Lessons from My Reading

M. K. Theodoratus, Fantasy Writer, blogs about the books she reads--mostly fantasy and mystery authors whose books catch her eye and keep her interest. Nothing so formal as a book review, just chats about what she liked. Theodoratus also mutters about her own writing progress or ... lack of it.

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Saturday, September 7, 2013

Golden Fantasy Oldies -- Revisiting Favorite Reads

Most fantasy readers I've talked to still get warm fuzzies from the favorite fantasy worlds of their youth. It's enough to make me feel unnatural because I seldom feel warm fuzzies about anything. Yeah, old pickle puss, that's me. Still I do reread and reread some of the same books over and over. 

Andre Norton's Year of the Unicorn and Anne McCaffrey's Dragonflight are just two recent examples.

The Year of the Unicorn is what might be called a novella today by some publisher requirements, but it was an Ace single when I bought it. The lords of Dales made a bargain with a pack of were-riders to give them 13 brides of good birth if the weres helped them defeat their Alizon attackers. The Unicorn book tells the story of how the debt was paid and how two young misfits who must find a their place in the world.

Set in Norton's Witch World,  Year of the Unicorn demonstrates one of the things Andre Norton does best -- a coming of age story of two talented young people who don't fit their society's expectations. The story is sparsely written but characters and setting come through loud and clear as the two struggle for their lives.

Anne McCaffrey's world of Pern is another classic fantasy franchise. I read Dragonflight  with enjoyment. The plot lines of the two main characters, Lessa and F'lar, coping with a deadly danger from space and each other held up well. So well it sucked me right into reading the sequel.

Can't say the same about Dragonquest where coping with a four-hundred-year time difference is the prime problem . Lessa became a secondary character, and F'lar become a deus ex machina with the right answer for everything. A few dust ups but no conflict, let alone angst.

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Am spending huge amounts of time on the computer ... but not getting much writing or blogging done. Primarily because I don't know what I want to do. Oh, I have plenty to do. 

The beginning of the Half-Elven of the Marches ... some 20,000 words into it. Is it the beginning of a novel? Another novella. The more I ponder while petting my muse, I think it will be a series of novellas. Then, if it ever becomes a novel ... Who knows what will happen.

There Be Demons is waiting for the teen editors. It's an interesting concept to have teens part of the editorial process. On the other hand, teens are part of the editorial process. Not quite ready to start singing: Some Day My Edits Will Come.

Have been as slow to blog as to write. I don't do formal well ... so I'm going back to mouthing off. It's what I do best ... even if no one agrees with me.
Summer's over with. Hope you have lots of interesting projects to keep you busy over the winter. Maybe even a bright new idea for NaNoWriMo.
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