Sunday, April 10, 2011

Fourth Time's a Charm!

Ah, my melancholy is upon me!

Another week trickles to a close, and a new one threatens to break upon us, like wind most foul... ok, that was uncalled-for, you have my apologies.

So, I've been reading - are you surprised? I'm about 60% through my latest re-read of A Game of Thrones. I am literally savoring every line this time through. I find I can learn much about writing, not just by reading it, but by *reading* it. There must be something special about the tale and the author for me to invest myself in it for a fourth time like this. I can't think of another book I've even read thrice, much less a fourth. I can think of several that I've read a second time, but not three...

It's so odd... I find myself actually hoping that the story will turn out differently this time. I've read it thrice before, as I said, and I know the story, inside and out... and yet, I keep hoping Character A will live, that King B will survive, and Character C will be stopped, and that other, better choices will be made by characters that I feel like I know. How wonderful it must be, to be able to craft characters that a reader feels he actually knows. I can't think of another tale that has the same effect. Even memorable characters crafted by Pat Rothfuss (Name of the Wind), Joe Abercrombie (First Law series) and Steven Pressfield (Gates of Fire), by all rights three of my favorite authors, don't connect with me like GRRM's vast and amazing cast.

If you haven't read this series, you really must. I adjure thee!

So, even though I know the story, I long for a happier resolution. I know the road that stretches out before me, another 3,000 pages and more, with volume 5 approaching, and I both dread the trip and look forward to it deeply. It has drenched me in melancholy, and inspired me to write, and stoked my sense of adventure. I wish I could write like Martin.

So, the new website for the rug shop is up and running. It still warrants polishing and fine-tuning, but it lives nonetheless. CLICK HERE to get a look. Even if rugs don't interest you, maybe take a quick peek and nose around... took a lot of work on the part of several people to get it to its current state, and more to come. Opinions appreciated.

This is my 498th post since I started this blog. I'll have to try and think up something fun for post 500. Of course, I'll expect you all to chip in and buy me a very nice, shiny, sparkly gift, as befits such a momentous occasion. Perhaps a new reading chair?

Quite cool, if I don't say so m'self... though those slots look awfully slim. Not sure they could accommodate some of the books I own, which are, to say the least, mammoth. It's funny - I look at The Way of Kings (B Sanderson) sitting on my shelf, still waiting for me to read, and it is so huge, I always pass it by. I want to read it, and I know it will be good... but the sheer size of it intimidates me. Yet A Wise Man's Fear (Rothfuss) was actually comparable in size (possibly even bigger), but I had no problems reading that one, since it was a digital edition.

I get the same sense of intimidation over the volumes of Tom Clancy I have on the shelf as well. I read many of Clancy's books as a lad. Several years ago, I discovered I could buy used copies of many of his hard-backs for one penny (plus $4 shipping), so I bought many of the Clancy books I remember loving. Yet looking at them, I am loathe to start reading them. I don't want to lug big books around anymore, when I can simply buy books for my iPad, and carry a library around with me anywhere I go!

I guess I'm getting lazy in my old age.

I cannot imagine the hours of wasted footage that went into the making of this video, but I enjoy it anyway.

I have little more to add today. If you aren't following Rebecca's blog, I suggest checking it out. She's blogging every day this month (save Sunday's), for an A-to Z blogging challenge. Good stuff.

Adios eh!

Dave the Melancholy, out!


Vye said...

Don't forget your spoiler alerts dude!

logankstewart said...

I'd like to re-read AGoT, as well as the rest of the books, 'ere ADWD comes out, but I know I won't. I'll never forget my first time reading through AGoT, though, especially when Character A died and Character X watched in horror, and my mouth dropped open and I was like, woah, wait, did Character A just really die?! GRRM truly tells a wonderful tale. The melancholy is understandable.

Rug site looks great!

Rothfuss's AWMF was 395,000 words and Sanderson's WoK is 386,470 words, though Pat's book is a few pages shorter. (Read the awesome interview here for that info, plus a ton of other stuff.)

That video was mind boggling. Not sure what I think is the coolest thing those guys did, but that was awesome.

Anonymous said...

All lagging Scrabble turns aside (!), is the book you are reading part of a series? I detest reading a series out of order :) Also, up until 4 1/2 years ago, I would polish off a book every two nights - ish, so I still feel qualified to rate the chair. Having the books-yet-to-read around the chair, rather than piled in giant stacks on a night stand and on the floor is awesome. The chair lacks the arm space to prop either arm up when repositioning during the read, not to mention the inability to sling a leg over the side. Lumbar could be added for the back and an ottoman for the feet. Overall I would give it a 5 for fashionable storage and a 2 for utilitarian function.

PS: Pea-green about that iPad - do you recommend it over a Kindle?

Paula Titus said...

Rug shop site looks great - not to mention a few rugs there I'd like to own. Too bad my budget doesn't leave room for $9000.00 decorative pieces. :(

I've read, and loved a lot of Clancy also, and am torn between getting one of those nifty book-reading devices just because I like to turn real pages.

Thumbs down on the book-chair, leg slinger here.

David Wagner said...

Vye: Thanks for the heads-up. My melancholy clouded my brain! I edited out names and replaced them with generic tags, thanks.

Logan: Yeah, GRRM pulls no punches when it comes to pulling the plug on characters, both hated and beloved.

Beth: A Game of Thrones if the first book in the series called A Song of Ice and Fire. The long-awaited 5th book in the series is coming out in July. I hope to have all four previous volumes re-read by then. Shouldn't be a problem. Highly recommended -- but keep in mind, as I said earlier to Logan, than the author is not exactly kind to either the cast or the reader...

I think your assessment of the book chair is right on the nose.

And I love love LOVE my iPad. It goes with me everywhere. I can check the web, load it up with pictures and music and videos, play Scrabble and Boggle and tons of other games on it, and best of all, use the Kindle app (as well as iBooks) and buy books straight off of Amazon an upload directly to my iPad. It really is an amazing piece of machinery. Battery lasts forever. Highly recommended.

Paula: Thanks for the kudos on the rug site.

I never thought I'd get into digital books - same reason. I thought I would have to have a real book in hand to enjoy it. Let me say, that was quickly disproven, at least for me. Now I much prefer digital books, for a variety of reasons. Try it, you leg-slinger!

Abbie Josephsen said...

Love the chair Dave! I'll take one! but it should be able to recline some what :)