Wednesday, April 23, 2014
Reading for Sword and Sorceress, week 1
The Harlot by the Side of the Road, is a good read--for an adult. Some Bible stories are not suitable for children.
When Marion Zimmer Bradley first started editing Sword and Sorceress, she got a lot of the type of stories she referred to as "rape and revenge." Since her goal was providing what she called "a satisfying reading experience" rather than having readers finish the book and want to slash their wrists, she didn't buy many of this type of story, but she did buy a few, such as Mercedes Lackey's first Tarma and Kethry story, "Sword Sworn."
So far this year I've been getting stories more along the lines of "murder and revenge," where the protagonist's loved ones will be murdered and she will seek revenge. I feel this is another case where a little of that sort of thing goes a long way, so I'm not going to fill an anthology with them. While I am trying to stay true to Marion's original vision for these anthologies, I'm afraid that I'm of a more frivolous bent than she was. I like stories that are a bit more light hearted.
One thing Marion always did that I have continued, however, is the practice of ending each volume with something short and funny. Deborah Ross and I have been doing that for the new Darkover anthologies as well, both Music of Darkover and Stars of Darkover (coming out this June) end with short, funny stories. When people finish reading an anthology I edited, I want them to be glad that they read it.