Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Terry Goodkind, Part One: The Man, the Myth, the Legend

There are three Terrys that are considered the staples of modern fantasy: Terry Brooks, Terry Pratchett, and Terry Goodkind. Terry Brooks writes the Shannara, Word and Void, and Magic Kingdom of Landover series. Terry Pratchett writes the whimsical Discworld series (surely you've read one). Terry Goodkind writes the Sword of Truth series and most recently, The Law of Nines. Of these three, Terry Goodkind is unquestionably the worst.

Now I had never read this last Terry's work... until now. I knew I didn't want to read the 11-volume Sword of Truth series, whose reviews only went downhill as time progressed. So I decided I'd read his most recent, The Law of Nines. Don't make the same mistake as me.

But I'll get to that part later.

Just for your information, here are some of the pictures of the Terrys for comparison. Here's Terry Brooks:

Here's Terry Pratchett:

And here's Terry Goodlord... I mean, Goodkind:

Yeah. And this sums them up pretty well. Brooks and Pratchett are good-natured gentlemen. Goodkind is a pretentious weirdo. Don't believe me? Read this interview. I mean, seriously. Read it all. It's important for your understanding.

Read it? Good. In summary, for those of you that were too lazy, he idolizes Ayn Rand above all others (he mentions it twice in the interview), he is full of himself (for proof, read where he talks about the "fantastic" Dean Koontz), and he believes he doesn't write fantasy.

It's this last one that's really shooting himself in the foot. All his fans are genre readers. They're the only ones willing to slog through book after book in hopes of finding a glimmer of good writing. And he says fantasy is one-dimensional, has no plot, and anyone who notices similarities between his and other books is just not mature enough to read them. Wow. That's harsh and stupid. I mean, if he doesn't write fantasy, why is his debut novel called Wizard's First Rule? Hint hint: If that's your title, and it takes place in a secondary world with magic...

YOU WRITE FANTASY. Deal with it.

In fact, he says he doesn't even read reviews. So I can say whatever I want. Nyah-nyah-nyah-nyah-boo-boo. And so on.

He also makes it clear that he believes writing has nothing to do with hard work. His "look at me, I got published at age 45 with the first book I ever wrote, and I hated English too" schtick gets old real fast.

Why am I so angry with Goodkind now? Well, remember what I said about The Law of Nines? I actually read it, so I could say I've read Goodkind. And now I have, and I never will again. But what is it that makes The Law of Nines so bad?

Next time, dear readers. Sleep in fear.

Coming Soon: The Law of Nines. Be very afraid.

1 comment:

Okie said...

lol...great post. I also have never read Goodkind...been put off by what I've heard.

I am intrigued to read about your reading experience. Waiting anxiously for the review. ;)