Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Seeking Deeper Something or Other

Prompted by a conversation with a friend...

I kinda like Neil Gaiman. I mean,I've read Sandman and American Gods and Neverwhere, and I thought they had some neat concepts. I didn't mind reading them. It was fun.

But I don't get excited about Neil Gaiman. I don't shout with glee every time I get hear of a new Gaiman book, like I do with, say, Terry Pratchett. I've never gotten so lost in his books that I lose a night of sleep, like I did with Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell, or pretty much every King book ever. I like Gaiman ok. I just don't love him.

And I have no idea why. I used to say this sort of work, that I thought was good but somehow didn't latch on to, was in the Farscape zone. Because, by gosh, I *should* have loved Farscape. I wanted to love Farscape. It had everything that usually gets to me. But I felt nothing but resounding meh. I'm not talking about stuff that you understand hating very well-I'm not talking about Twilight/Anita Blake/Tarot here, everyone who hates those knows darn well why. It's not even like my hate of Wicked, which is a whole other post. I should like these things! I DO like these things! I just don't love them!

Does this-- weird disinterest in work that is, by all moral and sensible rules, be absolutely awesome--happen to anyone else? I always think I'm missing something. And I'd love someone to help me get whatever the heck I'm not getting here, because hey, no one's making any more Firefly, and I like having stories to love.

So, if anyone wants to enlighten me, consider this an invitation for in-depth raves in the comments. And if anyone else has something they want to love more, mention it in comments--maybe someone else can help you see why it's awesome. No attacks on fans or unfans, here-- this is just for helping glorify the good, not demonize the opposition.

More art next time!


  1. Hmm.. I guess this makes sense. I can't really think of anything that I should have loved and didn't, though... Oh! I got one! "The Silmarillion"! I adore Tolkien and I normally don't mind dry historical stuff (heck, my BA in English focused on literature, and it's what I want to go to grad school for), but I just can't bring myself to feel anything more than an "eh, it's okay" about it.

  2. Looks like I missed a couple posts here while I was in new-computer-limbo.

    You know what I should like but don't? The subject of your other blog post I missed: Wondermark. I want to like it. I like the concept. I met Malki! at Comic Con last year, and he was friendly and funny. But the humor in his comic just doesn't quite click with me.

  3. Merily, I am the wroooong person to ask about Tolkien Appreciation. Hoo boy. That's a subject for another post. But-- wasn't the Silmarillion his own personal set of notes, released without Tolkien's approval? Man, I hope no one ever gets hold of my worldbuilding notes. Stuff like "But if S the right token the J takes second" is not terribly helpful to either elucidation of others nor my own reputation.

    AJ, I...don't know what to say. Malki's sense of humor seems so much like my own (and yeah, he really is a cool guy-- I've met him too, at wee little Staplecon in Austin),it seems weird that you'd like my little descriptions and all and not his stuff. Hmmm. You know, maybe you hit a bad batch? I don't think all his stuff knocks it out of the park. I'll see if I can find a couple of the ones I think do, maybe you haven't encountered them. There's one in particular...let me go argue with the internet for a while.

  4. Do not post about hating Wicked again, or I will have to come and switch you with a broom.

    I love Farscape. Reallyreally. Part crush, part something else, but I was so sad to see it go. Loved Firefly more, mind you.

    Loved the Silmarillion. Part of what I groove on is the ability to just go with it- I do not need to understand, follow, or remember it all. I just follow the beautiful trail of names and ideas, of places primeval.

    I didn't like Pearl Jam for a long time, but I don't know what switched because now I do. Anyone who doesn't like Kate Bush or Joanna Newsom, or The Decemberists, PLEASE keep that to yourself. Same with George RR Martin and ee cummings- if you don't like my men, I don't wanna know!

  5. So....if I post about hating Wicked, you come visit? You know, you kind of stink at negative reinforcement. Actually, if I write that post, maybe you'll be able to categorically tell me why I'm wrong, and that would be great, because I really really really want to just like Wicked entirely.

    I wanted to love Farscape! I didn't hate it. But it's like Season 8 of Buffy, stuffed full of goodness that for some reason just doesn't hit the spot.

    I suspect I might like the Silmarillion more than I liked LoTR. This is a thing Tolkien fans never seem to get when I say didn't enjoy the trilogy-- I didn't dislike because of the long explanations and historical digressions, I disliked it IN SPITE OF all the awesome description and historical digressions. I love that stuff! But I wanted to beat Gandalf with a stuffed Balrog, and his arghness radiated out and infected everything.

    Except Gollum. Gollum is *perfect*. Er, as a character. He's really loathsome, of course.

    The Decemberists are fantastic. The others, as we've established, I don't know. George Martin is one of those authors I keep meaning to read, though from what I've heard I need to get my mood right first. I like a good dark fantasy, but I need my head in the right place to really enjoy it properly. I am saving Martin for a vacation. :D


Geek out!