Ea Tolkien Society January 2015 Meeting Notes
JANUARY 10, 2015, 1-3 pm
Eä Tolkien Society of Spokane
@ Rocket Bakery North, 319 W. Hastings Road, Spokane, WA 99218
Present: Hawke (HR), Richard (RB), Brian (BH), Dave (DC), Caroline (CC), as well as Ardamir & others online.
1. Our local Spokane smial of the international Tolkien Society has taken a hiatus of several months, and is happily meeting once again, reforged as they might say, like Narsil of old. Here we raise our glass of Old Dorwinion to a vintage year of 2015, noting also the yearly acknowledgment of the Professor's birthday this month. No notes exist for last August's meeting. Michael Martinez's new ebook was also noted: http://www.tolkienscholars.org/news/a-new-book-on-middle-earth-is-coming-out.
2. Guests Dave Carlyle & his daughter Caroline were welcomed to our meeting.
3. HR restated the purpose of the Eä Tolkien Society. [feel free to enter any note here, Hawke] Our routine is 1) Read notes from previous meeting & follow-up on anything interesting; 2) read a letter of J.R.R. Tolkien & discuss related issues; 3) free-range discussion on any given topic. Attendees are encouraged to share their thoughts, while respectfully listening to others' views.
4. We discussed Tolkien & Beowulf. DC remembered a "Beowulf" Star Trek episode interesting tie-in.
5. We briefly discussed the third and final installment of New Line Cinema's Hobbit trilogy, The Battle of Five Armies.
6. HR described the background of Other Minds magazine and its link between Middle-Earth & role-playing (RPG).
7. HR read Tolkien Letter 91 (see here), 29 Nov 1944; it described how JRRT was thinking of finishing the story (to his son Christopher, including the astonishing thought that there would be a fight between the last Nazgul and Frodo & Sam on Mt. Doom). The final scenes are also mentioned: Frodo's departure/Aragorn's reign/Elves gone/didn't know what he would write about the Ents. "It will probably work out very differently from this plan when it really gets written, as the thing seems to write itself once I get going, as if the truth comes out then, only imperfectly glimpsed in the preliminary sketch."
8. RB commented on 'knowing that feeling' when a story seems to have its own mind & write itself, as he is working on a piece of fiction currently.
9. DC: Conscious mind steps aside & creativity finishes it. General discussion on that topic, with reference to martial arts, recreational therapy, and the idea of flow.
10. BH read Letter 92. Also we read a very profound quote by Tolkien about the nature of fantasy in The Monsters & Critics; "I propose to speak about Fairy Stories..." the inner consistency of reality & relation of Joy & Fantasy. (see below for full quote)
11. This led to a discussion about Dr. Who & LOTR; and how different generations perceive a particular attempt to render the "secondary world" which the fans love. Examples in Middle-Earth are the old Rankin-Bass version of the Hobbit, and the newest film versions (a la' Jackson). Examples in Dr. Who are the early episodes from the 1960's, and the new Who seasons since the start of the millennium. "Fanservice" is mentioned in anime' context as example of aiming @ pleasing fans of a given show by giving them extra doses of what they like to keep them hooked. Thanks to CC for great participation and bringing a younger point of view.
12. Next meeting's agenda will include reading Tolkien's Letter 93, and will be held here at the Rocket Bakery North on Saturday, Feb. 14, from 1-3 pm. Consider the topic: What are the greatest love stories in Tolkien's legendarium? What do you "love" about Middle-Earth the most?
Secretary of the Eä Tolkien Society of Spokane