Hey there everybody.
So every year or so, there’s a website that organizes what they call a fantasy cage match, wherein they pair a bunch of fictional characters up against each other and make them fight.
It’s a fun concept, very tongue and cheek, and my characters have ended up involved in various ways over the years. I think it was the very first year they did it when Kvothe went up against Aslan. I was so tickled by the idea, that I wrote up how I thought the match would go. (And a couple years later, I posted it up on the blog.)
(And someone liked it enough to do Fanart. Which makes me happy.)
It’s funny. I can remember where I was when I wrote that. I was in a hotel lobby down in… Iowa? I was traveling down to Virginia Beach for a signing, and Sarah and Oot were still sleeping in the hotel room. He was so tiny then. I think he was barely even one year old…
That was a tricky time for me. In some ways, I was in a great place: After more than a decade of work, my book was finally published, and people liked it. I had a beautiful son, a successful book, money in my pocket, and fans who loved my work. I got invited to conventions, and when I did a signing, as many as a hundred people would show up….
But in other ways, things were a real shitshow. I hadn’t finished book two yet, and I was a mess of self-recrimination and guilt about that. I was trying to come to grips with being a professional writer, and adult, a father, and a minor celebrity. Though I didn’t yet know it, my mood disorder was becoming more prominent, and my writing was not going well.
Then I sat down in that hotel lobby and wrote what turned out to be a lovely, fun, sweet little scene between Kvothe and Aslan. It only took two hours, and it came out nice and clean. It was startling how easy it was, because working on book two was excruciating.
Anyway. There’s another cage match going on, and this time it’s Devi in the mix. She made it to round four, where she’s going head-to-head with Tom Bombadil.
The thought of them in a confrontation tickled me, so this Sunday I sat down to write it up.
And as I write this it’s interesting how similar things are right now. Viewed from one angle, my life could not be better. I’ve got a movie and tv deal going. Lin-Manuel Fucking Miranda is involved. I have several successful books out. Translated in 35 languages. Millions of books sold. TWO lovely children….
But I’m a mess. I’m such a mess. And I’m behind on everything. And the writing isn’t going well.
But on Sunday I wrote this thing. And it was fun. And easy. And for the space of about 10 hours I felt really good.
So. Anyway. I’m sharing it with you now with the hope that you’ll enjoy it.
Also, I’d like to note that in writing something like this, I’m not hoping to tip the Scales toward Devi. I’m not trying to rig this voting thing. If you prefer to think of this as a straight-up fight and you think Tom should win, because… well… he’s Eldest and Fatherless. Probably one of the Valar. That’s cool. Vote for him. Vote ten times.
Even if you read my alternate take on events, (no spoilers here) and still decide that Tom would win the alternate competition that ends up getting proposed there. That’s cool. And rather reasonable, too. As Tom still has the home field advantage in that scenario. Great. Vote for him. I’d honestly love to see him go up against Ragnar in the final round.
I’ll eventually post it up here on the blog just to archive it. Because I never know when some other site will move or change or a link will go dead. It will also be nice to get a chance to edit the piece a little bit, as I wrote it in a single day, and I usually like to tweak and massage my writing a lot more than that. Even if it’s just a little something that I do for fun.
I hope all of you are doing well.