Get Back to Where You Once Beblogged

My Blog Gate post for the week is up. It’s a predictable rant about the Grauniad‘s list of sf/f novels that “everyone must read”.

Executive summary: “What about Binky ‘Bosco’ Sorenson? Greatest science fiction writer who ever lived. Knew nothing about science or fiction, but I read something of his when I was thirteen, so everyone ought to bow down before him. No, Nurse Ratchet, I do not feel like a nap.”

Lather, rinse, repeat.

About JE

James Enge is the author of the World-Fantasy-Award-nominated novel Blood of Ambrose (Pyr, April 2009). His latest book is The Wide World's End. His short fiction has appeared in Swords and Dark Magic (Harper Collins, 2010), Black Gate, the Stabby-Award-winning anthology Blackguards and elsewhere.
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18 Responses to Get Back to Where You Once Beblogged

  1. fpb says:

    On the other hand, people who claim to write hundred-best lists of anything just ask for trouble. I was just rather annoyed by a “hundred best TV shows” list I saw. And the people who post them know it.

    • JE says:

      Oh, definitely. Even as I was typing I was thinking, “I’m playing their game: here’s another link to their site and another discussion prompted by it.” On the other hand, it’s a game I don’t mind playing about genre books–I just didn’t want to play it in the meme-format that had started to circulate.

  2. peadarog says:

    Nice one. A lot of people mistake “Il barone rampante” for fantasy because of the company it keeps. That is, in a lot of countries it has been published as part of a collection called “I nostri antenati” (Our Ancestors) which includes the hilarious “Non-existent Knight” and “The Cloven Count”.

    • JE says:

      Thanks! And I’m sure you’re right: people think of it as a fantasy because of the collection “I nostri antenati”.

      Il visconte dimezzato was one of the first pieces of Italian literature I read and I have particularly fond memories of it.

  3. scbutler says:

    There is little that is more annoying than someone you don’t even know (and who doesn’t know you) telling you what you should read (or watch, or listen to).

  4. davidcapeguy says:

    Any list that wants me to read Golding’s “Lord of the Flies” again is a list lookin’ for trouble…

    • JE says:

      I kind of like Lord of the Flies, but it’s another one whose place on the list puzzled me a little. Why they would include it as sf/f? This is clearly intended as realistic fiction (for WG’s sense of what’s real).

      • davidcapeguy says:

        Total agreement on its not being sf/f.

        I think my major disagreement with LOTF, other than its amazingly downbeat view of humanity, is that I was required to read it. Any book I’m obliged to read always comes to the plate with two strikes.

        • JE says:

          “Any book I’m obliged to read always comes to the plate with two strikes.”

          I know what you mean. My favorite books are almost always the ones I came on by myself.

      • Anonymous says:

        Does the talking boar’s head count as speculative?

        –Jeff Stehman

  5. newguydave says:

    James,
    do you plan on attending any Cons this year? I didn’t see anything listed on your website, and your FAQ is, um, still under construction. he he

    • JE says:

      Well, some personal issues will keep me close to home for the first half of the year. I may go to WorldCon in August or World Fantasy in Fall.

      • lemuriapress says:

        If you have to choose one or the other, I’d suggest World Fantasy. It is smaller and “homier,” and is a much better place to do business because there are almost no fans.

        Panels at both conventions are excellent. World Fantasy has the Hugos, which is pretty awesome.

        If you’re going to fun, World Con is a better ticket. If you’re going to sell a book, network with other writers, editors, agents, and pros, or get a look inside the publishing industry, World Fantasy is the better bet.

        I traveled WAY too much last year, so this year I am planning to attend World Fantasy exclusively.

        • JE says:

          WorldCon is closer for me, and it happens before Fall semester starts around here. But World Fantasy seems like a better bet, for a couple reasons. I’ll have to make some decisions and plonk down some coin fairly soon.

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