In Which Our Heroine Sings the Edoras Song

20 December 2003

Here are the words I wanted to hear: "You stand between me and my lord and kin. Begone, if you be not deathless! For living or dark undead, I will smite you, if you touch him."

I'm not deeply angry not to have heard those words. But I wanted them. I could even have left out the begone sentence.

I enjoyed "The Return of the King," generally, but I am neither fangirl squealing over its perfection nor grumping for days over its flaws. We had a good time. I'm sure we'll buy the extended edition DVD and watch it again. I'm glad they made the film. I'm glad the film isn't all there is, though.

As we were watching the credits, I said, "Dude! Weaving should be a pencil sketch all the time! He looks much better that way." Then, of course, several other actors followed for whom the same was true. Fabulous.

I'm fascinated by the sheer number of people I have read in the last few days saying how they know they're the only ones (or else, in a comments section, "Thank God I'm not the only one!"), but they write spec fic and really didn't like The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien. Their reaction to "The Lord of the Rings" by Peter Jackson then varies, but so many people are making this a defiant declaration. And I just want to say: okay. You're allowed. And now there are enough of you saying exactly the same thing that I think the lines about being a freak and entirely alone and all of that can be left off from here on out. Some spec fic writers, some fantasy writers, don't like The Lord of the Rings. Everybody got it? Everybody prepared to let them have their own opinions without smiting them? Okay then.

The theme they played every time they showed Edoras has embedded itself in my brain. It's alternating with "The Long December." Greaaaaat. Thanks, brain. I may actually need a stupid soundtrack, because I have a feeling this one is going to get into my head fairly often. Especially in light of what my brain did to me, which we'll get to later.

Mark at the airport: "So which ending did you like best?" Timprov: "The one where they showed the Scouring of the Shire."

We didn't get to fetch Scott from the airport, because of the evil sucking vortex (and I mean that sucking literally) that is Chicago. But perhaps we'll get to see him in January, maybe maybe. Sigh. We could have gotten Perkins muffins without him, but a) it wouldn't have been the same and b) I was excited and happy to see Mark after a week and I still fell asleep in the car on the way home. Please note that the airport is 10 minutes from our house, and also please note that it was 13 degrees out. So pretty much the minute the temperature of the interior of the car got anywhere near tolerable, I was gone.

However, we did get to see Josh and Micki at the airport. It was entirely unplanned, just Mark saying, "Hey, is that Josh?" and then me plunging through the crowd going, "Josh! Micki!" I think it's lucky her name is Micki, because plunging through a crowd shouting, "Josh! Jennifer!" pretty much guarantees nobody will turn around, even if they love you to pieces and will give you big hugs as soon as they see you. People named Jennifer learn not to look when people shout their names in crowded places.

Anyway, anyway. My brain is not nice to me. It really, really wants to write The Mark of the Sea Serpent next. The Mark of the Sea Serpent is the sequel to Dwarf's Blood Mead; it's yet another YA fantasy. Rather than the lovely contemporary episodic grown-up fantasy I was contemplating doing next. Some of the stories of which are already finished and sold. Bah and humbug. Grr and also harumph. And yet I got better work done on it (longhand, still trying to rest the wrist) than I've gotten done on much in the last few months, ended up wandering around the house and asking Timprov, "What kind of power does the severed head of a god have?" And writing is better than not writing; and writing good stuff that's flowing is better than writing bad stuff that's limping. But still. A sequel in a category I love but already have severalmany books in. Sigh.

The thing that really did it was the Edoras song and the line I wanted, and they rattled around together, and then there were sea battles and ice battles and headless gods (or, more accurately, bodiless god-heads, not to be confused with bodiless godheads). If it was a movie about my creative process, there would have been a voiceover going, "You stand between me and my lord and kin...between me and my kin...between me and my kin...." And then, clearly and unconditionally, conversationally, in a young woman's not-Eowyn voice: "I will smite you."

Well, so. At least there will be smiting, and Soldrun gets to do it. And how can you resist the ice floes and the skiing archer-sorcerers and the god-binding charms? And finding Loki? Loki has been missing for an entire book already; don't you think it's time to find him? Soldrun's mother, in my head: "No." "But don't you feel better when you can keep an eye on him?" "Not if that means he's around me, no." Soldrun's mother and some of the Aesir have the sort of relationship one has with one's spouse's old frat buddies, should one be unfortunate enough to marry someone with old frat buddies...aaaaaanyway....

So the point is, if I'm going to be typing at all, it should probably be either notes to The Mark of the Sea Serpent or else more scenes on the Not The Moose, or else maybe e-mails to people who were kind enough to write to me in the first place. Right? Of course right. Okay. Mostly I'm going to try to do stuff longhand today. And possibly non-writing stuff as well. Yep.

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