I was visiting my local comic book store this past Saturday and picked up a few things. As I was paying I noticed on the wall behind the register a copy of " Famous Monsters of Filmland" # 265 to be precise. I noticed Gollum...I asked to see it and the store owner handed it to me and I noticed it was a Sanjulian painting. So I bought it expecting a nice article on the new HOBBIT film that was out recently. When I got it home I was totally surprised to see upon reading the table of contents if there were a Magazine to buy by accident or chance it is this one.
There were articles about Quentin Tarantino,The Hobbit,Bakshi's LOR,Forrest J. Ackerman,PSYCHO and of all things that made my purchase even more of an unexpected treat...ROBERT E. HOWARD in an article called The "AMERICAN J.R.R. TOLKIEN" for many years I have always compared Howard to Tolkien myself. I have had many a conversation with Tolkien fans about CONAN and how they should read a true HOWARD CONAN yarn.
One instance I can remember...I was talking with someone who was talking about how intellectual Tolkien's stories were and how his stories are discussed by Professors of lierature at great Universities around the world. I told him that in my opinion Tolkien's writing was verbose and too descript to hold my attention ( His descriptions of forests and hills and mountain sides and ornate castles were a bit overly descript and I got bored and had to slog through the story to get to the faster moving parts of the tale only to find there was actually no faster moving parts of the tale. It was like having a discussion with an Ent about whether or not to have a discussion )
Bottom line...there really is no better writer at all in this great world and in the history of literature or written fiction. It is all preference.
About two years later the guy I had this discussion with told me he bought a CONAN pastiche and read it and really enjoyed it. He also noted that the pace was more even and steady...I was pleased to give him an I told you so. ( There is only so much description one can put into something before you begin to lose interest ) My point of view on the subject is this...Tolkien...Like Howard created a world people could get lost in. Tolkien's world is full of magic and magical peoples...HOWARD's world...was full of grit and realism and strayed away magic. Like CONAN who hated magics. Tolkien wrote stories where magic played a major part. Howard wrote stories where magic was just a tool and the hero always had to overcome great obstacles with his wits and bare hands. Who is better? I am not qualified to judge.
For those of you who are CONAN completists...I recommend you go out and obtain this magazine.
Expand your Horizons and read more by CROM!!!
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