The SFFaudio Podcast #792 – READALONG: The Weirwoods by Thomas Burnett Swann

The SFFaudio Podcast #792 – Jesse, Will Emmons, Cora Buhlert, Jonathan Weichsel, and Alex [Cirsova] talk about The Weirwoods by Thomas Burnett Swann

Talked about on today’s show:
1965, 1967, DAW book?, ACE, Alex was a big fan, how come I never heard of him?, the audiobook existed, nobody had pirated it, special work, a list, why this particular one, the old Ace paperback, The Minotaur trilogy, most well know, Cry Silverbells, The Forest Forever, The Day Of The Minotaur, fun fantasy, a particular kink, good narrator, he was okay, the female voices, a female narrator, feminine language, same takeway, chapters 1 – 4 are perfect literature, seducing, the rest of the book 5 – whatever are imperfect, the flaw is in the plotting, go from one place to another, why does Arnth return to the town, Swann knows this, no real reason, Tannaquil, no motivation, well I escaped that net, a slave uprising, the weirones, a little more careful plotting, the language, the imagery, the themes, the worldbuilding, really magical, the naivete, that it had a plot, the kidnapping, enslavement, a sex fantasy, even the ones that are knowing we’re naive, erotic artwork, Pompeii, even cuter, traveling exhibitions, fauns and satyrs, Herculaneum, a classicist, a student of classic period, vast encyclopedic knowledge of antiquity, what if all of the myths from antiquity were literally true, a Dunsanian mold, why are they heartless?, they’re fairy creatures, they’re not human, they’re not gods, centaurs have two hearts, mythology, celtic mythology, the Christian god, god was getting tired late on the 5th day, fully antiquity, the meta-narrative across all of his books, the retreat of fey up until Christianity, The Gods Abide, early Christian Rome, because of the spread of the Christian faith, compatible with some other set of beliefs he had, ancient Etruria, UNESCO World Heritage protected, narrow to the exact year, the Rape of the Sabine, having happened, we can do it though, set in our world, panisci, the corn sprites, what about the fossil record, does that mean they don’t have bones, a weird kind of fantasy, set in our world, Robert E. Howard, urban fantasy novels, vampires or werewolfs, Doggerland, why am I even focused on this?, let’s talk about you having no heart, fossils, approaching this with hard SF bone, her heart starts beating, mostly what this book is is sex fantasy for everybody, chill and relaxed, until everybody gets killed, that’s a sex fantasy too, a Marxist with 7 cats, orgy of revolutionary violence lead by cats, making a claim about the past reality, everything we know about the ancients is true, science fiction brain, when they die out how do they die out, stopping having children, what do they do with their dead?, sarcophagi, buried archaeological things, temples underneath the earth, speaking of buried, our bear barely gets to do anything, Ursus, the eye-patched bear, he got a girlfriend in the end, dancing or trained bears, Eastern Europe, animal cruelty, the romance, that seduction scene, one of the most amazing things I’ve ever read, the central core idea of the book, French erotica movies, Emmanuelle (1974), have big passions, not remotely artistic, Sylvia Kristel, softcore erotica, late night tv, non-erotic movies, airplane accident movies, the decline or death of the fey, the macroscale, the meta-narrative, their encounter with humanity, tragic, leads to a little bit less magic, fey has to retreat, the resentment of the fey, kill all the fauns and centaurs, the sprite sorceress, costs her her life, a meaningful connection, temporary and passing, pure sensuality, feeling pretty bad, not that sympathetic, a violent guy, kills all these people, you only hate him because you didn’t know what he was or refuse to see it, throws himself on the axe, his own hands that do him in, homosexual themes in these books, a Biblical one, how are the mighty fallen, rubbing the wine off, sweet musician, just friendship, breaks him, fey people, pretty interesting, that Jesse is obsessed with, she becomes the thing she says she will never become, becomes obsessed with him, pure and innocent person with a real love and passion for her that she’s met, is this like a joke?, the heart of the book, our main character is not having sex with women because they’ll trap you, can’t bear his child, not the right class, playing with some interesting stuff, chronic white girl syndrome, my compassion will be reciprocated, magnanimous gesture for someone who is low class, these people resent her, she didn’t want him to be her slave, she wants to help free him, she’s shocked by the notion, once he’s murdered and their chains are off, give it multiple readings, a little wolf-puppy, grows into a wolf and eats the family, wicked and evil and heartless, she’s a spoiled rich girl, she’s so great, they rise up and kill her, the wicked slaves, the book intentionally gives these things the double meaning, the book intentionally doesn’t pick sides in these sociological debates, the sensuality, the food, the warmth, the cold, the bodily feelings, drinking the wine, the immediate attention to sensuality, Dunsany is ironic, cutesy, there’s no bent toward sexuality in Dunsany, Clark Ashton Smith, a celebration of life, and the joys of living, the rustic, the pastoral, the pastoral vs. the urban, an attention to the body, people’s skin like an otter’s skin, Sutrium is small, taste, texture, smell, every meal, the coziness of somebody in your sleeping bag, hammocks, can I sleep in your hammock, do we have to sleep?, assume this is throughout all of Swann, a particular fetish, really cute, his biggest influence is A.A. Milne, Winnie The Pooh, tea and honeycakes, 100 Acre Woods, everybody is fucking everybody else, Piglet and the sad donkey are getting it on, Kanga’s got a baby, Hobbiton, look there’s an elf Mr. Frodo, nobody in Middle Earth fucks anybody else, there’s no female hobbits, reproduction, incredibly focused on the sensual, visit Italy, a book of the mid-60s, early 20th century, Science Fantasy, Donald A. Wollheim, David and Jonathan having a relationship, a very specific kink, fits as fantasy, a writer writing what he’s interested in, literary, the magazines that would take him, fashion for retelling Greco-Roman mythology, out of time, read another one of these, barely a plot, stuff happening, sensuality and spending time with a bunch of fey in the forest, unique, doing something off in his own world, if you work on the internet, people who are passionate about Swann, producing these audibooks, doing reprints, the reviews online are hostile, 2 stars on audible, an audience mismatch, an American thing, very prude Americans, people just don’t understand the breadth of fantasy, sword & sorcery, a Tolkien clone, cosy sensuous fantasy set in antiquity, the sex element, depicting sexuality is wrong, this is the focus, tastefully hand, it’s beautiful, he really digs it, cottagecore, big push, fake cover, “everyone is gay for minotaurs and now you are too”, hampered, always 10 years ago, died way to soon, dying early is not great for being remembered, posthumously published, a body of work, the last handful of books aren’t as strong, a professor of English at the University of Florida, A Spell For Chameleon by Piers Anthony, a hero’s journey type plot, the late 70s, the good one, English language books, import book shop, Poul Anderson, set on actual Earth?, borders Florida, a magical border wall, exiled from the world, exiled to Florida, very cute, probably a good thing, Galactic Star, 55 years late, good that he won, a Hugo or Nebula nomination, the letter pages, because they don’t fit anywhere else, harmed, Good Show Sir, dunking on the covers, local independent bookshop, that book on that one cover, George Barr, Mark liked him so much, a brief biography, 1928, Korean War, Duke, Florida Atlantic University, literary scholarship, poetry, traveled extensively, WWI poet, The Not-World, DAW 1975, the last hideout, 2 centuries ago, the lore of the little folk, master of fantasy, one of his finest and most piquant, Thomas Chatterton, a balloon fight, Arachnae, spiderwoman, transposed to England the same sort of idea, against series, not a true series, some of the same characters, reverse chronological order, reconcile the differences, Cry Silver Bells, The Gods Abide, the final retreat of fey, The Green Phoenix, The Dolphin And The Deep, mythic Greek antiquity retelling of the Little Mermaid, will investigate his public domain status, mass market paperback, Wildeside, John Betancourt, a mix of public domain and regular, getting a narrator, never heard of him, writing really interesting books, why not, booking into the new year, Queens Walk In Dusk, the collected, a romantic type relationship, German fantasy author, Michael Ende, relationship with a minotaur, way too adult, Wonder And Whimsy: The Fantastic Christina Rossetti, Goblin Market, consequences, fucking a centauress, gender, consequences for sex, even more dire, reliable contraceptive, sensuous, a problem for human females, kinda weird that he chose, paniscii, not the product of dudes running around the forest having sex with animals, the most reasonable impersonation, dudes are having sex with goats, minotaurs, half human half animals, we are our own separate creation, fey, transposing, Greco-Roman mythology, tweeting about how Swann treats the morality of the fey, touch on it, an alien morality unto themselves, what humans could necessarily understand, spitefulness, chaotic, unpredictable, morality, moral code, when humans have sex, they just do it, a right interpretation, tapping into something, that’s really cool, one of the two main influences, A Most Exquisite Specimen by J. Manfred Weichsel, Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood, etymologist capturing butterflies, human butterflies played by ballerina showgirls, take the pin out, little dance number, a different plot, August [2023], Fall or Summer issue, see you in cyberspace, a pretty good show out of this good book, Mildred Klingerman, a young woman and a minotaur, Shirley Jackson, modern trad wife, Galactic Suburbia writers, domestic stories, Zenna Henderson, post-war domesticity, Letters For Laura, 6 pages, using euphemisms and language, copyright renewed, unlikely to happen, sure why not, if this show gets taken down, delete you from reality, full speed ahead damn the torpedoes, one of those, Dear Mom, A Cupful Of Space, Ballantine books, time travel, Love, Laura, my breasts are displayed in the style of ancient Crete, not who but what?, that’s the trouble with books, ancient Crete, so the minotaur wouldn’t eat her, they’re not as prude as people think they were, super-mainstream, visual, quite prudish, Clingerman stories, women’s magazines, now they’re both hungover, sleeping it off, working on his stuff in the garage, birdwatching, a dream that an alien is birdwatching her, exposing her lady parts, bye bye hangover, not super-prudish, stories for women, stories for men, Kay Tarrant, kinda prudish, there for fifty years, excised the erotic stuff, children read the magazine, prude, Slow Season by Robert Sheckley, Clark Ashton Smith, The Prize Of Peril, Das Millionenspiel (1970), better if you are German, such a different attitude towards sex, 1961 vs. 1965, double language, if you’ve seen those pictures there’s no top, with English subtitles, famous German comedian, The Running Man by Richard Bachman, Richard Dawson, the problem is he’s young, Family Feud, 1 year old in 1987, a unique style, human hunting, Suzanne Collins, Battle Royale (2000), PUBG, violence, hangups about violence, Evil Dead (1981), a censorious country, voluntary self control, if Jonathan took that job: “good I can censor some films”, juche, very particular to the Korean peninsula, worker’s uprising crushed, relying on other countries, allies turned their back on them, starve for a decade, the craziest stories about North Korea, a crazy story, Yeonmi Park, always lying, had to push the trains, local TV station, engaged in Pyongyang, desperately want to be a normal country, millions of people, Ukraine War, free fire zones, no buildings standing more than two stories tall, they didn’t lose, that’s amazing, they don’t want to win wars, they just want to have them, Grenada, Iraq – Kuwait, Bush War 1, Bush War 2, heating up in Iraq, seems like things are pretty bad, they wouldn’t put you in charge, Jonathan is the great unifier, a radical centrist, in a podcasting zone right now, sleeping 16 hours a day, contribute around the house, a lot of comics, mediocre comics, Mœbius, Jean Giraud, The World of Edena, have to eat natural foods, we should go to that planet, get yourself very dirty and roll around in it, dangerous in Canada, Quebec is very insular, engagement outside of Quebec, essentially its own country, East Germany, lovely talking to you, Franco-Belgian-Dutch[-Flemish] comics, a thank you, great bookstore employees, something expensive, one day she’s going to grow up and have money, Eurocon in Rotterdam, Confessions Of An English Opium Eater, how many languages does Cora speak and read?, decent at Dutch, sell me on it, 19th century, most popular youtube video ever, an old book, LibriVox narrations, assigned at universities, the comments are interesting, Martin Geeson is the narrator, serialized in the London Magazine, upset and shocked by it, 1821, long walks, too happy to observe, humorous, interesting, drug literature, glorious imagination, acute speculation, Edgar Allan Poe, Jack Kerouac, Charles Baudelaire, Boston Blackie, barn full of books, The Lone Wolf, radio drama, the early part of next year, Valentine’s Day, go die now, drink some coffee, The Cave Girl, the Lawrence Block, a thin volume, feel better, get better.

The Weirwoods by Thomas Burnett Swann 1977

The Weirwoods by Thomas Burnett Swann ACE

The Weirwoods by Thomas Burnett Swann SCIENCE FANTASY, October 1965

Posted by Jesse Willis

The SFFaudio Podcast #790 – AUDIOBOOK/READALONG: The Sword Of Welleran by Lord Dunsany

The SFFaudio Podcast #790 – The Sword Of Welleran by Lord Dunsany, read by Ed Humpal (for LibriVox). This is a complete and unabridged reading of the story (34 minutes) followed by a discussion of it. Participants in the discussion include Jesse, Scott Danielson, Maissa Bessada, and Jonathan Weichsel.

Talked about on today’s show:
1908, and other stories, great sword and sorcery books, Brian Murphy, a Penguin edition, In The Land Of Time, some fantasy role playing games, fantasy tropes, an intelligent sword, a sword with a soul inside, prose poetry, how to make writing better, at every opportunity, consonance and assonance back to back, very distinctive, so dense, so much, you need the space, take them in more slowly, 34 minutes, feels like a couple hours, a spell that he’s casting, repetition, ideas, who is I?, he’s the dreamer who is proud of his dreaming, sit before my fire asleep, draw away from the face of god, is this dreamer god?, the world that he’s spinning up, somebody bigger than time, somebody omniscient, the city, these dudes from a long time ago, everything’s dreamy, a nice and soft hard shift, thieves going to be executed, check out the city as spies, thieves, criminals as the protagonists, some sort of sense of honour, The Highwaymen, The Wonderful Window, he can almost smell the bakers and spice merchants, a hint of the smell, sat down by the fire, a nice dog at his feet, a long list of heroes, don’t forget Welleran, Young Iraine, a depth of history, Mermina, somnolence, a memory mumbley word that you remember, a Dreamlands, centered in a city, barbarians around, sing the praises of Welleran weaponless, protected by these old heroes, Roald, this thing that poets do, claim to be visionaries, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, smoking opium, a knock on the door, the vision was gone, after the fact, the game these poets are playing, are they?, part of the fiction of the story?, he’s playful, jumps out the window and runs down the street, The Hashish Man, it was not that at all, I do it with hashish, I know Bathmoora well, different brain, doing it as a poem, composed in the way, not so much about meaning as it is about feeling, The Irish Times review, baffling, strange but captivating, Seejar and Sejar-Ho, virtually identical to each other, a little dialogue, one-act plays, servants, listen to the piano, let’s put on a play, four characters, roll through the story, some resonance here, Dan Carlin’s latest, Twilight Of The Aesir, the Byzantines in 941, the Keivan Rus, Finnish, Oleg, Ayegar, was a great city, they think of themselves as Romans, 1000, years later, Constantinople, Istanbul, as if we had gone to heaven, unbelievable, full of heroes as it once was, field a thousand ships and 40,000 troops against the city, the leadership digs out mothballed wooden ships, animal heads, open mouths, unleash Greek fire, they didn’t know that was a thing, that was invented 300 years ago, they still had the tech, ended with a treaty, won the battle, the plot of this, an old city, decadent, tired sleepy citizens, wary barbarians, are they as tough as they say they are?, no reference, weird awesome fantasy, resonated deep, this change that occurred, the place that everyone fought for 100 years ago, like the heroes did in the past, lamenting how evil the sword was, they would have lost their city, people have funny ideas, interesting coming from the narrator, the interesting comment from the god, the heroes existed to defend this place, it doesn’t even occur to them to defend the place, once they have victory, this sword is evil, what was the alternative, this generational change, the change in values, resonates today for obvious reasons, floating around in our culture right now, the whole city was the product of the sword, the swords that wanted all of this, an anti-war story, the men that never would have lived, the gardens that didn’t grow, if you go back further when they built the city, the wish of the city or the wish of the sword, anti-war in the face of destruction, a very fascinating idea, very conflicted, I’m not supposed to like the people, the ending would be the surprise, Lovecraft, The Doom The Came To Sarnath, a civilization they genocide, salamander people from the moon, didn’t know much about fire, become incredibly decadent, a possible reading, if we lean on the idea that the sword has a soul, not to make friends, to kill, on page 30 of the PDF, drew round about him the huge red cloak around him, and and now, Roald’s dreams to him to the sword, in thy hand, it is a good sword to hold, take up the sword of Welleran, cajoled, we can lean on this idea, doing the defense of the city, enstatued, sword under glass, the unarmed singer, patrols the city, are they wiser than we think they are?, Maissa’s right, taken them back, defending the city, the lament at the end, another line, about paradise, like a warm fire, a great anthem, a stillness full of lights, what art thou thy shimmering thing, layers on, blending the characters, the god of the story, really interesting, how Dunsay led his life, 1918ish, the Irish Civil War, pro-British domination of the Irish, but he does it, a poet and a hunter and an appreciator of many things, the hero reborn, he’s the guy who takes up the sword when no one else will, part of the story is hilarious, a series of heroes, their souls leaving their bodies, their horses are freed, inspired by a dream, stay under glass, held off for 300 years by rumour, look they’re still there, confirm that their not dead, the robbers were wrong, they touch the statue, puts his eyes on the cloak, touches the mane of the horse, the colours of the different materials, alabaster, marble, sable, jasper, Clark Ashton Smith, the beauty of the material, a message under there, what kinda enemies, Lord Dunsany’s gonna get canceled, it’s not London, has resonance for all people, the slaughter, we blame the sword, it doesn’t wash clean of blood, even Roald is possessed, have they overcome their decadence, an outside spirit inside of themselves?, the right lesson, heroes will always rise, young Irane, double letters, two Ls two Os, a new thought came into the heart of Merimna’s people, when England needed to rise, the spirit of the people rose up in the personification of Churchill, why did Welleran wear the great red cloak, the way of Welleran, back to his mother’s house, almost a religious fervor, patriotism, a more general reading, holding of the sword, dropped the swords, the right reaction, right to be horrified by what they had done, they did what they had to do, simulation theory, NPCs running around in a simulation, way ahead of himself, the good and correct thing, defend the empire against the barbarians, lazy or dreamers, languorous, goes to the sun, it’s cute because it wants to kill, the reason it’s pawing, excited by the images, this is the leader we need right now, being pad to shill, like we’re all addicts, WWI, The Bowmen by Arthur Machen, charge into machinegun fire, we still have our fingers, this is a true story, we must believe in this story, no, it’s a true story, it has to be true, we have god on our side, angels of our ancestors, that’s crazy, they need it to be true, when signing up for the army, Audie Murphy, these classic wars, picking up the same uniform, pure fantasy, where do these heroes come from, he becomes Welleran, Roald would be added to the list, Arthurian legend, we need FDR to come back and fulfill his fourth term, mythological heroes are going to return one day, the puritan work ethic, they’re kind of lax, they’re sleeping too much, moved by this story, parallels today, what do people say?, a difficult week, Jonathan’s mom had a stroke, rehab, with stuff this old, other than Brian Murphy on us, a famous name from so long ago, only as an old writer, so fantastic, there’s no genocide, a defense of the city, he kisses the sword with his lips, battle sweat, more like possession, nervousness, something he needs, keeping it close, our hands can hold swords no more, go among dreams, take the old swords, the mouth the the ravine, make him take my sword, they were all tricked too, the city is hot, the gods made the city hot, go out now into the desert, for fear of the desert robbers, sent up a fever over it, what was the alternative, they’re going to sack the city, rising them from slumber, rise up and protect yourselves, coming from the right place, deceived or pushed into doing this, violence, under barbarian rule tomorrow, it is confusing, it all is ambiguous, kinda like gods now, the beautiful buildings, the architecture, an excellent point, defend the architecture that the heroes love, Roald and his mom, every page has gold on it, invoking the name, aka I’m Welleran, the savage lusting sword that had thirsted for a hundred years, warm blood all about it, the joy of the swimmer, living for long in a dry land, Welleran lives!, the exulting, the sword singing softly to itself, violence and lust for blood, poured into the depth of the darkness, gleaming blue, gleaming red, the whole battle, thrust through, they blame it on the weapon, really quite choice, it makes sense, in his castle, Morton Drax, ancestors, popish plot, sitting in his house, dog at his feet, drowsing, a burglar at the window, he’s got a pipe wrench, one of his ancestor’s guns, shoots the bad, rifle, what have you done?, bad gun!, sleep soundly, not that this is a true story, decadent guy, armorial trophies, a morality there, not everything ideal all the time, when it is necessary we reach for the sword, fighting for the wrong side, where does his title come from, anglo-irish lord, aristocratic, beautiful architecture, subhuman, he has to, Star Trek, the Irish reunifcation of 2024, proven wrong once and for all, Roland, rolled in, all one, he does roll out like a Transformer, transformed, The Song Of Roland, 11th century Frankish Challenge story, the Stephen King book, the poem, more innocent, more Roald than Welleran, sounds nice, the most jarring of the names, rhymes, they pair together, no sense of an ocean nearby, surrounded on four sides, this is not how great cities come to be, Paris, generally they’re coastal cities, London, Russia has no natural boundaries, what Russia does, create a buffer, back and forth, conquering the neighbouring lands, everything taken back, historical parallels, Shadow Of The Vulture by Robert E. Howard, one of the historical sieges of Vienna, Red Sonja has a real sister, the star of that story, mostly swords still, becoming mercenaries for a decadent city, for the love of battle and personal reasons, Rogatino, contemporary with Conan, Hyrkania, sometimes Russia sometimes Ukraine, sounds like a guy’s name, sounds like a British name, Wayland, Weiland, sounding eastern, playing some sort of game in dreaming up this city, how civilization is, the truth of that story, making a scapegoat of the sword, blaming, not have the equipment taken by the barbarians, the deep ravine, horses let to roam free, a wound that won’t close, on his way to the deep ravine to die, his soul leaves his body but he continues to ride, bones in the ravine, there’s something in there, Roald touches the horse and the man in the same way, seeing with your hand, dark, night, they’re all asleep in the Dreamlands, the story of the horse, pastiche of dreams with a simple story, bowed to the ground, horse’s hoof, poetry poetry poetry, quite cold, the terrible hand of Welleran, he was marble too, the figure of fear, heard the guard, you may sing of Welleran, still restless in the night, naught can save your city, the two spies went back alive, were wont to go back, hid themselves away, that only live a day, so beautiful, pure poetry, the story is solid, how come you don’t write like that Jonathan?, everyone has their own unique voice, classic satire, we can appreciate it, I would have preferred to have a different style, die and be reborn, we can fake it, who else could have written this?, lost in eddies different, Lovecraft’s agenda is always pointed, resentment built into it, often based on being poor, it’s not fair that I’m poor, cutesy and cuddly axes, he is traumatized not at all, a dark sense of humour, he turns the light away from the dark scenes, Clark Ashton Smith is sex mad, a shapely shape, incubi and succubi, like a Weichsel story, understanding who the writer was, trauma or non-trauma, debates about AI art, a this year thing, the fascination people have with the artist or the writer, born into wealth and privileged, born to illiterate parents, different experiences, ai traumas, aristocratic literature, what is the struggle that Dunsany had?, live up to ancestors, equal to almost every task, immediately becomes poor, Poe is easy, tries to woo every woman on the planet, chessmaster, fencing master, officer, lord, hunter, winner, I like art, I like funny cute stories, isn’t this cute?, The King Of Elfland’s Daughter, head wound, living a pretty great life, invented some game, a healthy dream life, extremely fertile imagination, Jorkens stories, kind of a joke, Herman Melville, supergay but not traumatized by it, George MacDonald, children’s literature, for adult amusement, people make kids read classic works, Black Beauty, a reflection of his room, trying to see each other, Alice In Wonderland, C.S. Lewis?, Lewis Carroll, it was never for children, The Hobbit is for children (8 year olds), The Lord Of The Rings is for slightly older children (10 year olds), very rich, compare Dunsany to Tolkien,

TOLKIEN: Dunsany, your stuff is not rigorous enough to really tell a story in a secondary world one needs a new language, a backstory to explain the gods and demons to haunt a world, a rich tapestried backstory for world building [runs off to Silmarill for a while]

DUNSANY: I like the sound of these words together and so I built a city, dome on dome and pile on pile.

[CLARK ASHTON SMITH: ok, but what materials are that city made from? what chalcedony? what ebon fanes? and in those fanes what arabesques whose numberless, unwonted hues..]

what day of week each Hobbit is where vs. a sketch, out and onto paper, next story, a stylistic choice, the dreamlike quality, Aragorn son of Arathorn, ephemeral, out of fashion and not as well loved, why had he picked that one, on the list, the lasting impact, the sword that has a soul, a whole Elric series, Stormbringer, Audio Realms, what a beautiful ones that was, adding background stuff to a reading, that’s where Wayne June came from, his readings of Lovecraft, very scarce, very expensive, difficult/impossible to adapt to other media, would make a great cartoon, a great comic, do a lot of his words, lots of voice over narration, not having their words, how they fucked up the latest Dune, Jessica has to cry all the time, see their eyes brighten up, you can see the hands crawling up the statue, the reaction in the eyes, not the mode we’re in right now, expressionism in film, somebody could do it, on Prime, dramatic interpretation to individual scenes, frame the story, My Talks With Dean Spanley (2008), Star Wars, based on other films, film noir, short stories or novels, the exceptions are very rare, Casablanca, based on a play, somebody saw a movie once, not looking at the original material, Harlan Ellison essay, The Words In Spock’s Mouth, create in totality, “fans” such as yourself, slave for three months, god knows who all else, politely told to screw off, a fleeting commodity, the credit he gets when the segment is show, how could you be so ignorant, we all start off that way, this one has a dragon on the cover, that one has spaceship, they’re both good covers, somebody’s name, match the name not the picture, a million axes to grind, when do most people stop reading? as children, people are still reading (their phones), reading comments, the most striking weird thing of our age, a chat window rushing up the screen, thousands of children saying lol, what about blah blah blah trigger word, dip into the river, the writing vs the reading, the quantity of the writing vs. the quality, can’t fathom it, the medium specifically of streaming, lol and emoji and trigger word, a question that gets lost, every medium is completely different, you can record a livestream and make it a podcast, a livestream and a youtube and a podcast, all the same content, why are we doing this weird thing of caring about old books, we used to be normal for hundreds of years, now we’re something else, found ourselves invaded by barbarians who are incomprehensible, this person was honest enough to oput his ghost writer on the cover, Peter Mansbridge has a new book out, on TV for 40 years as a newsreader, credibility with the boomers, the dominant medium, no real trauma, you know why he’s writing, he thinks he’s an artist, satisfaction out of his shitty life, very good question, for pleasure?, its fun, wealthy writers are very rare, the wealthiest journalist, A. Merritt, Edgar Rice Burroughs, some ghost writing for very rich people, typical of rich people, writing is a helluv a lot of work, he writes poetry, this is a story, read it as a story, not just look at the sound, images, telling a story in a very short and beautiful space, paying for music, lower class to want to make money off of your writing, he didn’t need the money, driven by pleasure it seems, a story that tells itself, he wrote some novels, Books Of Wonder, The Gods Of Pegana, chamber plays, he wrote those, what the aristocrats did, a sinister motive, be popular at parties, [The Idler] the ads for it are for very expensive cars and airplanes, one page stories, eligible women to marry and what their titles are, a diversion, the receiving of the paycheck, a pursuit of people needed money, he put his name on it, so did Robert E. Howard and Lovecraft, sex poems, he has the talent, he likes what his pen can do, compare Dunsany and Robert E. Howard, an axe to grind, barbarism vs. civilization, a decorative axe, an evil axe, Dungeons & Dragons, even sting gets a name, legends behind every sword, name one of Conan’s swords, any sword, any horse, making money, all up in the air, that aloofness doesn’t resonate, we’re there, Flame and Crimson: A History of Sword-and-Sorcery, Eric Brighteyes, The Ship Of Ishtar, The Tower Of The Elephant, Dragon Moon by Henry Kutter, Jack Vance, L. Sprague De Camp, Poul Anderson, The Tale of Hauk, Karl Edward Wagner, David Drake, Imaro, pocket protector tells you his era, glasses case, a horrible drunk, a keg of beer in his office, a mane of hair, died from alcohol, an editor at DAW, rediscover forgotten authors, have it as Howard wrote it, concluded in the early 2000s, In A Lonely Place, horror writers, the Tennessee woods, inspired by The King In Yellow, Sticks, Ramsey Campbell, $25,000 a year, $100,000 yearly, property in Jamaica and Ecuador, the handcuffs and the straitjacket and the scullery brush, Travels by Michael Crichton, 15 hours-ish, horrible thanksgiving, they’re lying, the hospital kidnapped me, little writing done, life problems, life gets in the way, back to writing short stories, where the money is, asking about Ace, so long ago, the first thanksgiving and Peter Mansbridge, the propaganda for Thanksgiving is deep in your bones, pumpkin pie and sweet potato pie, slavery, slaves were often cooks, adapted African meals, yams, to serve to their masters, this is cultural appropriation, abolitionist propaganda, toiling for pumpkins, a replacement for the sweet potato pie, well no actually, fighting over this, people don’t change, the symbolism has gone but the food remains, bulgogi, sweet savoury sauce, bought it at Costco, some soup, sweet soup, tasted like plum, Chinese and Korean students, immigrant area outside of New York City, poor Maissa, not a big rosewater fan, put it in rice, dried roses in tea, a very specific Persian, that’s not a feature, Korean bbq, they cook their own food there, moms are always cooking food, a cooking culture, kimchi fridges, cook it on the table, lot and lots of funny, skycat to Cave Girl, Fury by Henry Kuttner, Islamic Development Bank, isdb, May – July 1947, C.L. Moore’s husband, you could only renew in one year, they don’t do it anymore, it’s not libel if it’s true, to bankrupt your opponent, already bankrupt, they’re dumb, having Shambleau renewed pissed Jesse off, Tryst In Time by C.L. Moore, Fury, Carry Me Home, Heir Apparent, Sky Is Falling, Beauty And The Beast, Voice Of Lobster, prolific authors, written under pseudonyms, collected it later, every single story written by Kuttner and Moore, Robert Silverberg, novels on LibriVox, Hemple, he got every word right, a straight reading, it became transparent, limp, a more lilt, had to read it that way, a sound story, The Fairy Chessmen, they did renew a lot, 1947, Harry Harrison, Hell Bath No Fury, 1947, Street & Smith, Lawrence O’Donnell, cigarette ads, first paperback edition, the most popular writing team in science fiction, it’s public domain, other options, FadedPage, Gutenberg, two things that are happening, the library google scan system, if disproven, sue me if you think your right, allows people to share, the DMCA, a funny situation,, etexts of almost all of Philip K. Dick, English and Russian, C.L. Moore, Judgement Night, 1943, a novella, locked away for all the eternity, until the empire collapses, January 2025, compare statement to reality and call Jonathan a prophet, money debasing scheme, that’s like the petrodollar, students were studying hyperinflation in the Weimar Republic, a James Bond novels, part of the problem, they’re good books, the original Epic Of Gilgamesh, a really thin book and half of it is the introduction, Ian Fleming, Live And Let Die, Property Of A Lady, From A View To A Kill, From Russia With Love, has to be on a Canadian server, science fiction adjacent, Fu Manchu, Doctor No, robot hands, a dragon, sexy, cool, half German half Chinese, a sovereign citizen, damaged eyes, an indomitable will, a Robert E. Howard villain character, Ray Cummings, The Girl In The Golden Atom, aliens who want to kidnap all the human women, the Tama books, the serialization, to super science, Fantastic Adventures, viking queen in shining armour, Eskimo dudes, wizard staff, amazing covers, Robert Bloch, what Sam Moskowitz did, for reintroduction later, Famous Fantastic Mysteries anthology, the best of the Munseys, a short story or something, a poem, something nice, giant lady riding a seahorse, pewter pasties and u-boat in the foreground, lady wearing a red mask, eagle on her head, riding a Pegasus, and a pistol in her belt, giant ladies of the sea and submarines, tiger by her side, guy with colt automatic facing her, she’s topless, ladies riding wooly mammoths into cover, add a little lust, draw people in, little people, fairies or leprechauns discover giant lady in waterfall, Lady Godiva at the end of the rainbow, epic fantasy about Lady Godiva, epic in scale, husband’s a lord, ride through town naked on a horse, lock yourselves inside your houses, Circe Lannister style, covers herself with her hair, all of her parts, one guy named Tom, Tom peeps out the window, the etymology of peeping Tom, struck blind, needs some filler, flesh coloured body suit, Lady Godiva of Coventry, Maureen O’Hara, James Alderdice, David J. West, Run If You Can, Owen Dudley, so love, but so bad!, meets a water sprite in a ditch, forced to confront her with a luger, communist pirate radio program, that would be neat, that picture tells a whole story, it raises a question, the story answering the question fulfills the promise of the cover, design based covers, they don’t raise a question, the AI art is getting pretty good, doesn’t generally raise a question, match the cover to something that they wrote, the first thing the reader sees is the cover, that’s a promise, this is what’s in side, quarter pounder with cheese, now it needs a cover, is that what’s in here?, the answer is yes, oh and now I need a cover, psuedoscientific ideas, images and text and fonts, based on a philosophy, illegitimate, on and island with limited electricity, the cover of The Hobbit, what’s this about, will you read it to us, damn, that was good, Tolkien books, it has to be an image, a promise of what is inside, even romance novels, a farm, a fence, a guy riding a horse, communicate what genre the book is, a fence and silo, no rocket in the book, gothic romance, Fabio on a horse, misreading the romance genre, romance readers are more loyal than anybody else, girl porn, we’re ripped off in the science fiction, a book about robots, about an autistic lady, they depict something that’s in the book, but not the tone, the best thing about it was the cover, slapdash, can you make it a novelette, reads like a summary of a story, wasted time, an argument against the illustrated cover, old fashioned books, wanting read a modern book, the ideal reader, some people bought them, wanted to be in the in group, Barack Obama’s autobiography, not secure in your identity as an adult, you think he’s contemptible, retarded or secure in their adulthood, no good comics anymore, big pot belly, curly long hair tied into a pony tail, they only collect the covers now, Red Sonja, I should be reading this, getting pissed off, the writing is not Howard, very John Buscema, Jim Zub doesn’t have the problems Robert E. Howard, Dunsany doesn’t need trauma, romantic poets, nobody reads them, having a connection to nature, hard to penetrate poems, The Sleeper by Edgar Allan Poe, either a guy sitting outside a lady’s house, sneaks into the house, looks at her dead body, the trauma of death, beautiful dead woman, very accessible, what makes something really hot is that it’s out now, these pulp revivalist, The Cromcast, his trauma is in the stories, an axe to grind, five or six things, The Tell-Tale Heart, The Pit And The Pendulum (a terrible story), suspense piled on, well done for what it is, Morella is way better, what axe they have to grind, anti-catholic prejudice, what does he linger on, the walls are closing in, covered in rats, The Raven, Annabelle Lee, The Bells, Berenice is pretty nice Chris Sempter (Poe Museum guy), a harsh grating, the fiery walls, fainting into the abyss, Toledo, we don’t know anything about his sins, saved by the protestants, he’s an atheist, always talking about angels, consecrated her body to worms and heaven, guy loves his wife, he loves her beautiful smile, smashes her teeth out, symbolic of her, monomaniac, now she’s toothless, a very Jonathan story, the four paragraphs that are left out of later publications, this story got a lot of negative attention, Shirley Jackson’s The Lottery, heat brings warmth and warmth brings fire and fire is what this magazine needs, proceeded to do that, writing outrageous stories designed to provoke, put a nude lady on the cover of you book, argues for being outrageous, to sell stories, self-doubt sometimes, go along to get along, pick a genre, memorize the plot beats, followed that advice, don’t trust the experts, 20 books to 50k, that’s a thing there, bragging how much money you make in a month, aquatic animals, on Facebook, not legitimate, a specific graphic, 2 figures a month, a prawn, a lobster, a trout, their analogy is the broken thing, salmon, dolphin, whale, kelpie, kraken, whoever wrote this list is a bad writer, they’re all bad writers, chasing big dollar amounts, propaganda like this, streamers, you know this is streaming right now, thousands of people who want to be streamers and 100 that make a living at it, I’m locked in the house and I like games, free money, those donations are half for me and half for them, sharecropper, tips and tricks to self-publishing, spending more than that on Amazon ads, bragging about their net, bestsellers, The Empyrean #2 – Iron Flame by Rebecca Yaros, 119,000 ratings, campus romance, new Hunger Games book, continue on the path, any good covers on here?, you’re not supposed to stand out you’re supposed to fit in, all a scam, partially a scam, Michael Connelly, Nora Roberts, Suzanne Collins, girls like adventure stories, choosing dresses and choosing boyfriends, readers are getting tired of the series, a certain kind of reader who is autistic, dragons on the cover, what if you just become obsessed with dragons, Anne McCaffrey’s career, all of the Harry Potter series, a new character, Harry Potter rip-off books, readers who just want to read dragon books, to serve the readers, autism is on the rise?, these are the only people left?, other forms of distraction, traditional publishing has moved away from commercial fiction, being very cynical about how to pitch their books, respectable, using their real names sometimes, an executive, Roger Corman was very cynical, his Poe adaptation, Death Race 2000 (1975), invented the formula, young boys will go to the movies with their older brother, girls will go to the movie their boyfriend, a date with a spare, target to your movie to the girlfriend, the target is the older brother, PG-13 was the 80s, gaming society, all these formulas, commission an artist to make a movie poster, which movie do you want to see, Roger Corman movie list, Machete Maidens, Teenage Cave Man, The Fast And The Furious, Star Wars style ripoffs, Alien ripoffs, his Poe movies with Vincent Price, this monologue, The Masque Of The Red Death (1964), a lot of Cannes stuff, a very good artist, a lot of the pulp is the same way, people like trains, a magazine of train stories, artists, the artistry, they’re on the internet, all using pen-names, have integrity, going against the grain of what has been expected during the self-publishing era, unprofessional, oh he’s doing wrong, becoming whales, they’re the lobsters, the Elantris guy, do what he does, the Salt Lake City guy, Brandon Sanderson, not broken the way I need to be to like them, his interests, being forthright and sticking to his guns, like Stephen King: whatever the empire says, actual banned books, using copyright to prevent the spread of Rage, Spielberg re-edited E.T., I regret having made that decision, successful, 1941 (1979), the Battle Of Los Angeles, The Goonies (1985), Richard Donner, written by Stephen Spielberg, An Adventures In Babysitting (1987), asian guy says, and you can’t do generic asian, narrowing it, it never was a great idea, Tarzan takes the feminine world, needs to be rescued, he’s the Miranda, The Tempest, Rapunzel in the tower, Jane is the Prince Charming, Sheena is a gender flip of the gender flip, The Jungle Book, Green Mansions, a gender flipping website, flips Conan to Conana, Pirates Of Ersatz, girls are capable of being inseminated and having a result happen, racist!, biology is important vs. biology is whatever I say it is, she had a boyfriend who was very demure, she’s all aggressive and barbaric, staying at home, it distracted from the story that was originally being told, flipping the gender of Ghostbusters, they’re not redoing a play, they rewrite the script completely, make the characters dumb, the dumbest one was Bill Murray (he was a fake), a girl who is a babysitter, that’s what the idea was, a fuckin stupid idea (unless Jesse is missing something), they’re not going to inseminate their kids, the whole point of the job “babysitter” why maids are called maids and maidens, we need the money for the family, cooking and cleaning and moving things around, now you have to do that for your husband, the male version, these are teenagers, 12 – 13, they get out of the house, keep them out of the liquor cabinet, tape me to the seat, getting them back, what’s going to happen, one of the kids should be older than you, big and strong, it works, like Home Alone, get them back home before the cops get them, set it in Hollywood, get a celebrity to play a celebrity, Alpha Dog (2006), acknowledge the original movie to set the expectations, we know about this other movie, expectations set, things can be fixed, let’s gender flip stuff, a panacea somehow, let’s gender flip Romeo and Juliet, gay men or lesbians, a girl in her balcony, a guy wooing a girl, a gay movie, butch and femme, old couples, people married for seventy years, in real life this happens, lesbian couple sixty years on, that doesn’t work for storytelling, you have to have some differences, what if you don’t believe in differences, flippable on a dime, Will has somebody visiting, a direct message, your politics are always interesting to me, in foreign policy matters you’re basically a tankie, denying the Uyghur genocide, pro-DPRK, anti-sending arms to Ukraine, in other ways your conservative, love Heinlein, vaxx skepticism, trans skepticism, strong opinions of things being for men and women, a little trad for me, a lot more enthusiastic about abortion, it’s fuckn legal up here, it just happens, grew up in a house with women, uncles are different from aunts, people are easily liftable, they’re the same too, arms and legs and pencils, women writers put on a male character, anything is possible, I was told I could be anything I wanted, you’re wrong about that stuff, that’s not normal, weightlifting, the author’s introduction to Slaughterhouse Five, department of anthropology, any thing you study at university that has the words “studies” at the end, science fiction written by women, people have bad ideas, millions of years, get two dogs, lift up the back end and looking, both sharp teeth, people are even more different than dogs, sexual dimorphism throughout the species, the brain is a part of the body, a school shooting, the person who did the shooting was trans, a dude did it, who does school shootings?, dudes, the fucking hormones do shit to your brain, some girls like to wrestle, a female wrestling team at most high-schools?, female basketball players, female football, soccer, lacrosse is a male game as well, lawn hockey, ring hockey, sports teams and interests for girls, kinda weird, adult person, a manifesto, adults going to schools, a graduate of that school going back, something went wrong there a long time ago, dudes tend to do school shootings, poison, most girls don’t shoot, revenge fantasy, feels they were victimized, commit suicide, abandon schools, not a popular idea, doesn’t seem to come up much in the debates, make it more like prison, mandatory universal education, more people reading, be critical of stuff, there are good teachers, there are good prison guards, an English class, we’re writing essays about the books, very much alone in that, the books are boring and stupid, bullshit to write the essays, Jesse loves essays, what purpose to essays serve in our society, they’re punishment, the next six months will tell, the war goes on for twenty years, jerking off the audience, Jonathan Swift, hilarious essay, this is what you should be striving for, structured like an essay, digressions, making fun of the solution being offered, Edgeworks, why are trying to make everybody like Harlan Ellison, there were essayists, that’s 60 years ago, essays are wonderful, some people should write them, teaching them how to organize their thoughts, let’s look at a youtube comment, sometimes they’re well written and badly spelled, people want to communicate, if they spell correctly, intentional misspelling, teh, more high end, tiktok style video, clickbaity stuff, someguy’s building a mechsuit, forthright people who want to express their appreciation, thanks for this video, an answer to your query, what went wrong, they aren’t being graded, mispronounce a word you’ve never spoken, it all goes back to it’s an institution, this is where you go to die, all scary things, the hospital, preschool, a montesorri school, teachers are burdened with 10-20 kids, yellow jackets, hold hands, dealing with a herd, a herd of children needing to be herded, we’re not herd animals, horse and sheep love big groups, you need an uncle a friend and a dad to teach you something, telling 17 guys the same thing, this kid has this problem, needs certain standards to live up to, math, reading, do you think most kids learn to read in school, do most kids learn math in school, the institution is broken, girls are better at doing schools than boys, public school has always been broken, the schools don’t teach, alternative school, the kids who failed or got kicked out, kids liked it a lot more, teachers got it a lot more, we have to punish criminal wrongdoers, before the settlers came in, put you on this island, this is the way we do it, it’s good to have a place where you have the x-ray machine, school is the worst institution, prisoners learn more in prison than in school, got nothing to do, learn trades, car repair, what did people do before school, apprentices, guilds, learn a trade, go into the family business, sailor, tutors and parents, uncles and aunts, primer books, one of the first ESL teachers around, not a single word of English, very nice lady, students loved her, the normal thing, mostly not, teaching a program they disagree with, they’re always looking for teachers, making a new school, pick the team, the same teaching philosophy, struggle through this horrible system, safe babysitting, fun babysitting, 30 or 40 kids in the classroom, socializing, being down by the river washing and singing songs, also Jonathan, not everybody needs to learn to read, to plead to a politician, plead to a judge, bus driver, short order cook, stop signs, functionally literate, they didn’t learn that from school generally, parents, older brother, older sister, uncle, individual tutors, most kids don’t read with their parents, most parents don’t read, why is that, two parents are outside the home a lot, kids being raised by strangers, they’re little fucking sponges, you can see the kid learning shit, you can see massive progress happening, their brains are young and spongy, some tutor needs to be doing this, that value, they don’t have time, they’re addicted to their other things, priorities, if you work an eight hour shift, reading to your kid is not relaxing, when’s that reading happening, grandma’s retired, without an education we wouldn’t have a common culture, the anthem, the history, Shakespeare, no common frame of reference, get things done, because of the internet, micro-culture, jail them harder, didn’t want university to stop, 4 years then you’re done, learning is wonderful, didn’t remember it ten days later, for what purpose, we’re not able to do that now, concrete me, working the census, training, your name and your pronouns, she doesn’t know what a pronouns, now is the time we need to be caring about pronouns, when people were able to communicating, “leading”, that’s a lady, she’s an old lady you can tell by looking at it, the “leader”, enforcing the rules, she’s an institution, the old lady’s way, the government way, strap her in a chair and yell at her about pronouns, certain frames of reference, society to function smoothly, close to a civil war, upset and grumpy, people don’t understand each other, I’m assuming your pronouns are the worst, a humiliation ritual, land acknowledgment, we’re sitting on unceded territory, couched as honouring, leadership classes, a lack of education, we had a way of doing it, a mixed group, they made the movie, the teacher would get very angry, the kids did not take that lesson, a game being played, kids inherently, the way you learn hopscotch, a child culture, using the rules are being used to fuck with the guards, Pete Buttigieg, Kamala Harris, picking the worst leaders, failed to correct them, they’re enforcing the way they want to speak, I can’t afford a car, a house, or a kid, I can afford a tattoo and a Starbucks and my pronouns my hair colour and my piercings, an animal trapped in a cage, get rid of all the institutions, for humans health, and hence you defend them, corrupt, a little bit of power, elbow that person down, if I controlled the institutions I would like them very much, sent people to the Moons, did institutions send people to the room, a kind of story about institutions we can tell, why did NASA exist after a certain point, few guys working a console looking at old probes, Elon Musk, whoever’s his estate, companies, Google is in institution now, owns planets, preserve knowledge, grouping together is an institutions, start with a big pile of money, they devolve, The Royal Society, what has it done from us lately, when did the Royal Society get disbanded?, the people in the clouds in Gulliver’s Travels, dot org no less, science book prize, responsible for England’s military might, used to colonize the world, they need to be disbanded, overturning of these things, a Robert E. Howard, you’re the Lovecraft in this, the world needs barbarians, vaccines against COVID-19, shape publish discourse, like that the vaccine doesn’t work?, down with the institutions, nothing but oppress and hold Jonathan back, overproduction of people who think they’re elites, an axe to grind against every institution, do suggest anarchy, know a dude, wants to learn that shit, I’m gonna fix that thing, that’s how you do it, YouTube is a better institution, a tech utopian vision, more on the anarchist, works collectively, the system women lived under in James Tiptree’s Houston, Houston, Do You Read?, very old and needs to be changed, when the whole thing collapses, forcibly disbanded, go up to the doors and start chopping, gets the axe, traditional publishing, they don’t really understand what trouble they’re in, the bottom is going to fall out, New York publishing system, people like Jonathan, the authors that people look up to, books are not going to go away, paperbooks are never going to go away, too good a tech to throw away, merits that can’t be replaced, no tech ever dies, but the dominance does change, most people learn to read somehow, she loves her kids, some have to do it in prison, we gotta face facts, essay writing is not the key to success, blogposts, essays, children being taught them is a mistake, executive summaries, a stupid elected politician, make their shitty decision, a concise essay to read, Trump didn’t like reading them, his genius is being a stupid idiot and trusting his gut, they’re all up their own fucking asses, a bunch of words that mean enemy, no way to plan your society, they’re not as interesting generally, very topical, a fantasy story, very highly influential, Horatio Alger style stories, the least popular podcast you can do, if we were all literary people in coffee houses, we’re on the wrong track, learn how to read essays, we’re going to war with Ukraine, The New York Times, intellectuals in the New Jersey area, you don’t want to rock the boat, how was this useful, was once a great institution, centuries ago, The New York Times book review, obviously trash, a low class font, high fancy script font, a long time, new ones pop up, civilization vs. barbarians, the people online are digital barbarians, faceless hordes.

Welleran And The Sword Of Welleran

Posted by Jesse Willis

Reading, Short And Deep #430 – The Giantess by Charles Baudelaire

Reading, Short And Deep

Reading, Short And Deep #430

Eric S. Rabkin and Jesse Willis discuss The Giantess by Charles Baudelaire

Here’s a link to the Clark Ashton Smith translation |PDF|.

The Giantess was first published as La Géante in French in Les Fleurs Du Mal (Flowers Of Evil), 1857.

Posted by Scott D. Danielson Become a Patron!

The SFFaudio Podcast #783 – READALONG: Ill Met In Lankhmar by Fritz Leiber

Jesse, Paul Weimer, Scott Danielson, Trish E. Matson, and Jonathan Weichsel talk about Ill Met In Lankhmar by Fritz Leiber

Talked about on today’s show:
F&SF, 1970, the first story comes forty years later, almost 50 years, Cora’s article, a huge span of time, friend of the podcast, Flame And Crimson by Bryan Murphy, a couple of decades off, revived later, a friend by cooreespondence, role playing by letters, amazingly common, Patricia Reid and whatsername, reprints in books, a response to what’s going on in Weird Tales, Conan, super-coszy Conan, a Conaesque setting, cozy, how rich the world is, Mouser’s girlfriend, silk, an ermine wrap, a snowserpent fur stole, wizard’s familiar, half earthstuff and Nehwon, not meant to be read with your mouth, read with your eyes, inspired by years and years, defining cozy, opposition to hardboiled, tough detective in a seedy city, Lawrence Block’s burglar books vs. the Scudder books, Agatha Christie precedes , Lillian Jackson Braun, too cozy, this has both, a hardboiled ending, nice cozy setting, all dying of lung cancer, London fog, the geography is well stated, the lowlands, Doggerland, northern barbarian, southern guy, supposed to be their first adventure, archetypes, Swords And Deviltry, The Snow Woman, one of the many many public domain ones, finding a narrator, not told in order, filling in the corners, the comic, there’s a lot, at least double Robert E. Howard Conan stories, The Circle Curse, The Bleak Shores, wandering in the wilderness, drill down into the geography and the story, by the time we get to this, cursing to their respective gods, read and loved Conan, Lovecraft’s letters to Clark Ashton Smith, playing a game of role playing as if they’re wizards, an almost impenetrable poem, a letter written inside of the book, what the referent was, here’s a book that we could have written, two of the gods in this universe, seven eyes vs. no eyes, split Conan up into two, northern barbarian vs. Shadizar thief, Robert E. Howard seems to hate magic, oh this again, a little more than a little more, ooh magic that’s that scary stuff, physically taxing, this magic of the world, fun characters, funhouse mirrors of each other, the city, the setting, as rich as the characterization, the archetypal fantasy city of Dungeons & Dragons, Sherlock Holmes stories, The Red Headed League, The Man With The Twisted Lip, thrown in jail for murdering himself, a gentleman’s salary, enriching the underworld, he’s brought the underworld to the surface, really do the lords run the city, cultivating their thievery, come and pluck it again, Zamboula, not as good as this, more muscular and beautiful prose, better characterization of the characters and the world, a city boy, he loves this horrible place, the beggars guild, the thieves guild, Alexander Dumas, Charles Dickens, Oliver Twist, Tim Powers, girlfriend wants revenge, appear gallant, impress my new boyfriend, she’s the cause of the doom, murdered in one of their homes, not killing mongoose, not killing the thieves, a hardness, reading this the wrong way, reading short stories symbolically, how it was encoded, a miniature, the home that the Mouser has made, the whole thing’s rotting, the carpet thief and the rug merchant and the candle plucker, a fairy world to keep his fairy in, she’s was actually much harder than he wanted her to be, shrewdness and cynicism, coddling, her father’s torture chamber, knows more than his protagonists do, writing women with limited roles, what women get to do and don’t get to do, had to go a certain way, almost inevitable that the women get fridged, some alternative thing, disgusted with their drunken revels, more forgivable, known chronology, which would be a better story?, a joke ending, the harder ending, the men don’t come off to well, drunk all the time, their decision making, the deftness and dexterity, very Dungeons & Dragonsy, pre-D&D, Gygax was pulling on stuff, an Appendix N story, this is the good ones, transcribing a D&D campaign, the DM and the player, when the saving throws fail, in a spectacularly heroic way, epic, comic irony, thieves and counter-thieves, all about corruption, papering over the floors, by spreading the weight and money around the corruption seems lessened, all these rats, super-rich, every tunnel has a story, every sewer, the way the pillars are constructed, the armoured car attack, the peripheral hirelings, basically a perfect story for what it’s doing, not a footfault, two hours and fifty minutes, half of a Tor double, won the Hugo for the previous year, Ship Of Shadows, science fictiony psychological, a talking cat and werewolves, Clifford Simaky, pretending to be statues, pretending to be blind, more realistic as beggars, levels of irony, embracing, making the movie Chinatown cozy, guild beggars, my sacred butt, grown folk go blind, mindful of things as they really are, talking about readers as well, rooting for these thieves, they kill a 10 year old, that’s fine, plunging his named sword into the kid, that’s good writing, the level of description, the last year of Lovecraft’s life, one big long description, all the doors are open, missing in modern fiction, beautiful description of a rotting corpse, a big sprawling mess, dim alley, 70s batman comics, make Arkham, corrupt, the original Batman, big into Batman in the 1970s, sinking into a swamp, that richness of description, the destruction, quasi medieval city, ringing its firebell, burning down a district of the city, purify it, these are not heroes, counter-thieves, outside the union guys, a labour story, too corrupt, everything is corrupt in this world, all the thieves in Lankhmar are homegrown, the Conan excuse, The Tower Of The Elephant, I’m a Cimmerian I can climb stuff, pot-bellied master thief, team-up and immediately killed, there’s never a story where you see another character return, Valeria, Belit, to come back, it’s a team-up, two heroes, Green Arrow and Batman teaming up, a team-up issue, Green Arrow and Green Lantern, the instinct people want to go with, Conan, even Kull has Brule the Spear-Slayer, always alone in the end, even the the girls are dead and they swore off the city of Lankhmar, fate that these two guys are together, instantly recognize each-other, same weird plans, thinking about each other, a bromance, big fans, Savage Sword Of Conan, the letters column, Harry Fischer, best thing to be a thief, came up with that plan independently, very silly, had the author chosen a different pair, Fissif and Slavas, working within the system, he likes being afraid, they love their work, being in this gang is cool, not to home of nagging wife and squealing child, enough effort into creating the other characters too, the wizarding stuff, pouring on the wizard, put a knife between his shoulder-blades, inner thoughts of the wizard, horrified by his clubhands, magic has a cost, ableism, other signs, revulsed by it, revolted by what he does not how his hands look, parallel this with a Guy de Maupassant style figure wracked by syphilis, this is the cost of sexing around, the cost of magic in this world is yet another of the corruptions, damaged by her hatred, that that’s what caused her death, the only thing that’s pure and nice is the friendship of our heroes, climbing into a rathole and making it cozy, withering your arm etc., not mention it, all the good things in here, the agency that the women have, the world is different in the 1970s, not-super-sexist, disgusting ableism, sacrificing body parts for the power of magic, people have different ideas, birth defect, high level spells cost you, a duel with a wizard, a wizard-off, a lighting spell, Mouser knows, he grounded himself, pretty clever, one’s better with language, strong and quick, they have the same stats in different places, the character sheets, slightly higher constitution, same wise, dexterity 18, human maximum, you could predict this, Gygax’s numbers, three stories into book 2, Jonathan Davis was the narrator, the art for the audiobook sucks, the best sword and sorcery stories, C.L. Moore’s Jirel of Joiry stories, back into blogs again, the last story in the book, he’s filling in the corners, a hobbit’s second breakfast, Fantastic, Brian Murphy’s list, order of publication, Eric Brighteyes by H. Rider Haggard, She, The Sword Of Welleran, The Ship Of Ishtar by A. Merritt, Tolkien before Tolkien, Dwellers In The Mirage, inter-war writers, so many like that, The Moon Pool, the Munsey magazines, hard to generate interest, what is that Lovecraft thing?, the Conan movie, for this group, reprint series, rekicked back into gear, Seven Footprints To Satan, a silent movie, captive in a mansion, gambling, giant stairway, giant metaphor for the stockmarket crash, 97 pages, Creep, Shadow!, A Good Story Is Hard To Find podcast, incredible Virgil Finlay art, The Woman In The Wood, How We Found Circe, The Shadow Kingdom, The Tower Of The Elephant, Beyond The Black River, Red Nails, tortured by his apprentice for hundreds of years, The Threepenny Opera, Bertolt Brecht, an adaptation of The Beggar’s Opera, an organization, the Thieves’ World books, Elder Scrolls, Fallout, secret societies, literally underground, the smoke and the backstory for why everybody wears black and grey, so cosy, one Trish would like to live in, do you want to play the Lankhmar open world, a new startup for an open Thieves World, in an ironic way, a little post-modern, how ironic it would be if, the same way that killing that kid is fine, I gotta little crazy and I killed a 10 year old, so artificial, not even a hint this is 10,000 years ago, definitely not Earth, a secondary world, so secondary, Denethor seems to be going on and on about something, I don’t want to be a Boromir, no messages taken, when you read Conan, Howard has a hobby horse, an idea he’s dealing with, secondary world creation for fun, don’t get roaring drunk, don’t make promises you’re going to regret, corked jugs, get drunk is the message, follow the Persian custom, they don’t actually eat anything, wine fortified with brandy, small beer splashing, wine spritzer, dainty, order a Gray Mouser on, The Tale Of Satampra Zeiros by Clark Ashton Smith, Jason Thompson’s adaptation to comics, actually tentacles, sexy tentacles, Cora Buhlert’s essay Black God’s Shadow: Or Overcoming Trauma As A Core Theme Of Sword And Sorcery, a really good essay, lost his wife, so relatable, gloomy and depressing, the end of Red Nails, they’re just starting their lives, gloomy Guses, gigantic melancholics and gigantic mirth, emotionally powerful, Luke Burrage is getting tired of reading squeecore and torwave books, heists and trauma, consolation, there are other girlfriends, a whole world of adventure to be had, drink you latte and pet a cat, cosy to hardboiled, experience this noir things, sad and happy, Judgement Night, a princess in a warrior society, a woman for one night, pleasure planet, pleasure moon, loves the enemy now, a very C.L. Moore thing, very romantic, a little Campbell, less poetic and flowery, different themed rooms, chasing him through the planet, destroying all these romantic rooms, going up in dust, Dragon Moon by Henry Kuttner, not as mean as Bester, pretty mean, Fury, a dome beneath the surface of Venus, a totalitarian society, Stefan Rudnicki narrating, 27 pages and took the cover, inside has interior art by Hannes Bok, Atlantis, princess, viking dude, a dragon, the Wild Hunt, a quote from G.K. Chesterton, Rudyard Kipling, named chapters, we need to get an audiobook of that done, a novella or novelette, spread it around, Liane The Wayfarer by Jack Vance, Dying Earth, Poul Anderson, The Tale Of Hauk, The Broken Sword, Melnibone, The Dreaming City, Sailor On The Seas Of Fate, Bazarr Of The Bizarre, opens with a snowball fight, Frost Giant’s Daughter lacks snowball fights and skiing, the wrapping, well met, a rotten thing you carpet over and wrap it in silks, oh, right, gloomy and bad, the phraseology, Fantastic Stories Of Imagination, people loved illustrating these stories, prelims, how about this for the cover?, Robert E. Howard illustration, 10,000 people painting Conan, few Solomon Kane, lots of Red Sonja, even the rejects are amazing, a walking statue, the rejected cover, the very first story?, Adept’s Gambit, Karl Edward Wagner, a darker version of Conan, medieval England, a werewolf story, Two Sought Adventure, first one wrote, two left, David Drake, Imaro by Charles Saunders, first book was shitcanned by the publisher, Conan in Africa, 11 hours 33 minutes, with introduction by Charles de Lint, a third of the way through the list, writing that book, taken up by that, ages ago, an RSS feed that works, a keyboard that came out in 2015, watch youtube videos on it, a clock, an RSS catcher built into the keyboard, subscriptions, it was wiped out, I was there, Gandalf, substack is doing its best, what we really want is RSS back, they tend not to get supported, patiently waiting for Paul to start a Substack, problems with the owners of Substack, happily disconnected, next evolution of blogging, it was pointed out that neo-Nazis were using it, TERFs and other fun people, donates money to holocaust deniers, how do we get away from owners?, google dominates but it doesn’t own email, torrents, Cory Doctorow just wrote a book about that sort of thing, The Internet Con: How To Seize The Means Of Computation, plugs are good, Saber And Shadow by S.M. Stirling and Shirley Meier, a gender flipped Ill Met In Lankhmar, neither lady has pants, long sleeved tunics and no pants, they’re into each other, corruption comes from the top, unpleasant fanatics that don’t mind killing many many people, the nobles are corrupt, Earth many millennia later, homeless wanderers, red maned, just so we know, a creature of knives and magic, no ebook or audiobook, Discworld, Terry Pratchett, other comps, Scott Lynch’s The Lies Of Locke Lamora, felt like a YA, The Hammer And The Blade by Paul S. Kemp, a fixup, Scylla’s Daughter, now it is all novels, if you’re in fantasy and science fiction conversations, Heroic Fantasy Quarterly, a quarterly blog, Tales From The Magician’s Skull, Goodman Games, they exist, people who buy things on Amazon, it needs physical distribution, Sword And Sorcery Magazine, September 2023, New Edge, a lot of places to read it, was sword & sorcery ever mainstream?, when Howard was writing, Fight Stories, Top-Notch, Action Stories, DAW books, very geeky, offshoot of psychedelic and heavy metal culture, most people don’t read any books, Readers Digest Condensed books, Michael Crichton, Nora Roberts, books need trimming, the movies were huge, theatrical to video, Xena and Hercules, gotta prep, you can talk all your Jesse talks to much talk.

TOR DOUBLE - Ill Met In Lankhmar

Ill Met In Lankhmar COMIC

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The SFFaudio Podcast #767 – AUDIOBOOK/READALONG: The Charwoman’s Shadow by Lord Dunsany

The SFFaudio Podcast

The SFFaudio Podcast #767 – The Charwoman’s Shadow by Lord Dunsany, read by Michelle Fry for LibriVox. This is a complete and unabridged reading of the book (7 hours, 40 minutes) followed by a discussion of it. Participants in the discussion include Jesse, Trish E. Matson, and Scott Danielson

Talked about on today’s show:
rhymes with rainy, mainly falls on the plainy in Spainy, the main character’s name, a question, was he Catholic?, set in Spain, a man of all seasons, both sides of the Irish civil war, his heart is Irish, seated in Ireland, historically wealthy and famous, kinsmen of a Catholic saint, a crosier head, a staff with a hook at the top, buck you to hard, quite a bit of Dunsany, Reading, Short And Deep, mind would wander away, caught up in his curly-cues of ideas, a super simple plot, The Book Of Wonder Stories, Wizard demands somebody’s shadow for services rendered, Jorge Luis Borges story, writing at length later, 1926, January 2023, more as the years go by, other public domain already, better at length?, the exact same content, soak in with a short, beautiful writing, Jesse doesn’t care about plot, it’s a good book, Trish and Scott loved it, The King Of Elfland’s Daughter, Penguin Book edited by S.T. Joshi, he is quite good, excellent themes, where the plot went, Jesse had no clue, oblivious, she’s too old him, she’s of the wrong class for him, once he gets a look at her silhouette, Ramone Alonzo Matthew Mark Luke John, trying to help other people, being a knightly hero, spending time with the ladies, a very strong will, moved by pity, he doesn’t understand at first, misery, swears to help her, quixotic, the Spain setting, a Don Quixote character, young and doofusy, romances of other heroes, not a bad thing, choose your heroic quests carefully, Persuasion by Jane Austen, being part of this society, doing his duties, the Jane Austen structure, beyond this wood we set much by gold, beyond this wood lies error, evil magician, stories about genies giving us three wishes, focused on the wrong thing, the evil wizard that’s not so evil, A Good Story Is Hard To Find, Northanger Abbey, a fun writer, her own genre, true with Dunsany as well, so many gems of Dunsany in this, the opening, meta openings, the image of the man crossing the landscape, talking to his dad, not playing ball anymore, son, you gotta earn some money, the priests have told you that money is filthy, for good crops to grow they have to have something filthy in their roots, the guy who takes care of our horses, they get paid once a year, we live on rocky ground, the father is wise, the sister seems to be wise, everybody is wise except for our doofusy young man, he’s just young, it’s great to spend time at the knee of Lord Dunsany, the master before Ramon Alonzo shows up, elixir vitae, resounding stairs, whatever the rats might dare, golden key, a lock he turned only once every thirty years, little curtains the spiders had drawn across it, alone with the Moon, age worn steps of oak, free from its foibles, unyoked by its causes, fresh and keen, the nimble alertness of youth, a well wrought rapier coming to its first war, feeling the new generation, the newer ones, refreshing, rattling to the older generations, cast off the generation he’s in and become part of the new one, interesting concepts, love the language, so many pleasant digressions to follow along with, sending out the shadows, far beyond the outer planets, the Lovecraft element, the torment that that causes, her name was Anemone, the narrator, she’s the main character, her backstory drives a lot of what’s going on, we would have recognized you, the house with the lit window, the money is long gone, regretting letting her go, such a great backstory, he’s lifting a curse, he tricked her into giving up her shadow, her youth and beauty, Duckweed, revealing of the wizard, above, he’s not in it for her body, he’s in it for her shade, certain demons have no shape, Ariel and Caliban, servants or slave, to commune with Yuggoth, what the gossip is on Pluto, the genre of this, clearly a fantasy, magic for science, boring thing: transmutations of metals, Chapter 12, had you anonymized this book, it’s clearly obvious who wrote this,

Ramon Alonzo pondered bitterly: he had sold his shadow for gold, and now gold was not needed.

He had not yet learned the whole art of transmutation. Would the magician give back his shadow?

And Mirandola must have her love-potion, and the charwoman have her shadow out of the box. He had much to do if his plans were to come to fruition.

Back he went to the gloomy room that was sacred to magic. “I have no need of gold,” he said.

“It is a worthless metal,” replied the magician. “The philosophers sought it for the interest they took in re-arranging the element. But the stuff itself was nought to them. They buried it where I have said, and have often warned man of its worthlessness; in testimony whereof their writings remain to this day.”

“I would learn no more of it,” said Ramon Alonzo.

“No?” said the magician.

“I pray you therefore give back my shadow,” he said.

“But it is my fee,” said the magician.

“I would learn other things,” said the young man, “for other fees. But this fee I pray you return.”

“Alas,” said the magician, “you have learned much already.”

“Of this matter nothing,” said Ramon Alonzo.

“Alas, yes,” replied the magician. “For you have learned the oneness of matter, and that there is but one element. And this is a great secret to the vulgar, who believe there are four. And doubtless they will, in their error, discover even more than these four before ever they come to learn that there is but one, which you have learnt already, and this is my fee for it.” And he stooped and rapped the shadow-box somewhat sharply.

“You gave me a shadow to wear in its place,” said the young man.

“I will make you a longer one,” replied the magician.

Ramon Alonzo saw that words would not do it, and that whatever he said would be verbally parried with skill.

“Then give me a love-potion,” he said.

“I do not dispense these things,” said the magician haughtily.

“Then teach me how they are made, and not the making of gold.”

The magician pondered a moment. It was all one to him. He had his fee safe in the shadow-box. He despised equally gold and love, and cared not which he taught. Some etiquette he had learned from some older magician seemed to prompt him to give something for his fee.

“Gladly,” he answered briefly.

Then Ramon Alonzo sat down without a word, thinking of Mirandola.

He had never enquired the reason of anything that she asked for. It was Mirandola, with eyes like a stormy evening. Thoughts passed behind those eyes such as never visited him. Mirandola knew. It is hard to say how the flash of those eyes swayed him. He never sought to know, and never questioned Mirandola’s demands.

“By the admixture of crocodile’s tears with the slime of snails,” came the voice of the Master, “the basis of all love-potions is constructed. Unto this is to be added a powder, obtained by pounding the burned plumage of nightingales. Flavour with attar of roses. Add a pinch of the dust of a man that has been a king, and of a woman that has been fair two pinches, and mix with common dew. Do this by light only of glow-worms and saying suitable spells.”

Ramon Alonzo, following the gestures that the Master made as he spoke, saw on the shelves the ingredients that he mentioned. He saw a jar holding attar of roses beside one named “Dust of Helen.” He saw two jars side by side called “Dust of Pharaoh” and “Dust of Ozymandias,” one of them probably Rameses. He saw a vial labelled “Crocodile’s Tears.” All that he needed seemed there; outside in the wood the glow-worms burned, and there were plenty of snails.

The lesson went on drearily, the magician intoning various spells that the young man learned by heart or believed he learned, and naming alternative ingredients that had of old been used in more torrid lands. Of the ingredients Ramon Alonzo was so sure that no mistake was possible; if ever he erred at all it was with the spells.

guided by the plot, really good movie or an episode of a show, Sorcerer’s Apprentice, The Rejected Sorcerer (aka El Brujo Postergado Borges) story, a trail of flowered footsteps, finally a reason for CGI (removing a shadow), the uncanny, Michelle Fry from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, hints of irony,

Delightfully imaginative, somewhat similar to Dunsany’s blockbuster fantasy novel, The King Of Elfland’s Daughter (and published just two years after it), this equally entertaining, verbally voluptuous tale brings us in touch with the heraldry, artistry, and superstitions of the bygone Golden Age of Spain; with the magical arts of ancient times– alchemy, wizardry, potions, forest creatures that go bump in the night, quests for esoteric knowledge, use of the Philosopher’s Stone, and the Catholic church’s war against the ‘Black Art”. Above all, Dunsany explores the many mysterious properties of shadows, and warns what havoc might befall you if you lose yours. Published in 1926.

ruminating on the word “shadow”, an exotic location, the rolling out of the panisci and the change of age, he went therein and the golden age was over, the best age ever?, silver age comics, a place he can set his stories, the wizard is doing philosophy, Raistlin from the Dragonlance books, much more playful, a curious music, the scurry of little things, all manner of magical things, all the children of Pan, landscape talk, the sale of pasturelands, the rocky terrain, why people go through forests, a fictional spain, Averoigne of Clark Ashton Smith, they lost their minds as should we, the girls ran screaming from him, in myth and stuff, Dracula, in myth, a spirit or a ghost, that doesn’t cast a shadow, demons didn’t cast shadows, shadow means soul, a shade, fits him with a shadow, a very sharp knife, our shadows grow and contract, the science element, the regular people are smart, a close reading of Lovecraft stories, the regular people are always right, communing with devils, all the rumors are true, what magic is, communicate with things on other planets, like a lich I live forever, because she’s had her shadow removed she’s not aging, Tithonus, The Picture Of Dorian Gray, a happy romantic ending, the shadow cast the body, flips what reality is, the shadow would take the shape of the body, very Catholic, working these idea minds, everybody in this book is clever, working information, Scott would love this book, so used to hearing confessions, set in Spain, we don’t have wizards in Ireland, wizards in Wales, the tone would have been different, exotic Spain, Don Rodriguez: Chronicles of Shadow Valley, 1922, 1926, no excuses not to do it now, LibriVox, Ballantine Adult Fantasy, The Blue Star by Fletcher Pratt, the Lin Carter introductions, not the world’s greatest writer, has good taste, an enthusiast, bringing attention, we can trust everything he suggests, publication order, The Wood Beyond The World by William Morris, 1894, an artist writing a book, the wallpaper guy, Scott is 55, hard science fiction, matured into fantasy, hard science fiction is simple and fun, here’s a big dumb object, what do you think about that?, Spin, they’re hard to make and hard to make good, Childhood’s End, go onto Netflix and type in science fiction, set in the future, heist in a science fiction background, the real what if kinda stuff, Westerns, watched all the submarine movies, these are old books that have stood the test of time, Shakespeare’s Planet, Invitation To The Game, how short it was, it says VR on the tin, there are still good books to be found, looking up a famous author that writes something you’re interested in, Dunsany wrote a ton, lesser works, In A Dim Room, nailed this concept, tricked me, what a gifted writer, knowing how to not overstay your welcome in sentences, the digressions are handled, speaking true things in those asides, there’s no lies in here, this is the way the world is, this is the way people are, descriptions of things, descriptions of rooms, the spiderwebs, she doesn’t clean the spiderwebs on the curtains, going back to his spidery bedroom, dust, dust as a theme, shadow is all over this book, a constant word, implying age, a magical component, dust can obscure, the one element, the essence of beautiful woman, simple dew, both water, master of many other things, the master of language, sit there spellbound,

“Never again,” she said, “never again. It lay over the fields once; it used to make the grass such a tender green. It never dimmed the buttercups. It did no harm to anything. Butterflies may have been scared of it, and once a dragon-fly, but it did them never a harm. I’ve known it protect anemones awhile from the heat of the noonday sun, which had otherwise withered them sooner. In the early morning it would stretch away beyond our garden right out to the wild; poor innocent shadow that loved the grey dew. And in the evening it would grow bold and strong and run right down the slopes of hills, where I walked singing, and would come to the edges of bosky tangled places, till a little more and its head would have been out of sight: I’ve known the fairies then dance out from their sheltered arbours in the deeps of briar and thorn and play with its curls. And, for all its rovings and lurkings and love of mystery, it never left me, of its own accord never. It was I that forsook it, poor shadow, poor shadow that followed me home.

fakes, I need a gimmick, how do I make this simpler, what are some basic things people can relate to, look at your shadow, kids goes to sleep, literally doing magic, her curls are being played with fairies, congratulated themselves and felt the need to never write again, thoughtful digression, so readable, as simple a story you can get, that twist, why isn’t he worried about his own shadow, doesn’t even have a name, it fits, the question, leaving the scene and coming back, we grow into understanding what this book was about, her shadow was right in the title, rummaging in the shadow box, I know who that is, we’re slightly smarter than Ramon Alonzo, the love potion, her suitor, the brother doesn’t doesn’t need the money, the potion goes awry, tolerance engendered, nurses him back to health, the switcheroo, expecting the reader to be wiser than Ramon Alonzo, not a children’s book, Farmer In The Sky or Charwoman’s Shadow, mature enough, a love potion for his sister and some gold for his dad, too mature in a large sense, the subjects, to sophisticated in its simplicity, what makes The Hobbit or The Lord Of The Rings fun, dragons, gold!, all the sodas, all the comic books, have you noticed how rocky our fields are, your sister isn’t going to dowry herself, stories of childhood, we were all once children, that incredible playfulness, so reminding of childhood, adults enjoy reading books written for the YA market, T. Kingfisher, Ursula Vernon’s A Wizard’s Guide To Defensive Baking, Loadstar Award, reading it to children, a book written for children that adults can appreciate, a Jane Austen knockoff, Jane Austen with Cinderella, hitting all those fun beats, an unconsciousness, the author is unwilling to confront this?, yes, keep your class, modern colloquial attitudes, that’s kinda weird, the answer is no, aiming for the feeling of those things that I like, comedic elements, horrific elements, declaring war against wizards, a class that gets blamed in the siege in this city, using discrimination against others, the presumed ideal audience has the characters slightly older than you, children’s YA, too good a writer, the disposable forgettable, material that we burn through early on, pick any year that you were alive as a person, movies that would be important later on, its iconicness, name it and the associations come up, I’m smarter than I was, noticing the author, John Carpenter’s whatever it is, adults in touch with their youthfulness, boring for kids, too digressive, indulgent, a suitable student, a stage he goes through, technically an evil wizard, rocket fuel is needed, when you take your dog to the vet, how he acts, just doin what wizards do, TV Tropes, affable evil, so focused on tropes, totally fun, every scene is full of tropes, it was all a dream, Shakespeare, 17 book titles, from other character’s POV, the priest’s POV, the dog’s POV, A Night In The Lonesome October by Roger Zelazny, Smoke And Shadows by Tanya Huff, a shadow lord, possess people and do other things, The Silmarillion, how Sauron is a character, the ringwraiths are only shadows, without their clothes and horses they don’t exist, back to be reclothed, written for children, overlays a shadow, the shadow of an actual dragon passing over the water, some dwarfs want their money vs. make things right, the gold that glitters on the ring, the same idea mines, working real pure material, I want heists!, gay pirates on a heist!, Ronin (1998), international criminals chasing a suitcase, a McGuffin, these are great action sequences, these car chases are terrific, an opening sequence, a series of tropes, real attention, power corrupts people, we do need some money, son, fun stuff, why I think we like him, wizards don’t exist!, dealing with real themes, he does so much with a tiny idea, holding on to with stories like this, storytelling, since the beginning, something mythic and deep that really appeals, foundational, David Mamet, French action movies, Sean Bean, spies betraying each other, running around not knowing what you’re running around for, an action movie saying fundamentally we don’t know what we’re doing on this planet, being lied to by ourselves and by our governments, con-men movies, people lying to themselves movies, Homicide (1991), who killed somebody, a mistake early on, pulls the rug out from under, go back to basics, in a way that Shakespeare does, the big prop in Othello is a handkerchief, it all hangs on a handkerchief, swordfights, good storytelling, Wikipedia stuff, Arthur C. Clarke & Lord Dunsany: A Correspondence, Olaf Stapledon, at their best at short stories, $165, 83 pages, Anamnesis press, so many cool books, Persuasion by Jane Austen, Julie Davis, 6 books, Mary Shelley has other books, a legacy that big, 6 books that were all great, modern Stephen King, Westlake wrote 60-70 books, a writer’s writer vs. a regular writer, low output, Ted Chiang, long may he live, he needs a good 75 years or so, whatever pace he wants, how can I help make sure he stays alive, would that help, send some vitamins, here’s a helmet, Extrapolation, inter-library loan, fanzine packaging, two dude contemporaneous for a period, both in issues of F&SF, a really long life, 1878-1957, Lovecraft was very short, a farther distant past, all of WWII, the Boer War, Dunsany was in the 2nd Boer War, Robert E. Howard died at 30, 4 or 5 feet, Robert E. Howard is at least double that, started later and had a way bigger output, commercial purposes, much rather be writing letters, I have a demon inside me and that demon must be served, you gotta kill yourself, an astounding number of Robert E. Howard stories, keep turning up new Robert E. Howard stories, his output was such, places he sold, trunks full of unsold stories, unfinished, finished by other people, Austen died at 41, unfinished novel, Emily Dickinson,, Tales From The White Heart, Draco Tavern, The Black Widowers, Jorkens (Lord Dunsany), club stories, and Jorkens said, In A Dim Room, thrilling tales, I cannot be held responsible, a thrilling story of India, running away from a tiger, that would change the game, he can smell the tiger, the floor of the cave is very smooth, many paws for many years, you are talking to a ghost, he had me, he tricked me, he’s a good tricker, fables from the Fountain, homage, an anthology of British writers, The 9 Billion And First Name Of God, everybody loves those guys, Foundations Friends, The Originist by Orson Scott Card, loved and enjoyed, Farnham’s Freehold, Heinlein rhymes with grime, father’s day Brunch, playing D&D lately, the whole family plays, the starter pack, Dragon of Icespire Peak, more adventures in book form, that’s cool, in Hades right now, an Edgar Allan Poe module, pretty swordless, there’s a troll, The Call Of Cthulhu starter set, online group, I died once, how hard it was to shoot somebody, it went horribly wrong for me, how immersive it is, how into it you can get, during college, nothing, conventions, GenCon every year, a zombie apocalypse, a female scientist, military people, Delta Green?, I cooked the food and had long ago run out of meat and was using zombies, so immersive, a notch better than even reading a story, grow up, get old, kids grow up, get old, now you have to enough people to form a party, sit back and relax, good job, thank you sir, have a great day.

The Charwoman's Shadow by Lord Dunsany

The Charwoman's Shadow - HERRING

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Reading, Short And Deep #411 – The Willow Landscape by Clark Ashton Smith

Reading, Short And Deep

Reading, Short And Deep #411

Eric S. Rabkin and Jesse Willis discuss The Willow Landscape by Clark Ashton Smith

Here’s a link to a PDF of the story.

The Willow Landscape was first published in Philippine Magazine, May 1931

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