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Messages - Lonnie Slidell

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Have you spent any time on Scott's Three Pound Brain blog?

Literature / Re: YOU MUST TELL ME ... What else are you reading?
« on: September 11, 2018, 05:34:12 pm »
I'm still on the Malazan slog; I'm nearly finished with House of Chains now.
I just finished a reread of the Malazan Book of the Fallen.  Have you read any of the Esslemont books?  If so what did you think?

The Forum of Interesting Things / Re: Guns and the British empire
« on: June 17, 2018, 01:59:24 pm »
In what ways is this similar to modern efforts by the United States and other 'nuclear powers' to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons technology to nations such as Iran and North Korea?

The No-God / Re: TNG- Your expectations and wants
« on: November 30, 2017, 07:28:23 pm »
My sense, which admittedly comes from reading most if not all of Three Pound Brain, is that it is important if not essential to a sound understanding of the Second Apocalypse:

"Storytelling is my primary means of sounding these darker possibilities. The centerpiece of my project is The Second Apocalypse, the tale of a monastic outcast who rises from obscurity to shake the world. Through flawed gazes and broken hearts I try to paint a canvas as savage and sage as those rendered by my adolescent idols, Howard, Herbert, and Tolkien. I’ve lived with this story for thirty years now (!) and I’m pretty sure I’ll never have a better one to tell. “Perhaps the best fantasy series written in the past decade…” The recently declared.  And I’m just getting to the interesting bits now.

Three Pound Brain is my secondary means of sounding these questions, a kind of philosophical scrapbook where I try to make theoretical sense of what seems to be happening—the nature of the biological, social, and technological processes behind our ongoing ‘semantic apocalypse.’" (From the 'About' page of Three Pound Brain)

I think the thirty-year story reached its conclusion with the destruction of the Great Ordeal.  With "The No-God" he is going to have to go beyond what he dreamed up as a teenager, thus the 'discovery.'  I think Three Pound Brain gives a sense of how Scott sees the world becoming, and to the extent that he sees both Earwa and this world coming to apocalypse it sees likely that he sees them converging.  I expect Earwa to become disenchanted.   I would not be surprised if by the end of this next cycle of books Earwa is mundane , in the Xanth sense of the word.  The events of the Second Apocalypse would become Scripture, but as can be the case with (for example) the Bible and the Koran, misremembered or misconstrued.

Philosophical zombies, anyone?  A world that was shut might simply become like our world, inhabited by beings who are sentient but have no souls.

It occurred to me while listening to Scott on this podcast:
that Drusas Achamian is (assuming he survived the Second Apocalypse) the most powerful sorcerer left alive on humanity's side in the Three Seas and will be the de facto leader of humanity in the war against the Unholy Consult and the forces of the No-God.  So far leadership has not been his forte.  How do you assess his chances?  Do any of us expect him to rise to the challenge?

The Unholy Consult / Re: [TUC Spoilers] Inverse fire
« on: August 19, 2017, 03:37:24 pm »

Theology is mostly literary criticism, and it's always a good idea to be mindful of that.

A few thoughts:

At the beginning of The Fellowship of the Ring Frodo and Gandalf go back and forth about the fact that Bilbo did not stab Gollum when he had the opportunity to do so.  Bilbo's act of compassion eventually allows Gollum to redeem Middle Earth after the Ring masters Frodo at Amon Amarth (awesome band, by the way).  I think RSB considers himself one of Papa Tolkien's most rebellious sons, so if an act of compassion redeemed Middle Earth it's not surprising that an act of compassion should damn Earwa.  (And little Kel is a bit of a Gollum.)

I first stumbled upon Three Pound Brain while looking for a publication date for The White-Luck Warrior and decided that the fiction and non-fiction illuminate each other and should be read together.  The last line of his most recent blog post is "The semantic apocalypse isn’t simply possible: it’s happening" so the beginning of the Second Apocalypse with the activation of the No-God and the destruction of the Great Ordeal did not come as a surprise.

In fact, given that RSB, like most fantasy fans, was raised on happy endings (from Frodo to Thomas Covenant to Shea Olmsford to Rand al'Thor to that kid from The Belgariad to Adjunct Tavore) I was proud of him for having the nerve to be as brutal to his readers as he has been to his characters (although Kellhus' betrayal of Nersei Proyas was a real gut punch).

I guess that most readers who have followed the tale through all seven books have accepted Kellhus' omnipotence, or at least his ability to master events, so we assume that he is working another angle.  It's possible he is, but based on the evidence in the text, it's possible he ran out of angles and actually failed.  If what he said to Esmenet, "you are my only darkness, wife... the only place I can hide" was sincere (whatever that means in this context) the disaster at the Ark naturally follows.

And congratulations to those of you who predicted that Little Kelmomas would find himself inside the Sarcophagus.

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