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Topics - xiagan

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301
[Jan 2014] - Betrayal / [Jan 2014] Betrayal - Submission Thread
« on: January 01, 2014, 10:37:41 PM »


"The saddest thing about betrayal is that it never comes from your enemies. It comes from friends and loved ones."


Your challenge this month is to write about a betrayal. It doesn't matter if you write from the perspective of the person betrayed or the one betraying or a third party.

Rules:

1. This can be prose or a poem.
2. Must contain betrayal and elements of fantasy.
4. Prose must be 500-1500 words long.
5. Poetry must be 100-500 words long.
6. You will be disqualified if you exceed the limits, full stop. That's why they're called limits.

Entry will close January 31st 2014 and voting will begin February 1st 2014.


Please post your entry below. All members are eligible to join. If you are not a member you can join here. Sign up is free and all are welcome! :)


The winner will have their piece displayed on the main Fantasy Faction website in March 2014.

Remember that this thread is only for entries. Discussion or questions can be posted here.

302
[Dec 2013] - Underdog / Underdog - Voting Thread
« on: January 01, 2014, 08:17:19 PM »
Time to vote on December's Writing Contest - Underdog!

Please read through all of the entries in the submission thread and place your vote for your favorite entry in this thread. You won't be able to see the vote breakdown until the vote closes, so spread the word for others to come and vote! We do ask that if you entered, to vote for someone else.

Remember that the winning entry will be posted on the main Fantasy-Faction site in February 2014.
Good luck to all our entrants and thank you for voting! :)

303
Fantasy Book & Author Discussion / Help, my TBR pile is intimidating me!
« on: December 15, 2013, 11:06:29 PM »
I'm a fast reader. Way of Kings took me three days, Republic of Thieves two. When I actually read. And that's my problem. I love to read and I used to read in about every free minute.
Nowadays? I still read a lot, but sneaking a book in every spare moment? Only if it's something I was highly anticipating. Like A Memory of Light, Republic of Thieves, Steelheart or Raising Steam.

Why did my habit change? True, I have a tablet now and Angry Birds is more addicting than I would've thought. And yes, I'm trying to be not only a reader but a writer too. And then there's the job, which is keeping me more busy than university ever did. But the main reason? You may have guessed it from the title already (and you are to blame, btw):
My To Be Read Pile is intimidating me. Since I joined the forums some time ago, I learned about more books I want to read than ever before (and still do). I want to participate in the book club(s), read newly hyped authors and all the books you just have to have read.
And I'm simply not catching up. It's absolutely a luxury problem to buy books faster than I can read them, I know that. But still.

I decided to check how big the pile really is and discovered that it's too big for one pile. Here's a picture of my piles:


(bigger picture here)

Some of the books are there for over two years. I really meant to read Abercrombie or Weeks but then I became distracted by Sanderson, Rothfuss, Miéville, Cooper, Carriger, Scalzi, Lyle, Cole, Hulick, Newton, Valence, Lawrence, Knight, Fforde, Morgenstern, Sebold, Wooding and all the others...
The feeling that I'll never manage to catch up is demotivating me and makes it seem like a job and not the fun it used to be. Don't get me wrong, I do enjoy reading. It's the picking up of a book when dozens others are waiting I hate.

So what to do? How do you handle your TBRs?
I'm thinking of not buying new books until I've read the ones I already own (with a few exceptions: book club reads, books from series I already started, and new books from my favorite authors).

Any more ideas or advice?
(Sadly, audiobooks aren't my thing.)
Feel free to post your TBR piles too or tell me what I absolutely have to read from it in the last days of 2013. ;)

304
Last week, last chapters! Now you're free to discuss anything without the fear of spoiling something. :)

The summit was a bit of an anticlimax, imho. It was just a conference where people talked and nothing happened (besides his talk to Prince Sitri). Then he had sex with Caz again, the bomb exploded and he and Sam had to flee. That was a pretty cool sequence and Howly's end was funny and for Bobby probably extremely satisfying.

And he killed the Ghallu. Wow. Now we know what Orban meant with special silver. I'm a bit sad that the amulet is gone now, though and I bet Caz will be too. It saved his life, true, but I don't think she wants to hear: "Oh yes, the amulet that is so special to you that you kept it for 500 years and let it burn you every single day? I kinda lost it after a few hours and I didn't even try to save the lock of hair from your favorite servant girl."

I knew that there was more to Sam, so I wasn't that surprised when it turned out that he was Doc Habari. I was surprised that Bobby had the feather all along. That was great. On the other hand, I'm not sure his jacket pocket was the safest place. He could've lost his jacket (or have it destroyed) countless time when he was fleeing from Eligor's men or the Ghallu.

Clarence was a bit disappointing. He was exactly what Bobby and Sam thought from the beginning. A simple, not too bright, corporate spy.

I'm not sure what to think about Heaven. It looks as if God really made the humans in his image (and his angels too) with the difference that our world develops and gets better and Heaven is static and doesn't even try to correct the many flaws it has.
No wonder some think the third way is necessary. I wouldn't want to be in this kind of heaven either.

This book had a few weak points but was, all in all, very enjoyable and a fast read. In my eyes, Williams succeeded in trying out a new voice.

305
This sections starts strong with the Ghallu destroying the Compasses and injuring Sam. Now I'm really curious how Bobby will kill this thing or if he has to have it exorcised or something alike.
I'm not sure that Eligor is behind it. Bobby seems to think that, but why should Eligor want him dead before he can tell him where the feather is?

Caz saves him (again), shows him her lair and after she tries to kill him they have sex. A lot. And after that again. A lot.
The interesting part is that she opens up to him (pun not intended) and tells him her story back from when she was alive (apparently only angels get their memories wiped/personality destroyed) and how and why she was eternally damned. She must've had a pretty bad advocate. Reading what she had to endure, one would think that she would've deserved some peace after spending her life in a place alike to hell. I think Bobby thinks that too and uses it to justify his feelings for her.

Bobby's meeting with Howlingfell was quite entertaining. I think I laughed out loud when Howly opened Bobby's note.

Sam's hurt pretty bad so Bobby has a nice evening with Clarence, embarrassing him in front of his hosts and taking him to heaven to find out some things for him. I'm a bit annoyed about the bullying he does to Clarence. It may have been funny in the beginning, but now it's a bit too much especially when the kid does stuff for him and he mocks him instead of thanking him. I have the bad feeling that this will backfire in the end.

And finally, he finds the atheist's bible and we learn what's it all about at last. Anybody an idea who Habari is? And how he can do things not even normal angels can do?
Pretty interesting concept, this third way. I can understand how it may upset heaven and hell...

306
Writers' Corner / Children's books NOT to write
« on: November 14, 2013, 08:23:44 AM »
Found this list about children's books you shouldn't write.

It's quite funny so I thought I'd share. :)


Are we able to make a list about fantasy books NOT to write?

307
[OCT 2013] Snow Crash / Snow Crash: First impressions
« on: October 22, 2013, 08:20:05 AM »
I just read the first chapter of Snow Crash and it wasn't what I expected in a weird but funny way. Having read the blurb I didn't expect a chapter about how future pizza delivery works. :D
I think I have to get used to Stephenson's writing style but so far I'm enjoying it.

308
The book's out for quite some time now and there still isn't a thread to do all the spoilerific talk? Shame on you. ;)

I think we all agree that it is an incredibly brilliant book and that it was totally worth the few decades we had to wait for it. :)

[There are no spoiler tags in this thread because there is one in the topic title. This is your last warning. If you get spoilered after this line, it's totally not our problem.  ;D]


What I loved most is that we finally got to see Sabetha. And not only a short appearance but as much as anyone
could've hoped for. What a cool, badass girl!

My first two thoughts after finishing the book were: "Sooo Sabetha is pregnant now?" and "Oh shit, the Falconer is back."

I hope we find out in the next book what happened after the GB's left the Moncraine Boulidazi company. And if they (Chains?) managed to catch Moncraine.

I finished it yesterday and immediately started the Lies of Locke Lamora (didn't manage a reread before). I'm still thinking a lot about RoT, so I may post more later.

What do you think about the 3rd book in the Gentleman Bastards series?

309
Upcoming Conventions & Book Releases / Book release: The Deaths of Tao
« on: August 27, 2013, 09:59:51 PM »
The sequel to "The Lives of Tao" by Wesley Chu gets released on October, 29th.

310
Fantasy Book & Author Discussion / If I was a famous author...
« on: August 15, 2013, 03:34:13 PM »


Nice idea?  ;D

J.K. Rowling is writing books under unknown pseudonyms, Sanderson is stealth-signing books in airport bookshops, ...

What would you do, if you were a famous author?

311
Monthly Writing Contest / August Writing Challenge?
« on: August 08, 2013, 10:06:17 AM »
I'm back from vacations and now ready to participate in the next writing challenge. :) When is the one for August going up?

312
Quote from:  Ray Bradbury
“About two years ago, a letter arrived from a solemn young Vassar lady telling me how much she enjoyed reading my experiment in space mythology, The Martian Chronicles.

But, she added, wouldn’t it be a good idea, this late in time, to rewrite the book inserting more women’s characters and roles?

A few years before that I got a certain amount of mail concerning the same Martian book complaining that the blacks in the book were Uncle Toms and why didn’t I “do them over”?

Along about then came a note from a Southern white suggesting that I was prejudiced in favor of the blacks and the entire story should be dropped.

Two weeks ago my mountain of mail delivered forth a pipsqueak mouse of a letter from a well-known publishing house that wanted to reprint my story “The Fog Horn” in a high school reader.

In my story, I had described a lighthouse as having, late at night, an illumination coming from it that was a “God-Light.” Looking up at it from the viewpoint of any sea-creature one would have felt that one was in “the Presence.”

The editors had deleted “God-Light” and “in the Presence.”

Some five years back, the editors of yet another anthology for school readers put together a volume with some 400 (count ‘em) short stories in it. How do you cram 400 short stories by Twain, Irving, Poe, Maupassant, and Bierce, into one book?

Simplicity itself. Skin, debone, demarrow, scarify, melt, render down and destroy. Every adjective that counted, every verb that moved, every metaphor that weighed more than a mosquito–out! Every simile that would have made a sub-moron’s mouth twitch–gone! Any aside that explained the two-bit philosophy of a first-rate writer–lost!

Every story, slenderized, starved, bluepenciled, leeched and bled white, resembled every other story. Twain read like Poe read like Shakespeare read like Dostoevsky read like–in the finale–Edgar Guest. Every word of more than three syllables had been razored. Every image that demanded so much as one instant’s attention–shot dead.

Do you begin to get the damned and incredible picture?

How did I react to all of the above?

By “firing” the whole lot.

By sending rejection slips to each and every one.

By ticketing the assembly of idiots to the far reaches of hell.

The point is obvious. There is more than one way to burn a book. And the world is full of people running about with lit matches. Every minority, be it Baptist/Unitarian, Irish/Italian/Octogenarian/Zen Buddhist, Zionist/Seventh-day Adventist, Women’s Lib/Republican, Mattachine/Four Square Gospel feels it has the will, the right, the duty to douse the kerosene, light the fuse. Every dimwit editor who sees himself as the source of all dreary blanc-mange plain porridge unleavened literature, licks his guillotine and eyes the neck of any author who dares to speak above a whisper or write above a nursery rhyme.

Fire-Captain Beatty, in my novel Fahrenheit 451, described how the books were burned first by minorities, each ripping a page or a paragraph from this book, then that, until the day came when the books were empty and the minds shut and the libraries closed forever.

“Shut the door, they’re coming through the window, shut the window, they’re coming through the door,” are the words to an old song. They fit my life0style with newly arriving butcher/censors every month. Only six weeks ago, I discovered that, over the years, some cubby-hole editors at Ballantine Books, fearful of contaminating the young, had bit by bit, censored some 75 separate sections from the novel. Students, reading the novel which, after all, deals with censorship and book-burning in the future, wrote to tell me of this exquisite irony. Judy-Lynn Del Rey, one of the new Ballantine editors, is having the entire book reset and republished this summer with all the damns and hells back in place.

A final test for old Job II here: I sent a play, Leviathan 99, off to a university theater a month ago. My play is based on the “Moby Dick” mythology, dedicated to Melville, and concerns a rocket crew and a blind space captain who venture forth to encounter a Great white Comet and destroy the destroyer. My drama premieres as an opera in Paris this autumn. But, for now, the university wrote back that they hardly dared do my play–it had no women in it! and the ERA ladies on campus would descend with ballbats if the drama department even tried!

Grinding my bicuspids into powder, I suggested that would mean, from now on, no more productions of Boys in the Band (no women), or The Women (no men). Or, counting heads, male and female, a good lot of Shakespeare that would never be seen again, especially if you count lines and find that all the good stuff went to the males!

I wrote back maybe they should do my play one week, and The Women the next. They probably thought I was joking, and I’m not sure that I wasn’t.

For it is a mad world and it will get madder if we allow the minorities, be they dwarf or giant, orangutan or dolphin, nuclear-hear or water-conservationist, pro-computertologist or New-Luddite, simpleton or sage, to interfere with aesthetics. The real world is the playing ground for each and every group, to make or unmake laws. But the tip of the nose of my book or stories or poems is where their rights end and my territorial imperatives begin, run, and rule. If Mormons do not like my plays, let them write their own. If the Irish hate my Dublin stories, let them rent typewriters. If teachers and grammar school editors find my jawbreaker sentences shatter their mushmilk teeth, let them eat stale cake dunked in weak tea of their own ungodly manufacture. If the Chicano intellectuals wish to re-cut my “Wonderful Ice Cream Suit” so it shapes “Zoot,” may the belt unravel and the pants fall.

For, let’s face it, digression is the soul of wit. Take philosophic asides away from Dante, Milton or Hamlet’s father’s ghost and what stays is dry bones. Laurence Sterne said it once: Digressions, incontestably, are the sunshine, the life, the soul of reading! Take them out and one cold eternal winter would reign in every page. Restore them to the writer–he steps forth like a bridegroom, bids all-hail, brings in variety and forbids the appetite to fail.

In sum, do not insult me with the beheadings, finger-choppings or the lung-deflations you plan for my works. I need my head to shake or nod, my hand to wave or make a fist, my lungs to shout or whisper with. I will not go gently onto a shelf, degutted, to become a non-book

All you umpires, back to the bleachers. Referees, hit the showers. It’s my game. I pitch, I hit, I catch. I run the bases. At sunset I’ve won or lost. At sunrise, I’m out again, giving it the old try.

And no one can help me. Not even you.

313
Have you seen what Mark posted on reddit?

Quote from: Mark Lawrence
So Amazon.com ran a promotion on Prince of Thorns before Christmas and I was very glad to get it. For a day they offered the ebook at $1.99 and put it on their daily deals.

Excitement! The book charged up the charts, became #1 best seller in fantasy, knocking Game of Thrones etc out of the way, and reaching #18 in fiction as a whole.

I get 25% on ebook sales. But it's 25% of what the publisher get, and on books selling for less than $2.99 the publisher gets 35% of the sale price rather than 70%. So I got 25% of 35% of $1.99 ... which is 17 cents.

So, if the book sold a thousand copies that day (it probably didn't do that well, but that would be awesome) I made $170. Once I've paid 15% to my agent and 20% tax I'll pocket just under 12 cents a copy or make $120 on the thousand copies sold.

Today I just came back from the post office having spent $30 mailing out two copies to reviewers and a prize from a blog competition.

I'm doing very well compared to most fantasy writers.

We are not rich.

Yesterday some ....person... commented on my blog that he had stolen my book because buying it involved some effort.

That's all I have to say about that.

What do you think?

314
The follow-up to the No.1 bestselling novel, The Long Earth...
 
A generation after the events of The Long Earth, mankind has spread across the new worlds opened up by Stepping. Where Joshua and Lobsang once pioneered, now fleets of airships link the stepwise Americas with trade and culture. Mankind is shaping the Long Earth -- but in turn the Long Earth is shaping mankind... A new ‘America’, called Valhalla, is emerging more than a million steps from Datum Earth, with core American values restated in the plentiful environment of the Long Earth -- and Valhalla is growing restless under the control of the Datum government...

Meanwhile the Long Earth is suffused by the song of the trolls, graceful hive-mind humanoids. But the trolls are beginning to react to humanity’s thoughtless exploitation... Joshua, now a married man, is summoned by Lobsang to deal with a gathering multiple crisis that threatens to plunge the Long Earth into a war unlike any mankind has waged before.

315
It's finished. If you've made your way into this topic, you read the 14th and last book of Robert Jordan's The Wheel of Time. One of the most epic and massive series finally, after about twenty years, found it's end. Hundreds of theories (visit www.theoryland.com for some) have now been falsified, proven truth or will never be proven right or wrong.
Thank you, Brandon Sanderson, for finishing this. I can't imagine anybody to have done such a remarkable job with it.

Now the spoilers begin. Repent, if you haven't read AMoL yet!

Welcome to the 4th Age! :)

That said, there are probably dozens of things we need to talk about!

- What do you think about that two forsaken/chosen are still alive? Moghedien as a Seanchan Damane and Graendal under (her own) compulsion towards Aviendha? Graendal may have been killed by Aviendha, though. We don't know.

- I would have loved to see Hawkwing talk to Tuon. Why was it left out? Would have been a good laugh I suppose.

- Rand's soul in Morridin's body? Aaah! I wonder how the girls like this... I thought it a bit unfair, that they didn't tell Tam (and Perrin, Mat, Nynaeve and Lan) but maybe they will after Rand got away.

- Apropos got away. He can't wield Saidin or the True Power anymore but can just wish/think things to happen? That sort of power-leveling should be forbidden.

- Demandred. I was disappointed by who he was. I actually supported the Sharan theory, but letting people wonder for 14 books who he is and then he isn't somebody we have met before? That's a bit like lame. and how didn't he realize that Rand was already fighting in the Pit of Doom? Nobody told him?

- Perrin's a right badass now, nearly as big as Androl (opening a gate to a volcano? You're the man!) Shifting between the waking world and the wolf dream is awesome.

- Anybody remember what the second time was that Mat died and Rand saved him? I can't remember it right now. Loved the twist, though.

- I don't think Brandon did all he could have with the people from Hinderstrap. In the end, besides their (poor) fighting, it's only effect was to scare three dreadlords who let themselves killed because of that.

- I hope the Aes Sedai hold Egwene in reverence for the rest of the White Tower's existence. What she did was amazing and I really grew to her in the last books.

- It's a bit ironic that Galad has now only one hand while his half brother Rand has two again. The pattern has a sense of humor.

- Do we finally know if Olver is Gaidal? He's not, is he? So if he's not, we have no idea who he is, right?

- I love Mat. He was brilliant. He's just the coolest character ever. Knotai on the other side is one of the most silly name ever printed in a fantasy book (the Darkness that comes before is non-competitive).

- Poor Alanna. Wasn't one of her best ideas to bond him in the first place...

- I laughed when Mat killed Padan Fain/Mashadar, but it was a bit abrupt in my eyes.

- So much war, so many battles, so much fighting and so many dead. Sure, the last battle had to be epic, but that it would fill 4/5ths of the book. Wow. Manipulating the great generals was a masterstroke and you could really see/feel how it all was falling apart.

That's what I can think of right now. Will add more if something comes to my mind. What do you think? :)

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