Literary trivia: CS Lewis, Narnia and c.

A few things that Y’all Should Know:

  • CS Lewis didn’t believe in “children’s stories” and “adult stories”. He believed in good stories. He said that if a story wasn’t equally as good to a 10 year old as a 50 year old, it was a bad story. So, no, the Narnia books are not “children’s stories.”
  • Also: The Narnia books are NOT allegories. CS Lewis called them “suppositions”:

“I did not say to myself ‘Let us represent Jesus as He really is in our world by a Lion in Narnia’; I said, ‘Let us suppose that there were a land like Narnia and that the Son of God, as he became a Man in our world, became a Lion there, and then imagine what would happen.'” (Letter to Maryland schoolchildren, 1954)

  • In true allegory, everything stands for something else. “Well, that’s in Narnia!”, you may say. OK. Narnia=Eden. Aslan=Christ. But then it falls apart. What does Jadis, the White Witch, represent? Not Satan–she doesn’t fit. What about Edmund? Peter, Thomas, Judas? All three? Neither? How about Susan and Peter? And Lucy?The Beavers? (See what I mean?) Not allegory. (Lewis did say that Edmund would be Judas, but that, unlike the real Judas, he repented.)
  • CS Lewis and Tolkein were friends–very good friends–and had many of the same interests. But comparing their works is like comparing apples and wheat bread–they’re both food. That’s about where it stops. They’re both authors, who wrote books. The Tolkien was much more interested in the myth in mythology–creating a consistent, believable world from the ground up. It annoyed him that Lewis chose so many things from different mythological traditions. Lewis also wrote more broadly, shall we say. He wrote the Narnia books, he wrote the Space Trilogy, he wrote Till We Have Faces (which is so underrated, if you ask me), and of course he wrote apologetics. Tolkien? Yeah, not so much, or if he did, I certainly haven’t seen it or heard about it, and I’m pretty “up” on apologetics and Christian writing.  This is not to demean his Hobbits and LOTR, because those are mammoth achievements. I’m saying that Tolkien wrote almost one thing, exclusively, while Lewis…didn’t. This isn’t a bad thing. But it’s not helpful to try and compare the two, just because they were friends. Nathaniel Hawthorne and Herman Melville were friends, and their books are not really alike, are they? Yes, they both deal with Christian themes, to an extent. That’s about it.

I’m watching Bones

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Bones on




This is big. REALLY big, huge.

I wrote an entire novel, start to finish.

I have never done that. I’ve been writing for a long time, but  I have never finished a story. I’ve written an end and a beginning but left the middle to fall like a souffle.

This month, I did it. 50K words, 25 days. Wow.

Some things I learned:

  • This novel involved research into Korean food, Korean time zones, and the federal appellate process. (Thanks to my friends who gave me hints, tips, and info on these things! And wikipedia. And Google.)
  • It is true–your characters will do crazy things that you never expected them to do, when you’re writing.
  • I got ideas everywhere. I would dream about these guys. I would wash the dishes and start thinking, “What if?”
  • Conflict is key. When you take away a conflict, you have to create another one.
  • Things that I thought were going to be important vanished entirely, and things I never thought about became important.
  • Some characters appeared, some vanished, some came and went.

This is, of course,only a draft. There are things I’m going to want to clean up and edit and make clearer, and places that definitely need some elucidation. But I wrote a novel, with a beginning, a middle, and an end. And I am really happy about that.


Thanksgiving 2012

Happy belated Thanksgiving to all of you!
This month’s big adventure–so far–was Making The Turkey.

Now this wasn’t a whole turkey–it was just the five of us for Turkey Day. So I made a turkey breast–6 lbs. I had been lusting over a recipe for Turkey breast with rosemary, leeks and apples in a Pampered Chef cookbook since I was a teenager, so getting to make it was a culinary dream come true.

Turkey Prep–Apples, onions (in place of leeks), seasonings


The Bird

Ready to Eat! (Also made the gravy to the right)


The store didn’t have leeks so we made do with onions. You slice the onions and apples into rings and place them at the bottom of the roasting pan. Set the turkey ontop. Brush the turkey with olive oil, then sprinkle dried rosemary over the bird. Roast in a 350 degree oven for 1 hr 50 minutes to 2 hrs 20 minutes. I think we went a bit longer than that, but it was delicious and juicy and the skin, holy jiminy. The skin was incredible.

Yesterday I saw some old friends who were in town for Turkey Day, and got to meet some adorable kidlets that I hadn’t met yet, namely:

P and his Dad

This little guy, whose Dad I’ve known since high school, and

Me and Evie

This adorable babe, who is a little over a month old. I’ve known her dad since the first day of high school–we were in French I together–so, 16 years. I was in his wedding and am also good friends with his wife, who is a medical genius (she’s going to be an OB). This is their first kid and she’s precious!

It’s amazing and baffling to think that the people I met back in high school are still my friends, and are getting married and having babies. Wow. But the kids are truly adorable and a lot of fun.











I’m watching Les Miserables

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Les Miserables on

Bits and Pieces

I know, I’ve sort of abandoned you–blame NaMoWriMo! Speaking of that, I am on track to get this novel done. So far I’ve written 20,115 words. Some of them I want to scrip right now, and some of them are good. But I am suppressing my inner editor until Dec. 1!

(In case you don’t know: National Novel Writing Month–NaMoWriMo–is an international project that challenges you to write a 50,000 word novel in one month, the month of November, usually.)

Other things going on:

  • I started a new job last week. Never thought that would happen. I’m still in the Senate but I’m in a different office. With session starting this week, we’ll see how different (or not) things are! I’m enjoying it thus far. I have a bigger space, and the people I work with are great.
  • I wrote this over at CPG, my Catholic stuff blog. If you’re into that sort of stuff, read it and then comment.
  • Thanksgiving is soon upon us! I’m helping my mom with the meal this year so I’m excited about it.
  • I’m trying to teach myself music theory. I found a textbook at Half Price Books, in beautiful condition, for $7. So we’ll see how far I get. The whole math and music thing never really clicked for me. I am awful at math. I am good at music. We’ll see how I am at music theory!