In Which Our Heroine Exhibits Inigo Montoya Syndrome

30 September 2004

I have Inigo Montoya Syndrome, I think. I keep thinking, "You keep using that word. I do no' think it means what you think it means." Over and over again in the last week or so: "I do no' think it means what you think it means." The latest is in The Lost Years of Merlin. Pop quiz: does "stunted" mean the same thing as "recently chopped off?" If you were describing someone whose arm had recently been chopped off by goblins, would "stunted" be the word you would choose? I mean, sure, technically if your arm has been cut off by goblins, it is unlikely to grow any time soon,'s also not likely to break into the overture from "Pagliacci," and we don't say that it's silent or un-operatic or folky or jazzy, for heaven's sake.

And "stunted" is basic; "stunted" is not part of string theory. Not a hard word, people. Perhaps I'm just cranky. Or perhaps I'm cranky but also something else.

I'm done with The Lost Years of Merlin, and it's a very good thing that I am, because I am ready to read something else. (And not the sequel, either, though it's sitting on my library pile, and though I will need to read it one of these days, that day is not yet here.) Word to the wise: if you're going to use a death cauldron as a plot device, that's fine; it's been around in Celtic myth long enough that you won't necessarily look like you're ripping off Lloyd Alexander. But then you had better be pretty careful how closely you imitate Gurgi, hadn't you? Grrrr.

On to Analog and more of The White Death before I read more of the contract work books. I keep reminding myself that those are comparatively fun work, rather than being kind of cruddy fun. I try not to have cruddy fun.

But right now is worktime. I've forgotten to post this for long enough, working on Chapter 61. I'd best get back to what I'm supposed to be doing, which is what I have been doing anyway.

Sampo Countdown:
Chapters begun but not finished: ten.
Chapters not yet begun: four.

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