Register Guidelines E-Books Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Go Back   MobileRead Forums > Miscellaneous > Lounge

Notices

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 09-16-2010, 10:59 AM   #1
Ea
Wizard
Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Ea's Avatar
 
Posts: 3,498
Karma: 5169119
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Denmark
Device: Kindle 3|iPad 2|iPhone 4|Sony 600
What did you learn from reading fiction that you hadn't expected going in?

Suggested by DMcCunney: What did you learn from reading fiction that you hadn't expected going in?

Quote:
Originally Posted by DMcCunney View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ea View Post
I can't remember ever not knowing what parchment is, but Lord Peter Wimsey's interest in antique books taught me a good deal more because I had to look up some words.

Edit: I forgot to add my point, which was that reading is good for you, because you invariably learn something.
That's actually a topic for another thread - "What did you learn from reading fiction that you hadn't expected going in?"

Another question might be "Are some genres better than others for such accidental discoveries?"

My principal fiction genre is SF/fantasy, though I read a fair amount of mysteries and various other things. There are certainly things I would not have known were it not for my reading, as I encountered something unfamiliar and one thing led to another.

I specifically except non-fiction from the question. While you can (and I do) read non-fiction for pleasure, part of the assumption going in when reading non-fiction is that you will learn something. With fiction, such learning is serendipitous.
Ea is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-16-2010, 11:17 AM   #2
Graham
Wizard
Graham ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Graham ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Graham ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Graham ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Graham ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Graham ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Graham ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Graham ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Graham ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Graham ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Graham ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Posts: 2,582
Karma: 30624239
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: North Yorkshire, UK
Device: Sony PRS-650, Nexus 4, HP Touchpad, Nexus 7.
Zen and the art of motorcycle maintenance.

Graham
Graham is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 09-16-2010, 12:01 PM   #3
HarryT
eBook Enthusiast
HarryT ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.HarryT ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.HarryT ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.HarryT ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.HarryT ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.HarryT ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.HarryT ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.HarryT ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.HarryT ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.HarryT ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.HarryT ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
HarryT's Avatar
 
Posts: 63,433
Karma: 41542799
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: UK
Device: PW2, iPad Retina Mini, iPhone 4, MS Surface Pro, Onyx T68, N7,
What I have learnt is that sometimes authors don't know the meaning of their own words. I'm thinking specifically of the late David Eddings; one of my favourite fantasy authors, but (and I've mentioned this before, for which apologies, but it fits the thread title) he infuriated me endlessly in his "Belgariad" series by referring to an ancient text which he called "The Rivan Codex", but when described, it turned out to be a scroll. Just in case anyone doesn't know, a codex is a book - it's what the word codex actually means, but obviously Mr. Eddings was unaware of this. It's a pity he's died, or else I'd write to him and harangue him about it .
HarryT is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 09-16-2010, 12:13 PM   #4
dsvick
Wizard
dsvick ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dsvick ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dsvick ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dsvick ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dsvick ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dsvick ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dsvick ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dsvick ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dsvick ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dsvick ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.dsvick ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
dsvick's Avatar
 
Posts: 2,737
Karma: 635747
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Northeast Ohio, USA
Device: PRS-900
I find that most of the things I learn from reading (non-fiction excluded) are incidental little tidbits of knowledge that I just pick up along the way. like maybe a historical reference or that a certain city is in the north west corner of a state, or something else of equally low value but can be used anytime you like to irritate those around you
dsvick is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-16-2010, 12:33 PM   #5
Ea
Wizard
Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Ea ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Ea's Avatar
 
Posts: 3,498
Karma: 5169119
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Denmark
Device: Kindle 3|iPad 2|iPhone 4|Sony 600
Quote:
Originally Posted by dsvick View Post
I find that most of the things I learn from reading (non-fiction excluded) are incidental little tidbits of knowledge that I just pick up along the way. like maybe a historical reference or that a certain city is in the north west corner of a state, or something else of equally low value but can be used anytime you like to irritate those around you


I also learn things incidentally - when you come across something and look it up because you want to know more about, like cities/places.

Last edited by Ea; 09-16-2010 at 12:36 PM.
Ea is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-16-2010, 01:06 PM   #6
DMcCunney
New York Editor
DMcCunney ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.DMcCunney ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.DMcCunney ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.DMcCunney ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.DMcCunney ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.DMcCunney ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.DMcCunney ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.DMcCunney ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.DMcCunney ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.DMcCunney ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.DMcCunney ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
DMcCunney's Avatar
 
Posts: 5,141
Karma: 6210987
Join Date: Aug 2007
Device: Palm TX, Azpen A727 tablet, Fujitsu Lifebook p2110 w/ FBReader
Quote:
Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
What I have learnt is that sometimes authors don't know the meaning of their own words. I'm thinking specifically of the late David Eddings; one of my favourite fantasy authors, but (and I've mentioned this before, for which apologies, but it fits the thread title) he infuriated me endlessly in his "Belgariad" series by referring to an ancient text which he called "The Rivan Codex", but when described, it turned out to be a scroll. Just in case anyone doesn't know, a codex is a book - it's what the word codex actually means, but obviously Mr. Eddings was unaware of this. It's a pity he's died, or else I'd write to him and harangue him about it .
Eddings is hardly a Worst Offender. Steven R. Donaldson may hold the crown. If you are going to deliberately use obscure words in your books, it's on you to Look Stuff Up, and make sure you are using them correctly. If you don't...

The opposite is Gene Wolfe, who uses many obscure words, but if you look them up, you discover they are real words, and used correctly in context.

But while I enjoyed the Belgariad, the fact that a Codex was a book, not a scroll, was beneath notice. I was more unhappy that he seemed to have one story to tell, and one cast of characters, and subsequent series had the names changed and the serial numbers filed off but were essentially the same story.
______
Dennis
DMcCunney is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-16-2010, 01:45 PM   #7
clarknova
Addict
clarknova plays well with othersclarknova plays well with othersclarknova plays well with othersclarknova plays well with othersclarknova plays well with othersclarknova plays well with othersclarknova plays well with othersclarknova plays well with othersclarknova plays well with othersclarknova plays well with othersclarknova plays well with others
 
clarknova's Avatar
 
Posts: 242
Karma: 2617
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Greenwood, SC
Device: Kindle 2
Neal Stephenson's Baroque Cycle taught me that Dumas' d'Artagnan was based on a real person.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles...e_d%27Artagnan
clarknova is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-16-2010, 01:49 PM   #8
BenG
Wizard
BenG ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.BenG ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.BenG ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.BenG ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.BenG ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.BenG ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.BenG ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.BenG ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.BenG ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.BenG ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.BenG ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
BenG's Avatar
 
Posts: 3,664
Karma: 57911822
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Alpha Ralpha Boulevard
Device: Paperwhite
Quote:
Originally Posted by DMcCunney View Post
The opposite is Gene Wolfe, who uses many obscure words, but if you look them up, you discover they are real words, and used correctly in context.
Yes, you think he is using the standard SF/Fantasy way of making up words as a part of the world-building but, as you say, they are the correct (if sometimes archaic) term for what he is describing.
BenG is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-16-2010, 01:51 PM   #9
HarryT
eBook Enthusiast
HarryT ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.HarryT ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.HarryT ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.HarryT ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.HarryT ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.HarryT ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.HarryT ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.HarryT ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.HarryT ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.HarryT ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.HarryT ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
HarryT's Avatar
 
Posts: 63,433
Karma: 41542799
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: UK
Device: PW2, iPad Retina Mini, iPhone 4, MS Surface Pro, Onyx T68, N7,
I will acknowledge that there is a certain degree of, er, similarity between Eddings' various series, but for me there's still sufficient that's unique in each to make it an enjoyable read.
HarryT is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 09-16-2010, 07:46 PM   #10
ShortNCuddlyAm
WWHALD
ShortNCuddlyAm ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.ShortNCuddlyAm ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.ShortNCuddlyAm ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.ShortNCuddlyAm ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.ShortNCuddlyAm ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.ShortNCuddlyAm ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.ShortNCuddlyAm ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.ShortNCuddlyAm ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.ShortNCuddlyAm ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.ShortNCuddlyAm ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.ShortNCuddlyAm ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
ShortNCuddlyAm's Avatar
 
Posts: 7,881
Karma: 337114
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Mitcham, Surrey, UK
Device: iPad. Selling my silver 505 here
I know there've been more than a few times where I've either checked something and been surprised to find it's true, or assumed it wasn't only to discover accidentally some time later it was; but the only thing that springs to mind right now is Isaac Newton inventing the catflap, courtesy of Douglas Adams's Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency

Not exactly learnt from reading fiction, but our English teacher introduced the class to the (very) basics of quantum physics whilst we were reading Fireweed. I really can't remember why, now - ahh, but I did learn from reading that book that fireweed is another name for rosebay willowherb, and it is quick to colonise open spaces, such as those cleared by fire. Still, the only reason I recall even reading that book is the conversations with my best friend that followed on the bus about the nature of reality, what part observation had to play, and so on.
ShortNCuddlyAm is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-16-2010, 07:55 PM   #11
beppe
Grand Sorcerer
beppe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.beppe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.beppe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.beppe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.beppe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.beppe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.beppe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.beppe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.beppe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.beppe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.beppe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Posts: 5,161
Karma: 81026524
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Italy
Device: Kindle3, Ipod4, IPad2
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ea View Post
What did you learn from reading fiction that you hadn't expected going in?
I hope that condition is not so critical. Like meaning that when I started reading i did not know what would leave meaningful traces in me.

If I follow that hunch that I do not know nothing and that my path has been a series of fortuitous turns (opinion shared by a number of people that had and have dealing with me), than knowing little means that i learned little. Easy out.

But if I look more closely, I get the impression that all that I know of the important things of life I learned by reading fiction. I mean narrative in a wide sense.

So, starting with the most important ones, I learned about the fine art of making and eating sandwiches by the stories of Edward Delaney by Lawrence Sanders. Where else one can learn the distinction between dry and wet sandwiches to be eaten over the sink, or to unfold a news paper on the kitchen table to efficiently dispose of the mess?

To keep dry martini's already mixed in the freezer I learned it by Chandler.

What does it mean to be physically brave I learned it by a war novel. There was this officer totally fearless. And his collegue explained that one would have taken everyone to death. The true courage, he said, was not to not have fear - that was insane - but to master it. This stayed with me and helped me many times to overcome difficult or unpleasant situations.

Than there is love. From Daddy Long-Legs by Jean Webster, I learned that longing is good to appreciate an happy ending. And the movie accompanied the first of such longings.

The Little prince enters as a big factor in my sentimental education. Some of its teaching became obvious quite recently. The fox loves the blond hair of the little prince, associated to waves of wind in a ripe wheat field. When I saw the blonde head of the girl in the wind, it took very little else to shatter my heart and to be hit by all the longing that so many readings had loaded my heart with. A veritable time bomb. I will have to reread the Little Prince and not only once more to study the happy endings.

Last edited by beppe; 09-17-2010 at 03:07 AM.
beppe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-16-2010, 08:15 PM   #12
beppe
Grand Sorcerer
beppe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.beppe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.beppe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.beppe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.beppe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.beppe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.beppe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.beppe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.beppe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.beppe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.beppe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Posts: 5,161
Karma: 81026524
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Italy
Device: Kindle3, Ipod4, IPad2
Quote:
Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
What I have learnt is that sometimes authors don't know the meaning of their own words. I'm thinking specifically of the late David Eddings; one of my favourite fantasy authors, but (and I've mentioned this before, for which apologies, but it fits the thread title) he infuriated me endlessly in his "Belgariad" series by referring to an ancient text which he called "The Rivan Codex", but when described, it turned out to be a scroll. Just in case anyone doesn't know, a codex is a book - it's what the word codex actually means, but obviously Mr. Eddings was unaware of this. It's a pity he's died, or else I'd write to him and harangue him about it .
I like your comment. It reminds me of the kyrics of the song that was preferred by President Coleridge: home on the range.

Just to keep in shape?
beppe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-16-2010, 11:10 PM   #13
Fat Abe
Man Who Stares at Books
Fat Abe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Fat Abe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Fat Abe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Fat Abe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Fat Abe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Fat Abe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Fat Abe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Fat Abe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Fat Abe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Fat Abe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.Fat Abe ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Fat Abe's Avatar
 
Posts: 1,513
Karma: 9749652
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: 50th State, USA. Also, PA, NY, CA, and elsewhere.
Device: All of the Above
Quote:
Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
What I have learnt is that sometimes authors don't know the meaning of their own words.
Hey, what are you, a William Safire? Bill is deadly serious about the English language, even when he's commenting about something as racy as a G-string.

http://www.nytimes.com/1991/08/04/ma...-g-string.html

I plead guilty for stretching the meaning of this term, in the 4-words per post story thread. That is a work of fiction, right? It is obvious I have lived a sheltered life. Fat Abe has never set foot on a beach or inside a strip club. Two feet, maybe.
Fat Abe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-2010, 01:00 AM   #14
happy_terd
Banned
happy_terd ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.happy_terd ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.happy_terd ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.happy_terd ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.happy_terd ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.happy_terd ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.happy_terd ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.happy_terd ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.happy_terd ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.happy_terd ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.happy_terd ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
Posts: 13,048
Karma: 10105011
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Finally made it to Walmart.
Device: PRS 420
Quote:
Originally Posted by HarryT View Post
What I have learnt is that sometimes authors don't know the meaning of their own words. I'm thinking specifically of the late David Eddings; one of my favourite fantasy authors, but (and I've mentioned this before, for which apologies, but it fits the thread title) he infuriated me endlessly in his "Belgariad" series by referring to an ancient text which he called "The Rivan Codex", but when described, it turned out to be a scroll. Just in case anyone doesn't know, a codex is a book - it's what the word codex actually means, but obviously Mr. Eddings was unaware of this. It's a pity he's died, or else I'd write to him and harangue him about it .
Funny you should mention that. I just reread that series about two weeks ago.
happy_terd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-17-2010, 03:34 AM   #15
phenomshel
ZCD BombShel
phenomshel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.phenomshel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.phenomshel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.phenomshel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.phenomshel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.phenomshel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.phenomshel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.phenomshel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.phenomshel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.phenomshel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.phenomshel ought to be getting tired of karma fortunes by now.
 
phenomshel's Avatar
 
Posts: 4,719
Karma: 6075874
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: The Frozen North (aka Illinois, USA)
Device: Dell Venue Pro 8
I now know amazing bits of trivia about vintage clothing, jewelry making, archaeology, egyptology, Munich, needlework, the history of Virginia, forensic anthropology, the Dead Sea Scrolls, the layout of the Oriental Institute in Chicago, witchcraft, ghosts, revolutionary war history, the study of the occult, politics, scuba diving, landscaping, architecture, Bonnie Prince Charlie, and rose rustling....and that's from reading ONE author!
(Barbara Michaels/Elizabeth Peters)
phenomshel is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
No. of visitors expected Manishsb General Discussions 5 08-05-2010 11:20 AM
Is a new Kindle expected anytime soon? ensyed Amazon Kindle 15 07-23-2010 01:49 AM
What Non-Fiction are you reading or do you recommend? kennyc Reading Recommendations 15 02-26-2010 07:24 PM
Feeling guilty about not reading non-fiction ? tech_au Reading Recommendations 34 01-16-2010 06:10 PM
What Non-Fiction ebook are you reading right now, and why? Dr. Drib Reading Recommendations 50 01-07-2009 12:51 PM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 07:58 AM.


MobileRead.com is a privately owned, operated and funded community.