Thursday, January 9, 2014

"Ender is making it possible for the others his age to be playing in the park." 
"And Jesus died to save all men, of course." Graff sat up and looked at Anderson almost sadly. "But we're the ones," Graff said, "we're the ones who are driving in the nails." 

I'm reading Orson Scott Card's First Meetings, a collection of short stories in the Enderverse - including the original "Ender's Game" as it appeared in 1977 as a 50 page story.  It's so fascinating having first read the 1985 novel to approach this. 
Comparatively, this feels very in media res, but with surprising depth, making it very apparent that Card had already begun his complex world-building.  This makes me wonder if this is, perhaps, the best way for an author to enter their created world in sci-fi or fantasy.  Composing a short story would force the author to establish the mythology, history, and projected future while also presenting just a fraction of that story to test the waters.  Well, that's what I'm wondering, anyway.
Being shorter, things are much more direct - such as the lines above - but they are also profound.  Not quite a re-read, I'm still moved by earlier decisions - knowing the ramifications later on.  It's funny actually - I've read abridged versions and then later full versions of novels; I've read parallel novels; but this is the first time I've read the condensed version after reading the expanded story.  I suggest trying all three if you can at some point.  It's a marvelous exercise in narrative choices.

Ok, enough rambling.  Happy Thursday.

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