Geek Gab Featuring Author/Blogger/Gamer Jon Mollison

Sunday , 16, April 2017 10 Comments

This is a can’t-miss episode with gamer, Castalia House blogger, and author Jon Mollison. And all the hottest topics in fantasy and science fiction are covered:

  • How to get your writing career of the ground… with novellas!
  • How to claw your way to the top… without the resources of an NYC publishing house at your back!
  • What comics readers really want.
  • The large number of people that just quietly dropped out of fantasy and science fiction to spent more time and attention on rpgs without really realizing why.
  • Award winning fiction that nobody seems to be a fan of. (??)
  • Overt Christian themes versus covert Christian themes.
  • Moral relativism and The Force… and how mixing heroism and villainy with the Grey Jedi won’t work.
  • More on Bryce Beattie‘s Story Hack and Misha Burnett‘s 21st Century Pulp project.
  • And the imminent return of the triumvirate of Pulp to Geek Gab!

Don’t miss it!

  • Hooc Ott says:

    Jon talks about life experience and the inability of youth being able to write something profound.

    ERB Born Sept 1875 Tarzan, Princess of Mars 1912 ~36 years old

    Brackett Born Dec 1915 Jewel of Bas 1944 ~28 years old

    CL Moore born Jan 1911 Black God’s Kiss 1934 ~23 years old

    Robert E Howard born Jan 1906 The Phoenix on the Sword 1932 ~26 years old.

    I don’t think this is a life experience thing. I think it is a culture thing an education thing and a close connection with the western literary canon thing.

    Now there is very little to be done about the first two but the good news is that last one can be grasped very easily.

    Just read the books.

    • Jeffro says:

      Yes. Our young people are indoctrinated from the cradle with a bogus anti-culture.

      There’s no reason they couldn’t be creating significant works at a much younger age.

      If only someone could tell them to Regress Harder!

    • deuce says:

      I don’t know much about Moore’s early life, but REH grew up living in about 10 different places in the huge state of Texas before he was 12. His mother was a fan of poetry and Shakespeare, as was he. Howard, according to all accounts, would often speak with old-timers, coaxing tales of the Old West out of them. Men who had lived through the Civil War and Comanche raids. Early on, REH was a fan of Sir Walter Scott, an author dead for almost 75yrs before Howard was even born.

      In other words, REH had been around a little and had spoken to others who had seen it all. His tastes in literature were wide in a genre sense and deep in a temporal sense.

      Out of the four authors in Hooc Ott’s list, there is one writer we know they all admired: H. Rider Haggard.

    • Jon Mollison says:

      It’s a fair point, but I was specifically referring to contemporary writers. There’s no comparison between a 25 year old in the 1930s vs. today. The whole concept of ‘teenager’ barely existed in the 1930s. The prolonged adolescence made possible by the American post-war economy changes things.

      Also, don’t mistake trends for specifics. I’m sure there are dozens of writers in their mid-20s you could point to as the exceptions that prove the general rule.

    • deuce says:

      I kinda assumed that was how you meant it, Jon. I was just using the opportunity to point out some things about REH.

      In general, your point holds true. Very few authors do much truly classic work until their late 20s. Considering the coddling and misinformation the current twenty-somethings have been subjected to, the odds drop even lower.

      When you look at the bios of the 3 guys — Haggard, Burroughs and Merritt — who really laid the foundations for the “pulp” SFF template, several things jump out. All three started writing adventure tales in their late 20s or later. All three had traveled fairly extensively and had encountered non-English-speaking “primitice” tribes. They came away from those encounters with a certain amount of respect for those peoples while avoiding “going native” and hating Western civilization. All were married and all had a certain amount of religious conviction. All of them also were raised in traditional families with fathers active in their lives. Finally, all of them were exposed to classic works — ie, pre-“Literary Realism” — in the English language from a young age and were expected to have a strong grasp of those works as a matter of course.

      When one looks at those “stats”, it’s pretty easy to see that expecting a modern, 21st century twenty-something to knock one outta the park is betting against the spread. That said, it doesn’t mean that writers shouldn’t get started early and work hard at their craft. Also, getting some real-life experience — ie, hanging out with people working real jobs and living real lives, not snowflakes — would be very helpful. Being so grounded/”based” is what enabled those men to give their imaginations free rein and to fly far.

      Just some thoughts.

  • Alexandru says:

    Excellent episode. The idea of focusing on novellas is perfect.

  • deuce says:

    Yeah, fun episode all around.

  • Jon Mollison says:

    Thanks for the kind words, everybody. I live to entertain.

  • Just as a small correction, StoryHack is Bryce Beattie’s project.

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