Ordinary, Everyday Life: Good For Dramas, Not For Epics

Friend and good-natured troll Jon Del Arroz recently wrote about his experience with Tor’s blog, and it was on something that was bothering me for a while. Here was the paragraph that struck me.

Unfortunately, the promise that Tordotcom made in #SpaceOperaWeek turned out to be nothing but thin air.  The launch page really didn’t talk about space opera at all, just having some big logo announcing their initiative. The next post wasn’t about space opera or the joys of its fiction — but presenting a false narrative that women are somehow oppressed and erased in the genre (rebutted by the Hugo-nominated Castalia House who’s been active talking about the great women of space opera for years), a post about ponies in space,a post about the “underrated importance of ordinary, everyday life” in storytelling, and then shilling for a couple of Tor authors. Nothing else. No real space opera discussion at all.

It was the part about the ‘underrated importance of ordinary, everyday life‘ that struck me. I am not opposed to people writing about ‘ordinary, everyday life,’ as I am not opposed to people writing. Anything to get people more creative. I’m just not going to read it, and a lot of people aren’t either.

You think that’s an exaggeration? Surely, I’m projecting my own tastes onto the faceless masses. Well, not really. A little digging at a site called The-Numbers, which tracks movie sales and business, will show my theory in action. I took three ‘ordinary, everyday life’ films (Moonlight, La La Land, and Manchester by the Sea) and compared them with three heroic/speculative movies (Doctor Strange, Guardians of the Galaxy, and American Sniper). The results

For those of you who didn’t click the link, American Sniper is up top (war movie, with a side of patriotism), followed by Guardians of the Galaxy (space opera with a star-studded (pardon the pun) cast), both exceeding $300 million dollars. Doctor Strange (superhero fantasy with a martial arts twist) was lower, but still earning over $200 million.

Now, next we have La La Land (drama about a woman going off to Hollywood- not ‘ordinary, everyday life,’ but without any exotic elements like aliens or magic, or any heroic acts of valor, as one might find in a war movie). That grossed approximately $150 million. Manchester by the Sea (depressed man has to take care of his brother’s son, ‘ordinary, everyday life’ ensues) grossed just under $50 million, and Moonlight (Gay black guy goes through life in a rough neighborhood) made barely over $21 million.

My theory is that fiction in general, speculative fiction and heroic fiction in particular, is the incarnation of mythology for the modern age, though without the religious connotations. Think about the classical myths. They featured gods, sorceresses, heroes, monsters, magic, and all sorts of non-mundane artifacts. ‘Ordinary, everyday life’ has a place here, and it’s where the hero starts before he is torn into a realm of ‘extraordinary life,’ full of monsters and gods and demons and witches. Either that, or he is called to conflict greater than himself, and thus ‘ordinary, everyday life’ must be forsaken for something greater, usually war (The Iliad, for example).

Space Opera is an epic myth, with psionics instead of sorcerers, and spaceships instead of chariots, with planets in place of strongholds. The urge to focus on the mundane and the ordinary, when the very heavens are calling to you, is a failure of the spirit of space opera. It is beginning at the launchpad, and staying there. To focus on the ‘ordinary, everyday life’ is fine for drama. But for space opera, it is failure to launch.


Corey McCleery is a columnist and frequently top-100 listed fantasy author on the website Wattpad. His book, called Fever Blood, about a dragon-man who saves a woman and the adventures they have together, can be found here.

Superversive Vs. Pulp: The Big Bad Showdown That Will Never Happen!

So, after my fellow cohost of the Whippersnappers and editor of the anthology God, Robot (which produced a Hugo-nominated short story), Anthony, did a review of “Sword & Flower” by columnist and blogger Rawle Nyanzi, it sparked a small dust-up between the Pulp Revolution crowd and the Superversive crowd. So, on behalf of Superversive SF, I’m going to tell you why Superversive is better than Pulp… and why anyone who thinks this is very mistaken (the same goes for those who say the opposite, that Pulp is better than Superversive).

Pulp and Superversive are categorical variables, which is statistical-speak for variables that cannot really be quantified (to differentiate between, say, a variable like speed or height, which you can provide a numerical measurement for). Here’s the catch. Pulp and Superversive are separate categorical variables, but they’re not mutually exclusive; that is, a piece of fiction that is Pulp is not automatically excluded from being Superversive.

During the Superversive SF Roundtable where we discussed the Superversive Book List, we brainstormed the different types of qualities that make up superversive works of fiction, and I managed to distill them down into five categories. They are:

  • Aspiring/Inspiring- These mean that the characters aspire to something greater than themselves, and inspire others to seek greatness, and not remain where they are. This also refers to characters who theoretically aspire for uplifting things that aren’t necessarily a part of the moral sphere, such as beauty. “Betterment” and “wonder” both fall here.
  • Virtuous- This means that there is a right and wrong in the world. This does not mean there can’t be moral complexity and ambiguity – in fact, when done well this can be incredibly powerful – but even then there needs to be an understanding that there’s a difference between right and wrong. The characters themselves don’t necessarily need to be virtuous, but the concept of virtue must exist in the framework of the story.
  • Heroic- Closely entwined with the second category, the Heroic category means that there is a standard of heroism. While this doesn’t necessarily mean that you’ll have a hero (for a brilliant superversive story that features a protagonist who isn’t a hero, see John C. Wright’s “Pale Realms of Shade”), it means that the protagonist has a code of ethics under which they work, a code of ethics that marks them as something more than a villain. To go back to “Pale Realms of Shade”, the protagonist, Flint, might be a Grade A jerk and even a murderer, but he’s different from the demons he’s fighting against; in fact, he has to be for the story to work, because the temptation to become demonic is central to the story. While having truly villainous villains is something of a lost art nowadays and can certainly help flesh out this category, it is not strictly necessary for an Agnes Trunchbull to exist – but a standard for heroism is an absolute must.
  • Decisive – This means that the characters are active; their actions matter. They are not bereft of agency, at the whim of fate, or purely reactive to the things going on around them. These characters make decisions that affect the plot, and their decisions have to mean something. Books that ultimately preach the meaninglessness of life and the futility of struggling to change it don’t fit this section.
  • Non-Subversive- This is pretty much exactly what it says on the tin. These are works that do not attempt to subvert the paradigms of healthy culture, and don’t mock and criticize needlessly. While many great superversive works contain certain subversive aspects – even Lewis’s Narnia series and Tolkien’s Middle Earth books aren’t free of this, nor should they be – the work as a whole should be predicated on building up society rather than bringing it down.

These are the five categories we’ve settled on, and a work should try to fulfill most of them, if not all (except for the last category). There is a sixth category, Noumenal, but that’s a discussion for another time.

So there is your peek behind the scenes at what the Superversive crowd is doing: Organizing. Now that I’ve laid down the criteria for Superversive literature, I’ll tell you of a story I’m writing.

It’s about a man, a man confronted with the injustices of a tyrannical usurper trying to slay the woman he loves, and to defend her, he becomes something greater than he is, using self-discipline and training to go from a plain warrior to someone of unmatched prowess. He’s morally straight and kind, but has courage in the face of incredible adversity, won’t shirk from trouble because it’s, well, trouble, and also refuses to do the wrong thing when that would make life easier, but compromise his conscience. Right there, that checks off two boxes listed above (Aspiring/Inspiring and Heroic).

He travels the world I have made, sees wonders, sees beauties unearthly. He goes into the most dangerous of places, and grows stronger for it.

He is guided by virtue, and eventually meets up with some other characters, many of whom are morally questionable. Through their interaction with him, these characters become more selfless, virtuous, and heroic themselves, and go from morally grey to heroes (there’s the Aspiring/Inspiring). In this world, there’s a clear line denoting what is good and bad, and that the evil usurper is bad, a cutthroat despot who isn’t scared to shed innocent blood (and she does this out of envy and desire for power, not because she was abused as a child or was a psychopath). Good is good, bad is bad, and while the hero isn’t %100 good, he aspires to be good (thus, the Virtuous box is checked).

And ultimately, the hero fights to restore the throne to the rightful ruler, and does so. He is not a pawn of chance, incapable of making his own decisions. He decides, and those choices have consequences. His actions have an effect, and he doesn’t react to the world, but proactively acts (thus fulfilling the Decisive category). And lastly, I’m not deconstructing ideals of heroism or other healthy cultural paradigms (thus fulfilling the Non-Subversive category).

So, I’m writing a Superversive story, one that will be published in a magazine.

Here’s the catch. It’s being published in Astounding Frontiers, Superversive SF’s pulp revival magazine. The description above is accurate, but focuses on the Superversive themes, not the pulp.

My story is about a soldier, charged with guarding the elegant and demure Space Princess, scion of a star (She kind of glows). He teams up with a stoic yet wise Void-wielding pseudo-Buddhist attack monk lizard alien man, a rough-and-tumble yet oddly maternal cyborg techno-necromancer (who’s art is drawn from Daoist philosophy), a giant crustaceanoid barbarian who’s bulletproof and very violent, and the crustaceanoid barbarian’s love, a sorceress insectoid-alien who is refined and demure (as refined and demure as an insectoid lady of high breeding level can be).

He flies in a ship that sails through the ether, and goes from a soldier to a sorcerer-knight who wields the ether and the Void, among other powers. He breaks into the vault of the imperial sorcerers to plunder its knowledge, and fights the horrendous beast that lurks in the heart of a sun. There’s travelling through the myriad avenues of death, Way Cool armor forged from the substanceless Void, action and heroism aplenty.

My story has battles on space ships, duels to the death, a classic romance, and a Space Princess, ethereal and beautiful. It has sorcery used alongside laser cannons and futuristic technology, where a battle can take place with scrambler beams or ether blades. Settings include the deadly library of sorcery, an ancient temple, and ruins of an M.C. Escher palace that is suspended in the heart of a hollow sun. It looks at genre distinctions and laughs in their face.

As for me writing it, it’s a bit shorter than the other novel I’m writing, but in every chapter I’ve tried to have some action scene. I draw from the works of authors like Edgar Rice Burroughs, Robert E. Howard, and Brian Niemeier for inspiration. I add themes of Superversion in it, though I don’t have angels telling men to be better (I don’t have angels at all, but I do have a gigantic ten-story tall crab-dragon solar beast with super-healing).

So, I would simply like to state this: While not everything that’s quickly plotted and full of action and weirdness is Superversive (I’m looking at you, Elric of Melniboné!), and while not everything Superversive is about taking a fist to the face of evil (Andy Weir’s “The Martian” comes to mind), these two fields of writing can overlap, and I’d like to venture that they overlap quite well.

Superversive literature is against Subversive literature, works that try to destroy and undermine that which upholds civilization. Pulp is (from my experience) against non-heroic literature (or literary fiction), literature that focuses less on adventure and romance and more on stylistic gimmicks or characterization at the expense of plot (I’m not saying Pulp doesn’t have believable characters, just that Lit Fic overdoes it to the point where there is not a plot, merely a character… supposedly doing something vaguely plot-related). The Superversive writers and the Pulp revolutionaries are, I would say, natural allies in the quest to create truly culturally innovative and paradigm-shifting fiction. While we can have our doctrinal squabbles, remember that they’re about relatively trivial things, and that the guy you’re arguing with will probably be your best friend compared to the current subversive and literary SF & F authors.


Corey McCleery is a columnist and frequently top-100 listed fantasy author on the website Wattpad. His book, called Fever Blood, about a dragon-man who saves a woman and the adventures they have together, can be found here.

Corey Reviews Howl’s Moving Castle

My first experience with the works of Hayao Miyazaki was with a film called Castle in the Sky, previously reviewed on this site. I was a very young child at the time, so I didn’t understand everything, I just liked the robots and the weird flying city.

[easyazon_image add_to_cart=”default” align=”left” asin=”B00005JKYG” cloaking=”default” height=”160″ localization=”default” locale=”US” nofollow=”default” new_window=”default” src=”https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51281TEF3GL._SL160_.jpg” tag=”superversivesf-20″ width=”112″]

However, I had rewatched it a few years ago, and fell in love with Miyazaki’s work. So, I went to watch another movie, one whose title was similar to Castle in the Sky, named Howl’s Moving Castle. (I originally had mistaken the two, but the dates they were made cleared that up.)

The tone of the two movies is a little different. While Castle In the Sky has threads of a coming-of-age story, Howl’s Moving Castle does not. And while there is a romance in Castle in the Sky, the romance formed in Howl’s Moving Castle is much more mature and realized (and by mature, I do not mean mature in content. There are no steamy scenes seen, nor any of that kind of action even implied. I mean the romance is handled in a much more serious, and deeper, way than it is handled in Castle in the Sky.) Howl’s Moving Castle is also based off of a book by the same name, which it deviates from considerably, while Castle in the Sky is completely original from Miyazaki.

But above all else, Castle in the Sky is an adventure story. It may have hints of a fairy-tale settings, especially with the levitating castle, but other things (Such as the super-destructive robot-golems, and the sky pirates) place it in the category of an adventure movie.

Howl’s Moving Castle is a fairy tale.

That’s clear from the opening shot, where you look across the misty hills of the countryside, and see the gigantic, semi-alive castle walk past on its gigantic chicken-feet (giant metal chicken feet). That is the first sign, but the first hint occurs when the main characters, Sophie and Howl, finally meet.

Sophie, a hatter, is walking to the bakery after work while her town is having a military parade. Instead of fighting her way through the crowds of the parade, she decides to walk through the back alleys, and on her way, she is confronted by two soldiers, who are unpleasantly persistent in making advances on her. A few seconds after these guys confront her, the wizard Howl (though unnamed) appears by her side. With a few magical gestures, he sends the men on a stiff-limbed forced march away, and offers to escort Sophie.

However, things very quickly take a turn for the mysterious, as Howl informs her they’re being followed. It soon becomes obvious that their pursuers are no ordinary people, but strange, sorcerous blob-monsters that ooze out of the walls. Howl and Sophie’s brisk walk turns into a run through the alleys as more of these things pour after them. After they round a corner, more of these blobs appear in the way out, blocking their exit. And then, when all hope seems lost, and they’re about to be overwhelmed by the magical monsters…

…they leap. Howl grabs Sophie, and they soar into the air in one of the most wonder-inducing moments of the movie. They soar up, and then, slowly, they walk through the air, across a bustling city, over colorful crowds, before Howl sets her down on a balcony, before promising to draw the things away.

There is the wonder, the awe and mystery of magic shown, not as a form of arcane and esoteric science as many fantasy novels would show it (I myself can appreciate that style of magic) but as a thing of beauty and wonder, that makes your eyes go wide. That is one aspect of the fairy tale.

There is the darker aspect of fairy tales that must be remembered. For every Sleeping Beauty, there was her curse that put an entire kingdom to ensorcelled slumber, and a wicked fairy with all the powers of Hell at her disposal. For every Snow White, there was a poisoned apple, and a jealous queen who was suddenly no longer the ‘fairest of them all.’ For every Beauty and her Beast, there is the Beast’s curse, and the stubborn pride that earned him that curse. And Howl’s Moving Castle is no exception.

The curse is the hex placed on Sophie, turning her from a pretty, if slightly plain, young woman into a ninety-year-old crone, and the one who does it is the Witch of the Waste, an evil enchantress who targets Sophie after seeing her with Howl. Trying to hide from her family, so they don’t see the results of that curse (part of which prevents her from speaking of it), she flees, uncovering an animated scarecrow named Turnip Head, before stumbling upon the wizard Howl’s titular Moving Castle.

Within, she ends up meeting the ancillary characters, Howl’s apprentice named Marco, and a fire demon named Calcifer (He calls himself a ‘big scary fire demon,’ but he’s too cute). She bargains with Calcifer to break her curse if she can free him from the castle, which imprisons him.

Now, there were a few aspects of this movie that worked wonderfully. A subplot involves a war going on, between two rival kingdoms. Howl fights both sides, trying to end the war himself, risking his own life (and a fate worse than death) to do so. This doesn’t detract from the romantic arc that takes place, and ends up mixing in, where all the story arcs begin to intermingle in such a good way.

Another, that I had briefly touched upon, was the subject of the magic. This is pure fairy-tale sorcery, animated par excellence by Studio Ghibli. Some scenes that stood out involve ‘moving’ the Castle, where, after drawing a symbol in chalk on the ground, Howl casts a spell that causes the room to warp, throwing furniture into existence, reshaping the walls and ceiling until the room around them has changed completely. Another scene involves a battle between two magicians, with one summoning strange, shadowy apparitions that dance in oddly mesmerizing patterns.

The magic has that primal sense of wonder to it, but has its own rules, though not as well defined as the works of, say, Brandon Sanderson (who I have read quite a bit of). The lack of definition allows for a sense of wonder and open-ended possibility, the kind that permeates the fairy-tale wizard. One scene, where Sophie enters Howl’s bedroom, had shown him hoarding all these wondrous devices, and you were never offered an explanation as to what any of them did (except for one device, and then Howl only said it detected someone was looking for them). That only added to the mystery and wonder of the strange arts that Howl, and others, had mastered.

The final aspect I liked was the ending. There was a moment where you could have said, ‘They lived happily ever after,’ and you wouldn’t be wrong. But instead of being overly-saccharine and unrealistic, it is the natural end result of the story. A villain (as there are several) is redeemed. Love triumphs when all hope seems lost. And they lived happily ever after.

A quick note. This is considered one of the lesser Miyazaki films. I have a special liking to it, as my own stories often involve wizards and magic, and I understand that his other films, such as Spirited Away and Princess Mononoke are much better. I understand, but because of the visuals and the subject (wizards and magic) this remains one of my favorite films.

In short, definitely recommended for any Miyazaki fan, as with the rest of his works.

The Symbol of the Spirit in Flesh

The esteemed Andrew Klavan once remarked (and here I paraphrase) that we as a culture are undergoing a mindset shift. Instead of focusing on a spiritual reality (here I do not mean spiritual in the religious sense, but in the non-physical sense, such as with emotions and ideas), we are shifting to the physical counterpart of the spiritual truth. The example he used was the shift, where now we tend to say, “I had an adrenaline rush,” or “I was on an endorphin high,” instead of the non-physiological, more spiritual “I was excited,” or “I felt elated.” One describes a state of being while the other describes a physiological reaction to that state. Klavan believes that these physiological responses are the expressions of the spirit in the medium of flesh.

Regardless of one’s religious or philosophical beliefs, there is some truth to this. Many actions are used to convey meaning, to act as symbols to express the ineffable and intangible truth. Take a kiss or a handshake, for example. If one simply analyzes the various physical aspects of the action (placing lips on lips, grasping another’s hand and shaking, etc.), there isn’t any specific aspect that contains ‘love’ or ‘trust’ within it, no way we can measure or point out these spiritual states of being. It is the ritual of the kiss or the handshake that conveys the love or trust. The action is not love (or trust) but it represents love (or trust). The flesh is an expression of the non-physical, in this case. However, as Andrew Klavan said, we as a culture are moving away from that, to a point where the physical, in our minds, becomes what it attempts to represent (We can see this in the culture’s treatment of romance and love).

When one peruses the current state of fiction, whether on TV, or in written form, one can see this effect. Romance has lost the grace, elegance, and purity of the days of old. When most think of the romance genre, they think of the Dread Empress, her works beautiful and terrible as the Morning and the Night! All shall love them and despair! This Dread Empress is, of course, the numinous and brilliant Jane Austen. She harkens from a time where these spiritual, or intangible, states of being were widely known, and while associated with the symbolic actions that represented them, they were not confused with them.

This confusion manifests in two ways. The first form of confusion is a synthesis of the symbol and what it stands for, equating the symbol and what it represents, limiting it in a sense. This means that, in the mind of a synthesis materialist, the kiss means love (which we agree with), and that love means a kiss. Intangibles, such as love, have much more multiplicity to them, and by limiting them to a physical expression, the tangible is limited in meaning.

This is why our culture cannot understand the concept of non-sexual love (with the exception of parental/familial love). They can’t imagine two people loving each other and not wanting to sleep with each other. Two men or two women, to those not afflicted by this particular confusion, can be close friends, and can love each other, without having any physical desire for each other (such as David and Jonathan, Ruth and Naomi, and Mary and Martha from a popular book known as the Bible). But to someone with this affliction, the only way they can understand this is to call them ‘family.’

There’s another form of confusion between tangible symbols and the spiritual, intangible concepts they represent. This other confusion is a divorcing of the symbol from its tangible meaning. The physical is pursued for only the benefits of the physical. This leads to physical hedonism. If someone sleeps with another, it is not as a symbol of love, but simply a process to achieve pleasure, more akin to sating one’s hunger or slaking one’s thirst. This was the view of several of the members of the Frankfurt School, a group of Marxists who invented the concept of critical theory.

The Frankfurt School wasn’t an actual institution, but rather a collection of Marxist philosophers from Germany fleeing persecution during the rise of the Third Reich (Many of the Frankfurt School members were Jewish). They were also very into the concept of free love. As Andrew Breitbart detailed in his book Righteous Indignation: Excuse Me While I Save The World, they sought to damage or rebel against the social, political, and (especially) moral code of Western Civilization.

Among their numbers was included Wilhelm Reich, who believed that most psychological problems stemmed from sexual repression, whose psychiatric practices incorporated this theory. Erich Fromm,  another Frankfurt philosopher who bought into this belief, helped propagate the ideas that would grow into the self-esteem parenting movement that made the next generation especially susceptible to these messages. The most influential might have been Herbert Marcuse, whose book Eros and Civilization argued for sexual liberation as a cure for psychological ills on a societal level, where ‘polymorphous perversity’ (his words from the aforementioned book) would be what cures all mental ills (the phrase “Make Love Not War” was attributed to him as well).

The very nature of free love is that desire is like a closed pot of boiling water. Eventually, enough steam is going to build up until it blows, so the best idea is to take off the lid every so often to prevent that from happening. It is a physical need, a hunger to be sated, a pressure to be relieved, an itch to be scratched. In contrast, the traditional view of desire, of sex, would be that it is an expression of deep love and commitment, that you love the other person with such power and depth that that love can grow and become a new life. It represented a love that, with the rest of the symbols associated with it (that being marriage), says that you are ready to commit yourself to this other person. It is a symbol whose meaning is acted out not just behaviorally, but biologically.

That understanding of love has romance to it. That has allure and beauty to it. That act represents love so powerful that nature responds and new life is formed. However, in popular culture, that has become the less popular view. Watch any TV show, someone would sleep with someone else, who they weren’t in a relationship in, much less had that much love for, and assure other characters that ‘it meant nothing.’ That is the basis of the second confusion. The symbolic act is divorced from its higher meaning and becomes just an act. You kiss because it feels good, not to show you love them. You sleep with someone to blow off steam, not to say you love them so much you’d make a life with them (both in the sense of spending a life with them and procreating).

Now, one may look at this massive philosophical rambling and be content to wave it off. Why does this matter? If one wishes to call themselves a fiction writer, one thing that needs to be studied is the human condition. The two confusions are lies to our nature arising as a result of adopting materialism. The first confusion is the attempt to conflate the meaning with the symbol, trying to preserve the meaning that materialism, which states that only actions and matter exist, not intangibles, would destroy. The second confusion is the logical endpoint of materialism, reducing man from a creature who acted out intangible concepts via symbolic actions to little better than an animal, acting whenever his hunger, thirst, libido, or any other of the various physical urges strikes.

If you want to write stories that sell, you must first understand the nature of people. Andrew Klavan, in an e-pamphlet he wrote called A Crisis in the Arts, defined art as a method to convey the human experience. And a good story conveys the human experience, unadulterated, pure, and still vibrant with life. The human experience may be acted out in the flesh, but the true things we aim for -love, hope, joy, courage- are things of the spirit, things that the flesh can merely act out symbols for. If you want to convey the human experience, take heed of this fact. Oftentimes, the things we can’t touch or see are more real than the things we can.


Corey McCleery is an aspiring author, artist, and perpetual student of whatever he reads. He accidentally is writing a story on Wattpad called Fever Blood, about a dragon-man who saves a woman and the adventures they have together, found here.

Hello Superversive SF!

Hello!

My name is Corey, and I’d like to introduce myself, as I’ll be entertaining (or trying to, at least) with a few thoughts on the fantasy genre, gaming, philosophy, and anything else that relates to Superversive SF.

A little about me; I’m a college students (Economics major) and an aspiring author. You can usually find me on a story-sharing website called Wattpad (https://www.wattpad.com/user/Halcyon15) where I’m busy writing about the (mis)adventures of a half-human, half-dragon Ranger who rescues a lady and attempts to escort her home while being pursued by an immortal monster bent on killing the lady.

I’m a fan of science fiction as well, and I like reading about philosophy, and now that I have discovered Appendix N, I am devouring those books obsessively, and enjoying them immensely. However, my first love is fantasy, because that rescued me from completely abandoning fiction. When I was younger, I thought all fiction consisted of Junie B. Jones and Junie B. clones, and as those books depicted boring suburbia, I wasn’t too interested in reading them, seeing as I was living that experience. Thank God for Harry Potter.

Those books showed me that writing could go beyond that which boring, everyday life contained. From Hogwarts, I moved to Narnia, then Prydain, then Middle-Earth, then the House (from Garth Nix’s Keys to the Kingdom series), and onward. That was when I started writing fantasy, carrying around a composition book where I wrote my ‘novel.’ Eventually, I traded a composition book for a laptop, and moved from a horrible Tolkien-imitation to something more original.

I am also a bit of a gamer, which I blame on my father, who used to play Command & Conquer, a Real-Time Strategy game (which is still one of my favorite genres). I moved onto other games, like Skyrim and Dark Souls (Yes. I enjoy Dark Souls. I might be a bit of a masochist), and most, if not all, of the games I played had fantasy or science fiction elements in them.

I found the Superversive movement after finding out about Larry Correia, who led me to John C. Wright, who posted a video to a Superversive Roundtable and I was hooked. And, after Mr. Wright courteously responded to a few questions I sent him, I finally worked up the nerve to talk to some of the people here and ask if I could write for this group.

And that’s my story. I hope I can entertain and inform,  and contribute to the Superversive movement!

-Corey.