Entirely Off Topic

McMullin, Elise mcmullea at kl.com
Wed Aug 11 12:25:27 EDT 1999

>Max replied to Deborah:
>       "Exploit away! ;) If it wasn't for you we wouldn't have a place to 
rant with other DWJ-ers."

Yes, it's great!  I can't describe how often or how long I've wished I
could find folks who would talk about just these topics.  I've loaned
dwj and other authors, recommended them, suggested them etc. etc. but
never did a good conversation result from the efforts.  So this list
>more than satisfies a long frustrated desire.

Max said in another post:
>" And what a defense for the genre of fiction in general, and fantasy in 
>particular.  All those people who say they don't read fiction because it's 
>not 'true', or they despise fantasy because it's escapist.  Most of what I 
>learned about how the world works--really works, what motivates people 
>etc--is from reading fantasy.  Fantasy stories may not be 'true' in the 
>literal sense, but they can be true in the psychological sense, just as myths
are.  But we use 'myth' as a synonym for untruth.  Go figure."

Such a bogus, specious and spurious assertion too.  How often does
someone despise fantasy and scifi but love Star Wars or The Matrix or
vampire tales - any number of stories which are actually fantasy/scifi?
While we are at it; professional wrestling is fantasy (in the make
believe sense) too, as are Playboy bunnies, beauty pageants, rock stars,
commericials for luxury goods (ads in general), all sorts of dreams are
peddled...so many, many things are make believe - including many things
which profess not to be.  We're swimming in it.  And no one can convince
me that all of the above-listed things and more besides are *not*
escapist in their own ways. 
I knew a woman in college who made much of detesting Star Trek for being
make believe escapist foolishness; however, she would go into her room,
blast the soundtrack to Les Miserables and sing along for hours.
Clearly it was just a matter of preference about which make believe she
liked (the romantic variety as scored by Andrew Lloyd Weber apparently)
- you'll have to take my word for it that it wasn't only that she liked

Slap the next scoffer with that argument.  ;)

Regarding life v. fiction; also in college I became acquainted with a
group of people (alas, fellow lit majors) who turned out to be kind of
nasty and spiteful, which completely took me by surprise as I wasn't
expecting it from them.  And I was really, really surprised by the
extent of malice they would indulge in willingly as a pastime. I was
exclaiming over the whole thing one day when my dad asked me "You've
been a bookworm for years, surely you were clued in by reading to how
nasty people can be. Why does it take you by surprise?"   
I said, "But that's fiction!"

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