Well C’mon and Let Me Know…Should I stay or should I go?

I’ve been updating this blog for well over three years now. Two entries ago, I completed part one of Ivre. You can see all the posts here or just visit the initial post in the series here.  There’s still more to come with the book. Two more parts to revise and post. I’ve yet to get any feedback, though, beyond the suggestion to change the title. So I’m left to ask: Should I go on? Should I stay or should I go?

Trouble is, I quite like the characters, and where the story goes. And while I think it’s worth my time, I’m not sure if it is worth the time of others.

So, if you’ve remained silent until now, please take a moment. Dig through the entries. Especially the first chapter. Let me know: should I quit and focus on something else? Or should I keep going?

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Ten Women – And the Future (#TenWomenAuthors)

There is a hashtag trending – #TenWomenAuthors – whereupon folks name ten women authors who’ve inspired and amazed.  I thought I’d add my ten in this article. Now, I could just keep adding and adding, but I’ve picked ones which had a particular influence on me in one way or another as I was exploring literature.

Tanith Lee – The first lady of dark fantasy as far as I’m concerned.

C.J Cherryh – Whose Foreigner books are a milestone to culture building and the power of diplomacy.

C. L. Moore – Who shattered so many boundaries, and who’s Jirel stories will always have an honored space on my shelves.

Leigh Brackett – Planetary romance? Check. Howard Hawks’ favorite screenwriter. Check.

Christa Faust – Torrid tales from the pulp underground.

Caitlin R. Kiernan – Chronicler of the deep histories.

P.D. James – My first lady of crime.

Sara Paretsky – On these mean streets, she charted the way for so many others.

Pat Cadigan – Still blowing minds all of these years.

Margaret Weis – My first real introduction to epic fantasy.

Now, I could keep adding: Elizabeth Bear, Cherie Priest, Elizabeth Moon, Jacqueline Carey, Kate Orman, Gemma Files… I could keep going.  And who knows who will added to this roster in the future. I just hope this encourages folks to dig into these author’s work.

 

Ivre – Part 1: Arrival, Chapter 10

Ivre
by
Andrija Popovic

(The following is an initial draft of this work. All content is (c) Andrija Popovic 2015)

A box within a box. The great watchers laugh at me. The beast flailed in the ocean’s depths, grasping at the tiny motes of energy floating around. Fish. Squid. Survivors of the ship which carried his first prison. None offered sustenance. He craved the life-force of one of the sorcerers who dragged him from the oceans of home.

This was a cruel parody of his ocean. The channeler’s basalt prison maddened him, gave him nothing to focus on but the pain of his life essence draining away at the command of some petty energy channeler. Yet this world, this ocean, held no such malice. It could not help blinding him, starving him, driving him mad.

The beast sang, low and mournful, through the wisps of the higher realms where he once lived. It echoed into the sea and sky, unheard by the beings who dragged him into this existence. The world was deaf to his song.

But something sang back.

The the tenor felt nothing like the long, undulating songs of his people. This song resembled a chorus of sharp, brittle chimes which melded into a larger song. It was alien and strange, but close. Close enough to touch.

Can you hear me? The beast sang.

*We can hear you,* the chorus sang back.

How can you hear me?

*You sing the songs of the higher seas. We swim there to travel* The chorus grew discordant. *We swam. No longer. We are exiled here now. Our Queen was cast from the great web.*

I understand. The beast dragged his bulk further out to the sea, focused on the distant signal. I was dragged from my sea by channelers called Tememerans. They enslaved me. He sang sensations of entrapment, fear and pain. Through the aether, he felt sympathy and sadness from the chorus.

*We know the Temerans. When we were first cast to the lower realms, it was near their home continent. They took it as a sign and began a great working. They sought divinity through the higher realms.*

Did they succeed?

*No. It left them spiritless meat.* Sadness bloomed into thick, red despair. *But they trapped us here.*

You have my sympathies. One of his tendrils reached the source of the song: A rocky mass sitting in the sea, coasting like driftwood. You have learned to channel as they do?

*Yes. We disassembled the the Temerans remains. It allowed us to build a semblance of a life . In time, we could have returned to the home webs. But that is impossible now.*

Shockwaves of depression washed against the beast. He plucked out images of fire, of humans in armor, and of a human in white with a long, flowing beard.

Once more, a channeler of this realm causes suffering. Is there no hope?

*For us? No. There is only war.*

I wish you victory. And I wish I could help.

An odd sensation danced across the surface of his mind. For the first time since reaching this blighted realm, he tasted comfort, and the energies of home.

*We can help you. It will take time, but we can free you from this realm.*

The beast went silent. When they heard nothing back, the others reached out to him.

*Embrace our vessel. Listen to our song. Soon, the ways will open and you can swim home.*

The beast curled his tentacles around the rocky mass. The chorus sang, clear and strong, and the song resonated. It gained strength.

He joined his song to theirs, giving them what energy he could. The box would no longer imprison him. He was returning home. For the first time in centuries, he felt joy.

The Truth Revealed – thanks to Garth Marenghi

I admit, I was sucked in. A sheeple lead to the slaughter. But my eyes were opened by the brilliance of this man- Garth Marenghi:

 

It was here, in the awful light of his amazing literary talent, that I realized the Puppy campaigns were right all along. Why has a grand literary talent such as Marenghi never been honored with a Hugo? Was he too popular? Was he to controversial?

No, there is only one explanation for how this titan of terror, this dean of dark fantasy never received any popular recognition: the liberal Social Justice Warrior cabal and their gamma male army. Just as he was not responsible for a massive fire in Romford, Essex, in an attempt to hide massive tax frauds funding his suppressed film War of the Wasps, he was in no way responsible for the shameful treatment he received at the hands of the establishment.

Here the bloody-handed responsibility lies with the dark conspiracy of emasculating fiends, who dare to suggest works such as Ancillary Justice hold more merit than Wasp Sabat, or Stabber.  I only hope history judges your evil acts with more kindness than you’ve judged this demigod of a dream weaver.