This is awful.
I like books that tend to have footnotes, and recommendations for further reading on a subject…
I’ve been annoyed by S.T. Joshi’s The Dreams in the Witch House, which seemed to me to be composed of Lovecraft’s more inferior stories…but I was thinking about it wrong. I was thinking about monsters, rather than what dreams are like, or about the far more pronounced nihilism and paranoia of Ligotti’s stories. I should have been reading this book with those things in mind all along.
Because Lovecraft’s story-dreams are actually more like my own dreams than anything else I have encountered. And I say this meaning that, while they are completely unalike in content or theme, they’re very alike in the sense that they occur in seemingly cohesive “worlds”, and that they impart to the dreamer innate knowledge that the dreamer has no way of knowing, except that they do.
The only other dream story I can think of that felt like dreams I have was Karl Edward Wagner’s Endless Night…but I’ve never read anything else by him. (Yes I have…a short story called Sticks.)
There’s that problem I have with all these weird tales writers, though. A lot of them aren’t in print anymore. And that brings me around to what I was thinking about at the outset of this post: there is an essay I would like to read, but there’s about 0 chance of that happening.
L.D. Blackmore’s “Middle-Earth, Narnia and Loveraft’s Dream World: Comparative World-Views in Fantasy” was published over 30 years ago. In a magazine. Not a book. Not available through the library, and on Amazon…it’s there, but it’s not reasonable.
I’d still like to read it though. I’d like to see someone make those comparisons. It would be easier to take in, I think, than Ligotti’s The Conspiracy Against the Human Race was, especially following C.S. Lewis’s Mere Christianity. Those are some mightily disparate philosophies…
Moving away from philosophy though, I finally see how Brian Lumley’s Necroscope series fits in with more of Lovecraft’s writing…other than with Lumley’s vampire being a Lovecraftian-wannabe creature. Because I guess Lovecraft did write at least a few stories with math and interdimensional travel or time travel as major plot elements…I just didn’t know that yet at the time I was reading Lumley’s books. So I guess I can forgive Lumley a little more. Although I still think the way he brought the mathematician Mobius into the story was cheating. *shrug*
And…I should probably go to bed soon. But not before I leave you with one of our work conversations, because we like to talk about interdimensional travel, too. 😛
Blair: I’m so tired. Wanna come in for me tomorrow?
Kurt: Um, no.
Tyler: If I could, I’d just rip open a hole in the space-time continuum, and bring other-dimensional Blair to this dimension. Then she could cover your shift and nobody would know.
Me: You’d use control of space-time for that?
Tyler: What? Are you upset that I wanna use my powers for good? For helping others?
Me: No, that’s not what I said. I was just thinking maybe there were better uses.
Tyler: Oh, trust me. I’ve thought about better uses. And you’d better believe that when my powers are strong enough, I’m gonna rip open a hole and put a bullet in Hitler’s head myself.
Me: Besides getting shifts covered, is that seriously the go-to thing for interdimensional travel?
Tyler: Naw. I’m just trying to get you riled. Because you’re a Nazi and all. It even says it on your cup–“mar Nazi”. Whatever that is.
Me: Well, mar is the Spanish word for sea.
Tyler: So, an undersea Nazi.
Me: It’s like being a mermaid.
Tyler: Now I have to rethink everything I ever believed about mermaids.