A/N: If anything else, this was intended as a oneshot in response to reading @avalonroses‘s prologue to The Scowling Queen. In any case, it’s a lot longer than I meant it to be, and it’s totally unrelated to the actual plot because when I actually read it, I didn’t realise it was a prologue. XD I thought that was it, and admittedly, made me a bit mad because stories that leave Arthur in situations like this put me on edge, haha…So I had a sort of dream/daydream for a way I would have finished it off were it never going to go anywhere else. I’ve heard that avalonroses is going to continue it, so I’m looking forward to that! :D In any case, this was just my mind reacting and trying to reconcile the situation. It’s not my best writing, but I hope it’s at least a little entertaining! It’s some adventure-themed type stuff, but mostly it’s about Arthur’s emotional journey :)
The name of the Scowling Queen was heard of throughout the kingdoms, his name travelling across the other three suits like an insult. Most people laughed, mocked the queen, thinking it was amusing that such a person could only glower, making no other face. Spades, of course, were the least favoured suit, known only for the fact they were the only kingdom that still made use of slave-labour. Such a notorious reputation only made the Queen’s impression even worse. Some of the political cartoons depicted him in ridiculous situations, rudely making fun of the fact that he never seemed able to make any other expression.
Very few felt for him, even less pitied him, and hardly anyone cared. Those who did felt a sort of pain when the Queen was mentioned, and none more than the young King of Hearts.
“Who is he? Why doesn’t he ever smile?” he’d ask his chuckling caretakers, only to be patted on the head and told it wasn’t important. Though, the little boy could never seem to get the image of the Queen of Spades out of his head. The perfect, proper form always looked forced, and those dead eyes looked so sad and empty in every single image drawn, painted, and taken. The King wanted to know why, and that question would haunt him for years.
He made a promise to himself when he was barely tall enough to see over the balcony over his kingdom, that he would one day go and see for himself the reason the Queen of Spades never smiled.
It became the first thing he would do as King the day he was of age.
I was just sent this poem from an acquaintance. It seems particularly important at this moment in time.
It was written by one of our great treasures the African American Poet Langston Hughes.
Let America Be America Again
Langston Hughes, 1902 - 1967
Let America be America again.
Let it be the dream it used to be.
Let it be the pioneer on the plain
Seeking a home where he himself is free.
(America never was America to me.)
Let America be the dream the dreamers dreamed—
Let it be that great strong land of love
Where never kings connive nor tyrants scheme
That any man be crushed by one above.
(It never was America to me.)
O, let my land be a land where Liberty
Is crowned with no false patriotic wreath,
But opportunity is real, and life is free,
Equality is in the air we breathe.
(There’s never been equality for me,
Nor freedom in this “homeland of the free.”)
Say, who are you that mumbles in the dark?
And who are you that draws your veil across the stars?
I am the poor white, fooled and pushed apart,
I am the Negro bearing slavery’s scars.
I am the red man driven from the land,
I am the immigrant clutching the hope I seek—
And finding only the same old stupid plan
Of dog eat dog, of mighty crush the weak.
I am the young man, full of strength and hope,
Tangled in that ancient endless chain
Of profit, power, gain, of grab the land!
Of grab the gold! Of grab the ways of satisfying need!
Of work the men! Of take the pay!
Of owning everything for one’s own greed!
I am the farmer, bondsman to the soil.
I am the worker sold to the machine.
I am the Negro, servant to you all.
I am the people, humble, hungry, mean—
Hungry yet today despite the dream.
Beaten yet today—O, Pioneers!
I am the man who never got ahead,
The poorest worker bartered through the years.
Yet I’m the one who dreamt our basic dream
In the Old World while still a serf of kings,
Who dreamt a dream so strong, so brave, so true,
That even yet its mighty daring sings
In every brick and stone, in every furrow turned
That’s made America the land it has become.
O, I’m the man who sailed those early seas
In search of what I meant to be my home—
For I’m the one who left dark Ireland’s shore,
And Poland’s plain, and England’s grassy lea,
And torn from Black Africa’s strand I came
To build a “homeland of the free.”
Who said the free? Not me?
Surely not me? The millions on relief today?
The millions shot down when we strike?
The millions who have nothing for our pay?
For all the dreams we’ve dreamed
And all the songs we’ve sung
And all the hopes we’ve held
And all the flags we’ve hung,
The millions who have nothing for our pay—
Except the dream that’s almost dead today.
O, let America be America again—
The land that never has been yet—
And yet must be—the land where every man is free.
The land that’s mine—the poor man’s, Indian’s, Negro’s, ME—
Who made America,
Whose sweat and blood, whose faith and pain,
Whose hand at the foundry, whose plow in the rain,
Must bring back our mighty dream again.
Sure, call me any ugly name you choose—
The steel of freedom does not stain.
From those who live like leeches on the people’s lives,
We must take back our land again,
I say it plain,
America never was America to me,
And yet I swear this oath—
America will be!
They have advised me to dissemble in order to live down my present reputation of being the one whom Oscar Wilde loved. They have even assured me that in about five years I would again be received in the bosom of London society, that my youthful indiscretions would be overlooked, that imposing dowagers would smile at me in drawing-rooms, that brainless, heartless fools would bow to me in clubs.
That may be so, but I am tired of pretences. I have had enough of crawling to conventions at which my heart revolts. I have no need of dowagers to smile at me or fools to bow to me. I do not want to ‘gain the whole world and lose my soul.’ While I am still young and bold, let me put myself once and for all on the side of honesty, and declare that I am proud to be what I am, proud to have been so much loved by a great man, and proud to have suffered so much for him.
Alfred Douglas, 1895. Mercure de France article in which he defends Oscar Wilde, their romantic relationship and ‘the love that dare not speak its name’ in general.
Writing doesn’t have an age range. There is no too young or too old to start writing or get published. People of all ages have made an impact on the writing world. Here I have compiled a short list of writers whose first work was written or published during their teenage years.
Christopher Paolini began writing Eragon at 15 and self-published in 2001 when he was just 18. In 2003, the book was republished by the Alfred A. Knopf publishing house. The Inheritance Cycle has sold over 33 million copies.
Amelia Atwater-Rhodes received news that her first novel, In the Forests of the Night, would be published by Random House on her 14th birthday. She went on to publish four additional novels before turning 20 in 2004. To date Atwater-Rhodes has published 16 young adult fantasy novels.
Catherine Webbfinished her first novel, Mirror Dreams, when she was 14 and it was published two years later in 2002. She published three more young adult fantasy novels before her 20th birthday and has written 16 books in total.
Mary Shelley began writing Frankenstein in 1816 when she was just 18 years old. The novel was published two years later. There is little more that needs to be said about its continued widespread influence today.
Nancy Yi Fan began her novel Swordbird when she was just 11 years old. It was published two years later in 2008 by HarperCollins. Since then she has published a prequel (Sword Quest) and a sequel (Sword Mountain).
S.E. Hinton wrote The Outsiders while still in high school. It was published in 1967 during her freshman year of university when she was 18. The book has sold more than 14 million copies and Hinton is still considered one of the great female writers in American history.
Beth Reeks wrote and posted her stories online until Random House took notice of The Kissing Booth, a young adult romance novel, which had millions of hits on Wattpad. She was 17 when it was published in 2013.
Caydale Mill from across the mill stream. by Isabella “Caydale is one of those secret little dales that reward a walker who keeps off the beaten track. It is a sort of Doone valley, utterly shut off from the rest of the world. A little stream runs through the wooded ravine and old Caydale Mill is the only house in the whole dale. In the old days Caydale Mill ground all the corn for the surrounding farms, and the old cart-tracks are the only roads to it.”
From “Striding Through Yorkshire” by Alfred J. Brown, first published 1938.
Herbert A. Deutsch – Synthesis: An Introduction to the History, Theory & Practice of Electronic Music, book+7inch record, Alfred Publishers, USA, 1976
A book on early electronic music and Moog by American composer, inventor, and educator Herbert A. Deutsch (born 1932), co-inventor of the Moog instrument with Robert A. Moog in 1964. The book comes with a 45rpm record with examples of tape manipulations and Moog music.
Just about a full decade since the girl with a dragon tattoo was introduced to readers, she’ll be making her grand return to fiction — albeit with another author’s name on the cover. Stieg Larsson’s Millennium trilogy of crime novels is set to become something more on Sept. 1, when the series’ new addition hits store shelves as The Girl in the Spider’s Web. Publisher Alfred A. Knopf released the book’s title and cover art today:
What do y’all think? Are you going to run out to the bookstore/library/kindleoreum? Or should Larsson’s originals be left to stand on their own?
The English naturalist was born February 12, 1809, and five decades later he published On the Origin of Species. Prompted by an article by Alfred Russel Wallace published in 1858, Darwin’s book introduced readers to an idea that would revolutionize human life as we understand it: the theory of evolution by natural selection.
Here are a few spots to learn more about Darwin’s life, scientific pursuits, and the continued influence of the theory of evolution by natural selection.
To commemorate Alan Rickman’s death and celebrate his incredible talent, EW is honored to share a full recording of Rickman reading the story “The Ring Of The King” from the 2010 audiobook, Nelson Mandela’s Favorite African Folktales.