Ser Scot A Ellison

Memory, Sorrow, and Thorn/The Heart of what was Lost/The Last King of Osten Ard

309 posts in this topic

Btw this is what Tad said on faceborg to the GRRM/TW issue:

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A joke one of my FB friends made about George R. R. Martin being "my" meme-seed made me smile, but also reminded me that too much talk about me being super-influential on Game of Thrones makes me nervous.
George has always been very kind about acknowledging the role reading my Osten Ard books played in his decision to write GoT, but he was already a very well known and very fine writer long before he ever heard my name. The fact that he's said nice things about the Osten Ard books is something my publishing companies are going to (understandably) use to market my books, which are a return by me to that same universe, but I hope it's clear to everyone that George not only wrote his own excellent books (and is still writing them) but did things in them that I would never do or perhaps even have considered. He wrote a story that has captivated millions of readers, and is now second only to Tolkien in influencing the bigger world outside of fantasy fiction. He's been a class act all the way, and as I said, was a wonderful writer long before he ever bumped into me or my work, so when people discuss me and George and our respective books, please keep that firmly in mind.
That said, I'm also waiting to hear from all the people who are going to browse my new books, then accuse me of stealing things from George.

I am with Varys concerning the similarities but I do not consider it a bad thing at all. It is taking stuff and turning it into something else. I call it hommage not plagiarism. Tad does this in the Witchwood Crown as well as you all will notice come June. There are scenes that most obviously refer to ASoIaF. It is  an ongoing literary conversation which I find mighty cool.

Back to spaceships.

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14 hours ago, Darth Richard II said:

I think it can be denied. And has been. A lot.

edit: this is getting extra stupid, can we talk about Tad Williams again? I'm starting to miss the spaceship argument.

SPACESHIPS!!!!

ALIENS!!!

Will Williams leave this question ambiguous?

Edited by Ser Scot A Ellison

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On 20.1.2017 at 1:47 AM, Werthead said:

I'm reasonably certain that the origin of the Others in the books is going to be the same, or at least similar, to the explanation we have on the TV show: they were created by the Children of the Forest to fight humanity and something went wrong. Nothing like the Norns at all (especially because, unlike the TV show, the book versions of the Others have no single leader).

If it goes exactly this way George will give the whole concept his own spin, of course, but then we have Bran seeing something in the Heart of Winter in AGoT, something that might have consciousness and an agenda of his, her, or its own. I'm pretty sure we won't get some 'head Other' as the show has invented, but there might be some guiding principle or intelligence behind the actions of the Others. Say, some 'intelligent spell' running amok, or one or a group of (rogue) Children of the Forest whose hatred has consumed to such a degree that they rather see the world destroyed than those humans prevail in the end.

And that very much is the motivation of Utuk'ku and Ineluki as they are described in MST.

Also keep in mind that the talk about the Pact in TWoIaF suggested that the wisest on both sides prevailed and finally made peace. The not-so-wise among the Children might not have made peace, departed for the Lands of Always Winter, to eventually create the Others. Such an idea would also connect the Children very much to the Sithi/Norn split.

On 20.1.2017 at 8:05 AM, ylvs said:

Btw this is what Tad said on faceborg to the GRRM/TW issue:

I am with Varys concerning the similarities but I do not consider it a bad thing at all. It is taking stuff and turning it into something else. I call it hommage not plagiarism. Tad does this in the Witchwood Crown as well as you all will notice come June. There are scenes that most obviously refer to ASoIaF. It is  an ongoing literary conversation which I find mighty cool.

I didn't mean to imply plagiarism, either. Just that a lot of the concepts and characters are to various degrees based on things from MST. That doesn't mean George didn't create his own world and story. I just wanted to point that there are very strong parallels.

Speaking about that, I liked the Tolkien references in the new story. Was Khand ever mentioned in MST before? I don't recall that. And to see Yavanna showing up anywhere in any shape or form is pretty cool, too.

Tad's new trilogy certainly could profit from some darker, grittier elements drawn from George's series so I'm looking forward to those references. What made my journey through MST so tedious that everything was so drawn out and all the mysteries were so easily solved. But then, I do know that this was basically a series from the 80s.

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On 20/01/2017 at 2:06 PM, Ser Scot A Ellison said:

SPACESHIPS!!!!

ALIENS!!!

Will Williams leave this question ambiguous?

Having finished the new book, I am less wedded to the space alien theory - if they were from another planet, they shouldn't be able to interbreed with humans, whereas if they are offshoots of the same genetic lineage (similar to the Neanderthal/homo sapiens split) then it could happen.

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6 minutes ago, Maltaran said:

Having finished the new book, I am less wedded to the space alien theory - if they were from another planet, they shouldn't be able to interbreed with humans, whereas if they are offshoots of the same genetic lineage (similar to the Neanderthal/homo sapiens split) then it could happen.

That interbreeding thing really came out of nowhere. I guess the alien idea also made sense to some people because the Sithi/Norns can look so otherworldly/strange in their expressions. That sort of suggested a completely different evolution which could easily enough have occurred on another planet.

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2 hours ago, Maltaran said:

Having finished the new book, I am less wedded to the space alien theory - if they were from another planet, they shouldn't be able to interbreed with humans, whereas if they are offshoots of the same genetic lineage (similar to the Neanderthal/homo sapiens split) then it could happen.

That did occur to me and it weakens my hypothesis.  

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On 1/16/2017 at 3:32 PM, Lord Varys said:

 

Well, the online timelines one can find give other numbers. But they are apparently only non-canon although partially based on Williams answering stuff, like about Utuk'ku's age during MST being about 10,000 years.

By the way, I liked the nod to Tolkien with Khand and Kementari. That Khand realm was first mentioned in the new story, right? I don't remember hearing anything about that.

 

Khandia was definitely mentioned in MS&T, but only at a few places. There is a mention of "Khandery silk" and the ancient empire of Khandia, though we're not given many details. It's great to get more details in the new books, for sure!

Kementari, too, was mentioned in the old books. The name is, as you say, definitely a shout-out to Tolkien.

 

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On 1/18/2017 at 3:15 PM, Ser Scot A Ellison said:

Jon is not Simon, nor is Dany Miriamele.  Dany and Miriamele, especially, couldn't be more different in my opinion.

I've never seen much of Miriamele in Dany. However, Arya is clearly based on Marya. Aside from the name similarities, the plot similarities are obvious: Marya is a noble girl, half an orphan, dressed as a boy, running from the law in the forest, pursued by a man in a hound's-head shaped helmet, traveling with a wolf, and eventually killing the person who wronged her. Later, Sansa begins to resemble Miri. The Simon Snow/Jon Snow similarities are there as well: both are orphans with a hidden lineage who travel to the frozen north with a wolf, and who carry awesome swords, wielding them against the White Walkers/White Foxes. Then, of course, there are the Children of the Forest/Children of the Dawn, the tailed star, the red-robed advisor who attempts to murder the king's hated younger brother via blood sacrifice, etc, etc. Still, as Ylvs says, Tad has no problem with George's borrowings, and George does mix things up to good effect.

Also, since MS&T clearly inspired George in his writing of ASOIAF, it is my sincere hope that George will pick up HOWWL and TWC, get re-inspired, and start writing regularly again. I'd like to see what sorts of cool things in these two volumes he could play off of.

Edited by Jiriki

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On 1/21/2017 at 5:54 PM, Ser Scot A Ellison said:

That did occur to me and it weakens my hypothesis.  

How so? If they are space aliens, couldn't they have advanced technology ("magic") which would allow them to successfully breed with humans? ;)

The classic series mentioned the interbreeding between humans and Sithi as well: Queen Likimeya hinted at pairings between the races when she met with Count Eolair of Nad Mullach, and although he found her words unsettling, it seems as though the Hernystiri noble families (which would include Eolair himself) had Sithi blood in their veins.

There is definitely more about Gardenborn/human pairings in TWC, never fear...

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1 hour ago, Jiriki said:

I've never seen much of Miriamele in Dany. However, Arya is clearly based on Marya. Aside from the name similarities, the plot similarities are obvious: Marya is a noble girl, half an orphan, dressed as a boy, running from the law in the forest, pursued by a man in a hound's-head shaped helmet, traveling with a wolf, and eventually killing the person who wronged her. Later, Sansa begins to resemble Miri. The Simon Snow/Jon Snow similarities are there as well: both are orphans with a hidden lineage who travel to the frozen north with a wolf, and who carry awesome swords, wielding them against the White Walkers/White Foxes. Then, of course, there are the Children of the Forest/Children of the Dawn, the tailed star, the red-robed advisor who attempts to murder the king's hated younger brother via blood sacrifice, etc, etc. 

Wow. When you sum it all up like that, the similarities are huge.

Looks like GRRM was more than just inspired by.

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19 minutes ago, Calibandar said:

Wow. When you sum it all up like that, the similarities are huge.

Looks like GRRM was more than just inspired by.

I once compiled a list of 25 similarities between MS&T and ASOIAF. Since that time, I've realized there are at least 25 more. For example, the White Foxes are just simply renamed the White Walkers.

George definitely used plot elements, but he's never hidden that fact. That's why he included the feuding brothers Elyas and Josua, and their father, Lord Willum: readers in the know would instantly recognize what he was doing. I consider these plot similarities an homage of sorts, (much like, for example, the "white hart killing scene" in Snow White and the Huntsman, which is basically identical to the "white unicorn killing scene" in the 1985 film Legend).

And Tad will definitely be including some homages back to George in TWC, as Ylvs mentioned above. She's absolutely right about that.

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He already did in Shadowmarch as well, with the shape of the continent, the Wall-like obstruction in the north, Shadowmarch Castle fulfilling a similar plot function to Winterfell (whilst itself being a mash-up of Gormenghast and a reboot of the Hayholt) and so forth.

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Oh, I've never thought of Smarch as an answer to Ice&Fire. Cool observation, Werthead.

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4 hours ago, Jiriki said:

I once compiled a list of 25 similarities between MS&T and ASOIAF. Since that time, I've realized there are at least 25 more. For example, the White Foxes are just simply renamed the White Walkers.

Yeah, those were the ones I was thinking about. It is two years since I last read those and I forgot quite a few of them.

8 hours ago, Jiriki said:

Khandia was definitely mentioned in MS&T, but only at a few places. There is a mention of "Khandery silk" and the ancient empire of Khandia, though we're not given many details. It's great to get more details in the new books, for sure!

Oh, was that in connection with some place east of the known lands, or was this Khand place supposed to be in the lands we already know?

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1 hour ago, Lord Varys said:

Oh, was that in connection with some place east of the known lands, or was this Khand place supposed to be in the lands we already know?

I don't have my books in front of me right now, but I think I remember Khandia being associated with the ocean and islands, as if it was west of the Osten Ard mainland, rather than east. However, the reference was fairly vague. I can pull up a reference later, when I have my books in front of me. Khandia, Nascadu, Ijsgard, the Hyrkalands, Naraxi, Harcha, Warinsten, and of course Venhya Do'sae (the Lost Garden) were all places that were touched upon in the old books, but never visited. 

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Also, I'm a huge fan of Crackpot Theories, and definitely think there should be more theories along the lines of "zomg! the Gardenborn are aliens!" and such.

Here's my own crackpot theory. Or one of them, at least.

It's long been my pet theory that Geloe is a Tinukeda'ya, and that the woman Simon passes in Hjeldin's Tower is also a Tinukeda'ya, based on eye color and several passages describing singing that seem to link singing among the Gardenborn to locating things.

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From the new Reddit AMA:

https://www.reddit.com/r/books/comments/5qiqsx/i_am_tad_williams_and_i_have_returned_to_the/

Quote

Are their any Easter eggs/connections between the worlds or Osten Ard and Shadowmarch?

Funny, I was just thinking about this the other day -- connections between the two worlds. I think it's possible that there may be a Michael-Moorcock-style multiverse underlying all my books, but I've never consciously tried to link them all together.

Maybe someday...

Hmm Runestaff? Dark Tower? I'd love to see your version of Tanelorn.

I think "The Lost Garden" IS my version of Tanelorn. But more on that as the new series progresses.

 

How far in are you into Empire Of Grass? Current page count?

Not sure. About a hundred pages, I'd say (I'm writing in separate chapter-files at first, so I don't have a running overall page count). The last couple of months, with the holidays and various kid-related things, have been grueling. I'm expecting to have a nice long stretch in the next few months to get the first draft substantially done.

 

How long will we have to wait between books? This time?

Can't say for certain, but I'm aiming for a year to a year and a half max between books. I'm pretty good at that these days, and I've actually started and finished several multi-volume series, so it shouldn't take too long altogether.

I'm already working on the second large volume, Empire of Grass, and Witchwood Crown (first of trilogy) has been done for quite a while.

 

I sooooo want to hear the full "And Ministers Of Grace" story.

I'd like to write that one day, too. Just re-read it the other day and it started me thinking again.

 

I have read all the Bobby Dollar books. Will there me more for Bobby in the future?

I would LOVE to do more BD, and in fact my plan was to do the first three to set him up, then do standalone in the future, more like regular crime books. I still aim to do that. I love writing the character and the world, and hope to expose more people to it in the future. I even have a title (and story) for the first standalone, whenever it happens -- not for a while, because of the Osten Ard books -- "Forever O'Clock".

 

Edited by Jussi

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I think "The Lost Garden" IS my version of Tanelorn. But more on that as the new series progresses




Tanelorn is Michael Moorcock's city that exists in "all dimensions".  Doesn't that mean that if The Lost Garden is Williams version of "Tanelorn" that it isn't the same as Osten Ard because Osten Ard doesn't exist in "all dimensions"?

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4 hours ago, Ser Scot A Ellison said:

Tanelorn is Michael Moorcock's city that exists in "all dimensions".  Doesn't that mean that if The Lost Garden is Williams version of "Tanelorn" that it isn't the same as Osten Ard because Osten Ard doesn't exist in "all dimensions"?

No. Tanelorn exists in all dimensions but extrudes into specific dimensions. So the Lost Garden is a physical location on Osten Ard (well, the planet, I think Osten Ard is only the continent) but it's also a physical location on the Shadowmarch planet as well (if Williams follows through on that idea) and other dimensions that may exist in that multiverse. A bit like Valinor/Aman after the Rounding of the World (after the Downfall of Numenor) in Tolkien, you could sail to Valinor if you were permitted there or knew the way, but no-one else would find it.

Aha! That may be it: the Lost Garden is another dimension (partially or permanently). The ships crossed on the sea from the Lost Garden to Osten Ard, but still from another world (kind of). So that way everyone was right: the Norns and Sithi sailed to Osten Ard and didn't use starships, but they still come from "elsewhere".

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43 minutes ago, Werthead said:

No. Tanelorn exists in all dimensions but extrudes into specific dimensions. So the Lost Garden is a physical location on Osten Ard (well, the planet, I think Osten Ard is only the continent) but it's also a physical location on the Shadowmarch planet as well (if Williams follows through on that idea) and other dimensions that may exist in that multiverse. A bit like Valinor/Aman after the Rounding of the World (after the Downfall of Numenor) in Tolkien, you could sail to Valinor if you were permitted there or knew the way, but no-one else would find it.

Aha! That may be it: the Lost Garden is another dimension (partially or permanently). The ships crossed on the sea from the Lost Garden to Osten Ard, but still from another world (kind of). So that way everyone was right: the Norns and Sithi sailed to Osten Ard and didn't use starships, but they still come from "elsewhere".

Pretty much.

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