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Fiction Friction: Absurd Blurbs and the Riftwar Cycle

Jared

fatal softener
Published by SLP
Location
Over the rainbow
Since you mention that the goof on the blurb for A Darkness at Sethanon had that blurb was in the 2009 edition, I should point out that it’s the same blurb that was on the version I read sometime in the late 80s.

Feist himself was fairly philosophical about it when it came up in online discussions.
 

Charles EP M.

Well-known member
Published by SLP
God, never mind the mysterious sports team, that Lords And Ladies blurb is patronising as hell, "LOOK AT THIS WHACKY THING EH?" Piss off!

Author-decided blurbs is a notable thing for self-publishing and smaller publishers, leading to the horrible challenge of trying to figure out How Blurb Works. Lots of groups for authors focusing on commercial blurbs but it all comes off a bit blind-leading-the-blind-to-work-on-the-Philosopher's-Stone at times
 

Redolegna

Champagne Socialist
Moderator
Published by SLP
Location
Paris
Pronouns
he/him
Excuse me, let me miss the point of the article and take offence at a minor thing.

There are people who like Paul Kidby's cover art more than Josh Kirby's? And they have found a way to defeat the restraints and access keypads?
 

Gary Oswald

Old and Foolish now
Sea Lion Press staff
Published by SLP
Pronouns
he/him
Excuse me, let me miss the point of the article and take offence at a minor thing.

There are people who like Paul Kidby's cover art more than Josh Kirby's? And they have found a way to defeat the restraints and access keypads?
I always found the kirby covers grotesque and offputting. The prominent skimpily dressed women with big tits is part of it and only vague connection to the books is part of it bit just aesthetically Kidby's are cleaner and less busy in a way I like.

Can't help but feel nostalgia is blinding some people here.
 

SpanishSpy

Well-known member
The most irritating blurb I've ever seen was one I only 'appreciated' after I read the book - this being Daniel Quinn's After Dachau, which I have reviewed for the SLP blog and is one of the best AH novels I've ever read. The blurb on Amazon is clearly trying to tie the book's plot into modern concerns about social justice, which isn't a bad thing in and of itself. The bad part is that it spoils a major reveal that has very strong emotional torque; I was disappointed that I couldn't have experienced it in the way that Quinn had intended.

This is why I recommend anyone interested just ignore all promotional material about it.
 

Hendryk

Nothing ever ends
Published by SLP
Location
France
But there are also plenty of examples of Absurd Blurbs which clearly reveal that the writer of them has not read any further than the first chapter (the same is true, as JRR Tolkien observed, of many reviews of The Lord of the Rings).
Let me guess... "The novel hairy foot fetishists had been waiting for!"
 

Thande

David Miliband reacts only
Published by SLP
Since you mention that the goof on the blurb for A Darkness at Sethanon had that blurb was in the 2009 edition, I should point out that it’s the same blurb that was on the version I read sometime in the late 80s.

Feist himself was fairly philosophical about it when it came up in online discussions.
Somehow I am not surprised that (a) this has already come up before and (b) Feist was seemingly powerless to do anything about it.

As I said in the article, us SLP authors should thank our stars we get to write our own blurbs.
 

Thande

David Miliband reacts only
Published by SLP
Excuse me, let me miss the point of the article and take offence at a minor thing.

There are people who like Paul Kidby's cover art more than Josh Kirby's? And they have found a way to defeat the restraints and access keypads?
I always found the kirby covers grotesque and offputting. The prominent skimpily dressed women with big tits is part of it and only vague connection to the books is part of it bit just aesthetically Kidby's are cleaner and less busy in a way I like.

Can't help but feel nostalgia is blinding some people here.
I'm with Angelo but I get Gary's point of view as well. I was more inclined to prefer strict accuracy when I read the books for the first time, but in hindsight there's something iconic about Kirby's work.

I always wonder how much of the other point Gary mentions was deliberate, considering the first cover it features in is The Light Fantastic and that has an entire aside in it precisely about that trend in fantasy covers.

Anyway, stay tuned as we have another article in these series specifically about fantasy covers coming up next.
 

Ncw8

Like a Camelid in Wickwar
Patreon supporter
Published by SLP
Location
Baselland
I always wonder how much of the other point Gary mentions was deliberate, considering the first cover it features in is The Light Fantastic and that has an entire aside in it precisely about that trend in fantasy covers.
And Kirby did at least read the books before doing the illustrations, so would have read that aside.

Mind you, he also illustrated Twoflower with four eyes, because that’s how he was described in the book. Whereas PTerry meant that he was wearing glasses, and was playing on the term “foureyes” for spectacle-wearers.
 

Thande

David Miliband reacts only
Published by SLP
And Kirby did at least read the books before doing the illustrations, so would have read that aside.

Mind you, he also illustrated Twoflower with four eyes, because that’s how he was described in the book. Whereas PTerry meant that he was wearing glasses, and was playing on the term “foureyes” for spectacle-wearers.
My favourite bit was how Kirby always depicted Angua as wearing leggings (on "Men at Arms", "Feet of Clay", "Jingo"), which is never mentioned in the books, right up until "The Fifth Elephant" when he stopped...the same book where Pratchett mentioned her in the text as wearing leggings for the first time.
 
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