Re: Patricia McKillip and the reply button.
- 1st off.: Hey guys. When you hit the reply button to reply to a message,
please kindly delete any parts of the original message you're not using at
the moment. Otherwise the list ends up with huge emails with tons of
indentations (>>>>>>) and twenty or thirty footers. This is especially
annoying when reading the digest version and you have to slog through all
this extra stuff looking for the next header.
2nd off.: Patricia McKillip is a great writer. He books are very poetic.
I remember back when I was first getting into fantasy (many moons ago) and
my grandparents gave me a copy of the Riddlmaster of Hed, which I read and
which confused me utterly at the time (I was 7 years old.) Years later as
a senior in high school, I had an English teacher who encouraged me to
become a writer (and to whom my first book, coming out in July, is therefore
dedicated) who had the class read the Riddlemaster of Hed again. I read
the book again just last year on my way to the World Fantasy, where lo and
behold, Patricia McKillip was the guest of honor. (I asked her to give me a
cover quote and she said she'd give my book a read.) So the
Riddlemaseter of Hed keeps popping up at intriguing points in my career. :
First interest in fantasy, first teacher to encourage writing, and first
book getting published.
The Riddlmaster of Hed is a very poetically written book. McKillip tends
to approach her conflicts very obliquely. In point of fact, sometime its
very hard to tell what the conflict is. As far as external plot goes, she
tends to build toward confrontation then skip into aftermath without
actually showing the conflict itself. Her pacing revolves around characters
being stranded rather than pursued, which means things take a while to
develop, and much of the actual action is characters sitting around talking
or interally agonizing. The internal conflict of the main character
revolves more around whether or not to get involved than what he would do if
he got involved. The external villain remains very distant through the
first book, more of a vague threat in the distance than anything else.
All the above may sound like a criticism, but it isn't. McKillip weilds
her oblique style very well, creating story which is unique in its form as
well as content. The Riddlemaster of Hed and its companions form a mystery
with few hard edges or concrete rules. It is a story pulled along by the
unknown rather than driven by the known.
It's well worth a read.
Curt (Check out Sparrow's Flight at www.ruralnet.net/~sphinx)
Carport Diem-- Anyone remember where we parked?