Bah. I forget why this didn’t go out Friday. Oh wait, I remember, I actually went into the office then went drinking, then came home with the inspiration to write. I should have probably got all this stuff out before now, but things have been rather busy. Well better late than never. Let’s get cracking.
1. We will start with a personal gripe, stored until the right time, about reviewers who go on about words that don’t make sense for a secondary world/time period.
Now I emphatically defend everyone’s right to go “that word removed me for my immersion and it’s part of why I didn’t enjoy the book”. If it happened, it happened.
At the same time, that’s a you thing, not a technical flaw on the author’s part. There is no set rule that fantasy authors are meant to avoid words with etymologies leading directly from real world places or persons without a specific framing device. Similarly, anachronistic language (when it’s actually anachronistic to begin with) is a long-standing thing, if anachronism should mean something for times that never were. Moreover, I bet that in the case of both complaints, they have happily accepted a word that falls foul of their demands elsewhere. I suppose I could give more respect to the complaints of someone who has frowned on every mention of joviality and martial valour, chauvinism and mesmerism, coaches, calico, meandering rivers, and volcanos in their secondary worlds… but that’s a bit around the bend.
I suggest to everyone they treat every secondary world book as a translation from another language but if you can’t, don’t go around thinking it’s the author’s fault.
2. General Book Shit
Want to know the plots of major authors? The one they always did? Step this way
4. Authory shit
5. The Esoterica – always the best bit
6. You’re still here? Bugger, I did promise six things, didn’t I?
Another minor gripe. There’s an article going around bemoaning the lack of male literary fiction readers, full of the usual sideswipes at SFF, born either from ignorance or disdain. I mostly recommend we ignore it – although I bet I’ve made some of you curious enough to go look it up – but at the same time, maybe someone needs to feedback to the author that
a) To borrow from Professor Leary, they shouldn’t be trading the entire credibility of their message for the momentary satisfaction of communicating their disdain
b) If the author is more interested in communicating their disdain than their message, the author’s opinion isn’t wanted in subjects that to do actually matter
c) If they don’t know enough about reading habits and genres to know when their words will be taken as disdain, they don’t know enough to be writing articles about the matter
There we go. Have a gre… damnit, hope you had a great weekend!