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Old 04-02-2002, 09:00 AM   #1
The Perilous Poet
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Pipe Where have the Rings led you?

The magic of Lord of the Rings for me can be encapsulated by the reading list that spawned from within it. JRRT's writings led me, as a teenager, to read many varied texts, some that seem only tenuously linked to hobbit-holes in retrospect, but when traced through my life, can be seen as baby steps taken from the birthplace of my true love of writing. I had read voraciously as a child, as I continue to do so, 'some' years later, yet I can see now that it was with The Hobbit and the Lord of the Rings that my interest became my passion.

If the reader(s) will allow me to skip steps; from JRRT I eventually found my way to the epic sand-sagas of Frank herbert's Dune - a truly towering fictional text. I stepped back to the medieval stories, as so capably told by Umberto Eco in "The Name of the Rose" and "The Island of the Day Before". As a student at University, I managed to stereotype myself a little with Camus, Kafka, the Russian masters, Plath and even the 'Germinal' writings of Zola. Yet along with this, throughout those years the love of the fantastical has stayed with me and I shall always be grateful for the hole-dwelling Bilbo, who taught me that loving books was preferable to passionlessly devouring them.

Where did Gandalf lead you? [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]

[ April 02, 2002: Message edited by: Stephanos ]
And all the rest is literature
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Old 04-02-2002, 10:31 AM   #2
Tigerlily Gamgee
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The Lord of the Rings has lead me to a greater appreciation for the history of our own world and the desire to read and learn about it. I haven't moved on to any other ficition books yet. It also has given me a greater appreciation for nature, beauty and friendship!
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Old 04-02-2002, 01:28 PM   #3
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I think I can say that LOTR has had a great influence on me. Some of the charakters have become role models for me, e.g. the Elves. I love their calm but yet resolute manner. It's true that before I read the books I was often easily irascible and impulsive, and now I try to stay cool and polite. Of course, I've gotten older since I've read the book (at 13) and at that age changes are absolutely normal, but I think it helped my through that time, hackneyed as it sounds.
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Old 04-02-2002, 02:19 PM   #4
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Stephanos, welcome to the 'Downs!
Originally, the LOTR trilogy led me into a world of imagination shared with a friend. Now, it leads me back to memories of that time.
"A fair jaw-cracker dwarf language must be! "
~Sam Gamgee
Giving thanks unto the Father...In whom we have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of sins.~Colossians1:12a,14
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I am Samwise son of Hamfast, if by hoe or trowel I can get these weeds out of your garden, I will.You have my shears!;)
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Old 04-02-2002, 02:53 PM   #5
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The Lord of the Rings has led me on several journeys. the foremost of these are a renewed interest and deepening appreciation of the mythology of earth and a love for full appreciation of work. My friends often ask if knowing JRRT's work so well spoils the reading, but i would say withe the knowledge comes a new appreciation, and with every reading comes a new, more subtle level of understanding and joy. Also, LOTR has inspired my creativity and composition. but i think above all, i can comprehend much more clearly the deepness and strength of emotion, it gives me a reference to understand real-life situations of grief and love.
Not another ****ing Elf!

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Old 04-02-2002, 03:54 PM   #6
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let's see...why do i appreciate Tolkien? Why am i so passionate about his works? And most of all, how has it changed me?...Well...

The beautiful, rich, vast world he created...not a Utopia, yet harmonious. His writing style-the way he describes everything in minute detail so that you can picture it so vividly in your mind...yet he is ambiguous enough to allow room for the readers' own interpretations. The poetry, and the incredible infinite wisdom he posesses. The wisdom that is revealed through the characters' dialouge, the poetry, and the events of the stories. The way he can tear your soul to pieces with anguish, yet make your heart soar with joy at the same time.

THe way that Frodo, Bilbo and sam did not kill Gollum showed a true strength of character that i have never known before. There are also many more examples i can't think of right now... Tolkien is definitely a genius. The beauty of his vision and words, the tragic, desperate wars, the grand epic, the emotional richness... his words have moved me, touched me in a way that no one and nothing has ever done. They have awakened in me pure, terrifying evil, hoplesness, chilling fear, true strength and heroisism,and most of all,hope in the darkest hour, courage, and perserverance in the face of adversity. I know his works are not an allegory, but his wisdom should be read by all...his wisdom reveals the raw truth about our world and our lives that anyone can relate to. How can anyone fail to be moved by such great literature? After i finished LOTR, i've now digested as much of his profundity as i can (after reading them only once), and i vow to live differently because of it. What greater honor than that can anyone say about anothers' work?

[ April 03, 2002: Message edited by: Jessica Jade ]

The musicians had indeed laid bare the youngest, most innocent of our ideas of life, the indestructible yearning for the way things aren't and can never be. ~ Philip Roth, The Human Stain
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Old 04-02-2002, 04:32 PM   #7
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I really can't say that Tolkien lead me anywhere. I have to give credit to other authors for leading me to Tolkien!

I my youth the works of T.H. White, Jack London, Felix Saltin, Rudyard Kipling, P.L.Travers, James Barrie and Andre Norton opened my mind to exploring strange new worlds with magical, heroic characters that could still reflex the best of humanity.

In my late teens, I was reading much bleaker, darker "realistic" novels. Yet when I stumbled across "The Lord of the Rings" at the library, those earlier authors must have been whispering in my ear, reminding me of worlds where goodness, nobility and faith in magic could still win out over the Darkness. I had never heard of Tolkien. None of my friends had either. But after one chapter, I was home again.

That was 27 years ago, and I have always had a copy of LoTR on my bookshelf, and have read it at least 20 times. Most of those earlier authors I mentioned above share the same space. (Except Norton. Hmmmm, have to go back and check her out again.) Can't say the same for most of those "realistic" 70s authors. [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img]
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Old 04-02-2002, 06:32 PM   #8
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Well, although I am young (merely 14 years of age), so I cannot say that "looking back" on Tolkien has brought memories, for I was 9 when I first read the books, and they, then, had little to no impact on me.

I can say, however, that now that I reread Lord of the Rings and am reading more Tolkien books now, it has resparked my imagination, which I nearly lost about 2 years ago. I have fantasies now, about who I would be, what race I would be (I made a lot up), and what my role would be if I were alive in the time of the Third Age around the time of the fellowship. I regret to say that I dare not really write a fanfic actually about that era, for I would offend many, being the "10th of the fellowship" (which I defended by saying: well, 9 to "go against" the 9 Nazgul, figuratively, and 1, Frodo, who represents the counterpart of Sauron...well, not exactly "counterpart", but I figured 9 Nazgul = 9 to go with Frodo and the other would be Frodo and understand, yes?). Although the story would remain exactly the same, many I have met do not like my fantasies, and claim they are "messing with the work of Tolkien", which, I admit, they are, but can you all honestly tell me that you have not thought that you would have loved to be on that quest for one reason or another?

But the books have brought me closer to my friends. Many of my friends have just "found" Tolkien, and now we are all close, for we have yet another thing in common. I am sure that Tolkien will help me in the future, whether morally or just to cheer me up.
"I think we dream so we don't have to be apart so long. If we're in each others dreams, we can be together all the time." - Hobbes of Calvin and Hobbes
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Old 04-02-2002, 08:02 PM   #9
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The Lord of the Rings. Wow. What a profound and incredible piece of literature.No other 20th century fantasy novels rival it. I just recently discovered LOTR, and must admit,only after seeing the movie.The movie moved me so deeply, I decided to give LOTR a try and got hooked. It opened up an entire new genre for me, and now I am always on the lookout for other quality fantasy stories to read. The intelligence and depth of Tolkien's works will never cease to amaze me, nor will his sheer genius and insights into the human condition, the most realistic and bittersweet insights I have read yet. The LOTR, Silmarillion,Lost Tales...all touched me and knocked down the door into my formerly close-minded 17-year-old world and, forgive me for sounding maudlin, I am now a better person for it.
The Dwarf breathes so loud I could've shot him in the dark, drunk, blindfolded and hanging upside down from a tree.
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Old 04-03-2002, 08:20 AM   #10
The Perilous Poet
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(Thank you for the hello, Samwise). The books meant a tremendous amount to me, which was the major reason a) I am here and b) for starting this thread. I have always found reading patterns fascinating. I have just finished a short story by Tibor Fischer (well recommended) about a man who is trying to read anything that has ever been written. It was a dark little story, and in the end inevitably depressing, but it started me on this train of thought:

How did I end up reading the books I am reading today? (Currently the Fischer, a collection from Christopher Ross, Octave Mirbeau's Torture Garden and the incomparable Rimbaud)

How did I get there from what I read before? Curious.

[ April 03, 2002: Message edited by: Stephanos ]
And all the rest is literature

Last edited by Rimbaud; 10-29-2004 at 05:16 AM.
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Old 04-03-2002, 08:34 AM   #11
Niphredil Baggins
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It has led me to all the fantasy in the world, looking for a rival, a match, an equal. And as I gaze upon these hundreds of writers, what are they but men and women on the shoulders of a giant? I do not reproach them, for they offer grand views too. Some gaze behind the Giant, the opposite direction that he does. Some stand atop each other. I have also found some that stand in their own right, lesser giants. Ursula K. le Guin, Tad Williams, Peter S. Beagle, Guy Gavriel Kay.

Tolkien has also led me myself to walk the path of creation: to study legend, lore and language, to dream awake, to hear the call of Faerie. To plant the seeds and paint the leaves of small story-trees.

Vadia eea Vallanais,
valei ta mraneie.
Eleia mara Vallanais,
varei um daleie,
Wistful, willful, wingless, fly!
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Old 04-03-2002, 08:45 AM   #12
Eowyn of Ithilien
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the Rings have led me home [img]smilies/smile.gif[/img] to Middle Earth
But of bliss and glad life there is little to be said, before it ends; as works fair and wonderful, while still they endure for eyes to see, are their own record, and only when they are in peril or broken for ever do they pass into song.
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