Five Things I Read This Week
No post last week, as I was LARPing with Profound Decision's Empire LARP. And wow, a lot happened. But it's almost all ingame stuff, and would mean very little to you unless you play. We have a new Empress ingame, though! Intrigue! Excitement! Plot!
I'm sure good friend of mine Dr Kayleigh Wardell will be pleased to hear that she can have her Garth Nix Sabriel/Lirael/Abhorsen set of books back; having finished Sabriel, I chewed through the other two quite quickly. And luckily, I enjoyed them a lot more than Sabriel! Abhorsen in particular tied up some loose ends, and I can sing the praises of any book that does that. It's always wonderfully neat when stories do that, and irritating when they don't.
I've been an avid reader of XKCD's 'What If' column since it started. I have the book, a wonderful Christmas present from my brother-in-law. What I love about it is that I learn something every time - for example, the idea that all rainbows are in fact perfect circles, and that we see it as a bow because it's intersecting with the ground. It starts with the question 'What would rainbows look like on a binary star planet?' And if you've ever wondered what Luke Skywalker would have seen after a rainstorm on Tatooine, click through for your answer.
I'm busy writing Claws of the Chimera - in fact, I've almost finished the first draft - so I'm always interested in finding out how other authors approach their writing process. And not just because I love to procrastinate. I've got a blog post coming up about how great Stephen King's 'On Writing' is, and if you've not read that I heartily suggest you give it a go. But a random wander around the internet brought me to Raymond Feist's blog, and this article on how his novel Magician came to be. I am a real fan of the Riftwar series, at some point or other owning every single book in the series (including the three co-authored with Janny Wurts). Now that it's over, I can't wait to see what Feist brings out next. But the article really goes into the organic growth of his writing, and how necessity was responsible for a lot of it. He needed a theme, or a character to do something specific, and that part of the book came into being as a result. It's really interesting stuff from someone I admire a great deal.
I always enjoy jtrahan's stories on Tumblr. Sometimes one comes up and I think 'That would make an awesome episode of Pocket Fiction' and this most recent story is no exception. I encourage you to take a few minutes to read an awesome story about elder gods with a taste for entire universes, and the hapless priests that attend it. Any more from me and I'd spoil it.
The last one is also from Tumblr; slightly self-servingly, it's a list of stories that I myself have added to. Every single one is about someone's experience with an unexploded bomb left over from World War 2 - a fairly common experience in Europe. None of them closer than the second-to-last one, by my flatmate Chippy, who slept under two WW2 bombs for years. Crazy stuff.
Have a good week!