other authors? (was Re: POTD question...)

Fri Jan 24 12:07:52 PST 2003

>I think that it was in his Short Stories where Roger's best work can be 

I am inclined to agree.  Of course, I'm a partisan of short stories.  In 
general, I think that short stories work better than novels, if done 

>At a lecture he gave at the library here years ago, he noted that he wrote 
>_Creaturs of Light and Darkness_ just for fun, never intending  it to get 
>published. Then one of the editor friends saw it at his place, read it, and 
>asked to publish.

This doesn't surprise me.  It is clear that he was having a hell of a lot of 
fun writing it, and that he wasn't even attempting to give a nod towards 
mass appeal.  A lot of people don't like it -- I suspect that's because it's 
so utterly different from what we're used to finding in a story.  The only 
thing I can think of that is even remniscent of it is Silverberg's _Son of 

>Maybe because he did it for himself rather than for sale makes it all the 
>more fun, but I agree, Creatures is great. My favorite bit is the
>non-denominational non-sectarian preacher. And his prayer is a hoot!

It's worth repeating.  It is "The Possibly Proper Death Litany" by Madrak 
the Agnostic Preacher (aka, The Agnostic's Prayer):

"Insofar as  I  may  be  heard by anything, which may or may not care what I 
say,  I  ask,  if it matters, that you be forgiven for anything you may have 
done  or  failed  to  do  which  requires  forgiveness.  Conversely,  if not 
forgiveness  but  something  else  may  be  required  to insure any possible 
benefit  for which you may be eligible after the destruction of your body, I 
ask that this, whatever it may be, be granted or withheld, as the case may 
be, in such a manner as to insure your receiving said benefit. I ask this in 
my capacity as your elected intermediary between yourself and that which may 
not be  yourself, but which  may  have  an interest in the matter of your
receiving  as  much  as it is possible for you to receive of this thing, and 
which may in some way be influenced by this ceremony. Amen." [1]

>Isle of the Dead, which was actually the first book of Roger's I ever read, 
>I thought was great, but I think it might not be the best introduction to 
>his works.

My first intro to his novels was _To Die in Italbur_ which was a bit 
confusing, given that it was a sequal to IotD.  I've recently re-read it, 
going "Oooooh!" a whole lot.

>I've known some people to say it is a weaker work, (though I'd disagree).

I think that his weakest work was in his collaborations: _Coils_, _Loki_, 

-- Andrew Lias

[1] Other prayers and invokations by Mandrak:

"Then into  the hands of Whatever May Be that is greater than life or death, 
I resign  myself  --  if this act will be of any assistance in preserving my 
life.  If  it  will  not,  I  do  not.  If  my  saying  this thing at all be 
presumptuous,  and  therefore  not  well received by Whatever may or may not 
care  to  listen, then I withdraw the statement and ask forgiveness, if this 
thing  be  desired. If not, I do not. On the other hand ..."

as well as the brief, but wonderful:

"Hallowed be  thy  name,  if  a  name  thou  hast  and  any desire to see it 

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