Discussion:
Prose that makes you go mmmmmmmm
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Moriarty
2018-05-04 05:48:28 UTC
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What examples of prose can you give that, no matter the quality or otherwise of the book, make you go 'wow, that's good!'?

For example, David Brin's second Uplift trilogy is universally(1) panned as a steaming pile of horseshit. Yet early in the first book, is the following passage:

"There is a word we are asked not to say too often. And to whisper, when we do.

The traeki(2) ask this of us, out of courtesy, respect, and superstition.

The word is a name - with just two syllables - one they fear ever to hear again.

A name they once called themselves.

A name presumably still used by their cousins, out on the star-lanes of the Five Galaxies.

Cousins, who are mighty, terrifying, resolute, pitiless, and single-minded.

How different that description seems to make our own sept of ringed ones, from those who still roam the cosmos, like gods. Those jophur(2).

Of all the races who came to Jijo in sneak-ships, some, like qheuens and humans, were obscure and almost unknown in the Five Galaxies. Others, like g'Keks and glavers, had reputations of modest extent, among those needing their specialized skills. Hoons and urs had made a moderate impression, so much that Earthlings knew of them before landing, and worried.

But it is said that every oxygen-breathing, starfaring clan is familiar with the shape of stacked rings, piled high, ominous and powerful.

When the traeki sneakship came, the g'Kek took one look at the newcomers and went into hiding for several generations, cowering in fright until, at last, they realized - these were different(2) rings.

When qheuen settlers saw them already here, they very nearly left again, without unloading or even landing their sneakship.

How came our beloved friends to have such a reputation to live down? How came they to be so different from those who still fly in space, using that awful name?"

In a few short paragraphs, Brin has conveyed that the jophur are stupendous badarses, and that anybody with any sense will run and hide under the nearest rock if one comes by. And he's done it with what I consider to be incredibly emotive and convincing language. When I read that passage for the first, I read it again. It's very rare for an author to write something that makes me want to do that.

What are your examples?

(1) OK, that's an exaggeration. But it is panned so by me.

(2) Those words should be italicised.

-Moriarty
Robert Carnegie
2018-05-04 11:43:39 UTC
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Post by Moriarty
What examples of prose can you give that, no matter the quality or otherwise of the book, make you go 'wow, that's good!'?
"There is a word we are asked not to say too often. And to whisper, when we do.
The traeki(2) ask this of us, out of courtesy, respect, and superstition.
The word is a name - with just two syllables - one they fear ever to hear again.
A name they once called themselves.
A name presumably still used by their cousins, out on the star-lanes of the Five Galaxies.
Cousins, who are mighty, terrifying, resolute, pitiless, and single-minded.
How different that description seems to make our own sept of ringed ones, from those who still roam the cosmos, like gods. Those jophur(2).
Of all the races who came to Jijo in sneak-ships, some, like qheuens and humans, were obscure and almost unknown in the Five Galaxies. Others, like g'Keks and glavers, had reputations of modest extent, among those needing their specialized skills. Hoons and urs had made a moderate impression, so much that Earthlings knew of them before landing, and worried.
But it is said that every oxygen-breathing, starfaring clan is familiar with the shape of stacked rings, piled high, ominous and powerful.
When the traeki sneakship came, the g'Kek took one look at the newcomers and went into hiding for several generations, cowering in fright until, at last, they realized - these were different(2) rings.
When qheuen settlers saw them already here, they very nearly left again, without unloading or even landing their sneakship.
How came our beloved friends to have such a reputation to live down? How came they to be so different from those who still fly in space, using that awful name?"
In a few short paragraphs, Brin has conveyed that the jophur are stupendous badarses, and that anybody with any sense will run and hide under the nearest rock if one comes by. And he's done it with what I consider to be incredibly emotive and convincing language. When I read that passage for the first, I read it again. It's very rare for an author to write something that makes me want to do that.
What are your examples?
(1) OK, that's an exaggeration. But it is panned so by me.
(2) Those words should be italicised.
-Moriarty
"Family's always embarrassing, isn't it?" said
Ford Prefect to Zaphod Beeblebrox, referring to
Zaphod's judgmental great-grandfather.

That isn't an example, but I would look for some from
Douglas Adams - hard as it was, famously, to get him to
write at all; even harder, now. Stopping Terry Pratchett
from writing would have been a challenge, but it eventually
came to pass.

Both of them knew a good joke when they stole it, so
giving credit is a teeny bit complicated - but there's
an argument that you can't own a joke, anyway.
For one thing, people's reaction to being told a
good one is to find someone else that they can tell it to.

Terry Pratchett has a particular line in questions of
religion and humanity, including that gods should have
more respect for the latter - in _Small Gods_,
_Only You Can Save Mankind_, and _Truckers_, and their
sequels, although in the last two the subject isn't
"humanity" but "the enemy crew in video games"
and "tiny marooned space aliens, called nomes".

You don't want whole books, though.

There's a rather nifty bit in Ben Aaronovitch's
urban fantasy _The Hanging Tree_, where police constable
Peter Grant - who tends to talk to us as if he's giving
evidence in court, is called to the scene where an
assassination attempt was made on a significant magic
person in London. He describes in detail how a suspect's
body was found in a house across the street from the
target's, and only then mentions that the target's house
is half demolished, by magic, and /then/ describes
the street being suddenly flooded with water, along
with strange visions.So each paragraph comes as quite
the surprise.
Peter Trei
2018-05-04 13:35:21 UTC
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Post by Robert Carnegie
Post by Moriarty
What examples of prose can you give that, no matter the quality or otherwise of the book, make you go 'wow, that's good!'?
"There is a word we are asked not to say too often. And to whisper, when we do.
The traeki(2) ask this of us, out of courtesy, respect, and superstition.
The word is a name - with just two syllables - one they fear ever to hear again.
A name they once called themselves.
A name presumably still used by their cousins, out on the star-lanes of the Five Galaxies.
Cousins, who are mighty, terrifying, resolute, pitiless, and single-minded.
How different that description seems to make our own sept of ringed ones, from those who still roam the cosmos, like gods. Those jophur(2).
Of all the races who came to Jijo in sneak-ships, some, like qheuens and humans, were obscure and almost unknown in the Five Galaxies. Others, like g'Keks and glavers, had reputations of modest extent, among those needing their specialized skills. Hoons and urs had made a moderate impression, so much that Earthlings knew of them before landing, and worried.
But it is said that every oxygen-breathing, starfaring clan is familiar with the shape of stacked rings, piled high, ominous and powerful.
When the traeki sneakship came, the g'Kek took one look at the newcomers and went into hiding for several generations, cowering in fright until, at last, they realized - these were different(2) rings.
When qheuen settlers saw them already here, they very nearly left again, without unloading or even landing their sneakship.
How came our beloved friends to have such a reputation to live down? How came they to be so different from those who still fly in space, using that awful name?"
In a few short paragraphs, Brin has conveyed that the jophur are stupendous badarses, and that anybody with any sense will run and hide under the nearest rock if one comes by. And he's done it with what I consider to be incredibly emotive and convincing language. When I read that passage for the first, I read it again. It's very rare for an author to write something that makes me want to do that.
What are your examples?
(1) OK, that's an exaggeration. But it is panned so by me.
(2) Those words should be italicised.
-Moriarty
"Family's always embarrassing, isn't it?" said
Ford Prefect to Zaphod Beeblebrox, referring to
Zaphod's judgmental great-grandfather.
That isn't an example, but I would look for some from
Douglas Adams - hard as it was, famously, to get him to
write at all; even harder, now. Stopping Terry Pratchett
from writing would have been a challenge, but it eventually
came to pass.
HHGTG has, early on, one of my favorite lines in all of literature.

"The ships hung in the sky in much the same way that bricks don't."

pt
Harold Hill
2018-05-07 13:50:37 UTC
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On Friday, May 4, 2018 at 9:35:23 AM UTC-4, Peter Trei wrote:
to pass.
Post by Peter Trei
HHGTG has, early on, one of my favorite lines in all of literature.
"The ships hung in the sky in much the same way that bricks don't."
pt
I also have always thought that was a lovely turn of phrase. (And would have posted it myself, had you not beat me to it.)
--
-Harold Hill
a***@yahoo.com
2018-05-04 13:42:22 UTC
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Post by Moriarty
What examples of prose can you give that, no matter the quality or otherwise of the book, make you go 'wow, that's good!'?
"What kind of woman puts herself into a catalog so that she can be bought? The high school me thought I knew so much about everything. Contempt felt good, like wine" From The Paper Menagerie By Ken Liu. (This story has lots of embarrassing family in it).

Then there is "The sky above the port was the color of television, tuned to a dead channel" William Gibson, Neuromancer
Peter Trei
2018-05-04 14:01:45 UTC
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Post by Moriarty
What examples of prose can you give that, no matter the quality or otherwise of the book, make you go 'wow, that's good!'?
"What kind of woman puts herself into a catalog so that she can be bought? The high school me thought I knew so much about everything. Contempt felt good, like wine" From The Paper Menagerie By Ken Liu. (This story has lots of embarrassing family in it).
Then there is "The sky above the port was the color of television, tuned to a dead channel" William Gibson, Neuromancer
The latter qutoe is interpreted very differently by people whose iconic
television is analog, vs those who only know digital TVs. Gibson meant the former.

pt
Dorothy J Heydt
2018-05-04 13:57:56 UTC
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Post by Moriarty
Post by Moriarty
What examples of prose can you give that, no matter the quality or
otherwise of the book, make you go 'wow, that's good!'?
"What kind of woman puts herself into a catalog so that she can be
bought? The high school me thought I knew so much about everything.
Contempt felt good, like wine" From The Paper Menagerie By Ken Liu.
(This story has lots of embarrassing family in it).
Then there is "The sky above the port was the color of television, tuned
to a dead channel" William Gibson, Neuromancer
But of course, now that the default "no signal here" color for a
computer is bright sky-blue, the effect is lost ....
--
Dorothy J. Heydt
Vallejo, California
djheydt at gmail dot com
The Last Doctor
2018-05-04 15:57:05 UTC
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Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by Moriarty
Post by Moriarty
What examples of prose can you give that, no matter the quality or
otherwise of the book, make you go 'wow, that's good!'?
"What kind of woman puts herself into a catalog so that she can be
bought? The high school me thought I knew so much about everything.
Contempt felt good, like wine" From The Paper Menagerie By Ken Liu.
(This story has lots of embarrassing family in it).
Then there is "The sky above the port was the color of television, tuned
to a dead channel" William Gibson, Neuromancer
But of course, now that the default "no signal here" color for a
computer is bright sky-blue, the effect is lost ....
The phrase lives on, evolving with technology...

"The sky was the perfect untroubled blue of a television screen, tuned to a
dead channel."
-Neil Gaiman, Neverwhere

"The sky was the color of a dead laptop display, silver-gray and full of
rain."
-Charles Stross, The Family Trade
--
There are some corners of the universe which have bred the most terrible
things. Things which act against everything we believe in. They must be
fought.
Default User
2018-05-06 17:35:47 UTC
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Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by a***@yahoo.com
Then there is "The sky above the port was the color of television,
tuned to a dead channel" William Gibson, Neuromancer
But of course, now that the default "no signal here" color for a
computer is bright sky-blue, the effect is lost ....
That was true at one point. For me it depends. If there's loss of
signal going into the cable box, then you get a graphic saying so. If
it's the signal going into the TV, it's pretty much black. I'm not sure
how common that is.



Brian
Robert Carnegie
2018-05-06 19:33:12 UTC
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Post by Default User
Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by a***@yahoo.com
Then there is "The sky above the port was the color of television,
tuned to a dead channel" William Gibson, Neuromancer
But of course, now that the default "no signal here" color for a
computer is bright sky-blue, the effect is lost ....
That was true at one point. For me it depends. If there's loss of
signal going into the cable box, then you get a graphic saying so. If
it's the signal going into the TV, it's pretty much black. I'm not sure
how common that is.
A current TV is liable to be digital and displaying
a message that the antenna is disconnected. If you
see that message in the sky, your universe simulation
is defective. Or someone outside wants to get your
attention. Or the antenna is disconnected. Or you
forgot to take your VR off...
Greg Goss
2018-05-06 21:14:13 UTC
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Post by Robert Carnegie
Post by Default User
Post by Dorothy J Heydt
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Then there is "The sky above the port was the color of television,
tuned to a dead channel" William Gibson, Neuromancer
But of course, now that the default "no signal here" color for a
computer is bright sky-blue, the effect is lost ....
That was true at one point. For me it depends. If there's loss of
signal going into the cable box, then you get a graphic saying so. If
it's the signal going into the TV, it's pretty much black. I'm not sure
how common that is.
A current TV is liable to be digital and displaying
a message that the antenna is disconnected. If you
see that message in the sky, your universe simulation
is defective. Or someone outside wants to get your
attention. Or the antenna is disconnected. Or you
forgot to take your VR off...
My bedroom TV shows green with a "no signal" moving around on its
face. The TV before that showed classic sky blue.
--
We are geeks. Resistance is voltage over current.
Dorothy J Heydt
2018-05-06 22:34:30 UTC
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Post by Robert Carnegie
Post by Default User
Post by Dorothy J Heydt
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Then there is "The sky above the port was the color of television,
tuned to a dead channel" William Gibson, Neuromancer
But of course, now that the default "no signal here" color for a
computer is bright sky-blue, the effect is lost ....
That was true at one point. For me it depends. If there's loss of
signal going into the cable box, then you get a graphic saying so. If
it's the signal going into the TV, it's pretty much black. I'm not sure
how common that is.
A current TV is liable to be digital and displaying
a message that the antenna is disconnected. If you
see that message in the sky, your universe simulation
is defective. Or someone outside wants to get your
attention.
ObSF: Zelazny's _Doorways in the Sand,_ where the sky says to
him, "DO YOU SEE ME FRED?"
--
Dorothy J. Heydt
Vallejo, California
djheydt at gmail dot com
Robert Carnegie
2018-05-07 14:44:47 UTC
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Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by Robert Carnegie
Post by Default User
Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by a***@yahoo.com
Then there is "The sky above the port was the color of television,
tuned to a dead channel" William Gibson, Neuromancer
But of course, now that the default "no signal here" color for a
computer is bright sky-blue, the effect is lost ....
That was true at one point. For me it depends. If there's loss of
signal going into the cable box, then you get a graphic saying so. If
it's the signal going into the TV, it's pretty much black. I'm not sure
how common that is.
A current TV is liable to be digital and displaying
a message that the antenna is disconnected. If you
see that message in the sky, your universe simulation
is defective. Or someone outside wants to get your
attention.
ObSF: Zelazny's _Doorways in the Sand,_ where the sky says to
him, "DO YOU SEE ME FRED?"
I thought that was cuvyvc qvpx va hovx, but I've read both.
I also decided that "your universe simulation is defective"
shouldn't be mentioned with a book that it spoils,
although with PKD the universe simulation is /always/
defective.
Greg Goss
2018-05-08 01:21:42 UTC
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Post by Robert Carnegie
Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by Robert Carnegie
Post by Default User
Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by a***@yahoo.com
Then there is "The sky above the port was the color of television,
tuned to a dead channel" William Gibson, Neuromancer
But of course, now that the default "no signal here" color for a
computer is bright sky-blue, the effect is lost ....
That was true at one point. For me it depends. If there's loss of
signal going into the cable box, then you get a graphic saying so. If
it's the signal going into the TV, it's pretty much black. I'm not sure
how common that is.
A current TV is liable to be digital and displaying
a message that the antenna is disconnected. If you
see that message in the sky, your universe simulation
is defective. Or someone outside wants to get your
attention.
ObSF: Zelazny's _Doorways in the Sand,_ where the sky says to
him, "DO YOU SEE ME FRED?"
I thought that was cuvyvc qvpx va hovx, but I've read both.
I also decided that "your universe simulation is defective"
shouldn't be mentioned with a book that it spoils,
although with PKD the universe simulation is /always/
defective.
Interesting. You've got the scene pinned to PKD. I've got the entire
book pinned in my mind to Tak Hallus (Steven Robinette). Is there
some reason that we don't attach this book to Zelazny?
--
We are geeks. Resistance is voltage over current.
Dorothy J Heydt
2018-05-08 01:59:23 UTC
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Post by Greg Goss
Post by Robert Carnegie
Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by Robert Carnegie
Post by Default User
Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by a***@yahoo.com
Then there is "The sky above the port was the color of television,
tuned to a dead channel" William Gibson, Neuromancer
But of course, now that the default "no signal here" color for a
computer is bright sky-blue, the effect is lost ....
That was true at one point. For me it depends. If there's loss of
signal going into the cable box, then you get a graphic saying so. If
it's the signal going into the TV, it's pretty much black. I'm not sure
how common that is.
A current TV is liable to be digital and displaying
a message that the antenna is disconnected. If you
see that message in the sky, your universe simulation
is defective. Or someone outside wants to get your
attention.
ObSF: Zelazny's _Doorways in the Sand,_ where the sky says to
him, "DO YOU SEE ME FRED?"
I thought that was cuvyvc qvpx va hovx, but I've read both.
I also decided that "your universe simulation is defective"
shouldn't be mentioned with a book that it spoils,
although with PKD the universe simulation is /always/
defective.
Interesting. You've got the scene pinned to PKD. I've got the entire
book pinned in my mind to Tak Hallus (Steven Robinette). Is there
some reason that we don't attach this book to Zelazny?
Perhaps _Doorways_ isn't as frequently read as some other books?
I think in all the years I've been reading this group, it's been
mentioned *once.*
--
Dorothy J. Heydt
Vallejo, California
djheydt at gmail dot com
Greg Goss
2018-05-09 02:46:47 UTC
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Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by Greg Goss
Post by Robert Carnegie
I thought that was cuvyvc qvpx va hovx, but I've read both.
I also decided that "your universe simulation is defective"
shouldn't be mentioned with a book that it spoils,
although with PKD the universe simulation is /always/
defective.
Interesting. You've got the scene pinned to PKD. I've got the entire
book pinned in my mind to Tak Hallus (Steven Robinette). Is there
some reason that we don't attach this book to Zelazny?
Perhaps _Doorways_ isn't as frequently read as some other books?
I think in all the years I've been reading this group, it's been
mentioned *once.*
I don't really "get" Zelazny. I like Robinette. So, since I liked
Doorways, it couldn't have been a Zelazny. :)
--
We are geeks. Resistance is voltage over current.
Dorothy J Heydt
2018-05-09 04:08:55 UTC
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Post by Greg Goss
Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by Greg Goss
Post by Robert Carnegie
I thought that was cuvyvc qvpx va hovx, but I've read both.
I also decided that "your universe simulation is defective"
shouldn't be mentioned with a book that it spoils,
although with PKD the universe simulation is /always/
defective.
Interesting. You've got the scene pinned to PKD. I've got the entire
book pinned in my mind to Tak Hallus (Steven Robinette). Is there
some reason that we don't attach this book to Zelazny?
Perhaps _Doorways_ isn't as frequently read as some other books?
I think in all the years I've been reading this group, it's been
mentioned *once.*
I don't really "get" Zelazny. I like Robinette. So, since I liked
Doorways, it couldn't have been a Zelazny. :)
The thing is, there's Zelazny and then there's Zelazny, and I
fancy I can put the line of demarcation between them just about
exactly halfway through _Nine Princes in Amber._ Before that
line, marvelous exciting weird stuff that grabs one's attention
and won't let go until it's quite finished with it. After that,
nothing but palace politics, nine and a half volumes' worth of
it. IMO of course.
--
Dorothy J. Heydt
Vallejo, California
djheydt at gmail dot com
Moriarty
2018-05-09 22:15:58 UTC
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Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by Greg Goss
Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by Greg Goss
Post by Robert Carnegie
I thought that was cuvyvc qvpx va hovx, but I've read both.
I also decided that "your universe simulation is defective"
shouldn't be mentioned with a book that it spoils,
although with PKD the universe simulation is /always/
defective.
Interesting. You've got the scene pinned to PKD. I've got the entire
book pinned in my mind to Tak Hallus (Steven Robinette). Is there
some reason that we don't attach this book to Zelazny?
Perhaps _Doorways_ isn't as frequently read as some other books?
I think in all the years I've been reading this group, it's been
mentioned *once.*
I don't really "get" Zelazny. I like Robinette. So, since I liked
Doorways, it couldn't have been a Zelazny. :)
The thing is, there's Zelazny and then there's Zelazny, and I
fancy I can put the line of demarcation between them just about
exactly halfway through _Nine Princes in Amber._ Before that
line, marvelous exciting weird stuff that grabs one's attention
and won't let go until it's quite finished with it. After that,
nothing but palace politics, nine and a half volumes' worth of
it. IMO of course.
Eh? There's plenty of stuff written after Nine Princes in Amber that isn't palace politics.

His last novel "A Night In the Lonesome October" is very, very good. If you decide to read it, start on 30 September and read the introduction. Then read the 31 chapters throughout October, one on each day, the way Zelazny intended.

-Moriarty
David Goldfarb
2018-05-10 05:15:48 UTC
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Post by Moriarty
His last novel "A Night In the Lonesome October" is very, very good. If
you decide to read it, start on 30 September and read the introduction.
Then read the 31 chapters throughout October, one on each day, the way
Zelazny intended.
I tried that one year. I actually felt that it didn't serve the
novel very well. Too many of the early chapters are very short and
unexciting; and too much of the late action becomes broken up.
--
David Goldfarb |"Bagels can be an enormous force for good or
***@gmail.com | for evil. It is up to us to decide how we
***@ocf.berkeley.edu | will use them."
| -- Daniel M. Pinkwater
Stephen Harker
2018-05-09 05:47:47 UTC
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Post by Greg Goss
Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by Greg Goss
Post by Robert Carnegie
I thought that was cuvyvc qvpx va hovx, but I've read both.
I also decided that "your universe simulation is defective"
shouldn't be mentioned with a book that it spoils,
although with PKD the universe simulation is /always/
defective.
Interesting. You've got the scene pinned to PKD. I've got the entire
book pinned in my mind to Tak Hallus (Steven Robinette). Is there
some reason that we don't attach this book to Zelazny?
Perhaps _Doorways_ isn't as frequently read as some other books?
I think in all the years I've been reading this group, it's been
mentioned *once.*
I don't really "get" Zelazny. I like Robinette. So, since I liked
Doorways, it couldn't have been a Zelazny. :)
Interesting: I like Zelazny and so I liked _Doorways in the Sand_ since
reading it serialised in Analog. I would class _Doorways_ amongst the
better Zelazny novels: higher than most of the Amber series. Robinette
is more hit and miss for me.
--
Stephen Harker ***@netspace.net.au
http://sjharker.customer.netspace.net.au/
Kevrob
2018-05-09 16:13:45 UTC
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Post by Stephen Harker
Post by Greg Goss
Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by Greg Goss
Post by Robert Carnegie
I thought that was cuvyvc qvpx va hovx, but I've read both.
I also decided that "your universe simulation is defective"
shouldn't be mentioned with a book that it spoils,
although with PKD the universe simulation is /always/
defective.
Interesting. You've got the scene pinned to PKD. I've got the entire
book pinned in my mind to Tak Hallus (Steven Robinette). Is there
some reason that we don't attach this book to Zelazny?
Perhaps _Doorways_ isn't as frequently read as some other books?
I think in all the years I've been reading this group, it's been
mentioned *once.*
I don't really "get" Zelazny. I like Robinette. So, since I liked
Doorways, it couldn't have been a Zelazny. :)
Interesting: I like Zelazny and so I liked _Doorways in the Sand_ since
reading it serialised in Analog. I would class _Doorways_ amongst the
better Zelazny novels: higher than most of the Amber series. Robinette
is more hit and miss for me.
--
MY NAME IS LEGION and ISLE OF THE DEAD are two favorites of mine.

"Zelazny" was bookstore slang for a backlist book that sold well,
even though it suffered from less-than-optimum shelf placement, the
result of the cruelty of alphabetical filing. Word-of-mouth and
reviews drove the sales, rather than the cover hitting you at eye
level and drawing your attention.

circa: 1980s

Kevin R
D B Davis
2018-05-08 13:22:20 UTC
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Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by a***@yahoo.com
Then there is "The sky above the port was the color of television,
tuned to a dead channel" William Gibson, Neuromancer
But of course, now that the default "no signal here" color for a
computer is bright sky-blue, the effect is lost ....
That was true at one point. For me it depends. If there's loss of
signal going into the cable box, then you get a graphic saying so. If
it's the signal going into the TV, it's pretty much black. I'm not sure
how common that is.
A current TV is liable to be digital and displaying
a message that the antenna is disconnected. If you
see that message in the sky, your universe simulation
is defective. Or someone outside wants to get your
attention.
ObSF: Zelazny's _Doorways in the Sand,_ where the sky says to
him, "DO YOU SEE ME FRED?"
I thought that was cuvyvc qvpx va hovx, but I've read both.
I also decided that "your universe simulation is defective"
shouldn't be mentioned with a book that it spoils,
although with PKD the universe simulation is /always/
defective.
spoiler space


Yesterday the skywriting part of the PKD's story eluded me. After a good
night's rest it popped into my mind the first thing this morning.
Towards the end of the story an airplane appears over Des Moines
Iowa "exuding white trails of smoke." The "dissipating streamers" in its
sky-written message spell out:

KEEP THE OLD SWIZER UP, JOE!

Although the character named Joe in the story means something to me,
the noun swizer means nothing. A duckduckgo on the word returns a couple
of companies and surnames.
Let's return to your point about PKDian universe simulation. This
story is set in a place called half-life. Although half-life's
existential rules are unknown to me, the place seems more supernatural
than simulation, more organic than virtual. The evil boy warps its
supernatural verisimilitude.

Note.

The phrases enclosed in quotes are pure PKD. In regards to the later
quote, are you really supposed to attribute an adjective/verb combo, or
is /that/ over-the-top obsession about plagiarism?



Thank you,
--
Don
Robert Carnegie
2018-05-08 20:43:48 UTC
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Post by D B Davis
Post by Robert Carnegie
Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by Robert Carnegie
Post by Default User
Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by a***@yahoo.com
Then there is "The sky above the port was the color of television,
tuned to a dead channel" William Gibson, Neuromancer
But of course, now that the default "no signal here" color for a
computer is bright sky-blue, the effect is lost ....
That was true at one point. For me it depends. If there's loss of
signal going into the cable box, then you get a graphic saying so. If
it's the signal going into the TV, it's pretty much black. I'm not sure
how common that is.
A current TV is liable to be digital and displaying
a message that the antenna is disconnected. If you
see that message in the sky, your universe simulation
is defective. Or someone outside wants to get your
attention.
ObSF: Zelazny's _Doorways in the Sand,_ where the sky says to
him, "DO YOU SEE ME FRED?"
I thought that was cuvyvc qvpx va hovx, but I've read both.
I also decided that "your universe simulation is defective"
shouldn't be mentioned with a book that it spoils,
although with PKD the universe simulation is /always/
defective.
spoiler space
Yesterday the skywriting part of the PKD's story eluded me. After a good
night's rest it popped into my mind the first thing this morning.
Towards the end of the story an airplane appears over Des Moines
Iowa "exuding white trails of smoke." The "dissipating streamers" in its
KEEP THE OLD SWIZER UP, JOE!
Although the character named Joe in the story means something to me,
the noun swizer means nothing. A duckduckgo on the word returns a couple
of companies and surnames.
Let's return to your point about PKDian universe simulation. This
story is set in a place called half-life. Although half-life's
existential rules are unknown to me, the place seems more supernatural
than simulation, more organic than virtual. The evil boy warps its
supernatural verisimilitude.
Note.
The phrases enclosed in quotes are pure PKD. In regards to the later
quote, are you really supposed to attribute an adjective/verb combo, or
is /that/ over-the-top obsession about plagiarism?
If friends thought that an idea of PKD's was one of mine,
I'd expect some kind of intervention.

I thought I remembered a series of intrusive messages
sent to people in the story I named. In the Zelazny
story though - I suppose that comment on that will also
spoil, and it is a long time since I read it, anyway.
As far as I remember, that's set in a real universe,
but, like this one, inhabitants only see it subjectively.
And this isn't the main plot point, like it is in the film
_They Live!_

I had that title muddled with _Them!_, but /that/ one is about
giant radioactive ants. Who see the world in their own unique
way, I suppose.
Dorothy J Heydt
2018-05-08 21:01:10 UTC
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Post by Default User
Post by D B Davis
Post by Robert Carnegie
Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by Robert Carnegie
Post by Default User
Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by a***@yahoo.com
Then there is "The sky above the port was the color of television,
tuned to a dead channel" William Gibson, Neuromancer
But of course, now that the default "no signal here" color for a
computer is bright sky-blue, the effect is lost ....
That was true at one point. For me it depends. If there's loss of
signal going into the cable box, then you get a graphic saying so. If
it's the signal going into the TV, it's pretty much black. I'm
not sure
Post by D B Davis
Post by Robert Carnegie
Post by Dorothy J Heydt
Post by Robert Carnegie
Post by Default User
how common that is.
A current TV is liable to be digital and displaying
a message that the antenna is disconnected. If you
see that message in the sky, your universe simulation
is defective. Or someone outside wants to get your
attention.
ObSF: Zelazny's _Doorways in the Sand,_ where the sky says to
him, "DO YOU SEE ME FRED?"
I thought that was cuvyvc qvpx va hovx, but I've read both.
I also decided that "your universe simulation is defective"
shouldn't be mentioned with a book that it spoils,
although with PKD the universe simulation is /always/
defective.
spoiler space
Yesterday the skywriting part of the PKD's story eluded me. After a good
night's rest it popped into my mind the first thing this morning.
Towards the end of the story an airplane appears over Des Moines
Iowa "exuding white trails of smoke." The "dissipating streamers" in its
KEEP THE OLD SWIZER UP, JOE!
Although the character named Joe in the story means something to me,
the noun swizer means nothing. A duckduckgo on the word returns a couple
of companies and surnames.
Let's return to your point about PKDian universe simulation. This
story is set in a place called half-life. Although half-life's
existential rules are unknown to me, the place seems more supernatural
than simulation, more organic than virtual. The evil boy warps its
supernatural verisimilitude.
Note.
The phrases enclosed in quotes are pure PKD. In regards to the later
quote, are you really supposed to attribute an adjective/verb combo, or
is /that/ over-the-top obsession about plagiarism?
If friends thought that an idea of PKD's was one of mine,
I'd expect some kind of intervention.
I thought I remembered a series of intrusive messages
sent to people in the story I named. In the Zelazny
story though - I suppose that comment on that will also
spoil, and it is a long time since I read it, anyway.
As far as I remember, that's set in a real universe,
but, like this one, inhabitants only see it subjectively.
And this isn't the main plot point, like it is in the film
_They Live!_
SPOILER BELOW, for whoever wants it:*
Post by Default User
I had that title muddled with _Them!_, but /that/ one is about
giant radioactive ants. Who see the world in their own unique
way, I suppose.
Well, yeah. Multifaceted eyes and all.










_____
* In _Doorways,_ the protagonist has managed to get a crystalline
biological artifact *inside* himself. The artifact has somehow
gotten itself mirrored: it's in an isomer of itself that almost
entirely prevents it from communicating. Almost entirely. Hence
the vague messages against the sky and so forth. The protagonist
has to reverse *himself* (fortunately, there's another alien
gadget onhand that will do this.)
--
Dorothy J. Heydt
Vallejo, California
djheydt at gmail dot com
D B Davis
2018-05-09 03:12:46 UTC
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<snip>
Post by Robert Carnegie
Post by D B Davis
Note.
The phrases enclosed in quotes are pure PKD. In regards to the later
quote, are you really supposed to attribute an adjective/verb combo, or
is /that/ over-the-top obsession about plagiarism?
If friends thought that an idea of PKD's was one of mine,
I'd expect some kind of intervention.
I thought I remembered a series of intrusive messages
sent to people in the story I named. In the Zelazny
story though - I suppose that comment on that will also
spoil, and it is a long time since I read it, anyway.
As far as I remember, that's set in a real universe,
but, like this one, inhabitants only see it subjectively.
And this isn't the main plot point, like it is in the film
_They Live!_
I had that title muddled with _Them!_, but /that/ one is about
giant radioactive ants. Who see the world in their own unique
way, I suppose.
Let me try again. The PKD contains the phrase "dissipating streamers."
That's one adjective and one noun. Is it plagiarism for me to use the
phrase "dissipating streamers" without attribution? Or, does my question
indicate obsession? LOL.
Although the messages in the PKD are from the real world, the
messages in _They Live_ are subliminal. _They Live_ is the Hollywood
treatment of "Eight O'Clock in the Morning" (Nelson). The Nelson begins
with George Nada as a member of the audience who volunteers to take part
in a hypnotist's stage act. George wakes up "all of the way" after the
hypnotist tells his subjects "Awake" at the end of the show.
Now that he's all the way woke, George can see the alien, reptilian,
"Fascinators" in his midst. But the remainder of Earth's population
remains under the thrall of alien hypnosis and obeys alien subliminal
messages.
"Eight O'Clock in the Morning" is an amped up version of
_Firestarter_ (King). In the King a father named Andy uses auto-hypnotic
mind domination. He "pushes" a cab driver into accepting a one dollar
bill as a five-hundred dollar bill. Government agents who acquire the
dollar bill at a later time can still sense artifacts from the push.
The messages in _They Live_ dull cogitation in the real world. The
messages in the PKD sharpen supernatural cogitation. That's the
difference, in case anyone gives a tinker's dam. ROTFL.



Thank you,
--
Don
Gene Wirchenko
2018-05-06 23:21:12 UTC
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On Sun, 6 May 2018 12:33:12 -0700 (PDT), Robert Carnegie
<***@excite.com> wrote:

[snip]
Post by Robert Carnegie
A current TV is liable to be digital and displaying
a message that the antenna is disconnected. If you
see that message in the sky, your universe simulation
is defective. Or someone outside wants to get your
Or *VERY* effective.
Post by Robert Carnegie
attention. Or the antenna is disconnected. Or you
forgot to take your VR off...
Sincerely,

Gene Wirchenko
Greg Goss
2018-05-07 02:27:54 UTC
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Post by Gene Wirchenko
On Sun, 6 May 2018 12:33:12 -0700 (PDT), Robert Carnegie
[snip]
Post by Robert Carnegie
A current TV is liable to be digital and displaying
a message that the antenna is disconnected. If you
see that message in the sky, your universe simulation
is defective. Or someone outside wants to get your
Or *VERY* effective.
Dorothy already cited an example of such.
--
We are geeks. Resistance is voltage over current.
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