tad williams (was Re: : fantasy monarchies)

Melissa Proffitt Melissa at Proffitt.com
Fri Feb 7 01:26:03 EST 2003


On Fri, 07 Feb 2003 05:27:16 +0000, christian nutt wrote:

>>From: Melissa Proffitt You do see the absurdity in taking your reactions to 
>>one book and applying
>>them to the author in general, and then saying you aren't talking about
>>another book by the same author?  If it's authorial weakness then it 
>>applies
>>across the board.
>
>well, writers can change. i'm not interested in finding out.

That's not what I was saying.  Just that it's silly to say "I'm not talking
about _Otherland_" and then say things about the writer in general--because
then those would apply to ALL his books.  Just logic-chopping, really.

>>I just don't even know where to begin with this.  You're not making the
>>distinction between what you like and what is genuinely bad writing.
>
>yeah, it's a bad habit of mine. i feel things very strongly and then figure 
>that's enough for everyone -- obviously, it's not.

Well, that's why you get picked on.  :)

See, the thing I am really trying to point out is that you slide from "this
is my opinion" to "this is God's truth" without seeming to notice the
difference.  I don't mind your opinion--remember that I also didn't care for
MS&T, though for different reasons, and I don't really recommend it to
people.  But it's like the following two parts of your post:

>i like fast-moving stories with a lot of dialogue. i'm sure a lot of the 
>books i really like would be of little or no interest to the people on this 
>list.

which represents your opinion (and you should probably mention your favorite
books, because most people here don't read just fantasy) and

>i believe (and i may be wrong) that there's no good reason for a book to be 
>more than around 500 pages.

which, while still carrying the caveat that you could be wrong, represents a
statement of universality.  The second part of this paragraph is better
because, again, it's about your opinion:

>i find that's about as much as i can stand and 
>still enjoy the whole thing, anyway. i prefer books in the 200-300 page 
>range. 

When you're asserting that books shouldn't be more than 500 pages, or that
brevity is always better, you're being rude to people who prefer long books
by effectively calling their favorite books bad.

>i think i'm just arrogant enough to think that my preferences are a 
>reasonable expectation of all fiction. it's taken me a long time to 
>cultivate the ability to appreciate and respect things i don't like in other 
>media -- i never got around to it for books because i read them so much less 
>than i watch movies, listen to music, play games, etc.

Well, I have sufficient faith in your general merit to try to beat the
arrogance out of you.  You should be grateful.  I accept chocolates.  :)

>i seem to have a very different character than many/most of the list 
>members; i'm just not a book fan or a fantasy fan especially. i just like 
>DWJ. 

You remind me of my best friend in high school.  We became friends because I
had just gotten into Star Trek (the original series; that was all there was
at the time) and I saw a Star Trek novel under her chair in choir.  I asked
her if it was good, she let me borrow it, and things progressed from there.
But it turned out that Star Trek was the ONLY speculative fiction that she
liked.  She preferred cop stories and mysteries.  I just couldn't get her to
care about SF at all.  The closest I came was loaning her my copy of
Sturgeon's _More Than Human_ and having her read the psychiatrist chapter
(something she was also interested in).

>books are (please don't hurt me) well below my interests behind movies, 
>anime, and games. i'm not being condescending -- i'm not saying books are 
>inferior. more than anything, it's just that it's been difficult for me to 
>get involved in it. but it leads me to put less effort back into it as well. 

I completely understand about this.  Most of my friends are gamers, and I
have at least one friend who plays computer games the way I read books.  But
I'm just a casual gamer, and it's not like I think they're bad or anything,
it's just not something I want to put a lot of effort into.

And I should add that I really appreciate your comments on anime.  That's
another casual interest of mine; I really like it, but not enough to go out
and get it.  So I enjoy what you have to say about it.

>i'm such a troublemaker. =) it seems like every so often i have to do 
>something really egregious to the list and piss a variable number of 
>upstanding list members off. this community is very unusual for me. i'm much 
>more used to dealing with different types of people with very different 
>interests, so i apologize.

Well, I think this is only the second time you've incurred anyone's wrath
here.  That's a pretty good track record.  If I were really and truly pissed
off, I wouldn't bother with trying to change your mind.  :)

>similarly to christopher, where he discovers that he thought everyone liked 
>him automatically and didn't noticed that had stopped, i figure everyone 
>thinks i'm interesting and my opinion is valid automatically. =) it's a bad 
>habit.

Hey!  ObDWJ!  We're on topic again!

>PS: i'm really not that foolish when i write reviews. honest. i can forward 
>some URLs to anyone who's curious. =)

I'm curious.  What do you usually review?

Melissa Proffitt
really tired now

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