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April 18th, 2014

09:50 am: So very grateful!

This is just so cool! Nothing John or I have written previously ever made it onto the top 100 of any list on Amazon. AWAKE IN THE NIGHTLAND is still #2 on Hot New Dark Fantasy Horror and #5 in all Dark Fantasy.

Latest review:

5.0 out of 5 stars jack, April 17, 2014
By jack – See all my reviewsVerified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Awake in the Night Land (Kindle Edition)
Finished it today. If it's not the best book I've ever read it's so close to the top as to be no difference.

Dark, yes, scary, very, uplifting and a monument to the human spirit, most certainly. I could not recommend this book more if I tried.
Five stars are simply not enough. It's composed of four novellas that are linked thru the book and thru an immense amount of time. It will take you to depths of despair through the actions and thoughts and fears of the characters and cause a cheer for their courage in the face of ultimate and irresistible evil. By all means read this thing.

 

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Originally posted to Welcome to Arhyalon. (link)

April 17th, 2014

10:31 am: Mab’s Handy Guide to Surviving the Supernatural

Mab f 2

Mab here, Prospero Inc. company gumshoe.

As part of my campaign to protect you woefully-uninformed humans from your own folly—in hopes of saving even one of you from an elf-induced death, or worse—here is some of my gathered wisdom concerning the supernatural world.

Read. Pay attention. And maybe you’ll live. 

For those of you who are just coming in, we’ve started with Tsukumogami, Japanese household objects that wake up after their 100th birthday and become animate.

 

 

SekienMinowaraji

 

Name:  Minowaraji

Description:   Animated farm tools being carried around by an old fashion Mino—a Japanese straw coat. The thing thinks and acts like a rural farmer. Kind of like all the farmers’ sense and nonsense got absorbed by his stuff.

Where To Find It: Farms and tool sheds.

Frequency: Occasionally

Danger Level:  It’s carrying a hoe. Hoes have sharp edges. Keep away!

Mab’s Eye View: These minowaraji are very, very touchy. Generally, they are benign to human beings, but hurt their feelings and, whoa Nellie!, do they go for you! I had—you’d call it a cousin—once who accidentally insulted one by calling it a Kosode no Te. Thing swung his hoe and separated my—you’d call it a cousin’s head from his body.

Luckily, his head being attached to his body was optional. But that would not be the case for you!

 

Comments

Originally posted to Welcome to Arhyalon. (link)

09:29 am: And one more. LOL

This one…from a comment on the Publisher's blog…made me laugh:

 

Just a warning: If you read this book, be prepared to have a positive feeling about life in general. Also watch out for a feeling of love and brotherhood and hope.



I was not ready for this, expecting a miserable depressing nihilistic lovecratian trip through pain and madness, instead I got something that made me feel like I can persevere through anything.



Dammit.

 

 

Originally posted to Welcome to Arhyalon. (link)

09:17 am: The Wonderful Reviews of AWAKE IN THE NIGHTLAND by John C. Wright
 
5.0 out of 5 stars One story by itself is worth the price April 11, 2014
Verified Purchase
"The Last of All Suns" may be the best SF novella I have ever read. I am not kidding.





Four independent stories, but each story subtly builds on what has come before.





They grip you. I spent the weekend thinking about them. I dreamed about them at night.





I don't usually give books five stars even if they are very, very good. But sometimes I have to make exceptions.
 
Review Two:
 
5.0 out of 5 stars One of the genuinely creative geniuses of our time. Writing with a soul., April 16, 2014
By 

 

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Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Awake in the Night Land (Kindle Edition)
Doomed humanity lives out its numbered days in a beleaguered fortress on a dying planet, post-sun, while more-than-Lovecraftian horrors manifest in the outer darkness, encroaching over the centuries, gloating over their inevitable victory.





I will leave it to the reader, and read this you should, to discover if and how there can be any hope-beyond-hope to be snatched from the silently screaming, many-jawed face of inexorable despair.





This is not just sci-fi or sci-fi horror. It has a soul.


It transcends its genre to become timeless.





For once I can think of no criticisms, constructive or otherwise. This time I was spellbound at the mercy of the story teller, along for the ride. For me, it was a journey well worth making. I advise you to make the trip as well, but take care, lest you lose the master-word, and your humanity with it.

 

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Originally posted to Welcome to Arhyalon. (link)

April 16th, 2014

02:32 pm: Wright's Writing Corner: Beware the Sneer of Reader X! or Don't Skimp on the Cover Art!

Beware, fair reader! Be not slain by the baneful sneer of Reader X, The Condemner of Covers!


So who is Reader X? And why does he condemn books with less-than-professional-looking covers? If you would keep yourself—and your book—from so dire a fate, read on!


I have a great many friends who are published by small publishing companies or who self-publish their own books. Once upon a time, I handed a small press book written by a friend to another friend whom, for the sake of this article, we shall call: Reader X.


racerx_head


Reader X — is he preparing to read? Or to sneer?


(We call him Reader X because of the X shaped mask he wears to hide his identity from the characters in the books he’s reading. Actually, Reader X as he appears here is an amalgamation of more than one friend, but we will treat him as one person for the purposes of this article.)


Reader X hated the book.


This happened twice, maybe three times. Reader X no longer wants to read books written by friends of mine. In fact, he is now suspicious of all small press books.


What’s more, Reader X has the keen eye of an eagle. He can pick out small press books at a hundred paces.


After a little while, I realized that I, too, could pick out small press books instantly…because they just didn’t look as good at “real” books. They looked low-quality.


When I myself decided to become a small press author, I found myself asking: what is it that makes these books stand out to me? What could I do better, so that my book does not scream low quality and make the Reader Xs of the world instantly sneer?


And, worse than sneer, refuse to buy!


The first and most obvious answer is: bad cover art.

Read more...Collapse )




April 14th, 2014

04:50 pm: Caption This!

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In honor of Easter…

Originally posted to Welcome to Arhyalon. (link)

04:46 pm: Caption This Winner!

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Winner:

  • Inverness Fashion Week.
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Runner-Up:

Gotta Catch 'Em All!

 

Originally posted to Welcome to Arhyalon. (link)

11:48 am: AWAKE IN THE NIGHTLANDS DAY!

Awake in the Night Lands eBook Cover 4

New anthology by John C. Wright on sale today!  

 

 

Originally posted to Welcome to Arhyalon. (link)

April 10th, 2014

10:31 am: Mab’s Handy Guide to Surviving the Supernatural

Mab f

Mab here, Prospero Inc. company gumshoe.

As part of my campaign to protect you woefully-uninformed humans from your own folly—in hopes of saving even one of you from an elf-induced death, or worse—here is some of my gathered wisdom concerning the supernatural world.

Read. Pay attention. And maybe you’ll live.

For those of you who are just coming in, we’ve started with Tsukumogami, Japanese household objects that wake up after their 100th birthday and become animate.

SekienMenreiki

Name:  Menreiki

Description: Once upon a time, back in the Sixth Century, a guy named Prince Shotoku made a bunch of Gigaku masks—that’s mask used in some defunct Japanese drama-dance art form—for a nigh-legendary guy named Hata no Kawakatsu. This Hata no Kawakatsu invented some Shinto dance form or other.

Apparently, this prince created sixty-six masks. Then, like the incompetant mortal that he was, he went and died, leaving the masks just lying around.

Of course, they came to life! Even a frog could have predicted that.

Where To Find It: Theaters, dark allies, your worst nightmares.

Frequency:  There’s only one of ‘em. How common could they be?

Danger Level:  Frankly, I have no idea what a mask…even sixty-six of ‘em…can do to you, but stay away, just to be safe. Whatever it is they do, it can’t be good.

Mab’s Eye View: Huh? Good grief. Give me a break. Masks? What will mortals think of next?

Originally posted to Welcome to Arhyalon. (link)

April 9th, 2014

10:54 am: Wright’s Writing Corner: Spock vs. Elf – An Author’s Dilemma

I have been wanting to write about this for quite some time. Today seems like the day.

It has come to my attention that there are two kinds of readers when it comes to reading about emotions. (There may be more, but I’ve only discovered two of them.)

The first one, I shall call the Spock Reader. The second I shall call the Elf Reader.

star-trek-spock1

Spock Readers distain shows of emotion. Many men fall into this category, but I know some women who say the same thing. To them, emotion is barbaric, and calmness is a sign of advancement. Characters who show emotion are immediately dismissed as either feminine or weak. Cool-headed, collected characters are to be admired.

The characters admired by the Spock Reader embody the best of humanity—mankind’s ability to rise above the primitive and resist the animal passions, the triumph of the intellect.

Lindsey the elf

Elf Readers are the opposite. They live in a world where only the most highly-discerning are swept away by strong emotions, while the masses are callous and unfeeling—incapable of appreciating what is truly there. The Elf Reader, to quote my dad’s favorite line from the Hindu Bhagavad Gita: "burns with the bliss and suffers the sorrow of every creature”. Characters who show deep emotional reactions reach them. Cool, emotionless  characters seem stiff and lacking.

The characters admired by the Elf Reader embody the best of humanity—mankind’s ability to emphasize with others, our love of art, of beauty, of music, of the things that touch the soul.

To the Spock Reader, an ideal character to read about might be a soldier who never loses his cool even in the heat of battle. Detective books and thrillers often have such characters. Spock himself is such a character.

To the Elf Reader, an ideal character might be a lonely young girl, perhaps with a cruel stepmother, who suffers because of her intelligence and compassion allow her to experience so much more than the uncaring people around her. Books for teens and romances often have such characters.

Which brings us to the author’s dilemma: which character do we put in our books?

Because, folks, we can’t do both at once, make our characters both cold as ice and hot as flame.

Or can we?

There are characters who appeal to both groups. Spock himself is a good example. The Spock Readers love his logic. The Elf Readers love his ears…er…I mean, his struggle with his human side, the emotions he attempts to control. In this one character, both readerships can find something to relate to. (I would say empathies with, but that’s Elf Reader talk right there.)

But then some viewers found Spock cold and preferred Bones, with his warmth and compassion, or Kirk, with his ability to make us feel that he really saw and appreciated what  was best in human beings. 

And yet, not every story can carry both kinds of characters. Books that cater to one of these readerships run the risk of losing all their readers if they try to cater too much to the other readership at the same time. Readers who love James Bond are often not the same ones who love Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights. The audience of the Bourne Identity are often not the ones found waiting at the bookstore at midnight with their roses and ballgowns for the next Twilight novel.

So…how does an author decide how far to go? How much should our elf burn with the bliss and suffer the sorrow of all mankind? How icy should our Vulcan be? If we go to a farther extreme, will we gain more loyalty out of our desired readership? Or just lose the middle ground reader who now finds our characters too emo or too cold.

What is your preferred reading style? Where do you like authors to draw the line?

 

Comments

Originally posted to Welcome to Arhyalon. (link)

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