Old words for old worlds

On the use of the past to explain the present

Tolkien’s own translation of Beowulf to come out in May 2014

One link to rule them all: http://www.theguardian.com/books/2014/mar/19/jrr-tolkien-beowulf-translation-published

I am so beside myself with joy and excitement that I can barely type. Yes, my hunger for more Tolkien, Beowulf and Old English literature is so boundless, so infinite and OH MY GOD I WANT THIS BOOK RIGHT NOW.

Project LOSK, Update #3

Word count: 4875 (+3878 since last update, 1401 were previously shelved)
Draft stage: Better than yesterday, worse than tomorrow

Most of my “writing Sundays” start with me liking my manuscript in the morning and end with me hating it in the evening. Yesterday was the opposite, for a change. A quick recap:

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On Medieval Warfare, Revisited (but it’s not that great this time)

Medieval Military TechnologyWhile my first draft keeps chugging along (more on that very soon), I thought I would interrupt my regular programming with a short review of another book on medieval warfare that I read last month. It is the second edition of Medieval Military Technology by Kelly DeVries and Robert Douglas Smith, published by the University of Toronto Press in 2012. I should note that DeVries was a contributor in Fighting Techniques of the Medieval World, a book I have previously reviewed. This was not the reason for my acquiring it, however. It was in fact an impulse buy, after reading some rave reviews on Amazon, where people said it was the new reference on the subject.

Fair enough. But my short answer to that has to be this: sorry, but no way.

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Project LOSK, Update #2

Word count: 1001 (+1001 after draft reset)
Words shelved: 3362
Draft stage: Legitimately Reset

Three things of note for this week’s update.

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Project LOSK, Update #1

Word count: 3362 (+2814 since last update)
Draft stage: Chaotic & Crappy


It has been about a month now since I finally sat down on a rainy summer night and started writing. Here is what I can say about the experience thus far.

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Introducing Project LOSK

So there it is. I’m now officially writing a Fantasy novel.

My working title is The Legacy of the Silent King.

This title will never be the official one, if you must know. My wish is to come up with a satisfactory title that does not follow a nomenclature of the X of Y kind. But this can wait.

Tonight’s word count: 548.

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Part Three of a Medieval Warfare Reader: A Deeper Look

Eleven books, fourteen months and three thousand pages later, all the high priority items on my reading list have been completed, finally. This experience has been quite rewarding, though sometimes demanding. I am therefore both happy and relieved to conclude my Medieval Warfare Reader with three superior titles that are not to be missed (or at least the first two — see below on why) by both the history aficionado and the serious Fantasy writer. My opinion on how to leverage the knowledge of actual history in writing Fantasy has been made clear enough in the first and second part of my series; I will not push that particular topic any further here.

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The Ways of Castles (Part Two of a Medieval Warfare Reader)

This second installment of my Medieval Warfare Reader has long been in the making; more so than the first part, in fact, for I wanted to increase my understanding of castles, and from that my ability to imagine and describe them, before learning about armies and soldiering in ages past. I find few fortresses in Fantasy as interestingly unique as the Hornburg at Helm’s Deep in The Lord of the Rings. Given that my project of Fantasy has an overt inclination toward martial matters, I try to hold myself to a similar standard. I mean that only as a reference, of course. I’ll be damned if I ever quit looking up to the master of Fantasy.

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Medieval Warfare: A Reader (Part One)

The only acceptable reason for not blogging is that I should be writing instead. I am not. In the past months, I have rather spent most of my free-time reading, which I hope is at least near-acceptable. My defense? Research. Good and well-crafted stories are written by those who know what they are talking about and I believe this holds true with Fantasy just as well.

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Link: Fantasy armor and lady bits

A lot of Fantasy art sucks. Oversized, oversexed, overboard all the way. Puerile and sad, really. Now, I have recently stumbled upon the following blog post by an armorer, on the contentious topic of female armor: http://madartlab.com/2011/12/14/fantasy-armor-and-lady-bits/.

Many fair points in there. Wonderful post. This is required reading.


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