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For Those Who Disregard Prophecy

People who snub prophecy bewilder me. They say, "I'm not obligated to pay any attention to private revelation. The strict teachin...

Saturday, July 30, 2011

The Vox Day Discussion of "Literal readers"

An interesting point has been made today over at the Vox Day blog.  In a discussion about “literal readers,” Vox cites the Italian, Umberto Eco, for a discussion on how many readers are unable to disassociate an author from the author’s fictional characters.  Most notable was this paragraph:

What happens instead to the readers of whom I speak, those who don't absolutely distinguish between fiction and reality? Their situation does not have aesthetic validity. To the extent they are inclined to take the story so seriously that they never ask if it is told well or poorly, they are not looking for instruction and they do not identify with the characters. They simply manifest that which I will define as a fictional deficit; they are incapable of suspending their disbelief. Since there are more of these readers than we think, it is worth the trouble to consider them because we know that all the questions of morals and aesthetics will elude them.”

Many interesting points have been brought up.  One blog contributor, davidofone, labels this trend as Superlusionality--the capability and the inability to suspend mental and emotional vestment (active) in the relating to fictional characters or events.  Davidofone attributes this quality more to women, citing soap operas as a potential example of this phenomenon.  Another blogger, O.C., takes the discussion further, stating that this phenomenon springs from “that same piece of psyche that lets people believe that actors have something important and intelligent to say when they're not reading a script.”  Another regular poster, Pax, claims that this phenomenon of “literal reading” is generated from the sheer volume of media available to readers or viewers. 

But near the beginning of the posts for Vox’s blog entry is this statement from “the abe”:

“Personal experience and observation have led me to conclude that a traditional religious grounding seems to harness our irrational/unconscious nature in a healthy fashion. It makes me wonder if people who are susceptible to such disassociation (in a general sense) Ecco describes are more prone to be either irreligious or generally haven't cultivated any irrational elements in their life (e.g. scotch and water Christians, non-practicing jews, etc).”

After considering this statement from the abe we can consider using the cliché: “If you believe in nothing, you will fall for anything.”  If the society at large is irreligious and people’s minds are based on a materialist philosophy, it very well may be that individuals will look to anything to replace the spot where religion would ordinarily be in their lives.  And in that sense, characters and fictional plots become the religion.  It is the pop culture that they believe in—they have more faith in the media that is fed to them through books, magazines, or video.  And with the sheer volume of so much fiction being fed to “literal readers,” who could deny the truth of media?  It must be real.  “There is no God, but perhaps these people are.”

If this is the case, one could argue that a “literal reader” has severely misplaced their practice of faith, and that they have a grave spiritual deficit.  Instead of having a proper place for the Divine in their lives, the spiritual growth of these people has mutated into something more deformed.

Friday, July 29, 2011

New Thundercats

Just when I thought I was going to post about Black Swan, I was reminded instead about the latest new rendition of Thundercats.  It will air tonight for all to see, and all of Generation Y can determine whether or not it's a good fresh look or not. 

Coincidentally, JamesNintendoNerd has decided to chime in on his take of the old series. 

Watching his review makes me long for the old days.  Anymore, a superhero cartoon will feature animation that is somewhat...blocky.  Inorganic.  Cheap and thrown together, almost.  Nothing like the old 1980s cartoons such as Thundercats, G.I. Joe, He-Man, Transformers--the hits.  In fact, one wonders if cartoon animation will ever return to that style of trying to portray characters ever again.  But for now, it seems that we are to choose between Japanese Anime style, and the blocky overexaggerated reduxes thrown onto the canvas over at Cartoon Network. 

As for the new Thundercats series, time will tell if it can stand on its own.

The Beginning of The Hirsch Files

Tonight, we kick off the start of the brand new Hirsch Files, with the announcement of the first of many books, Road to Moloch

While my primary literary interests involve fantasy, it seemed appropriate to begin by grounding my first book in reality.  What is more fantastic than the carnival of variety we see in today's people?  Road to Moloch is an early work from an early period of my life.  Also, it is based partially on true events.  So there's a double bonus to reading the work: Not only can one enjoy a good yarn, but they might even be able to catch a glimpse or two of some of the things that have passed through Laramie's eye sockets. 

However, I want to assure readers that the attitudes and opinions of the protagonist are not shared by the author.  One is allowed to write about a bigot without being a bigot, is he not?

The protagonist, Samson, goes through a lot on his trip to New York.  He meets plenty of people along the way to spin him in more circles than he thought possible.  As the belly of Moloch (a.k.a. New York City) begins to digest the little soul, I often wonder if the reader will experience a touch of schadenfreude when they see the boy trip over himself. 

Fun for everyone--except the kids.  There's plenty of cussing in this one.  Seems Samson never understood the word "tact."

My special thanks goes out to E.S. Hammer, whose vast imagination conceived the fierce book cover.  My gratitude goes out to "Lady K," whose technical know-how was able to bring me to this point with my writing, thank you so very much for working with me, Lady K.  Finally, I would be nowhere without the encouragement and guidance from my mentor, whose name I do not yet know if I have the permission to print here.  Thank you everyone.

And if you would like to purchase a digital copy of The Road to Moloch for your Kindle, simply follow the Amazon link here: http://www.amazon.com/The-Road-to-Moloch-ebook/dp/B005ELOXEO/ref=ntt_at_ep_dpt_1   

Friday, July 1, 2011

Hail Mary, full of Grace.  The Lord is with thee.  Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the Fruit of Thy Womb, Jesus.  Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death.  Amen.

Glory be to the Father, to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit.  As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end.  Amen.

Oh my Jesus, forgive us our sins.  Save us from the fires of Hell, and lead all souls to Heaven--especially those in most need of Thy mercy.  Amen.