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David Eddings The Belgariad and beyond

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Old 9th June 2006, 09:32 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Re: One time reader

English teachers, blood drenched battles and pre-conceived notions be damned.... Yes, Eddings is repetative, yes, main and supporting characters are similar and yes the plot lines seem to run in a strange sort of parallel.... But... and theres always a but, why did we pick up Eddings to begin with? There must have been something, a glimmer of literary genius, a hope of uncharted teritory, a dream of finding the best "read" ever...
But, each of us found something we liked...and if we didnt really like it, we could at least respect it...(Hey, hes writing books, and we aint..) So, heres to my fave writors, Eddings, Robinson, Rice, Auel, Jordan, Rawn, Steel and many others.... If it weren't for them and their grand ideas, where would we be?? A bunch of sorry sotts, without anything to look forward to, save bible verse and classical music. (not that theres anything wrong with bibles and classical music) Who among us dares to dream?
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Old 9th June 2006, 11:45 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Re: One time reader

I don't feel Eddings does what you says - he doesn't have any originality, and while he may have been mildly entertaining to many of us in the past, it isn't necessarily because of "a glimmer of literary genius". Eddings writes popular, escapist fantasy. And a lot of people like that, which is fine by me - if Eddings gets more people reading fantasy, then I'm not complaining. But that's rather different to literary quality.

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If it weren't for them and their grand ideas, where would we be?
Perhaps we would have a more diverse fantasy scene with greater imagination? When I think of grand ideas, I don't think of Eddings, I think of Mieville, Peake, Harrison, Moorcock, Vandermeer - and a lot of the early fantasy writers as well. Eddings is a relatively modern writer, and there are plenty of excellent authors out there - Eddings has been particularly important in publishing terms, but as an influence on fantasy as a whole, he's been relatively minor - just another bestseller that helps to perpetuate the prejudices about fantasy.

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Hey, hes writing books, and we aint
In fact, what tends to happen is that writers have a much more limited scope for criticism than readers. Writers who do criticise other writers get a lot of flak for it - perhaps their criticism is the most legitimate of all - they know how difficult it is to write a book, but what actually happens is that they're opinions are dismissed as "bashing" so that they can promote their own sales or as "jealousy", which is a shame, because they often have intelligent, well argued points.

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save bible verse and classical music
I'm just wondering why you would consider that to be the case. Are you postulating what there would be if there was no fantasy, or just if those authors you listed didn't write?
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Old 11th June 2006, 07:01 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Re: One time reader

Escapist fantasy couldn't be all bad... it all takes us somewhere else... and lit. quality is always a bonus. But, how many new ideas could possibly be out there? Isnt it how its delivered? Yes, bashing occurs, not only in writing, but in most occupations. So, then, how is lit. quality measured? By the # of readers? or # of toes stepped on in writing? the # of books sold? # of awards? However, I will read some of the folks you mentioned, just because they are unfamiliar to me and I am always lookin for a good read, but, please, what did you mean about "perpetuating the prejudices of fantasy"?
Of bible verse and classical music....if you hated ham sandwiches but there was nothing else to choose from, where would you be if that was all that was offered at the lunch counter...? I am not reffering to Sci-Fi writing as a staple, but more of a condiment... it's good to see choices. For example, I am trying to get my daughter to read different things, and it has taken me awhile to get her to "try" Eddings, as well as other non-commercial authors(Interview w/a Vampire, Lord of the Rings, etc..) Books that aren't "required" reading or what her classmates read (like heaving-breast romance books) Therefore, aside from bible verse, I am glad there are other things to read and aside from classical music, I am glad there are other things to listen to. That said, aside from classical, what other music do you listen to, as I've already gotten a glimpse of other authors...
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