Thursday, April 10, 2008

The Illuminata, and Other Illuminating Things

Well, the newest Illuminata is out and the relaxed schedule seems to have pumped up the content. I’m talking 26 pages of material about SF, Fantasy, and Horror literature. There’s pieces for writers on “Names in Fiction,” on “Suspension of Disbelief,” and on “Information Overload.” The last one is my “Writer’s Block” column entry and is a large scale expansion on a post I did here on the issues of front loading and back loading of informational material in stories. If you don’t already get the newsletter sent to you, and it’s free, you can download the issue from the link above. Go to the bottom of the page there and select Volume 6, Issue 6.

As an additional note, another of our blog friends is responsible for the piece on “Suspension of Disbelief.” This is a fine essay by our own Rachel, and she also has a book review in the issue. So support her and download a copy.

Finally, I want to thank Bernita for her most wonderful review of Swords of Talera on her blog. Bernita has such a wonderful way with words herself that it was really an honor to have her compliment my prose. And I really appreciated her comment on: "One of the reasons I am fond of sword 'n sorcery is the assertion, without apology, of a certain idealism, of nobility, of qualities such as honour, loyalty, valour and duty." I feel the same way and I'm glad that came through in the book. I'd also like to thank all those who made great comments in response to her post.
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30 comments:

Heff said...

"Suspension of Disbelief"...that's a great name for a Metal song. I'm gonna have to stick a post-it note of that on my amplifier.

Billy said...

I'll take a trip over there. Thanks!

Charles Gramlich said...

Heff, the title of my horror novel, "Cold in the Light," comes from a WASP lyric. From the song "Cries in the Night," although I didn't realize it until years later.

Billy, it's a pretty good free newsletter.

Sam said...

That was a great review, and Bernita is the best, and I do want to read your books!
:-)

Sphinx Ink said...

Charles, you may want to let the ILLUMINATA editor know he forgot to put in your byline on your column this month. At least it didn't show up on my PDF copy....

Good work. I always enjoy your column especially, and also like the rest of the newsletter.

Sarai said...

That's a great newletter I went ahead and signed up for monthly email. I really enjoyed some of the articles!

Sarai said...

Okay I think blogger ate my last comment so I will try again. I love the newsletter and signed up. tons of great information packed into it.
I read the review of Swords of Talera and now have one more to add to the shopping spree! It sounds wonderful can't wait to check it out.

Britta Coleman said...

Great tip--I'll have to check out the newsletter.

Lisa said...

I remember the abbreviated post well and I'm glad to have a chance to read the expanded piece. You make some great points about some things I hadn't considered with regard to where the information should be included relative to the hook and the climax of the story. Thanks for sharing the link!

david mcmahon said...

Never heard of the Illuminata - thanks for educating me.

Say G'day to Lana for me, too.

Charles Gramlich said...

Sam, if you do read them then let me know what you think.

Sphinx Ink. I didn't even notice that but I'll have to email him. Thanks for pointing it out.

Sarai, the newsletter is often really chock full of information. I hope you enjoy the Taleran books if you get a chance to read them.

Britta, I think you'd enjoy it.

Lisa, thanks for the kind words on the piece.

David McMahon, if you're not into SF, fantasy or Horror it might not be that interesting but for writers I think it has some good stuff.

Steve Malley said...

You deserve every bit of Bernita's praise, Charles. Your work is great reading!

Miladysa said...

As I am currently readling Sword of Talera I shall visit Bernita's post at a later date :-D

I received my copy of the Illuminata this morning - the email from Tyrannosaurus Press took me a little by surprise until I realised what it was!

Sidney said...

Looks like a good issue.

Wil said...

Oh God, I better keep the OL away from this stuff, she would love it!

Danette Haworth said...

Congratulations on the good review. BTW, I also enjoyed your awards ceremony!

Charles Gramlich said...

Steve Malley, thanks Dude. I appreciate that.

Miladysa, ah, I hope you enjoy. Thanks for the support. Yes, since the Illuminata isn't published every month these days it's arrival can come as a surprise.

Sidney, it's like two old issues in one.

Wil, it's hard to keep 'em on the farm when they've seen the bright lights.

Danette, thanks. So I guess you didn't mind the shiny gold suit? Blinding for sure.

Rachel said...

Speaking of honor, valor, etc., how is that research on that Viking knight going?

Bernita said...

Charles, I finished the set.A wonderful trilogy.
If possible, the story gets better and better.
And your heroine is no wimp.

Charles Gramlich said...

Rachel, that has completely fallen by the wayside in the face of an onslaught of tests, letters of recommendation and IRB approvals. Right now I'm just trying to keep my head above water until the end of the semester.

Bernita, I really appreciate that. Swords was written much earlier than the other two and I always thought it showed the tracks of my lack of experience. I had a much better conception of what I was doing in the second and third books so I've always felt they hung together better. Thanks very much for taking the time to read them and to comment. You really made my day.

ivan said...

Congrats.

Great review.

Lana Gramlich said...

My comment didn't post! Stupid Google! *kicks Google*
I loved your column, baby. Very informative. Almost makes me wish I was a writer, too.

benjibopper said...

hey congrats Charles! and others. i'm going to check the link now and read your fine work.

benjibopper said...

btw, there is a great song by modest mouse called 'willful suspension of disbelief.'

Travis Erwin said...

I've never read much in those genres but I'm always open to good writing so I'll check it out.

benjibopper said...

great piece! i'm a front-loader myself, usually at the beginning of a chapter. i just like setting the context. think of it as a wide angle view of a world, or town, then a sharpening of focus down the minutia of a character's life.

Inside our hands, outside our hearts said...

I havent had much time Charles, but I must say you are a talented man and that makes me lucky to know you.

T

Christina said...

I just read about you on Rachel's blog and had to come over. lol. Now I KNOW for sure I run in tight circles. lol

Donnetta Lee said...

Hi, Charles: I'll have to check out this newsletter. Sounds right up my alley. Better go visit Lana now. Nighty night.
Donnetta

Charles Gramlich said...

Ivan, thankee,

Lana, you sure did write Ravenmyst well.

Benjibopper, I think that a lot of writers naturally front-load, especially when they are coming up with the story idea because we need the background. There are strengths and weaknesses to each.
Lol about the song.

Travis Erwin, there is good writing in all genres that is well worth studying.

Tara, Thanks.

Christina, yes, it's a clan.

Donnetta, hope you enjoy.