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Everything posted by Kivam

  1. Just wanted to check in on you guys.
  2. Kivam

    Pure amazingness

  3. FYI, Pat is a good dude and an unofficial-official Friend of Dragonmount, since we brought him in to host an author's Q&A in the Illuminator's way back when (during the run-up to the release of Name of the Wind). So I'm very supportive of anything that brings him publicity and fans. Which is one way of saying if you haven't read these books yet ... go do it
  4. Some of you know that my community and synagogue (Oceanside, NY) were hit pretty hard by Hurricane Sandy. There's now a really easy and painless way you can help me and my community rebuild. Yeshiva University is donating $10,000 in religious texts to an institution that had its library wiped out by Sandy, with the lucky winner determined by Facebook vote. My synagogue is on the list, and could really use your help. Please visit http://www.facebook.com/seforim/app_228910107186452 and vote for the Young Israel of Oceanside (Look for "Oceanside", please - there's also a "Young Israel of Long Beach" on the list). And if you could pass the word along to your facebook friends as well, that would be even better. Thanks in advance! -Kiv
  5. That drove me crazy. Pages and pages of Demandred screaming "Rand, where are you!" At the Bore, obviously. Where else was he going to be. Last battle, blood on the rocks of Shayol Ghul . . . come on, now. Demandred as good soldier destroying the armies of the Light so the DO/Moridin can face Rand 1 (2) on 1, that would have fit within the plot (though not his personality as it was revealed). Demandred as crazed guy looking for 1 on 1 duel with Rand in a stand up fight in Merrilor made no sense given the leadup.
  6. That's actually Sanderson's biggest problem as a writer - he has his characters self-narrate, declaim, or otherwise engages in way too much "telling" when he should be "showing". It's gotten a lot better since the start, but it's still a real annoyance when I read his (otherwise excellent) work
  7. he was an empty husk in the bore when Rand walked in he noticed the body Which was completely ludicrous. Honestly, much as I liked the book as a whole, the ending felt off and there were such obvious things that nobody was doing (like Androl just opening a gateway in Taim's chest or, once Androl had demonstrated the use of gateways to move lava, further use of that on the battlefield). Characters seemed off, and it just left me cold. Truthfully, the best thing this book could have done is let Talmanes die right at the beginning. Would have set a nice heroism/sacrifice/real danger tone for the whole book. Instead, we got a last second, just in the nick of time rescue that became the pattern for the rest of the story. It was relatively clear that Shaidar Haran was some sort of avatar for the Dark One for quite some time. I'm satisfied with his "appearance" in this book given that fact. Except: 1) He had a distinct personality and motivations (which makes ending him offscreen, as a useless husk, a real copout) and 2) the idea that the DO needed to incubate in a Fade to become a dark pool outside the Bore . . . it's just silly, to me. There's no real basis/explanation for it - it's just declaimed into the series by fiat Yes, but once Androl shows it off, it should be a major weapon in the arsenal.
  8. he was an empty husk in the bore when Rand walked in he noticed the body Which was completely ludicrous. Honestly, much as I liked the book as a whole, the ending felt off and there were such obvious things that nobody was doing (like Androl just opening a gateway in Taim's chest or, once Androl had demonstrated the use of gateways to move lava, further use of that on the battlefield). Characters seemed off, and it just left me cold. Truthfully, the best thing this book could have done is let Talmanes die right at the beginning. Would have set a nice heroism/sacrifice/real danger tone for the whole book. Instead, we got a last second, just in the nick of time rescue that became the pattern for the rest of the story.
  9. An odd approach. It's possible to form emotional attachments to characters and this to add to the experience of reading when they die: it hurts, showing you are invested in the story and the writer was successful in drawing you into the series. Egwene's death in particular comes after fourteen novels of her being around and having lots of storylines and doing important things, and her death is the catalyst for Rand's victory (or the most notable one). Egwene earns her death scene as much as any of the characters in ASoIaF earn theirs. The use of character death in ASoIaF is more effective, however, as they come early in the series and raise the stakes. There is tension if you don't know if the character you are reading about will live or die. WoT gave way too many characters invincible plot armour earlier in the series, and whilst many of the deaths in AMoL are effective it also feels a little obvious to hold back on major character deaths until the last 300 pages of the entire series (and let's be honest, apart from Egwene, some of the villains and arguably Gawyn and Siuan, most of the deaths were of second and third tier characters at best).
  10. Yep, No Costume was actually my girlfriend's contribution to the team :) TNS - I was the one in the Perry the Platypus T-Shirt on Friday
  11. This year's JordanCon installment - Car'a'Con - wrapped on Sunday, to the mingled delight and dismay of the attendees. Dismay, of course, because a great weekend had ended. And delight because, once again, JordanCon had fully delivered on its promise and premise, wrapping con-goers in the welcoming and non-judgmental embrace of a fully geeked-out Wheel of Time communal experience. From the informative and lively Writer's Track sessions with published authors and publishing insiders to The Last Ever WoT Theory Panel, JordanCon 2012 was a true home run. I can't do the entire con justice, but for what it's worth, here are my top reactions to my first-ever con experience. 1) I'm a WoT Slacker I've always viewed myself as a major WoT fan, and a fairly knowledgeable one. It took one of the con's opening sessions - the Daes Dae'mar trivia game - to rid me of that illusion. With great fanfare, the con attendees who chose to take part in the trivia contest were divided into teams and told to choose team names, ready to do battle in a WoT Trivia Agni Kai (I'm an Avatar nut too. Deal with it). In this corner, Terez and the Tamyrlin's Know it Alls. Across the room, the Defenders of the Stone - a trivia group so serious that one member was Skyping in. One group called itself the Aelfinn, and had Maria sitting in with them. Another group was the Eelfinn. Corruption. And us - the dramatically named No Costume Is a Costume. (The name would make more sense if you read the fine print on the JordanCon program guides.) I knew we were in trouble from the start - our team of five included two girlfriends who had never read any of the books - but I didn't quite realize how much trouble until the questions started rolling in. What is the Old Tongue name Moghedien used for Shaidar Haran? (Mia'cova). What is Gaidal Cain's weapon (I still say "Birgitte" is a better answer than "two swords"). Who was Rogosh Eagle-Eye's love? (Dunsinin). Even Terez' team got some of the questions wrong. No Costume? We were just glad to end the game with positive points. So, uh, no, we didn't win. And I realized I know only slightly more WoT trivia than my hasn't-read-the-books girlfriend. So, congratulations, JordanCon - you just got me to do a reread in advance of A Memory of Light. Something to be proud of. 2) Meeting Online Friends in Person is Awesome...If They Recognize You One of the primary attractions to JordanCon, for me, was the chance to finally meet, in the flesh, some people I've spent the past decade virtually hanging out with. Jason Denzel. The Liangs. Dwyn. Shendare. And there were surprises. I mean, I knew Jason was tall, but nobody mentioned that he was actually part stork. Jennifer not recognizing me immediately...or on slow prompting. (Come on, Jenn...how many guys with yarmulkes were you expecting? To be fair, Jenn is to "short" what Jason is to "tall", so she couldn't really see it, but still...I cried a little, on the inside). Dwyn was much more petite than I expected. You build up a picture of people in your head, and the force of their personalities makes you think of them as larger than life. Dwyn was barely life sized. Seriously, though, meeting old friends, and making new ones, is what a con like this is really about, in my opinion, and JordanCon was uniquely well set up to make that happen. Daes Dae'mar, the Ji'e'toh competition, the Saturday night party, the open-gaming room, and the panels all provided real opportunities to interact with other WoT fans, and I had a blast doing it. 3) JordanCon Hates teh Jews; or Why is the Awesome Scheduled for Saturday?!? OK, OK, I get it. Saturday is the weekend day, the day off, the day with the most attendees, and the day without either opening or closing ceremonies taking up time. But man, if knowing the con organizers can't get them to schedule Harriet McDougal's reading of the AMoL prologue for "not Saturday", what good is it, really? So, yeah. Sadly, I had to miss the reading - which I heard was terrific - and most of the Saturday night party. I did manage to show up for the last hour of dancing Saturday night, and that was fun, if a bit embarassing. (In a room full of mediocre to bad dancers, shot through with occasional awesomeness, I was by far the most awkward dancer on the floor. The last time I'd actually danced to, well, dance music was in high school, more years ago than I care to think about...and I wasn't particularly good back then. I'm uncoordinated, arrhythmic, and apparently - according to my girlfriend, who laughed at me but still loves me, unaccountably - I make weird faces when I dance. Top that!) Any dance party that has the DJ screaming "I am the Lord of Chaos" at random times works for me. Plus, I got introduced to an awesome but decidedly NSFW love song to Ray Bradbury. Yes, that Ray Bradbury. Google it, if you're of age. Win all around. 4) The Writer's Track Had Some Serious Info for Aspiring Authors Not going to be funny here at all (Yes, Barm, Luckers, I hear you. I wasn't funny anywhere else in this post. Got it. Be less predictable, dammit!) - the Writer's Track panels at JordanCon were extremely useful. Industry vets at every level, from Hugo and Campbell award winner Mary Robinette Kowal to behind the scenes folks like Peter Ahlstrom (Brandon Sanderson's assistant) to up-and-coming and successful self-published author Will Kenyon, shared valuable knowledge and insight about the writing and publishing process. 5) JordanCon's Blademasters Are Awesome, and I Am Not Interesting side note: In college, I choreographed sword fights for stage and actually spent a little time in a fencing club. More relevant side note: That was way too long ago to make a difference when I decided to take part in the con's swordfighting tournament. Armed with practice swords gifted by Robert Jordan himself, con attendees were paired up in mini brackets of four, with the winners of each bout facing off in a second round, and the winner of that second bout getting to challenge one of three Blademasters. Watching the random bouts was fun, in an "opening rounds of American Idol" kind of way - occasionally, someone who knew what they were doing would be involved, by pure luck, but most of the time it was completely untrained folks whacking each other with sticks. Awesome. Watching the Blademaster bouts was awesome in a whole different way. Those guys really know what they are doing, and it was much like watching any other elite athlete - just stand back and appreciate it. As for me, it didn't help that I got matched up with Stork Denzel himself. I didn't land a blow. 6) The Exhibitor Floor Rocked There is some truly amazing art being done out there, in the fantasy realm in general and the WoT arena in particular, and despite not having the funds available to bring any of it home with me, it was a privilege to walk the room and see some of those beautiful works - a number of which were replicated on Ta'veren Tees. And meeting the son of the late Darrell K. Sweet, hearing him talk about his father's work, and examining the full size paintings from which the book covers were made was definitely memorable. 7) The Wrap Up Bottom line - I drove from New York to Atlanta for this con, and it more than met my expectations. I'm looking forward to going again next year. In fact, I'm going to start working on my dance moves and fencing now.
  12. Mr. Modesitt will be with us through the 25th
  13. What other authors do you think have most influenced your own work - and what other authors do you admire?
  14. Thanks for joining us, Mr. Modesitt. One thing that caught my attention in your Recluse novels was the third-person present tense you wrote in; not many writers use it and it was jarring at first, then kind of captivating. How did you hit on that, and what made you use it?
  15. Kivam

    9/11 Memories

    Where were you on the day that changed the world? What do you remember most about it? For me, it was my first real week of law school. I was living in Queens at the time and commuting to the city. It was an hour and a half long ride, so I got on the bus before the first plane hit and got off the subway after the second one hit, knowing nothing about what was going on. I still remember walking up the stairs at the 116th street stop and having some stranger say, surprised, "the trains are still running?" Knowing nothing, I looked at him like he was crazy. "Of course they are." And I made my way across campus in blissful ignorance. I didn't find out what was happening until I was walking down the stairs to my class when a classmate barreled past me, almost knocking me over in her race to get down the stairs and connect her laptop. "Hey!" "Sorry," she shouted back over her shoulder. "Another plane just hit the Pentagon." "What? Wait - 'another' plane?!" I vaguely remember sitting in that shell-shocked classroom, a bunch of silent students and a torts professor who had no more to say than any of us. After give minutes our so he dismissed us all to go watch the news, call loved ones, or do what we would. I remember watching the news in the student lounge, packed with people yet preternaturally silent. Somber newscasters already struggling to deal with the event struck dumb by images of people leaping off the towers to escape the flames. Images they replayed over and over, unable to comprehend what they were seeing, or unable to process it. Some things stand out in my memory. The collective gasp in the room as the first tower came down. The sobbing as the second tower fell. Watching video of people celebrating in other parts of the world and wondering how they could be so stupid as to not see the shape of events to come. Heading to the nearest hospital to give blood - and being turned away because there were already so many volunteers they didn't have the capacity to take blood from us all. Scrambling to find a way out of the city so I could get home that night. A 45 minute car ride that took three hours. Most of all, I remember the next day. The eerily silent subway rides, with people who couldn't bring themselves to smile, as if enjoyment was sacrilege. The sense of unity, which would soon dissipate. And the sense of determination, which would not. Hard to believe it's been ten years already. For me, for many New Yorkers, it still feels like yesterday. That's what I think about, today. How about you? This post has been promoted to an article
  16. The same as in every other 7th age that has passed. Hence nothing unique about this one. When authors get things wrong it is usually concerning eye color, or losing track of where a minor character is. He would not get something as important as this wrong. If you can find in any interview a quote that contradicts the one I provided please do so. As for the misquote maybe someone else could chime in but I have never heard of issues with the Marcon report. The statement is unambiguous and very straightforward. It's actually pretty pathetic, at least try to prove your theory with textual evidence or quotes instead of just claiming to know better than RJ. Since you are so inquisitive, work that mind, get the cobwebs out, start looking at what RJ said to find contradictions. There are bound to be a few. I already provided textual evidence (see Rand's quote), as you well know there are dozen's of quotes by various characters. This is emphasized throughout the entire series without any contradiction, TG, win or die. If you can find anything to contradict the fact the TG is indeed win or die time from the books, quote it, otherwise there isn't anything else to discuss. If by "win or die time" you mean "if the Light loses, it's all over", you're right. If by "win or die time" you mean "if the Light wins the shadow will be destroyed for all time" . . . no. As for sources from the books, how about Herid Fel: There you go. Straight from the books. The Third Age is coming again. The Bore will be resealed, the Dark One will still be in the prison, and, in the Third Age, the Bore will be drilled yet again. Let me guess - Herid Fel is wrong, too?
  17. Aegon being alive was made clear by the fact that EVERY time the books referenced his murder, it repeated that his head was bashed in and the corpse was unrecognizable
  18. 30 years for 80 murders? That's less than 3 years per life taken. How is this not a life sentence?
  19. Thankfully we don't have the death penalty in Norway. This is one of the situations where you should have it. Hopefully, for your sake, he won't become a Samir Kuntar like prisoner that others will be trying to get released. What a horrible, horrible event. My hearts go out to everyone affected.
  20. That's appropriately evil, Cindy
  21. Final Cookpot Points (through Thorum's game - everything after is in July, so just for fun ) Come join Shayol Ghul to claim your points Kivam: 32 Red: 19 Leelou:48 Csarmi: 1 Moon: 113(+5 from my personal stash for the "Lightful" question) TinaHel: 166 Toraneko: 1 Keyholder: 52 BerfBieber: 1 Blackhoof: 69 Glip: 2 Ithillian:4 (+5 from my personal stash for the "misunderstood" comment) Locke: 5 Alanna: 2 Vambram: 157 Cindy: 138 (+ 15 points from my personal stash for the "ginger" question and the "Aaaargh" response) Stitch: 19 Talmanes: 48 (+5 from my personal stash for choosing his namesake as the cookpot character) Smiley73: 101 (+5 for the response to the Rand guess) Johtholar: 5 Parthet: 179 Thorum: 42
  22. Channeler? (Yes, I saw Tina and Talmanes both ask, and I felt left out). Over 30?
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