The Liebster Award is given to new bloggers as a way of saying ‘Hello’ or rather ‘Hallo’ as the word Liebster is taken from the German language. (I stole that line from Danny’s blog. But here’s the translation: ‘liebster’ means most favourite/beloved in German, as in: ach du, mein liebster Romeo.)
bullied Dan Cross for a nomination was nominated by Dan Cross over at his book blog. Thank you so much, Danny!
So here’s how it works in a nutshell (full rules here):
- Thank the person who nominated you – check
- and answer the 11 questions they’ve written for you. – check: see below
- Give 11 random facts about yourself (optional) – look here, already done that
- Nominate 5-11 different people with less than 200 followers and give them 11 questions to answer. –
um … this might take a while … ok, here are my nominations – I look forward to reading your answers Kamsin, Kathi, Bernadette, and Stephanie!
Here are Danny’s questions:
- What book(s) are you reading right now? I just started Peter Newman’s The Vagrant. I only read one book at a time.
- What is your favourite genre? Fantasy.
- Why is that your favourite genre? Most people belive that fantasy has much to do with escapism. You read fantasy to flee from the drudgery of your day-to-day life. But I don’t agree. I believe that it is in speculative fiction especially that we learn to see reality as it actually is. This fundamental truth is poignantly delivered in Neil Gaiman’s Sandman by Destruction commenting on Dream’s function.
Gaiman – Brief Lives * Sandman Volume 7
And if Neil said it, it’s gotta be true. Anyway, the bottom line is: I see reading fantasy as practice for life, not escape from it.
- If you could meet an author in real life, who would it be? Past or present. Tough choice as there are so many. … Joe Abercrombie. (But only because of the next question …)
- What would you talk to that author about? Hehe. We’d snark, not talk. It’d be awesome. Someone should tape it.
- What is your take on the subgenre Grimdark? This is a long answer, sorry. Grimdark is a relatively new recognized subgenre of fantasy, but its essence has been around forever, namely the dark side of epic heroic tales. Anytime you’ve picked up Moorcock or Cook or let’s go way back when: Lovecaft, you’ve read grimdark – only it wasn’t called that then. So what is it? Abercrombie, aka Lord Grimdark Himself, has an excellent post on the value of grit, namely it’s not merely ‘to shock or titillate.’ In a short summary, then, here’s my definition: a heavily character based narrative that says goodbye to shiny knights in armor, return of once and future kings, elaborate magic systems, and setting (though must still accomplish worldbuilding), grimdark as a subgenre completes the fantasy genre’s scope. (Abercrombie calls this counterbalancing.) There’s also a heavy dose of so-called realism. Life today is seldom clean, meaningful or straightforward. While we as heroes often stand before insurmountable challenges, it’s not sure or even likely that we might achieve our goals – especially not while remaining wholly innocent at the same time. We curse, we cry, we get stupid mad over small matters, and tragically our loved ones die, mostly without accomplishing some grand purpose. We’re flawed, but not broken. This is true of characters in grimdark, too. They face the same shit – and then some (because we authors are sadists.) Humans are capable of terrible, terrible things. We see it in the news daily – or maybe we choose not to see it because we just can’t take it anymore. That’s fine. Go re-read Tolkien once more, be soothed by his eu-catastrophe scenario. But what Tolkien knew, and what we know today, is that amidst all the darkness, there still is light. And that is what good grimdark fantasy can and must accomplish for me.
- What is the longest book you have ever read? The Bible – or rather: a classic bundle of 66 books by 40 amazing authors, ranging from history to prophecy, sage advice and bloody tales of revenge and romance – everything’s included. Get it now. For Free! (Or I don’t know … some epic fantasy series or other. But does the whole series count as one ‘book’ in this question? I mean Harry Potter and A Song of Ice and Fire are pretty damn long, as is the Sharpe series by Bernard Cornwell …)
- What’s the weirdest book you’ve ever read? Murakami always freaks me out a little. There is a short story in Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman that still leaves me sick when I think about it. (I try not to.)
- What’s your favourite thing about blogging? Well, I like scouring the internet for cool opening images now I know how to include them – and how important visuals are. Really, it ‘s a learning curve thing. I’m addicted to learning new stuff.
- If you could be any character that was the opposite sex/gender to yourself, who would that be? Pratchett’s Samuel Vimes.
- Where do you live? Can you describe it in three words? Shitty internet connecti-
And here are my own 11 questions:
- What book are you reading right now?
- If you could meet a fictional character in real life, who would it be?
- Which short story have you read recently?
- What extra would you love as an addition to your favorite fantasy book: awesome map(s) or cut scene(s)?
- If you could travel to the places described in a book you’ve read – where would you choose to go?
- Insider tip for someone visiting your area?
- What is the most extreme thing you’ve ever done?
- Batman or Superman? (Or Wonder Woman?)
- What’s your favourite thing about blogging?
- Can you describe your blog in 5 words or less?
- Best advice for other newbie bloggers?