The Newcomer's Guide To Robert E. Howard
Posted 03 January 2011 - 05:40 PM
Posted 03 January 2011 - 07:25 PM
In Myths and Misconceptions, you say Bob didn't own rifles. I beg to differ, he apparently had quite a collection of weapons, including swords, pistols and rifles. Kate Merryman commented that she saw Doc Howard and some friends handing lots of weapons out the window to keep Bob from using them to kill himself. Whether they were Bob's rifles, or Doc's, doesn't really matter, the point is that rifles were kept in the house. And that would be a VERY typical thing to expect in rural Texas of the early 20th century. You have to go kill a snake on occasion, and home defense was a given.
A little thang.
No, hardly a little thang: very important to point out, and thanks for it!
Conan's height, there are several quotes in the texts implying he was signficantly taller than others, implying 6'4" to 6'6". There are some threads in the Board here that pulls all those quotes.
The height thing's quite a confusing matter in general, but I'll likely be using it as a hub for links - like the aforementioned threads. Still, I think 6'2" to 6'6" is about the "Conan zone".
Edited by Taranaich, 03 January 2011 - 07:36 PM.
Robert E. Howard, 1906 - 2006
Sword & Sorcery! Historical Fiction!
Posted 22 January 2012 - 07:56 AM
Friends, Barbarians, Tribesmen, a moment of your time.
When Mark Finn released his New Manifesto, it was borne of a mounting frustration with how Howard is considered in the popular consciousness. No doubt a large part felt it was preaching to the choir, others felt it would set Howard studied back years. Nonetheless, I feel it had an important point to make.
Someone asks you what you're reading. You say, it's a collection of Robert E. Howard stories. They draw a blank. You attempt to clarify, but usually, it's only the mention of Conan that elicits the little flash of recognition you're looking for. Then they respond in any number of ways: a few happy, joyous times, they'll engage in conversation about the author with a sense of familiarity. But more often, it'll be some variation of "why are you reading that dumb teenage junk," "why are you reading that racist filth," "I didn't know they novelized Conan the Barbarian," "I thought that was Robert Jordan," "crush yah enemies blah blah blah blah blah." Sometimes they'll bring up some old hoary myth or nonsense, like how Howard had an Oedipal complex, or that he never left his home town, or that he sympathized with the Nazis, or how he hallucinated the ghost of Conan who told him his tales at axe-edge, or that he boarded up his windows at night and loaded rifles for a coming onslaught that never came. And all you can do is sigh a little.
You've had those moments. We've all had those moments. Well I say, enough is enough!
I decided a while ago - about the same time, as it ended up, as Mark's New Manifesto - that the only way to dispel the myths and misconceptions is to replace them with facts and reasonable hypothesis. Split the rocks of ignorance that obscure the light of knowledge and truth. And so, I started The Newcomer's Guide to Robert E. Howard.
It's REH's birthday. Send emails with links to Al's guide to ten of your friends most likely to "get" Howard. Or, to the ten who have the MOST effed-up stereotypical image of REH. Gives y'all something constructive to do between watching football and drinking beer on a Sunday (all of which Bob would approve of).
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