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      CommentAuthorInkblot
    • CommentTimeOct 18th 2011
     

    Yeah, I agree with SWQ: As annoying as it is to revamp an entire story, I love being forced to think all the way through how something works, and see how my new understanding sheds light or changes other things in the background. If a plothole is just a minor issue, though, I’ll probably pave it over and keep plowing on.

    Example of #1. Wait, how does this power generation facility work anyway? Can the heroes and villains both draw that much current for their own uses in one day?

    Example of #2. Wait, how did X get here/how does X know Y? These are usually fairly easily remedied. I encounter them because I am a terribly sloppy thinker and often forget who doesn’t know who in the heat of the action.

    Both of these are made up for the purposes of this discussion. I like #1 enough I might keep it. :D Yay imagination!

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      CommentAuthorswenson
    • CommentTimeOct 19th 2011
     

    @Klutor – On the size of the plothole, yeah, pretty much. But I try to avoid them in the first place by thinking through the connotations of whatever it is I’m doing before trying to plot a story. This doesn’t always work, of course, but I hope to at least catch most of the big stuff before I get to it.

    (NaNo is exempt from this, I should point out, because I really only plan the backstory of my NaNo stuff. Plot sort of gets made up as I go along.)

  1.  

    ^Ah okay.

  2.  

    Literary Fiction! The latest innovation in writing, brought to you by the Department of Redundancy Department!

    Just for the record, I hate the term too. And I hate how it’s always talked about in the context of “literary” fiction vs. “genre” fiction, as if a science fiction story, for example, could not have literary merit, or at least not as much merit as a “literary” story. I also don’t like because I don’t know what it means or what falls into that category because people talk about it like only literary fiction (whatever it is) is actually meaningful and not just brain candy, and that pisses me off.

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      CommentAuthorInkblot
    • CommentTimeOct 19th 2011
     

    I generally find that “literary fiction” translates to Xtreme Navel-Gazing. It’s usually just as boring and pretentious as it sounds, so add irony to the list of accomplishments the name has gathered.

  3.  

    as if a science fiction story, for example, could not have literary merit, or at least not as much merit as a “literary” story

    Yeah, because the only people interested in sci-fi are basement-dwelling geeks with no social lives…
    /sarcasm

    I hate that reasoning with a passion.
    Tolkien and Lewis wrote fantasy, Stoker wrote horror, Austen and the Bronte sisters wrote romance, and the Bard himself wrote romance, comedy, tragicomedy, fantasy, and political drama. They’re all literary giants, and their stuff can still be divided into genres. There’s no need to bitch about how some works are just SO SPECIAL because they TRANSCEND BOUNDARIES and how the rest is not meaningful just because it somehow fits into a specific genre.

    Basically, like Inkblot said, it’s just bloody pretentious.

    •  
      CommentAuthorFalling
    • CommentTimeOct 21st 2011
     
    I guess I'm another one of those fantasy writers- but the sort where magic is pretty subdued/ is mystical and dangerous rather than a rigorous system for problem solving. However, two secondary interests that have been developing might push my fantasy in new directions. Since stumbling across steam punk, I do like some of the potential that is. The other is HP Lovecraft/ mysterious horror. I don't particularly like Lovecraft's writing style (although I do like the clinical, scientific analysis trying to account for mysterious horror and the slow drive to madness). There's something about that sort of horror that I find fascinating rather than the splatterfest or vampire style horror.

    I haven't quite assimilated these two new influences so for now I'm leaving it be.

    Oh as for whether fantasy can have literary merit, you all should check out the Tolkien Professor aka Corey Olsen of the Washingon College. He has a collection of podcasts and recorded lectures using Tolkien's writings as a basis. Fascinating stuff. A good one to start with is his intro How To Read Tolkien And Why. Only 28 minutes.
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      CommentAuthorFell_Blade
    • CommentTimeOct 21st 2011 edited
     

    I really enjoy reading fantasty/sci-fi, and it’s what I really want to write. I also really like the Medieval, knights-in-armor settings. I know it’s not a fantasy novel, but one of my favorite books when I was growing up was Howard Pyle’s “Men of Iron”. That type of Medieval setting really fascinates me.

    @Falling, Thanks for sharing that. I looked up that lecture and it was really, really good. =D

  4.  

    Ooh, I have to check that out, Falling!

    Personally, I’m kind of interested in looking at magic in a more scientific manner. I know that it’s dangerous ground to tread (because science has rules and all that crap) but I think it could be interesting to treat it as a frontier and a realm of the unknown that ‘magicians’ are trying to figure out, rather than just having them already know how it works or be resigned to the unknowable.

    Also, I think that a magical scientist would be badass.

    •  
      CommentAuthorApep
    • CommentTimeOct 23rd 2011
     

    @SWQ:

    To quote Agatha Heterodyne:

    Any sufficiently analyzed magic is indistinguishable from science!

    •  
      CommentAuthorInkblot
    • CommentTimeOct 23rd 2011
     

    SWQ: That sounds so sick. Do it.

  5.  

    Also, I think that a magical scientist would be badass.

    One of my main cast is a witch that basically be described as a magical combination of weapons expert and technician.

    Edit: Apep, are you sure it’s her who said it?

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      CommentAuthorBeldam
    • CommentTimeOct 24th 2011
     

    I think the original ‘any sufficiently analyzed science is indistiguishable from magic’ was said by someone else, but the flip, I think, originated in that comic. Probably.

  6.  

    TvTropes is your friend.

  7.  

    One of my main cast is a witch that basically be described as a magical combination of weapons expert and technician.

    That too is awesome.

    That sounds so sick. Do it.

    Ahahahhaha. That means I actually have to write something and get to the part where she becomes a scientist. I’m considering having this particular character’s arc revolve around something like the traditional ‘searching-for-my-identity’ schtick, but she ends up finding that in a life purpose, rather than a love interest specifically. Also, this gives me something to lay foundations for in her personality- curiosity, persistence, and all those things that I already knew she had fit much better with a scientist than with anything else I was trying to think up for her. I’m excited about this! :D

  8.  

    That too is awesome.

    Thanks.
    She’s also a worn-out workaholic, but that kind of comes with the territory.

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      CommentAuthorApep
    • CommentTimeOct 24th 2011
     

    Apep, are you sure it’s her who said it?

    Yes. Yes I am.

    You’re thinking of Clarke’s Third Law, which goes

    “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.”

    The quote I gave above is coming from the other direction.

  9.  

    “Any sufficiently advanced magic is indistinguishable from technology.”
    — Larry Niven, riffing on Clarke’s Third Law

    I suspected that it was Niven who said it, and TvTropes did not disappoint. ;-)

    •  
      CommentAuthorApep
    • CommentTimeOct 24th 2011
     

    Okay, fair point.

    But, on the other hand, the quote I gave said “sufficiently analyzed magic”, not “sufficiently advanced magic.”

  10.  

    I think “analyzed” fits better for the reversed quote anyway.

    •  
      CommentAuthorApep
    • CommentTimeOct 24th 2011
     

    Thank you.