A few months ago I pulled down my old Conan paperbacks to re-read what I’d remembered as a pretty decent pastiche, de Camp’s “Halls of the Dead.” The bones of the story were pretty good, most likely because they were from a very detailed outline Robert E. Howard himself had set down (now popularly known as “the Nestor fragment). But man, was the execution terrible.
And in the past few months I’ve been exposed to more de Camp pastiche than ever as I worked through various Savage Sword of Conan volumes. On the whole, they’re just not very good, even in outline form.
The only exception I suppose I have is when de Camp changed names and settings in one El Borak story and turned it into a Conan tale. Even that isn’t entirely successful — until it makes its way into comic form in a Savage Sword story, at which point, in the hands of Buscema and Thomas “Sons of the White Wolf” kicks an awful lot of sword-and-sorcery butt.
Do any of you enjoy the de Camp and Carter pastiches? If so, which ones?
Well, my energy’s approaching normal again, but I remain super busy. So while I have a moment to think about the web site, I still don’t have time to tackle a couple of cool subjects I’ve been planning.
Instead, here’s some Friday links, courtesy of Link Man!
First, here’s an interview I held with the talented Peadar O’Guilin about his new novel, The Call.
Second, here’s a link to an upcoming sword-and-sorcery audio book that looks pretty cool.
Third, I received a copy of the first issue of Skelos magazine and can hardly wait to get started reading it. If you’ve been living under a rock, you may not have heard that there’s a new fantasy/horror/sword-and-sorcery mag out there. Here, go read more.
First, I’m proud to announce that after years of practice, I’ve finally qualified for my second degree black belt. Hopefully this level of fitness will help delay the ravages of middle age!
Second, I’ve just had an article published in REH: Two-Gun Raconteur on one of my favorite, and under-appreciated, Robert E. Howard stories. You can check it out, along with a bevy of great articles, at the link.
Third, the sleep issues seem finally to be settling down. Fingers crossed that it’s finally under control!
Here’s the highlights reel from the last few days:
1. Finally saw “Stranger Things,” and found it almost as good as I’d been promised it would be. Those actors were fantastic, and the pacing and script were excellent. Highly recommended — unless you work with traumatized kids, in which case maybe not. I deliberately had kept from learning anything about the plot, so wasn’t able to forewarn my wife, who was having some tough times by the end of episode three. Read More
I’m happy to announce that with some medicinal aid I’ve managed to get three decent nights of sleep in a row. Not great, but decent, and even that feels amazing. I don’t want to become dependent on sleep-aids, so after a week I’m going to taper off and see if I have “reset” into some kind of normalcy.
I knew the sleep dep was having an effect on my writing, but I didn’t quite realize how severe it was. I made some changes to a chapter last week, and when my wife was looking it over Sunday night she was flabbergasted. Almost ever change had made things worse. Sometimes I had actually added two or three instances of word echo to a paragraph rather than, you know, eliminating them. It was sort of like allowing Jethro Bodine to perform brain surgery.
Anyway, on to cheerier things. I hope to announce soon that I’ve signed a contract for a new series. It’s taken a long time for the contract to move through the system. Even though I’m 98% certain everything will go through, I don’t want to prematurely announce what I expect to happen.
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