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(02-09-2020, 12:41 AM)Nayrb Wrote: [ -> ]This is actually just a convention in English writing. Capitalizing "God" (Christian) over "gods" goes back to when people were still afraid of being struck by lightning for thinking about any divinities other than the Biblical one. It was done to suggest that the other divinities (especially members of pantheons) were lesser than Him. It's meant to highlight His uniqueness as the only god. It basically makes Him a character (yes, all the pronouns referring to God are actually capitalized by this convention, too). Does that make sense? Sorry if it's a bit confusing... It just kind of is...

So in your case, you should keep "gods" lowercase no matter the piety of the person if you are referring to multiple gods. If you have an analogous Biblical God in your story, then you should capitalize it.

Another way to think about it is that God doesn't really have another name (I guess that's debatable, but that is for Biblical scholars to discuss). Other gods tend to have specific names like Odin, Quetzalcoatl, Shiva, etc.

Sorry for taking my time responding to this. It makes sense and works the same way in Swedish (i.e. God -- Gud -- is usually capitalized, I think) and I understand it's a question of influence/prominence/superstition/whatever. "God" vs "gods". There is in fact a very Christian- (hey look, a capital again) like god in my story, the Uldani god Ailor, but I'm going to play it safe here. He's not more real than the gods of the Eastern nations anyway, so a "god" he remains.

Anyway. I've taken a break from SoD for a few months now. I was getting frustrated with a few chapters late in the book. Some pretty upsetting things are going to happen to my characters, and I really understand why GRRM finished the rest of A Storm of Swords, then wrote the Red Wedding at the last minute. I'm not likening my work to ASoIaF, mind you, but when you get to know these fictional people for a couple of years, you don't want terrible shit to happen to them. But sometimes it has to, and it's difficult finding the words to describe it.

But as it's important to me that I don't stop writing and lose my momentum, I've been working on The Wolves of Northreach novella for a while now. Writing it, I find myself wondering why I went with the magic and the general fantasy tropes in Strands, because it's so much more fun writing about mercenaries and local political struggles xD
(02-21-2020, 12:12 AM)Mattias Westlund Wrote: [ -> ]
(02-09-2020, 12:41 AM)Nayrb Wrote: [ -> ]This is actually just a convention in English writing. Capitalizing "God" (Christian) over "gods" goes back to when people were still afraid of being struck by lightning for thinking about any divinities other than the Biblical one. It was done to suggest that the other divinities (especially members of pantheons) were lesser than Him. It's meant to highlight His uniqueness as the only god. It basically makes Him a character (yes, all the pronouns referring to God are actually capitalized by this convention, too). Does that make sense? Sorry if it's a bit confusing... It just kind of is...

So in your case, you should keep "gods" lowercase no matter the piety of the person if you are referring to multiple gods. If you have an analogous Biblical God in your story, then you should capitalize it.

Another way to think about it is that God doesn't really have another name (I guess that's debatable, but that is for Biblical scholars to discuss). Other gods tend to have specific names like Odin, Quetzalcoatl, Shiva, etc.

Sorry for taking my time responding to this. It makes sense and works the same way in Swedish (i.e. God -- Gud -- is usually capitalized, I think) and I understand it's a question of influence/prominence/superstition/whatever. "God" vs "gods". There is in fact a very Christian- (hey look, a capital again) like god in my story, the Uldani god Ailor, but I'm going to play it safe here. He's not more real than the gods of the Eastern nations anyway, so a "god" he remains.

Anyway. I've taken a break from SoD for a few months now. I was getting frustrated with a few chapters late in the book. Some pretty upsetting things are going to happen to my characters, and I really understand why GRRM finished the rest of A Storm of Swords, then wrote the Red Wedding at the last minute. I'm not likening my work to ASoIaF, mind you, but when you get to know these fictional people for a couple of years, you don't want terrible shit to happen to them. But sometimes it has to, and it's difficult finding the words to describe it.

But as it's important to me that I don't stop writing and lose my momentum, I've been working on The Wolves of Northreach novella for a while now. Writing it, I find myself wondering why I went with the magic and the general fantasy tropes in Strands, because it's so much more fun writing about mercenaries and local political struggles xD

I think the best thing to do is just to write and worry about it all in editing later. Writing is just as hard as music. You go through draft after draft and by the end you're only as happy with it as you will be based on your current level of skill and the advice you got workshopping it. There is always room for improvement. After ten years away from school, I've started my Master's and found myself spending each week slaving over draft after draft of 300-500 word responses to a reading. Next is the first of two presentations (apparently you can narrate a PowerPoint now... What will they think of next!)

I agree. I think the god Ailor's "supremacy" will be best represented by context. We'll be able to infer what's going on via the characters' attitudes and interactions.

I'll be curious to check out Wolves when I get the chance. Currently I'm knee-deep in cyberpunk for my class.
(02-29-2020, 04:06 AM)Nayrb Wrote: [ -> ]Currently I'm knee-deep in cyberpunk for my class.

That sounds like fun! Gibson and Sterling et al I'm familiar with. If you have any suggestions on more modern cyberpunk writers to check out, I'm all ears. I rewatched Netflix's Altered Carbon to refresh my memory in preparation for the second season, but sadly my eyes glazed over a few episodes into S02. I think I should maybe read the book (books?) the show is based on though, because the thing with the cortical stacks is a fascinating premise.
(03-01-2020, 11:24 PM)Mattias Westlund Wrote: [ -> ]
(02-29-2020, 04:06 AM)Nayrb Wrote: [ -> ]Currently I'm knee-deep in cyberpunk for my class.

That sounds like fun! Gibson and Sterling et al I'm familiar with. If you have any suggestions on more modern cyberpunk writers to check out, I'm all ears. I rewatched Netflix's Altered Carbon to refresh my memory in preparation for the second season, but sadly my eyes glazed over a few episodes into S02. I think I should maybe read the book (books?) the show is based on though, because the thing with the cortical stacks is a fascinating premise.

Well, Gibson and Sterling are my two favorites from the class so far... There have been a number of excellent pieces so far, but they are more of the "they're good because I'm a Literature Major" sort of thing, you know? If you want to read some good proto-cyberpunk, check out Tiptree's "The Girl Who Was Plugged In."

I'm currently trying to get my thoughts together for my final paper for the class, which will likely be some attempt at exploring Gibson (and perhaps others) via the philosophy of consciousness, which is probably divergent enough for another thread entirely (ever heard of David Chalmers?). In the decade or so between Bachelor's and Master's, I've taken a keen interest in how other disciplines interact with mine (literature, or arts in general). That again is perhaps another thread entirely, but suffice it to say I like "interdisciplinarity." Frankly, I don't see how the arts can exist without some kind of conversation with science and / or philosophy. (A good book on this topic is The Age of Wonder by Richard Holmes, by the way.)

We read Neuromancer for the class and some short stories from Schismatrix Plus, and I'm hooked on those authors now. I see the origins of Tad Williams' Otherland in Gibson, and I sense that Sterling was an influence on a lot of the prime time SF TV that was on when I was growing up in the 90s / early 2000s: Star Trek, Babylon 5, etc. But Sterling is way more brutal in a sense. We read "Swarm" and "Spider Rose" and I was blown away. You'd never see that sort of thing on TV back then, even in the revived Outer Limits.

Again, I suggest Dan Simmons' Hyperion books if you'd like something that exists on a level with these authors. Then again, I'm the sort who enjoys brainy, abstruse things as much as good specimens of the simpler stuff. I'm sure you've read Otherland, but I still maintain that is one of the best cyberpunk stories I've read. I guess I'm on the lookout for more stuff now, too.

I'm not sure if you are aware, but Bruce Sterling wrote a pretty important underground zine called Cheap Truth in the '80s under the pseudonym Vincent Omniaveritas . You can check it out here https://fanac.org/fanzines/Cheap_Truth/. It's ranty, but you might find some other authors to check out.
(03-02-2020, 03:58 AM)Nayrb Wrote: [ -> ]If you want to read some good proto-cyberpunk, check out Tiptree's "The Girl Who Was Plugged In."

Wow, thanks for the tip! Never ever heard of that one, and (reading the Wikipedia page) it sounds VERY cyberpunk for being as old as yours truly. Philip K. Dick is usually credited with being a progenitor of the genre but TBH I think his books were never technologically centered enough to really count. Dark, brooding dystopic sci-fi for sure, but they never had that techy edge to them that I associate with cyberpunk. Admittedly I've only ever read Do Androids... and Ubik.

(03-02-2020, 03:58 AM)Nayrb Wrote: [ -> ]We read Neuromancer for the class and some short stories from Schismatrix Plus, and I'm hooked on those authors now.

Gibson has been one of my favorite writers for ages. Though I love him more for his style of writing more than his sci-fi elements really; he has an elegant flair mixed with a more noir-type straightforwardness. Again, one of those writers with an enviable affinity for delivering a wealth of info with a few surgically precise phrases. Then again: I haven't read any of his books for years. Not since All Tomorrow's Parties I think. And BTW: I prefer the Bridge trilogy over the Sprawl one Smile

(03-02-2020, 03:58 AM)Nayrb Wrote: [ -> ]I'm sure you've read Otherland, but I still maintain that is one of the best cyberpunk stories I've read.

Actually, I haven't! I have the first book somewhere, but I wasn't aware they actually counted as cyberpunk. I thought Otherland was just a different way of telling a fantasy story, a child of the nineties VR fad.

(03-02-2020, 03:58 AM)Nayrb Wrote: [ -> ]I'm not sure if you are aware, but Bruce Sterling wrote a pretty important underground zine called Cheap Truth in the '80s under the pseudonym Vincent Omniaveritas . You can check it out here https://fanac.org/fanzines/Cheap_Truth/. It's ranty, but you might find some other authors to check out.

Ranty indeed, but insightful and very charming!
In the words of Monty Python: And now for something completely different.

Outhouses.

Yes, outhouses. Is there by any chance anyone here with a rural enough upbringing that s/he has some outhouse nomenclature to share? In English, that is. I'm trying to find out if there's a particular term for the hole in the seat where you do your business. Like something colloquial.

For the record, yes, I've used outhouses in my day but I'm not aware of any particular word for it in Swedish either. I guess it's not an inspiring thing to come up with a name for, but I'm trying to describe how someone who was locked in an outhouse escaped, and "through the hole in the seat" doesn't have the right straightforward ring to it.
(03-14-2020, 02:59 AM)Mattias Westlund Wrote: [ -> ]
(03-02-2020, 03:58 AM)Nayrb Wrote: [ -> ]If you want to read some good proto-cyberpunk, check out Tiptree's "The Girl Who Was Plugged In."

Wow, thanks for the tip! Never ever heard of that one, and (reading the Wikipedia page) it sounds VERY cyberpunk for being as old as yours truly. Philip K. Dick is usually credited with being a progenitor of the genre but TBH I think his books were never technologically centered enough to really count. Dark, brooding dystopic sci-fi for sure, but they never had that techy edge to them that I associate with cyberpunk. Admittedly I've only ever read Do Androids... and Ubik.

(03-02-2020, 03:58 AM)Nayrb Wrote: [ -> ]We read Neuromancer for the class and some short stories from Schismatrix Plus, and I'm hooked on those authors now.

Gibson has been one of my favorite writers for ages. Though I love him more for his style of writing more than his sci-fi elements really; he has an elegant flair mixed with a more noir-type straightforwardness. Again, one of those writers with an enviable affinity for delivering a wealth of info with a few surgically precise phrases. Then again: I haven't read any of his books for years. Not since All Tomorrow's Parties I think. And BTW: I prefer the Bridge trilogy over the Sprawl one Smile

(03-02-2020, 03:58 AM)Nayrb Wrote: [ -> ]I'm sure you've read Otherland, but I still maintain that is one of the best cyberpunk stories I've read.

Actually, I haven't! I have the first book somewhere, but I wasn't aware they actually counted as cyberpunk. I thought Otherland was just a different way of telling a fantasy story, a child of the nineties VR fad.

(03-02-2020, 03:58 AM)Nayrb Wrote: [ -> ]I'm not sure if you are aware, but Bruce Sterling wrote a pretty important underground zine called Cheap Truth in the '80s under the pseudonym Vincent Omniaveritas . You can check it out here https://fanac.org/fanzines/Cheap_Truth/. It's ranty, but you might find some other authors to check out.

Ranty indeed, but insightful and very charming!

Otherland definitely takes the whole concept of Neuromancer to a new level. It's absolutely cyberpunk. As for Tiptree, yeah, I've discovered that, as usual, most of the fiction that originally defined the genre was a lot more philosophical and cerebral than the stuff that became popular. I of course have no problem with the "simpler" stuff, but it's cool to explore the heavier fiction and see what it was originally all about. Cyberpunk was about our then growing dependency on tech and what it might all mean. It wasn't just "check out these cool neon lines I'm flying through!"

And how did you manage to quote all those lines individually? Maybe I'm just drawing a blank, but I can't seem to get it to happen...

(03-14-2020, 03:24 AM)Mattias Westlund Wrote: [ -> ]In the words of Monty Python: And now for something completely different.

Outhouses.

Yes, outhouses. Is there by any chance anyone here with a rural enough upbringing that s/he has some outhouse nomenclature to share? In English, that is. I'm trying to find out if there's a particular term for the hole in the seat where you do your business. Like something colloquial.

For the record, yes, I've used outhouses in my day but I'm not aware of any particular word for it in Swedish either. I guess it's not an inspiring thing to come up with a name for, but I'm trying to describe how someone who was locked in an outhouse escaped, and "through the hole in the seat" doesn't have the right straightforward ring to it.

Weirdly, I don't know either. Maybe you'll have to Google "outhouse construction." Or maybe just resort to metaphor Big Grin
Hi, it's me again with another language question xD

Does anyone know of a different word for one of these things? Feels weird to use a term that references a place in our world in a fantasy novel, IMO.
Had a new idea for a Strands of Darkness cover, so I went out in the woods to have a little photo session. Not sure if I'll use any one of these, but turned out pretty cool I think.

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(04-16-2020, 02:55 PM)Mattias Westlund Wrote: [ -> ]
Hi, it's me again with another language question xD

Does anyone know of a different word for one of these things? Feels weird to use a term that references a place in our world in a fantasy novel, IMO.

I was going to suggest just going with it, but "Horses of Friesland" / "Frisian Horses" is probably too close to home and will pull the reader out of the story, like saying "he bought some French bread." Maybe you'll have to make up a name and or describe them. Maybe even come up with a name and a description that is close enough that it will make sense. It might help to contextualize it, too. Unfortunately I don't have a good idea off the top of my head, but something like "Charge-breakers, horizontal wooden beams crossed with rows of deadly wooden spikes..."

It's not a very good example, but hopefully it gets the idea across.
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