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The Dream of Earl Aubec

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  • The Dream of Earl Aubec

    MM:

    Why was "The Dream of Earl Aubec" edited out of the White Wolf version of Elric? Carter Kaplan mentioned it the other day in reference to a way to begin the Elric movie, I went looking for it in the White Wolf texts and saw that it was removed. When at last I managed to dig out an old paperback copy of the text over the weekend, I immediately recognized it as a sequence that had effected me very deeply in my youth.

    What were the reasons for this alteration to the Elric series? Has it been placed in the Earl Aubec White Wolf text? Is there a "definitive" edition of the Eternal Champion series, or will it remain a work in progress as you keep adding texts?

    I ask these questions as someone that originally read the Elric series (U.S. DAW editions) circa the middle 70s. Perhaps you see the various Elric texts as being very fluid and not bound by a strict sequence of texts. While I understand the authorial urge to add to or tweak a given text, by removing a lengthy and familar passage aren't you flirting with the same sort of possible error in judgment that Poul Anderson committed when he revised "The Broken Sword"? I wouldn't go so far as to say that you were messing with perfection, but how about "if it ain't broke, don't fix it"?

    I see "The Dream of Earl Aubec" as a singularly influential passage of the Elric series. If it is not part of any "in print" book, it should be made available somewhere else - perhaps here on this website as part of its content. That's just my heart-felt but insistent suggestion, I understand there may be legal impediments or your own reluctance for whatever reason. Still, the removal of the Earl Aubec story from the Elric series has me scratching my head with puzzlement.

    I look forward to reading your thoughts on the subject.

  • #2
    Bump!

    It's bad form, I know - but I was still hoping to have an answer of some kind. Plus I have these somewhat unrelated followup questions:

    MM:

    What are your feelings on bookbinding and presentation?

    I have three volumes of the White Wolf revised editions and it seems to me that all of them fall into the category of "fake" hardbounds. Basically, the actual binding is not properly sewn and if one is looking one notes that an attempt is made to fake the appearance of proper binding techniques having been employed. Most new books are glued together and are little more than paperback books with slightly better paper and stiff cardboard covers.

    What effect does this kind of shoddy craftmanship have on the book industry as a whole? Do you think that most people even care, or do they just want a good serviceable reading copy? I ask because lately I have noticed prices for these fake hardbounds being as high as $40 for a single novel - that's a lot considering that the book obviously will not last. While the glue remains flexible one has a book, the minute the glue goes brittle one has a pile of loose pages.

    Your thoughts?

    Comment


    • #3
      That's built-in obsolescence, mate. Everything made is impermanent by design, to keep us buying new stuff and keep the wheels of capitalism rolling. Same thing goes for CDs - they'll never have the lifespan of the old vinyl, and anyway, they're busy coming up with the next technology to replace them. Ho-hum.

      Comment


      • #4
        I set greqt store by decent book-making methods, I must say. The problem is that it seems to cost a lot, these days, so you are always faced with the old problem of trying to keep prices down. However, there's no excuse for bad methods in making 'special editions' for which high prices are paid. Pretty much all the special editions of my books,
        sold at high prices, are properly bound and on decent paper. I thought The Dreamthief's Daughter, in the special edition, was pricey, but a lot was paid both to the artists involved and to the binder. I share your hatred for fancied up editions, meant to look like expensive books but actually cheaply done. They have always been around, at least through the 20th century when commercial publishers began to realise the possibilities of deceiving the public into buying high-priced 'collector's editions'. Where my own books are concerned, I'd never willingly allow such books to be published and sold at high prices in my name and am always grateful to learn of ANY scam being operated where my stuff is concerned.

        Pre-order or Buy my latest titles in Europe:
        The Whispering Swarm: Book One of the Sanctuary of the White Friars - The Laughter of Carthage - Byzantium Endures - London Peculiar and Other Nonfiction
        Doctor Who: The Coming of the Terraphiles - Kizuna: Fiction for Japan - Modem Times 2.0 - The Sunday Books - The Sundered Worlds


        Pre-order or Buy my latest titles in the USA:
        The Laughter of Carthage - Byzantium Endures - London Peculiar and Other Nonfiction - The Sunday Books - Doctor Who: The Coming of the Terraphiles
        Kizuna: Fiction for Japan - The Sundered Worlds - The Winds of Limbo - Modem Times 2.0 - Elric: Swords and Roses

        Comment


        • #5
          I meant to have added that I prefer the tendency to sell first editions in paperback format these days, as has always been done on the Continent. What we need then are firms of binders who can produce a decent stitched binding for those customers who wish to have their books preserved in that state. The present practice of hard-binding came from the British and American circulating library systems, which needed very durable books which could be read many times. This private circulating library system did not exist to any important degree on the Continent, thus all books were 'paperbacks'. The reason for durable stitching was practical, in other words. Nothing to do with 'fine' editions. Some publishers are guiltier than others when it comes to producing shoddily made books and the more readers complain the better.

          Pre-order or Buy my latest titles in Europe:
          The Whispering Swarm: Book One of the Sanctuary of the White Friars - The Laughter of Carthage - Byzantium Endures - London Peculiar and Other Nonfiction
          Doctor Who: The Coming of the Terraphiles - Kizuna: Fiction for Japan - Modem Times 2.0 - The Sunday Books - The Sundered Worlds


          Pre-order or Buy my latest titles in the USA:
          The Laughter of Carthage - Byzantium Endures - London Peculiar and Other Nonfiction - The Sunday Books - Doctor Who: The Coming of the Terraphiles
          Kizuna: Fiction for Japan - The Sundered Worlds - The Winds of Limbo - Modem Times 2.0 - Elric: Swords and Roses

          Comment


          • #6
            the Dream of Earl Aubec is just a fantastic, compressed view on the situation of the EC for me. he is captured it his own imagination, while at the same time he is also bound to powers not controlled my him. i liked the idea of how the border of chaos was set anew as the tower wanders with it, according to the championآ´s actions. it HAS to be part of the movie, somehow!

            Comment


            • #7
              That segment can now be found in the 14th volume, Earl Aubec and other stories. It is actually the only Aubec story in the book, but there are a number of great stories that span Mr. M's career.

              Comment


              • #8
                Krunky:

                There is a wee snip on Earl Aubec on page 15 of the Elric Movie thread.


                Paperbacks:

                I miss the old pocket book format. Easy to carry around, and cheap. These big clumsy 12 dollar paperbacks are too bulky to carry around. I've always liked to travel light. The used paperback shops still got 'em, of course.

                Which reminds me: when I go into a used book shop I always get sentimental when I look through the Pelicans. All those fascinating topics, good scholarship, cheap.... They represent an attitude toward learing and knowledge--the idea that Everyman is interested in marine biology, or Mesopotamian archaeology, or seamanship, or modern archtecture, or Richard II, or Greek drama, or what have you--and that everyone should be able to own a book on such topics if they jolly well want to.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I agree wholeheartedly about Pelicans and I love them, too. I have quite a lot -- on typography, architecture, the Dante set, literary history and so on. The idealism which sparked them (and the Penguin Specials) seems to have disappeared, perhaps with the urge towards self-education. They contributed a lot to my education, that's for sure.
                  And, yes, I agree about individual paperbacks. My idea was to make a set which gave the new reader a sense of what order to read the books in and offer them as cheaply as possible. Having done that, I'm not seriously thinking of putting the books back into individual volumes.
                  That at least will offer a choice. One thing I hadn't considered, when I did the omnibus set, was the amount of money I was going to lose in
                  royalties and PLR. It reduced my income from the books by about two thirds! But I still think it was well worth doing and now it would be nice to have a variety of choice, still.

                  Pre-order or Buy my latest titles in Europe:
                  The Whispering Swarm: Book One of the Sanctuary of the White Friars - The Laughter of Carthage - Byzantium Endures - London Peculiar and Other Nonfiction
                  Doctor Who: The Coming of the Terraphiles - Kizuna: Fiction for Japan - Modem Times 2.0 - The Sunday Books - The Sundered Worlds


                  Pre-order or Buy my latest titles in the USA:
                  The Laughter of Carthage - Byzantium Endures - London Peculiar and Other Nonfiction - The Sunday Books - Doctor Who: The Coming of the Terraphiles
                  Kizuna: Fiction for Japan - The Sundered Worlds - The Winds of Limbo - Modem Times 2.0 - Elric: Swords and Roses

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Maybe if the books were put out in invidual paperbacks again, you could include a reading order in the front of each volume, based on the one you and Jonn Davey established for the Omnibus editions.

                    Comment

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