Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Susannah's Song (Isn't In My WinAmp): Fanwank Remix

I've been following the "52 Books in 52 Weeks" project over at Negro Please, so I was delighted to get to fanwank a bit when Jason added Song of Susannah (Dark Tower VI to the cognosceti) to the list over there.

I have very few good things left from the first and longest relationship of my life, a long and unneccesarily sordid tale with which I will not bore you, but the ones I have left are awesome...the leather jacket I still wear every winter, the copy of The Fountainhead that was among the things I sued the motherfucker to get him to return, and an abiding love for the works of Stephen King, whose work I had unfairly discounted after some adult allowed me to purchase and read It at the age of nine. It scared the holy living hell out of me and left me with a bad taste in my mouth for years -- and as it turned out it took me over a decade to read that book again. When I was younger I had to turn that book to the wall because I was even afraid of the cover art (the Tim Curry cover that was the tie-in with the movie), but even at that age I was too much of a collector to get rid of it. Still scared the fuck out of me more than 10 years later, but I was able to deal with it.

Anyhow. The First Boyfriend gave me a rather self-serving gift (should have seen the warning signs right then) for Christmas in 1997 -- the first three books of the Dark Tower series. Because he loved them sooooo much, I sucked it up and read them, and after a little while I was the one being sucked -- sucked in, that is. The introduction to that series that got me reading King again was probably worth everything else I went through. Probably.

By the time I finally got to finish the series this year, in a marathon 36-hour immersion where I devoured the last 3 books almost at a sitting, I had been reading the damned series for 7 years. It was that series that made me swear off reading closed series with unpublished books for many years -- until J.K. Rowling tricked me and I started reading the adventures of goddamn Harry Potter, for which I kick myself every time I see the preorder info on Amazon. Not that I don't love the books, but I get too invested in these things and end up taking it personally (not Annie Wilkes personally, but very badly and with much "BUT I WAAAAAAANNIT!" bratting nonetheless) when I have to wait to find out what happens. I don't like to wait, because I'm a Leo.

That said, I'm now sad in a different way; sad that the series is over. Since no one I currently talk to is all that about DT -- the Artist and I are working on Book 2 aloud, but that's gotten choppy lately with all the moving -- it didn't really hit me until I realized that there are people out there who love it, yet don't know how it ends. Jason, for instance, has been reading that series for twice as long as I, and he's not done, and for some reason that just kicked it into my consciousness for good, that it's over, and there's no guarantee King will keep bringing the world of the Tower into his writing, if he even keeps writing (although I trust that he'll quit writing about as much as I trust it when Jay-Z says he's retiring.) Book 7 is one of the few books I remember making me literally wail -- not cute little welling tears, but big, deep sobs, the kind that scare you if you ever witness someone else emitting them, the kind that usually come from major grief.

But, in all fairness, I've known those characters longer than I've known most of my friends. I started reading them back before I'd ever been kissed, for God's sake. Now they've passed out of my life, and it's sad -- not as sad as losing a real person, since you can't pick a real person back up and reread them from start to close whenever you feel like it. But it makes me wonder if there's something wrong with me, because when Stephen King got hit by the van, the first words out of my mouth weren't "Oh God" or "I hope he's OK" but "He BETTER not fucking die, he's got 3 Dark Towers to write, dammit!" I was reminded of that recently because Fran's mother does something similar in the beginning of The Stand, and I hope that reaction didn't make me a bad person forever and ever. Just goes to show that even the most bleeding heart among us are inherently selfish, I suppose. And I'm glad Mr. King didn't die, even if he had never finished the Dark Tower series. I probably would have wanted to kill him myself if he had elected not to, but that just makes me a fanwanker, and that I have always been.

I rarely write authors. I've thought about writing him but have never had enough to say. I've corresponded with Jill Connor Browne, and as far as I can think of, that's it. There are letters I've written in my head to authors no longer with Earth as their return address -- Heinlein, Asimov, Tolkien, Plath and Ginsberg -- but my track record with the living isn't great. Usually the story is enough for me, and most novelists appear to prefer the readers who feel that way. I may be a fanwanker, but I don't want to be just another annoying fangirl who thinks she has a right to your private life when chances are you've shared all you want to through your words. (JCB is a little different because she's a writer, but not a novelist, and actively encourages people to send her their stories and thoughts.) Maybe I'll sit down and tell him what I think. I'll probably never send it. I might post it here.

Anyhow. That's what's up. In real life, nothing but work and vegetation, and a ritual last night that was pretty motivating but not anything I can really describe. Suffice it to say that my tarot is so right it's amazing.

Oh -- and CDHSarah is letting me re-roll my Druid and play in her very first ever campaign. Woot!

The media, just for you.

What I'm Reading

Nothing, again. I'm intentionally not picking up a book, because CDHSarah is due in an hour to help me clean, and I won't want to get up and get it done if I start reading. Next up is the Book of the Subgenius, which I had lost recently and just re-found.

What I'm Hearing

During this post I gave Magus control. What were the results?

Bitch and Animal, Scrap Metal
Buck Owens, Who's Gonna Mow Your Grass?
Rob Zombie's Brick House remix from House of 1000 Corpses
Sex Pistols, Anarchy in the U.K.
Tori Amos' cover of Tom Waits' Time
Jimi's Star Spangled Banner
Shame on You, Mr. Bush, a remix of Michael Moore's Oscar speech from Bowling for Columbine
Three Pickers, Daybreak Blues
Eminem, Broke the Rubber (a live freestyle with a couple of other rappers)
Fifty Cent, Many Men (Wish Death)

Let me know you stopped by...leave a comment.


At 6:36 PM, Blogger Special Sauce said...

Hee! I actually used to do the same things with my Stephen King books. I'd turn the covers away, and make sure the pages faced the wall lest the stories seep out and invade my dreams. It was a SUPER creepy book- and they've been showing the miniseries version on some station or other lately.


And I'll email you the link instructions- they escape me at the moment-

Rock on, ET!

At 6:06 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

hmmmmm. ayn rand always struck me as waaaaaaaay too stuck on herself. supercilious. holier-than-thou, if you will. now, i'm not saying that there is not value in reading rand, just that i feel it must be taken with an ENORMOUS BLOCK of salt, not simply a grain.

stephen king is another story. i've always felt that i should like him, somehow, but i've never been able to read him. i've started to wonder why that is. perhaps, all of the brou-ha-ha annoys me, as it did with Dune? which is why i held off reading Dune for DECADES and then became positively spell-bound, just as everyone else? perhaps because i dislike following the madding crowd, so??? querida, if anyone could convince me, it would perhaps be YOU, given our mutual adoration for RAH. ahhhhhhhhhh. those were the days. i miss him terribly. ginny never liked me much. perhaps i was too much of a brash adolescent, i am really not sure. she never seemed to mind his previous infatuations, and actually came to expect it, as anyone could see for themselves if they bothered to read Grumbles from the Grave. ah, well. he loved her, more than anyone else he ever loved. he loved her until the last moment.

and you know what? i think i may just have figured out my addiction to red heads! huh.

obrigada, my dear friend, zen. that was enlightening, and certainly unexpected. could there be such a thing as ghost typing??? is robert here as i write this? i wonder........


At 9:02 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"It was that series that made me swear off reading closed series with unpublished books for many years..." OMG, I have the same bias - after reading the first two books of a trilogy in PB, then finding out that the third had never come out in PB, bitching and grumbling and trying to find the third book used so I wouldn't have to pay full price, and finally breaking down and paying something like $28 just so I could FINISH THE DAMN STORY!!! It was so worth it, tho' (Guy Gavriel Kay's Fionavar Tapestry.) I still occasionally get duped into getting involved in a series - the current one is George R.R. Martin's Song of Ice and Fire, which I bought the first book of because it said nothing about being Book One of XXXX and discovered only about 50 pages from the end that it was to be a multi-book epic. And the worst part: (actually, three parts) a) It's scheduled to be something like SIX books (only 3 published so far), b) Martin is exasperatingly slow about bringing out the next book (worse than Rowling, IMO) and c) it's just an incredible story and there is no way in hell I can stop now. DAMN YOU GEORGE R R MARTIN!!

Jillie, Fellow Fanwanker


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