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Interviewing the AH Community: Harry Turtledove

napoleon IV

You Can Really Taste the High Crime Rates
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Washington, Douglass Commonwealth
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I guess the next question is where Mark Twain got the idea from.
Sir Walter Scott. A Connecticut Yankee is taking the piss out of the idealization of chivalry in works like Ivanhoe. Twain hated Scott, saying of him
Life on the Mississippi said:
"But for the Sir Walter disease, the character of the Southerner-- or Southron, according to Sir Walter`s starchier way of phrasing it-- would be wholly modern, in place of modern and medieval mixed, and the South would be fully a generation further advanced than it is. It was Sir Walter that made every gentleman in the South a Major or a Colonel, or a General or a Judge, before the war; and it was he, also, that made these gentlemen value these bogus decorations. For it was he that created rank and caste down there, and also reverence for rank and caste, and pride and pleasure in them. Enough is laid on slavery, without fathering upon it these creations and contributions of Sir Walter.

Sir Walter had so large a hand in making Southern character, as it existed before the war, that he is in great measure responsible for the war. It seems a little harsh toward a dead man to say that we never should have had any war but for Sir Walter; and yet something of a plausible argument might, perhaps, be made in support of that wild proposition. The Southerner of the American Revolution owned slaves; so did the Southerner of the Civil War: but the former resembles the latter as an Englishman resembles a Frenchman. The change of character can be traced rather more easily to Sir Walter`s influence than to that of any other thing or person.
 

Hendryk

Nothing ever ends
Published by SLP
Location
France
Sir Walter Scott. A Connecticut Yankee is taking the piss out of the idealization of chivalry in works like Ivanhoe. Twain hated Scott, saying of him
Ah, yes, I remember he laid it on pretty thick in Huckleberry Finn as well, what with naming a wrecked ship the Walter Scott and having two Southern families play-act a feud like they're Old World nobility.
 

Thande

Jabs First Brexit
Published by SLP
I for one am glad we can finally put Thande's TL-191 theory to rest.
Gary didn't ask about mine*, my theory is that TL-191 was only meant to have one more book after the Great War trilogy originally. You're referring to the theory that he planned it for the US to go fascist under McSweeney and then changed it to the CSA going fascist under Featherston - a theory which I've never believed or advocated, to be clear.

*Which I don't mind to be clear as the other one is a much more commonly cited idea.
 

Jared

fatal softener
Published by SLP
Location
Over the rainbow
Gary didn't ask about mine*, my theory is that TL-191 was only meant to have one more book after the Great War trilogy originally.
That's exactly how it was announced. Originally the main TL-191 series (excluding the prequel How Few Remain) were announced as four books: American Front, Walk in Hell, Breakthroughs, and Settling Accounts. Settling Accounts was described as a single book running into the 1920s.

Either Turtledove had more ideas or just liked the sales, and the series got extended by a lot, but originally Settling Accounts was the projected title of a single book, which then got morphed into the interwar books in the series.
 

Thande

Jabs First Brexit
Published by SLP
That's exactly how it was announced. Originally the main TL-191 series (excluding the prequel How Few Remain) were announced as four books: American Front, Walk in Hell, Breakthroughs, and Settling Accounts. Settling Accounts was described as a single book running into the 1920s.

Either Turtledove had more ideas or just liked the sales, and the series got extended by a lot, but originally Settling Accounts was the projected title of a single book, which then got morphed into the interwar books in the series.
Thanks - Do you have direct evidence of the announcement, because when @Japhy asked before I could only find a vague mention on Steven Silver's site, though I definitely remember seeing it somewhere more concrete than that.
 

Jared

fatal softener
Published by SLP
Location
Over the rainbow
Thanks - Do you have direct evidence of the announcement, because when @Japhy asked before I could only find a vague mention on Steven Silver's site, though I definitely remember seeing it somewhere more concrete than that.
Nothing which I've kept a copy of, unfortunately, but I remember seeing the Settling Accounts announcement as the original title before it was announced that the title would be Blood and Iron and run to what was then described as two books (later three). I may even have read it on Steven Silver's fan website at the time, but after so many years I'm not sure.
 
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Gary Oswald

Old and Foolish now
Sea Lion Press staff
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For those curious on how we picked certain questions and how we choose to phrase them.

So it was @Meadow's idea to ask the forum. We'd both reserved 2 questions each for ourselves and we decided we'd crowd fund the other 7 so we put up a thread on this forum that asked for questions.

Once all those were in, I sent an email to Tom saying 'these 5 questions seem to be coming up a lot, we should try and ask them' he agreed with me and then wrote up a draft of 11 questions: our original 4 and 7 taken from the thread.

I then switched out two questions for new ones and re wrote two more and sent that back to Tom, which got us something we were both happy with and that's what I emailed Harry.

I mostly mention this because there's a reason my name isn't anywhere on the article. It really was a joint endeavour. Meadow did most of the leg work in terms of compiling questions and @Thande, @Makemakean, @zaffre, @Anarcho-Occultist, @Charles EP M., @Beata Beatrix, @SpanishSpy etc all helped contribute the raw material he was working with. And since I'm getting praise, it's fair to recognise that.
 

Ncw8

The Midlands Engine goes "Brum, Brum, Brum!"
Patreon supporter
Published by SLP
Location
Baselland
Outstanding article--and can't wait for the Earhart story!
Definitely. I’m intrigued at how he’s going to justify having a female combat pilot in the RAF. There were women pilots (including some American volunteers) in the RAF - the Air Transport Auxiliary. Their work involved transporting aircraft from factories to air fields. While sometimes dangerous work, they didn’t get involved in combat.
 

Jared

fatal softener
Published by SLP
Location
Over the rainbow
Definitely. I’m intrigued at how he’s going to justify having a female combat pilot in the RAF. There were women pilots (including some American volunteers) in the RAF - the Air Transport Auxiliary. Their work involved transporting aircraft from factories to air fields. While sometimes dangerous work, they didn’t get involved in combat.
Maybe just go with, "It's Amelia Earhart, she's got enough panache to do what she wants." Not entirely realistic, but hey...
 
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