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Showing posts from November, 2014

Spheres--A Fantasy Story World Based on a type of "Scientific" Magic

Taking a break from my Combat Realism series of blog posts for a bit, I've decided to share a concept for a new kind of fantasy story. The kernel of the story idea came from Francis Godwin's 1638 book, The Man in the Moone , in which a Spaniard flies to the moon in chariot drawn by geese. Of course geese can't fly to the moon because there isn't air for them to breathe along the way. And even if there was air between the Earth and the moon, the distance is so far--roughly far enough to equal going all the way around the planet Earth in a circle ten times--the geese would never have the energy to make it all the way. (Of course Godwin was not writing with the lack of atmosphere or true distance in mind.) "But what if, " my mind was wondering, "What if there was a fantasy world in which you really could fly a goose-drawn chariot to another planet? What would that story world be like?" I immediately seized on the notion that gravity would have

Story Combat Realism Part 5--Evil as a System of War

David Grossman's On Combat  (as well as his earlier work, On Killing ) has largely inspired my blog post series on combat realism, though I'm not delivering the exact same conclusions, nor putting things in the same order he did. When he discussed the factors that make it easier to for a human to kill another (for almost all human beings are naturally adverse to killing members of our own species), it struck me how a certain combination of factors have defined some of the most terrifying militaries that have ever existed on the face of Planet Earth. These factors define armies that rightfully should be called "evil," a distinction Grossman never talked about specifically. These factors include: 1. It's easier to kill if an authoritative leader is telling you to do so (psychologically, this relieves individual guilt). Let's call this the "Nazi mentality"--"I was only doing as ordered." 2. It's easier to kill if you are with a g