this is how viral marketing works, right? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Although it received favorable press when AGoM came out in 1996, it really wasn't until 2000, with ASoS that he really became popular. And then that just led to more reading it based on friend's reactions. Sorta like a trickle-down effect that actually worked - go figure :P view post


posted 04 Feb 2005, 15:02 in Author Q & ACharacter heights in Earwa by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Figures ;) No wonder why you kept looking down on me after the booksigning :P Man, to be 5'11 and be so short in comparison... So... are there any marked differences in height between the various ethnic groups in the Three Seas area, or are they relatively the same? Oh, and just an idle thought - how come we don't hear of too many short, balding, porty superfighters in fantasy series? I mean, it'd be a natural for some of us, yes? ;) view post


posted 05 Feb 2005, 14:02 in Author Q & ACharacter heights in Earwa by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Just to burst your bubble here, Scott - you know the human skeletal system is much less efficient for those over six foot tall, right? Looks like you might have years and years of debilitating arthritis to look forward to, yes? :P And speaking of dietary stuff, what are the main foods eaten in the main ethno-cultural regions? view post


posted 05 Feb 2005, 14:02 in Interviews and ReviewsAnd this is how viral marketing works, right? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Remember Scott, that you Canadians seem to adopt good fantasy series (when you're not writing them ;)) a good 1-2 years before Americans do. But I had heard of Martin's series when CoK was still in HC, because I bought it during the summer of 2000, about three months before the release of SoS. And speaking of HC, seems like the HC of TWP is doing rather well over at Amazon these days, yes? :D view post


posted 05 Feb 2005, 20:02 in Interviews and ReviewsAnd this is how viral marketing works, right? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

That sounds promising - of course, there's a downside to this. Since you're newly married, you can't use this success as a lame pickup line in the bar, correct? ;) But as that old aphorism goes, good things do sometimes go to those who wait...and wait...and wait, right? view post


Re: sorcerer posted 07 Feb 2005, 07:02 in Author Q & ACharacter heights in Earwa by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="ilana richardson":pz809qpu]and yet tall people earn higher pay and have better jobs than short people. They're also more attractive to women. Lots of research to back this up. So i don't know about their skeletal systems giving out later on, but they'll definately enjoy the intervening years ps... how many short supermodels do you know :shock:[/quote:pz809qpu] Well... considering I'm straddling the 6' mark myself (that's what I'm listed as on my driver's license, although that might be an inch too tall), I don't think I'd be confused for a "short" person, except maybe compared to those 6'6 or taller, such as Scott ;) As for short male supermodels, there are many shorter than 5'10", if I remember correctly. As for women supermodels, point taken, although most aren't giants either at the 5'7-5'10" mark, just merely a bit taller than average. But then again, I sound like I'm compensating, don't I? :P Well, bah to that! Maybe I'll just move to South America, where I'd be almost a giant, or to South Florida anyways... ;) And Scott, cool bit about the dietary stuff. I figured that might be the case, but wasn't for sure. Of course, that leads to questions of how the Norsiri were organized (were they tribal-based like the Celts, or more hierarchial than that?), possibly as a result of how their food production was arranged. view post


posted 07 Feb 2005, 19:02 in Author Q & ACharacter heights in Earwa by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

He's about 6'6, easily. Besides, he made a joke about it earlier when saying that he consulted Cu'jara Cinmoi's driver's license ;) view post


posted 15 Mar 2005, 00:03 in Author Q & AExcellent pointers to promote TTT by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":ps1smaaz]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:ps1smaaz]sometime[/i:ps1smaaz] in the near future... Let me get back to this :wink:[/quote:ps1smaaz] :o Sorry, Scott, that's my first reaction to reading this. I agree with you about everything said above, And Time Warner having a meeting to discuss what we did? Pardon the language, but Holy Shit! :o Never knew they paid that close of tabs to what we do over there. It'll be interesting to see if anything came of that meeting, but wow, that's a real ego-booster, yes? :D And to get back to the subject - if you ever want/need any promotional materials publicized on wotmania, be sure to email me - I'll get it done ASAP. Even the little things, such as the cover art and the release dates, those will be big items. And of course we'd love even a copy of the synopsis after the book goes to the final editing rounds. view post


posted 08 Jul 2005, 23:07 in Author Q & AExcellent pointers to promote TTT by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

How evil of you, Scott, posting this as I was taking my final exam in Spanish! :o Only just now am getting around to visiting the sites again and let's just say I copy/pasted your bit for the denizens of wotmania to enjoy! :D And so...how many more months do I have to wait before I get to read a copy of TTT? It'd be a nice early birthday present if you can tell me it's before Christmas 2005 *hint, hint* :p view post


posted 12 Jul 2005, 07:07 in Author Q & AExcellent pointers to promote TTT by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":1oc3r9hw]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:[/quote:1oc3r9hw] Whoohoo! Or is that whoo hoo? ;) Either way, great to know and I [i:1oc3r9hw]certainly[/i:1oc3r9hw] am looking forward to October then! :D Thanks a million, Scott! (and let's hope that translates into sales figures approaching that!) view post


posted 10 Aug 2005, 16:08 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":1s5zc7e0][quote:1s5zc7e0]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:1s5zc7e0] 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.[/quote:1s5zc7e0] Which of course begs the pseudoFreudian question of: "Did you plan that color scheme to honor the homeland of Nietzsche?" :P Oh, and hi. ;) view post


posted 10 Aug 2005, 16:08 in Author Q & ACnaiur's prowess by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":1huybkls]With Cnaiur, the question has to be, [i:1huybkls]what do you mean by defeat?[/i:1huybkls] 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.[/quote:1huybkls] Potential plot/character spoiler there, Scott? ;) Sorry, just in a playful mood today, as it's the first time in months that I've had two free days to myself! But boy is next month gonna be a killer - 6 classes AND working 40+ hours a week! :( But maybe I should just adopt Cnaiür's attitude, minus his possible insanity, about all this? ;) view post


posted 10 Aug 2005, 17:08 in Author Q & ACnaiur's prowess by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":dnx9e5d4]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:[/quote:dnx9e5d4] Ha! :P And yeah, let's forget about those grad school days...I'm really dreading working for DCS in a couple of years AND working toward my Master of Social Work degree. :cry: view post


posted 10 Aug 2005, 17:08 in Author Q & AThis time I got a question... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Just as long as you're not whistling the Horst Wessel Lied, you should be (relatively) okay, Scott ;) And great news about the ARCs! Looking forward to it! :D view post


posted 12 Oct 2005, 23:10 in Author Q & AAdvanced Reader Copies? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Hrmm....soo...because I'm curiouser and curiouser now ;) Have the ARCs arrived yet? Because you know I'm starting to really, really want to get my copy! Any ETA for them, Scott? view post


posted 17 Oct 2005, 00:10 in Author Q & ACnaiur's prowess by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":3ubw64rl]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:[/quote:3ubw64rl] Not only that, but you are so twisted that over at SFF World you had to tease both me and Rob B. about the imminent arrival of the ARCs - almost two weeks later, I'm STILL searching my mailbox in vain! You're mean and baby Jesus is probably crying right about now! Or something... ;) view post


posted 18 Oct 2005, 17:10 in Author Q & ACishaurim magic essentially anagogic?? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

If there isn't, I'll hang you out to dry! :twisted: Or maybe not... :p view post


Scott, I'd appreciate your take on this posted 18 Oct 2005, 17:10 in Author Q & AScott, I'd appreciate your take on this by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I just recently updated the OF Blog with a post regarding emotional connections readers have with events and how it seems to me, based on reactions I've read elsewhere in addition to my own experiences, that fantasy and sci-fi works [i:z6ql4ypl]in general[/i:z6ql4ypl] do not pack that same 'emotional punch to the junk' that might occur during a 'real-life' event or after reading a 'realistic' novel. Thoughts/counterpoints to any of this? Here's the link, before I forget: http://ofblog.blogspot.com/2005/10/wond ... punch.html view post


posted 18 Oct 2005, 17:10 in Author Q & ACunuroi/Inchoroi numbers by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Such as how hot are the Nonmen women? ;) view post


posted 19 Oct 2005, 21:10 in Author Q & AAdvanced Reader Copies? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":xzrap6zd]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.[/quote:xzrap6zd] I know...but hey, I can overlook that and still give a detailed thematic review of the book without spoiling the plot, right? ;) *wonders if that'll help get the ARC here quicker* :P view post


posted 19 Oct 2005, 22:10 in Author Q & AZarathustra by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":1otyq83o]You'll have to tell me what you think after TTT, Lucimay! :twisted:[/quote:1otyq83o] Makes me wonder if I've made the correct choice in having Cnaiür as a secondary SN over at wotmania, Scott ;) view post


posted 19 Oct 2005, 22:10 in Tour and Signing InformationMADISON, WI by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

While sadly I can't make it (school and lack of work, of course ;)), I'm curious - have you made a 'sell' yet for Neuropath? The more you say about it, depressing as it might be, the more curious I am about it. view post


posted 20 Oct 2005, 21:10 in Author Q & ACishaurim magic essentially anagogic?? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

You're Canadian. You drink beer in copious amounts. No way in hell that you're 'dry' ;) view post


posted 20 Oct 2005, 21:10 in Tour and Signing InformationMADISON, WI by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Which means...you've been procrastinating again, haven't you? ;) Just teasing - I really am curious about the premise of the book. You've only been talking about it in passing for 16 months or so for me at least! :P view post


posted 20 Oct 2005, 21:10 in Author Q & ANew Favourite Review Quip by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

*winces* Do you [i:30ojnt52]have[/i:30ojnt52] to mention that 'B' word here? It's bad enough being a Leftie in the South, but that's a four-letter word of badness there...blech! :evil: view post


posted 21 Oct 2005, 20:10 in Author Q & ANew Favourite Review Quip by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Trust me, as soon as I can, I will. Lived near Miami for two years before being forced by money/job issues to move back to my native Middle Tennessee. Once I finish this coursework on social work and complete (hopefully, if I get accepted into the program) a two-year work-study agreement, plans are for me to either move back to South Florida or (preferably) to Latin America to do a combination of international child welfare and teach English. Which of course might make it more difficult for Scott to send me ARCs ;) view post


posted 08 Nov 2005, 22:11 in Author Q & AThe Thousandfold Thought - Paperback? Large print? Hard... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

If not in the photos they choose for their authors' ARC editions ;) view post


posted 09 Nov 2005, 05:11 in Author Q & AQuestion! re: Advance Reader Copy by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Well, that link didn't say anything about it being an ARC. As far as I know, only Rob Beford over at SFF World and myself have been sent ARCs by Scott, but I could be mistaken about that. I'll just wait and see what Scott has to say. view post


posted 09 Nov 2005, 14:11 in Author Q & AThe Thousandfold Thought - Paperback? Large print? Hard... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Sure, sure...'Slosh' ;) view post


posted 10 Nov 2005, 21:11 in Author Q & AThe Thousandfold Thought - Paperback? Large print? Hard... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Don't tempt me. I do have a scanner and I know how to use it :twisted: view post


posted 11 Nov 2005, 14:11 in Author Q & AThe Thousandfold Thought - Paperback? Large print? Hard... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

You're [i:100b3a87]still[/i:100b3a87] tempting me, Scott... ;) Threats never really seem to work well against me, but appeals to my compassionate side might... ...that and of course the contracted firstborn being delivered as promised ;) view post


posted 16 Nov 2005, 17:11 in Author Q & AKhellus and transhumanism by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":1lju5yeb]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.[/quote:1lju5yeb] So, when exactly will I get a chance to read NP? ;) view post


posted 20 Nov 2005, 02:11 in Author Q & AThe Thousandfold Thought - Paperback? Large print? Hard... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Yeah, Overlook (US edition) produces the hardcover editions. Got one of those (TDTCB), one Penguin Canada tradepack (TWP) and one PC ARC (TTT) - I think my collection would drive all of the anal-retentive "gotta have the same cover art/format" folk crazy :twisted: But I'm holding out for the collaborative drunken effort no doubt forthcoming called "Slosh the Barbarian", with the cover art featuring a guy looking eerily like an Air Supply groupie on the front ;) Think of the reviews it would get! :D view post


posted 20 Nov 2005, 02:11 in Author Q & ANot a question, just congratulations! by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Cu'jara Cinmoi":n68x2r32]Well, I [i:n68x2r32]feel[/i:n68x2r32] like a virgin...[/quote:n68x2r32] And the hits just [i:n68x2r32]keep[/i:n68x2r32] on coming... No pun intended there ;) view post


posted 03 Dec 2005, 05:12 in Author Q & AThe Motivation of a Dunyain by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Scott, you need to gain about 70-100 lbs., grow a beard, and start carrying around a pimp cane - THEN you can say RAFO and be credible doing so :P But let's practice you saying this: Does Cnaiür 'get any' in TTT? ;) view post


posted 11 Dec 2005, 04:12 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWas Cnauir gay? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

*whistles innocently* More in TTT. view post


posted 11 Dec 2005, 04:12 in Author Q & APrince of Nothing gone in 40 years by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

So I should expect an illustrated 'children's' edition of PoN, with Cnaiür 'cuddling' a wench like they show in those children's Bibles? ;) view post


posted 14 Dec 2005, 06:12 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWas Cnauir gay? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Fine, because it's already been said here by another that's read TTT: Yes, Cnaiür and Moënghus were lovers. It's [i:qo4l8ai0]quite[/i:qo4l8ai0] explicit before the book is over that the two fucked each other. The only uncertainity is whether or not Cnaiür screwed other men. Then again that Rob Halford-esque moniker of Breaker of Horses and Men kinda has a different meaning now, huh? ;) But on a much more serious point - how does Cnaiür identify himself? While sexual identity is important, especially in this time and age, I seriously doubt it's THE defining issue of what cosntitutes a person. Too bad Scott's on vacation - it'd be fun to see what his take would be on this, because I can't help but think of how Michel Foucault defined himself in relation to his homosexual relations. view post


posted 14 Dec 2005, 22:12 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWas Cnauir gay? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I can't help but wonder if it's 'poor form' to basically cite things from the synopsis, considering that just only sums up the first two books ;) Make of that statement what you will - as it applies to something else that's been argued quite fiercely around here for over a year. :twisted: view post


posted 15 Dec 2005, 19:12 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWas Cnauir gay? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I believe the 'homophobe' part deals with the person who posted this - just go to the TWP section and see a post he made there recently. And Scott and his wife will just [i:1jxfd86e]love[/i:1jxfd86e] to learn that he's now been labelled as 'gay' by this one person that seems to have a gay fixation. :roll: view post


posted 21 Dec 2005, 07:12 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWas Cnauir gay? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Or he's a slighly more deranged version of Achilles. I seem to recall having a discussion on this issue with Scott when I first interviewed him in June 2004. I'll have to consult my notes on this. view post


posted 21 Dec 2005, 20:12 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWas Cnauir gay? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Here is an excerpt from the interview that I did with Scott in June 2004 at [url:3avjtrqp]http://www.wotmania.net/fantasymessageboardshowmessage.asp?MessageID=98054[/url:3avjtrqp]: [b:3avjtrqp]As I was reading this, I couldn't help but think that the Scylvendi chieftain, Cnaiür, would fit excellently as a badass who is a badass not because he resembles other badasses of his time and place, but even more so because he feels compelled to break with tradition to forge his own path. Did you have in mind this exploding of the badass character myth when you created Cnaiür?[/b:3avjtrqp] I'm glad you've mentioned Cnaiür. He is indeed the battleground for this question. I remember reading somewhere that 19th Century literary scholars had a difficult time dealing with Homer's Achilles, primarily because of the way he weeps to his mother after Agamemnon seizes his concubine. Here's Achilles, the most martial of all men, crying like a baby... How could this be? But this is the thing: our present concept of what it means to be a 'man' is largely a historical artefact - and a very troubling one at that. Think of all the terms we use to impeach someone's manliness: pansy, bitch, queer, fag, girly-boy, pommy pufter, and so on. Almost all of them are accusations of femininity, which would suggest that the worst thing for a man to be is... a woman! Which is to say, soft, weak, passive, and emotional... Huh? This, I think, is an absurd and destructive way for men to value themselves. Strength is found by owning and understanding one's weaknesses, not by displacing and denying them. Think of all the supposed badass warriors out there, checking people in at hotels, clearing tables, posturing in front of mirrors, bragging to sceptical significant others about how lucky so-and-so is because... We live in strange times. view post


posted 30 Dec 2005, 17:12 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow listening to... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Bob Marley - [i:8w8md18b]Uprising[/i:8w8md18b] - This is a good album. Sadly, Bob died of cancer a year after this was released. view post


posted 01 Jan 2006, 01:01 in The Thousandfold ThoughtWas Cnauir gay? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Translation: You ain't gay :P view post


posted 01 Jan 2006, 02:01 in Author Q & AYou should be afraid... very, very, afraid. by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I'll go a step further and note that in most high schools (especially the public ones), the [i:2vv6u4wv]last[/i:2vv6u4wv] thing on the districts' minds is educating the students to be critical thinkers. When the focus is on scores on 'objective' tests, as the bacon is on the line in terms of funding, the last thing to be looked at is the development of true critical thinking skills, because that detracts from the time spent preparing students for the lower-functioning tests that demand little more than rudimentary processing/reasoning skills. And to think I almost got my first year as a teacher for doing a simple thing in a government/civics class. I noted that at one point, the 8th Amendment to the US Constitution was used to rule that capital punishment was a cruel and unusual punishment as it was then being carried out. I then said I was against it. Let's just say for an hour, there were students that were up in arms that I opposed capital punishment, but everytime I politely asked them to explain [i:2vv6u4wv]why[/i:2vv6u4wv] they were opposed, they couldn't answer with more than 'it's wrong that criminals get to stay in nice prisons and have exercise equipment and etc.' So I pressed them a bit. Nada. Sighing, I pointed out briefly a few pros and cons to that and concluded the session. A few told me in private later that they realized there were other viewpoints and that I had made them think, but there were others that later went on to complain to my bosses about what I had done. :roll: Sometimes, the System just drains the brightest of any hope. view post


2006 wotmania OF Awards (and Scott's up for an award or two) posted 02 Jan 2006, 07:01 in Interviews and Reviews2006 wotmania OF Awards (and Scott's up for an award or two) by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Sorry for only the link, but the awards themselves are up (at least my part) in 10 different subthreads, to create more suspense for the entire thing. Anyways, just go here: [url:1lzm9m0w]http://www.wotmania.net/fantasymessageboardshowmessage.asp?MessageID=146163[/url:1lzm9m0w] view post


posted 02 Jan 2006, 07:01 in The Thousandfold ThoughtHave you ordered your TTT yet? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Nope! But that's because I received the ARC for TTT back in October :D view post


posted 16 Jan 2006, 18:01 in The Thousandfold ThoughtThousandfold Thought discussion *Spoilers* by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I was much more interested in the very final scene and later, when I have the time, I'm going to ask Scott about another thematic element I saw there. Something tells me the doubt Akka has been harboring throughout the books might just play an important role in the future series. view post


posted 26 Jan 2006, 19:01 in Author Q & ACorrespondences by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

And don't forget about those strands of Nietzsche that seemed to be floating about ;) view post


posted 26 Jan 2006, 19:01 in Tour and Signing InformationAny tour news? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Like "eat my dust, hack!"? ;) I laughed when I heard about that one! Although you weren't too cheesy when you signed my TDTCB! Alas, TTT was not signed, breaking it at two...but each of the three looks different than the rest - Overlook Hardcover, Penguin tradeback, Penguin ARC - does that mean I can have a loose-leaf [i:3nv09nx5]Neuropath[/i:3nv09nx5] next year? :P view post


posted 30 Jan 2006, 18:01 in The Thousandfold ThoughtDELETED by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

100+ pages (I'm basing this off of the ARC edition I received months ago) and it isn't [i:3epv2q4j]extensive[/i:3epv2q4j] enough? Well, as to the alphabet, who knows, although I suspect that wasn't topping the list of things Scott wanted to include in the appendices and as for a site thing, well...you'd either have to ask Scott or the webmasters here, Wil and Sovin. view post


posted 07 Feb 2006, 23:02 in Author Q & ACnaiur (spoilers for TTT) by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

In other words, in his own way, Cnaiür had the Frodo ending? ;) view post


posted 28 Feb 2006, 19:02 in Author Q & ABack-er or Bake-er? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

What I really want to know is how Scott pronounces these words: potato tomato either nuclear And of course... about :P view post


posted 14 Mar 2006, 07:03 in Tour and Signing InformationThe Tour Dust Settles... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Details! I want details of this scrappage! *notes that email would be perfect for this, now that his DSL is working again* ;) view post


posted 15 Mar 2006, 17:03 in Author Q & ABack-er or Bake-er? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

You wound me to the heart, Scott! But I should be honored of sorts, I suppose. After all, how many authors tell their fans to go 'screw themselves' in a public forum? :P *ponders setting up a [i:35pcovlh]Bakker is Our Dûnyain[/i:35pcovlh] website in revenge* ;) view post


posted 02 Jun 2006, 23:06 in Author Q & AWhat happened to Scott? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

He's still alive and busy preparing to make some people sweat at night and to have horrid nightmares, apparently ;) He sent me an email a couple of weeks ago about how he had just finished polishing off a new draft of NP, which is currently being shopped around, and that he was about to be really busy with the first AE book. But I imagine we'll hear from him sooner rather than later. I believe he's attending a few conventions later this year, so I guess others can see him then and try to drink him under the table in hopes of forcing him to reveal more plans? ;) view post


posted 03 Jun 2006, 03:06 in Author Q & AWhat happened to Scott? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Of course it's possible - it's called [i:3ocoljwq]sipping[/i:3ocoljwq] while he's [i:3ocoljwq]chugging[/i:3ocoljwq]. :twisted: view post


posted 13 Jun 2006, 21:06 in Literature DiscussionTerry Goodkind engages in rape fantasy? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

It's very surreal seeing a post I started two years ago being revived in such a manner. Very surreal indeed. But time to have a bit of 'fun' with this, I suppose... The first rule of the Bon Ton Society is that you don't mention your money. It could be 10 million dollars or 10 million 1923 Reichmarks for all I care, but the money means nothing. Hell, [i:3gbx4qjq]Titanic[/i:3gbx4qjq] made over a billion dollars worldwide, yet who goes around praising [i:3gbx4qjq]that[/i:3gbx4qjq]? So there's a lot of people who enjoy Goodkind's stuff. Fine. There's millions more that enjoy Scheiße porn. More power to them. Scratch the surface deep enough and there are fans of furry bondage, child beating/rape, and Satanism, just to name a few. But people enjoy these activities. Others do not. Cajoling is a time-honored way of curbing certain behaviors. Some like to join in, others hate it. Some cheer for the guys in the white hats, others for those in black. Defending someone is okay in certain situations, strange to bad in others. So what if people mock and deride Goodkind? I mock and deride N'Sync and the Backdoor(err, Backstreet) Boys. But I don't see fanatics of theirs logging on to multiple sites just to argue with them. At a certain point, just shrug and [b:3gbx4qjq]let it go[/b:3gbx4qjq]. So what if people get their jollies from ridiculing the writing and ideas of Goodkind? How does that affect [i:3gbx4qjq]you[/i:3gbx4qjq], how does it keep [i:3gbx4qjq]you[/i:3gbx4qjq] from enjoying his works? All this crossboard posting does is paint a big target on your back, allowing for the derisive people to go 'oh look, mystar is over at [so-and-so], what a moron!'. What's next? Are you going to come to other sites that you've yet to post at, so you can defend Goodkind/attack the mockers? Why not head to wotmania? I mean I'm an Admin there for its Other Fantasy section and I make the occasional post about the statements Goodkind has made. Or why not head to the Other Authors section of Neil Gaiman's official site, because some there in the past have made comments about Goodkind's work? I mean, you managed to come here because of [i:3gbx4qjq]one[/i:3gbx4qjq] person, and Bakker isn't as much (yet) of a household name as a Robert Jordan or Neil Gaiman. Why go to such trouble? Just let the mockers have their fun and you have yours over at your site. Maybe the twain don't need to meet. It probably would be for the best that way. view post


posted 14 Jun 2006, 05:06 in Literature DiscussionTerry Goodkind engages in rape fantasy? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Aww...you know my name! How sweet! :P As for the rest, I post here about a wide variety of things. I post at Westeros over many other things, mostly sports-related these days. I even post ECW wrestling reviews on occasion. Goodkind doesn't occupy my time. I post as I please. But I believe you were missing my point - I know some people have felt better reading Goodkind. More power to them. I still personally find his fondness for Objectivism for it to be repugnant, but that's just me. I don't lose sweat over it. As for the dishing/taking it out, I shrug at it. Those who often counter with such things often (not always, but often) have other issues when they have to compare themselves to others. It is a weakness of a great many of us. But instead of sniping back and forth, I have a better idea, if you're game. Since you claim to be standing up for Goodkind and against those who are mocking him, I invite you to register over at wotmania and to post a defense post over at our Other Fantasy section. Only request would be no ad hominems or references to specific people, just a statement as to why Goodkind might need to be re-evaluated. I won't mock, edit, delete, close the thread or anything if it stays civil. I won't even reply, just only will allow a dialogue between you and others, if you're game. The ad hominems above to me I'll just ignore, as I believe they were spoken more out of a general irritation rather than in reaction to sustained contact between the two of us. I don't know you, you don't know me. Fair enough. I just simply disagree quite strongly with the thrust behind Goodkind's ideology and I will state it, maybe even in occasional derisive terms, just as you and others were derisive in your disagreements with Ilya's letter last year about Goodkind's comments regarding Canada ;) But the offer stands on the post. view post


posted 14 Jun 2006, 19:06 in Literature DiscussionTerry Goodkind engages in rape fantasy? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="mystar":3puu3cey] I think not. BUT you are welcome to come to .net, I've no illusions as to the kind of creature exist there and their lack of character in being civil or allowing a civil discussion. BUT why I know you will refuse my request is that you have just proven my point. You have just shown yourself incapable of a civil discussion with out resorting to petty "ad-hominems" and adding "derisive” flames. On my board, we have respect and do not allow such behavior, just as you would not allow such behavior out of the children you allegedly work with. The point being, I do not serve a double standard. We actually require selfrestraint and respect. Something you appear not to be familure with.[/quote:3puu3cey] Why should I come to a forum of fans when I'm not a fan of the guy's work? To say that I find his ideology repugnant, his writing stilted and spotty, his characters more like archetypes than anything truly resembling flesh-and-blood people? That's quite a bit different from being offered the opportunity to state a defense to those who are skeptical AND those who are fans of his works (we do have those over there at wotmania), or if defense is too maligned of a word, then a persuasive piece as to why Goodkind is being maligned by people, including myself. I have no problems with staying out and letting you post your piece and see if a dialogue can be created. I don't need people agreeing with me, nor do I need them disagreeing with me. I do both with close friends of mine and the dialogue improves matters more than long-distance snipage. But if given an adequate reason to post at your site, I might do it, even if some might want to rip into my arguments. That's okay. I've walked into worse situations before. But I just need an explanation as to why I should post something negative about the author at a fansite. I choose to leave fans their respectful love of their author because it is not the time nor place to attack. And as for respect, it may or may not surprise you to know that when I heard about Goodkind's recent surgery that I made a post about it that was quite respectful, as my mother had a similar surgery 3 years ago. I believe my words were along the lines of regardless if I dislike the author's ideas or writing, I do not wish this on anyone and that a speedy recovery would be made. So there is some respect for the guy from me, believe it or not. I just think his ideas are repugnant, at least the ones expressed in the seven books of his that I did read before I decided that the combination of (to me, needless to say) poor writing/characterizations and Objectivist-influenced ideas was not the sort of tale I wanted to read any further. Tastes vary and we'll just have to disagree on this point (and some others)., that's all. view post


posted 14 Jun 2006, 21:06 in Off-Topic DiscussionFirst Scott, then the rest of us... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Bah, I'm too busy trying to recruit Kellhus to be on my Fantasy Football/Soccer Team. ;) view post


posted 14 Jun 2006, 22:06 in Off-Topic DiscussionThe Hangover Whinge: Why oh Why? + A Misery Poll by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I've yet to have a hangover from any liquor, then again I've yet to try the dreaded Tequila. So...maybe just switch to triple-strength mojitos or Cuba Libres for a while? ;) view post


posted 14 Jun 2006, 22:06 in Off-Topic DiscussionIts not just Scott its the ancient boarders to by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Xray the Enforcer":rv18hvg3]I've had an Aldarion sighting...I think. He was cheering on the US footy team and crying into his vodka after their loss. He'll take is revenge on Argentina once he arrives in B.A. in 2013. Traveling by pack-llama is slow going.[/quote:rv18hvg3] You're SO gonna pay for that, Polska Shrimp! I'll probably arrive for a visit there in July 2007 if I'm lucky, then 2008 if I'm not. But I'm thinking of walking the entire way - only a year or so travel to avoid the Yanomano, right? ;) view post


posted 14 Jun 2006, 22:06 in Off-Topic DiscussionIts not just Scott its the ancient boarders to by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Oh, and for the others - I've been busy over at wotmania, Westeros, and a few other places, but I do look in once in a while. Perhaps I'll have a bit more time for a little bit...no thanks to seeing a strange Email notification of a post I made almost two years ago :P view post


posted 14 Jun 2006, 22:06 in Off-Topic DiscussionJust wrong, I tell you. by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Nothing wrong with children learning how about 'seed planting' Perfectly innocent activity, yes? ;) view post


posted 14 Jun 2006, 22:06 in Off-Topic DiscussionASOIAF board names by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Oh, I post there quite a bit more now than I used to. Different SN here though compared to my wotmania/Westeros SN of Dylanfanatic. I like this one, though...makes me want to get a princess/queen pregnant and then sail the seas of Middle-Earth ;) view post


posted 14 Jun 2006, 22:06 in Off-Topic DiscussionWhere in the world is R. Scott Bakker? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

*whistles innocently* Yeah, NP is quite a bit different from PoN in style, flow, setting, etc. But it is even more difficult to read without reacting to it. Sorry, that's all I can say about it. I probably shouldn't even say that I've seen a draft of it, but I know I'm not to reveal anything about the plot. I do hope it's published as a novel and optioned at least as a film. It certainly would make for a lot of talk. view post


posted 15 Jun 2006, 01:06 in Off-Topic DiscussionThe Hangover Whinge: Why oh Why? + A Misery Poll by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Xray the Enforcer":3f0jnyu1]I'll go back to a TRUSTED liquor, namely sweet, sweet gin. And believe me, Aldarion, you come drinking with the Xs in NYC, we will make you rue the day you were born at least once during the trip. :twisted: Oddly, I have a desire to watch Ladyhawk now. The shame![/quote:3f0jnyu1] There's a slim chance that I might be up that way in the next few months - no guarantees, though. Depends on a female friend of mine and her travel plans, not to mention what job(s) I have by then. But one of these days, I'll drink...slowly...to 'save myself' ;) view post


posted 15 Jun 2006, 05:06 in Literature DiscussionTerry Goodkind engages in rape fantasy? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

First off, I could post there if I had more of a motivation than to state at yet another forum what barely occupies my time elsewhere. Most of my free time these days is spent on matters unrelated to Goodkind and quite frankly, if you hadn't gotten involved, I probably would have stopped paying attention altogether weeks, if not months ago. But sadly, I'm bored enough that I'm drawn to the mudslinging on both ends, from others and from yourself. Bad enough that I bothered to reply much...but then again, I'm waiting for Dan Simmons' fans to start showing up on my virtual door knocking because I slagged him for what he wrote in his last book and in two 'messages' to the fans. But that's an aside, of course. As I said elsewhere before, I've seen snipage from you and from certain others at your site. Nothing worse than those you complain about do, and all really (all of this, not your side or 'my' side or the side of the Great Pumpkin) is just as meaningful as chickenshit. I feel no need to defend my opinion on the matter - I do not like the opinions expressed by the author. Simple as that. You can copy-paste it, you can discuss it, but that would be almost word-for-word what I would say in such a hypothetical situation. I just don't usually piss in other's drinking water, which is why I keep my opinions on certain authors in forums not devoted to their work. The fans of those authors tend not to like people trolling for a negative reaction to negative comments on their forums. But to go to other forums to argue and to imply things about others when you don't know them outside of the few comments you've read...what's the point? You might have missed it above, but I did agree implicitly (and I'll state it explicitly here) that Goodkind's series has had a positive impact on many. You take umbrage about the parodying and the mockery, but wouldn't it be argued by some that by going through such efforts, it could be seen as being a bit insecure as well? All of us have our insecure moments and you might even argue that the parodying reflects some of that, but again, the ultimate result of your comments has been to encourage pages more of sarcasm on a few sites. I would rather that it all be...dropped. Because frankly, it gets boring after a while. And I know some of the mockery is on the level of telling Retard Jokes, but when they get a reaction...some enjoy continuing on with it. So why feed the flames? And as for what you were referring to in regards to that 'interview'...you mean [u:3uja5xzh][url=http://www.wotmania.net/fantasymessageboardshowmessage.asp?MessageID=156421:3uja5xzh]The April Fools' Day post[/url:3uja5xzh]?[/u:3uja5xzh] Yes, I parodied some of the Goodkind interviews that others had started to discuss. I don't apologize one bit for it. Instead of being full of piss and vinegar, I expressed my disliking for his perceived attitude (and I read quite a few of his interviews in whole, so don't bother with the argument that you've made elsewhere of him being quoted out of turn) by using humor. Nothing different than what a Letterman or a Leno does, nor what satirists have done for centuries. If you disliked it, sorry, then it wasn't meant for you. As for GioG...maybe it hits a bit close to home. Maybe it is harsh at times toward those who don't know how to write well. But it serves a function of letting off negative energy in a way that brings laughter rather than invectives toward others. It's a common reaction and most people do it in groups to relieve group tensions. Again, when I do something of such a nature, I don't limit myself to one group. I've teased the fanatical WoT fans at wotmania as well, with the epiphet of WoTHeads. A few who didn't know me well took offense, until increased interaction revealed that it was more of a tease, as I tease and parody and playfully mock just about everything around me, not out of bitterness or hatred, but as a way to avoid those feelings. It's better to laugh over a frustrating task than to break out in anger, as long as that laughter serves to make the task at hand a more managable one. Laugh WITH us or AGAINST us - do parodies, or ignore the harsh comments, or show by actions rather than by words why the other side might be mistaken. Laughter does much more good than bitterness. And as for the final bit, yes, you might be a bit wary, but my pointed and vehement disliking for Goodkind's ideas and writings does not equate to the wishing of suffering on him or on any. I just merely wish his writing would be better and that he'd move away from an adherence to Objectivist ideals, as I believe those are harmful to the working of a society as a whole. Nothing more, nothing less. view post


posted 15 Jun 2006, 05:06 in Author Q & ATTT paperback? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Best best is probably toward Christmas time - the US tradeback of TWP didn't come out until October or so and it was released in January 2005 in the US, so probably October-November 2006 for the TTT tradeback. As for the regular-sized paperback, no rights have been sold on that, so you'd have to order from Canada or the UK for those, again likely months from now. view post


posted 15 Jun 2006, 20:06 in Literature DiscussionTerry Goodkind engages in rape fantasy? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Umm...no. I don't kiss dudes. Not even when I've been drinking. :P view post


posted 15 Jun 2006, 22:06 in Literature DiscussionTerry Goodkind engages in rape fantasy? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Yeah, I'm not for half-measures. Whether it's pre-op or post-op, I expect more than just tongue jousting. I want a deep, [i:1e1xhqb0]meaningful[/i:1e1xhqb0] connection that's more than just the heaving of loins. I want a family, dammit! Not a makeout session with a dude that probably will be a floozy and tongue an aardvark! Sheesh, even sluts like me have standards! :P view post


posted 15 Jun 2006, 23:06 in Literature DiscussionTerry Goodkind engages in rape fantasy? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[size=34:1i7sszs9]FIVE! It takes FIVE!, not FOUR![/size:1i7sszs9] Urmm...yeah :oops: view post


posted 16 Jun 2006, 00:06 in Literature DiscussionTerry Goodkind engages in rape fantasy? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Of course! Strong...and shiny! :wink: view post


posted 16 Jun 2006, 01:06 in Literature DiscussionTerry Goodkind engages in rape fantasy? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Well, I'd say at least three of us here have posted there ;) view post


posted 16 Jun 2006, 02:06 in Literature DiscussionTerry Goodkind engages in rape fantasy? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Bah, my livver has been coddled enough. I want the shirt with the skull drinking JD that says "Liver evil....must....punish....it!" view post


posted 17 Jun 2006, 00:06 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I enjoyed Vennis. As for what I'm reading, alternating between five books now: Mario Vargas Llosa, [i:36cc25jg]La fiesta del Chivo[/i:36cc25jg] Xavier Velasco, [i:36cc25jg]El materialismo histérico[/i:36cc25jg] Torquato Tasso, [i:36cc25jg]Jerusalem Delivered[/i:36cc25jg] St. Augustine, [i:36cc25jg]Confessions[/i:36cc25jg]; [i:36cc25jg]City of God[/i:36cc25jg] view post


posted 17 Jun 2006, 01:06 in Tour and Signing InformationReadercon by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Wouldn't that be like matter and antimatter colliding? :P view post


posted 17 Jun 2006, 17:06 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Well, the book-reading is in-between the matches, ya know ;) view post


posted 17 Jun 2006, 17:06 in Tour and Signing InformationReadercon by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I'll settle for photos, as apparently I'll be working as of the first week or so of July :D view post


posted 17 Jun 2006, 23:06 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I multitask well, no? view post


posted 18 Jun 2006, 19:06 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

[quote="Xray the Enforcer":vkgcmfud]I believe I would have to poll the women to get a good answer for that. :P[/quote:vkgcmfud] Yeah, well...do you speak español o srpski? :P view post


posted 18 Jun 2006, 22:06 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

That line is SO 80s...like spandex, Aquanet, and fishnet stockings with glitter paint :P view post


posted 19 Jun 2006, 21:06 in Literature DiscussionFantasy by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

*bumps, to see what newcomers have to say about Scott's views here* :P view post


posted 21 Jun 2006, 20:06 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

No need to bring age into this, considering who was born first and all ;) view post


posted 23 Jun 2006, 17:06 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

While in every moment of ecstasy, I die the little death? ;) As for reading (to get this back on-topic ;)), I just started the omnibus collection by M. John Harrison, [i:3vcm15yg]Viriconium[/i:3vcm15yg] and Roberto Bolaño's [i:3vcm15yg]Los detectives salvajes[/i:3vcm15yg] (re-read). view post


posted 23 Jun 2006, 21:06 in Off-Topic DiscussionNow Reading... by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Freudian slippage there about crap? :P Just teasing - I imagine the Link will win it. Her worst is only 'merely very good', it seems. view post


posted 27 Dec 2006, 06:12 in Literature DiscussionTerry Goodkind engages in rape fantasy? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

That's [i:137h5r3r]good[/i:137h5r3r] news? :cry: view post


posted 27 Dec 2006, 06:12 in Off-Topic DiscussionOther forums frequented by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I help run wotmania's Other Fantasy section (when the webmaster isn't neglecting to make sure the server isn't on the fritz, that is ;)). Outside of that, I post at these places, in descending order of frequency: Westeros World's End (official Gaiman MB) This site SFF World Fantasy Bookspot Malazan Empire And I've made a post or two at Dragonmount and a couple other places over the years. Oh, and I co-operate the Blog in my sig link. Get a few freebies...and I'm one of the fortunate few to have read a complete draft of [i:27izxz68]Neuropath[/i:27izxz68]. You may hate me now :twisted: view post


posted 27 Dec 2006, 06:12 in Off-Topic DiscussionScott Bakker by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I haven't had the time myself for emails the past three months due to the two new jobs I have (teaching and part-time direct care/counselor's asst. at a residential treatment facility for adolescents), but last I heard, Scott's just being a hermit until he's finished with the first AE book and that Neuropath is still being shopped around as a combo book/movie, with some encouraging nibbles from both New York and Hollywood. But that's about all I can say on that - I'll try to remember to email him during my holiday break. view post


posted 27 Dec 2006, 21:12 in Off-Topic DiscussionScott Bakker by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

OK, I sent an email, but most of that was about this awards thingy Scott's up for at wotmania as well as talking about some personal life stuff. But I did ask, so it'll be wait and see if/when there's a response. view post


posted 04 May 2007, 01:05 in Off-Topic DiscussionOther forums frequented by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I wonder if that hate is still current or if it's expired like rotting meat... view post


posted 05 May 2007, 04:05 in Off-Topic DiscussionOther forums frequented by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I guess I need to email Scott (and a couple other authors, as I've been very slack due to the school year teaching and so forth!), but I'll see what I can do. I think there's going to be a new interview by him and Pat of Pat's Fantasy Hotlist later this month, so that might be something to await with eager anticipation! As for the renewed hatred...just remember, Jesus Forgives...even [b:3vrb41b2][url=http://bigpicture.typepad.com/writing/images/farting_preacher_4.jpg:3vrb41b2]this[/url:3vrb41b2][/b:3vrb41b2] ;) view post


posted 11 Apr 2008, 00:04 in The Great Ordeal [supposed]On the progress of the new novel by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

It's been ages since I've posted here, although I guess Scott and I talking still can attract some attention :P It'll be nice to re-read NP in print form shortly, as the ARCs for the Penguin Canada edition ought to be arriving soon. view post


posted 11 Apr 2008, 01:04 in The Great Ordeal [supposed]On the progress of the new novel by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Well, I received an electronic draft of it back in Feb. 2006, well before Orion picked it up for the UK (and then Penguin for Canada and Tor for the US markets), so does that mean you can hate me even further? :P Besides, I likely would have received an ARC anyways since I do receive quite a few now for review purposes on a few sites. view post


posted 11 Apr 2008, 01:04 in The Great Ordeal [supposed]On the progress of the new novel by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I will not rest until I can persuade Scott and his wife to name their firstborn child (if male) after me. Only then shall your hatred of me be complete. :twisted: view post


posted 12 Apr 2008, 16:04 in The Great Ordeal [supposed]On the progress of the new novel by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

No, because I replaced computers a year ago after the old one blew up. That's why I haven't re-read it since Feb. 2006. I'll be receiving a print galley in the next few weeks though from Penguin, depending on when Scott gave them my mailing address. view post


Re: Cnaiur-is he dead? posted 15 Nov 2008, 20:11 in The Great Ordeal [supposed]Cnaiur-is he dead? by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

Well, according to the "What has come before..." part in TJE... (highlight, in case some complain about the "spoilers" from the synopsis to TJE) [color=#FFFFFF:2cnoxaab]...But he [Kellhus] had made one mistake. He had allow Cnaiür urs Skiötha, a Scylvendi chieftain who had accompanied him on his trek to the Three Seas, to learn too much of his true nature. Before his death, the barbarian revealed these truths to Drusas Achamian...[/color:2cnoxaab] view post


Re: The Judging Eye posted 15 Nov 2008, 21:11 in The Judging EyeThe Judging Eye by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

I'm a little over 2/3 into TJE now and I don't know if I really can agree with Pat's assessment of the book's strengths. If anything, it's a [i:1daos0m7]deeper[/i:1daos0m7] examination of human foibles regarding certainty, but that's not a knock against the book, only a note that Pat's comments about the book being "accessible" might be misleading to those who were/are hoping for continued philosophic probing. But he is correct in noting that the nature of it has shifted, just as the pattern from TDTCB through TTT in regards to how Kellhus is viewed as shifted (not that I'm hinting too much, am I? :P) More later, perhaps, but I'm strongly considering waiting until January before I write an extensive review. Suffice to say that page 272, I think this book is easily the equal to the first three and likely better in terms of writing and it certainly is better in regards to certain characterizations. view post


Re: The Judging Eye posted 18 Nov 2008, 22:11 in The Judging EyeThe Judging Eye by Aldarion, Sorcerer-of-Rank

What he said, pretty much. I review quite a few books and on occasion, publishers and authors seem to reply to what I say about the books. In this case (unlike the past three books), it was Overlook Press and not Scott himself who sent me the ARC for review purposes. view post


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