Monthly Archives: March 2013

That Extra Bit

I’ve discovered that I like it when authors seem to go the extra mile. I mean, I know now that we all do go very in detail with the world building and character development. More so than most readers would ever realize. But I love it when as a reader you get to see this in the act. A lot of people do this in different ways.

The most popular example of this would probably be Pottermore. I love Harry Potter. I grew up with it, read the first three books in 7th and 8th grade, and waited on pins and needles to for the next one to come out just to rip through it in three days. It was amazing. I couldn’t get enough. It had everything a growing boy could want.  And now there’s Pottermore, which is like unlocking all this secret information in your favorite video game except in book form; it’s great. You can read excerpts that weren’t put in to the books, or tid bits of information about random characters that practically meant nothing; but being such a huge fan of the universe it feeds that itch for more, you know?

Things like this are great. Another example would be how Brandon Sanderson posts extras of his books on his website. If you head over there and click on Mistborn you will find deleted scenes, and various revisions of chapters. It’s neat.  As a writer I find this a bit more interesting of course, because you can see his thought process on story development. What he thought was necessary etc.  I feel like these kind of extras really bring you closer to author and is great for the book industry.

Another thing  a lot of others due that I find intriguing as a story building mechanic is the use of some sort of excerpt or the like at the beginning of chapters. For example Ender’s Game- great book, stoked for the movie- at the beginning of every chapter are the two men talking. It’s a bit enigmatic, and when it all comes together it’s great. I love to experience this tactic done well. It adds so much flavor and depth to the book I think. Mistborn does a great job with these, where it pertains to the story well.

Another book that used these that was more of a fun tid bit is Agatha H. and the Clockwork Princess. I think the way the Foglios use this mechanic in a cool way. Instead of having their passages pertain directly to the story, they are random things from the universe. The one that sticks out most in my mind was a recipe for some common food dish. Like I said, it feels like you found a cool trophy in a video game.

Anyways. This is my goal. I want my work to be more than just novels for those who enjoy them. Queen City, the site of my first book and series, is huge and has lots to offer. Way more than I can fit in a novel or two; or ten. Hopefully when it’s all said and done I’ll be able to provide readers with all the means necessary to completely submerge themselves.

 

-Your Awfully Tired Author Who Doesn’t Care That He Just Used An Adverb

P.S. – This has been stuck in my head all week. 

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Story Matters, and so does a hot Lara Croft.

I’ve never been a fan of the Tomb Raider games over the years. I don’t know why really. I played one or two and couldn’t get into them.  To be honest, I had taken the opinion-like I’m sure others had too- that they were just using the games as an excuse to show off Lara Croft.  

With that said, as soon as I saw the trailer for the reboot I got excited. It looked so raw and rugged; and the new Lara Croft look was also an upgrade IMO. So naturally, I went out on a limb and bought it. What’d I think? It’s awesome.  

 

I don’t think I’ve ever played a game in which I’ve felt constantly in peril. The game keeps you on your toes constantly. Half the time you can’t even walk without something bad happen. It’s great. And you know what surprised me the most? The story. It was actually good and entertaining, which is something to say for most games now a days.

Now, Square has a great history of games with great stories, but even they have been sliding down hill lately. I know some of you don’t play games for their stories, but I am a huge sucker. I find the story of a game to be way more important than it is given credit for. Sure you could mindlessly waste hours away as a Dovahkiin with almost no rhyme or reason (cause let’s face it, the majority of us paid little to no attention to what was actually happening on the side quests. Though I will admit there were one or two that were actually captivating. Like the one where you go on a drunken bender and figure out what you did) but personally I’ve always loved games that held more meaning.

 

Just look at Arkham City. Yes the game play was amazing, but so was the story, and despite how cool it was to be the Batman, the story held my attention from start to finish. I couldn’t wait to see what happened next.

 

In a sea of games that come up with very poor over all story and character development, Tomb Raider delivered. And I must say I have a new found respect for Lara Croft. She is a straight beast, and a sexy one to boot! I just hope she continues down this path for years to come.

 

-Your Everyday Lara Croft Lover

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A Hobbit Day

Currently tuned into AMC which is playing The Two Towers. I assume this is in honor of The Hobbit being released on Blur-ray,DVD, digital download, etc. At any rate, I love these movies. They are so well done. J.R.R. Tolkein was a genius.  

It’s hard for me to conceptualize a time before Hobbits. A time where orcs and elves were hardly defined. Almost everything now a days references LotR in one way or another. And this blows my mind. Tolkein created things that have become everyday things. Elves are used everywhere; video games, other books, movies. It’s incredible.

I wanted to take a moment to recognize and thank Grandpa Tolkein for all he accomplished.  He brought fantasy a long way and paved the road for many others. He single handedly made the genre more mainstream and opened the door for the likes of Robert Jordan, Terry Brooks, and Brandon Sanderson.  

 

I wish Tolkein could have seen just how big the Lord of the Rings has become. It’d be interesting to see how he felt about the film interpretations. And as a writer I can not imagine he could have dreamed it to become what it has. It’s not in our nature. As good as we feel something we write is, we still have doubts. We know all the imperfections that others don’t after all.

I have to admit I’ve never managed to read the Lord of the Rings. I find it impossible to read something after I’ve watched it. It bores me (exception Harry Potter, but I read those first). I did read the Hobbit though and it was amazing in so many ways. I love that book and would suggest it to everyone.

 

Hears to you Grandpa Tolkein. Wish you were around to enjoy this.

 

-Your Half as Hairy as Hobbit blogger

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