The December 2017 Plan
With the translation of the final installment in the Green Zombies series published, ‘The Mythical Astronomy in Polish’ enters a new stage, which it has never truly experienced before. By this I mean: we have three quite lenghty texts, exploring ideas never discussed in the Polish ASOIAF fandom, at least not in such detail. The Corn King’ archetype and its manifestations in ASOIAF were not completely unknown among the forum readers, thanks to Mr. DAEL of the FSGK ‘Crazy Theories’ blog and his essay entitled ‘Mormont’s Raven, part II: Blood and Corn‘ published in June 2017, and Mya Stone’s ‘The symbolism of stag‘ (though this second text was at least partially inspired by my translation of LML’s essay about Herne the Hunter and the Corn King). But The Green Zombies trilogy offers a glimpse at something Grand Admiral Thrawn from Star Wars would call ‘the bigger picture’.
‘To defeat an enemy, you must know them. Not simply their battle tactics, but their history, philosophy, art’
It explores the topic at hand in its full grandeur, in nearly all aspects. And most importantly, it opens as many doors as it closes. For every statement, theory or conclusion, LML offers what he calls ‘food for thought’, something the reader can ponder on.
And thus we return to ‘the new stage’ for Mythical Astronomy in Poland I’ve just mentioned. Three massive essays were published, but soon even the slowest or most busy readers will finish them. What happens now? As I have discovered, it’d be very unwise to publish a next text of such lenght soon. Why? Well… hearken the story of Mythical Astronomy of Ice and Fire in Polish. Although right now I’m the sole translator of M.A. in Polish, starting this project was not my idea. Some of you might remember my friend, who uses the nickname The Great Mou at Ogień & Lód forum. ‘Mythical Astronomy PL’ exists thanks to him. And yes, I was the one who first read this series by LML, and I was its huge fan from the very first essay, published at Westeros.org in early 2015. But for some weird reason, it never dawned on me translate it to Polish… So, it was late June 2016, and I was having a quite lenghty conversation with my friend, partially in the real life, face to face, and later on the internet. Here’s a fragment of that discussion, in blue – my words, in red -Mou’s.
30th June 2016:
‘Is it worth it to have an account on OiL (Ogień i Lód forum)’
‘I recommend it. Great people can be found there. And you can present the astronomical theory, as I guess that no one knows it there’
‘It’d be a bit weird to start to share some strange theories just after joining. I could end up like PJ (Preston Jacobs) on Westeros.org’
‘You won’t end up like him’
‘But you can wait’
‘We have to come up with some nik(sic). Nick.’
‘I’d prefer to get to know them before starting to discuss [them – Mythical Astronomy essays]. I’m not good at it. You know, in fact, we could develop some post together, about 2000 words, explaining in a nutshell what the h*** is this theory about. For those who don’t know English, even though about 90% of the forum knows it.’
‘We can do so. Year ago I’ve received LmL’s official permission to translate Astronomy. But somehow, I never did it.’ Weird – I don’t remember such event.
‘Maybe I could help too… That’ll take some time, but during holidays there’s much time. Though, it’d be better to throw an explanation of the theory, 3000 words long, not more on OIL. Now I have plenty of time, so I can help. And, I’d like to see the opinions of OIL users on this topic [Mythical Astronomy].’
‘And now let’s think if we’re doing sth with this astronomy thing today, because if yes, I’d like to start today, and if no, I’d like to do sth else.’
‘Maybe I’ll re-listen the beginning [of Mythical A.]’ (Astronomy Explains the Legends of Ice and Fire)
‘Though, in my opinion GRRM is writing modern mythology’ itself is an introduction’
‘The question is, do we prefer to translate it or just shorten/summarise/draft (underline the corect one)’
“Well, we could start Astronomy’
‘All right. The question, what are we doing?’
‘We have to start with something interesting. Something sensational, like ‘Is the history we know a lie?’
‘So, a summary post? Better not, it’s better to have something substantive, because if you give something sensational, they’ll treat you like a madman.’
‘Well, Preston did end up badly’
‘On OIL they’ll read it anyway, and consider and it’s better not to stir up’.
BT: [A message sent to LML]
By the way, LmL I’ve recently started translating your essays to Polish with a friend, and George R.R. Martin is writing modern mythology is nearly ready. When it’s done, I’d like to publish it on the biggest ASOIAF forum in Poland, the ‘Ogień i Lód’ http://www.ogienilod.in-mist.net/
Are you OK with that, of course you’ll get all credit for it?
LML – Wow, yeah I’m okay with that! A little blown away, more than a bit grateful, and definitely ok with it. It’s awesome how enthusiasm for ASOIAF has spread to so many countries. It makes sense when you consider that George has pulled from mythology from all around the world. Let me know how it goes!
‘I got response’
2nd July 2016:The A
[After finishing translation]
‘Check if everything’s copied. Sorry. Not this.’
‘You want to publish it today?’
[After publishing it, 11 pm.]
‘The first person’s commented, that he likes it and it’s worth to keep working [on translation] even if only for him’
And so it all began… Astronomy Explains the Legends of Ice and Fire was published mere 6 days later, on the 8th of July 2016… The Bloodstone Emperor was released on the 8th of October 2016… but only 60%, and the remaining chapters were not translated until March 2017… because of school and other activities, Mou had to step down as translator, and I became sole head of this Polish dragon… (Mou remains the Honorary Head of The Mythical Astronomy of Ice and Fire POLAND in perpetuo, and Chivalier of the Order of Celestial Dragon, First Class, along with LML (Sovereign and Supreme Chivalier of the Order, Honorary Head of the ‘Mythical Astronomy Poland’ in perpetuo) and Bluetiger (Castellan of T.M.A. PL). And I was busy as well. Then, the readers had to wait for another few months… until mid. July 2017…. And then… our zenith came… Waves of Night, L. means Lightbringer, The Green Zombies Trilogy, About LML, LML TV 1: The Long Night… so many translations in just few months… But a new danger arises. For the first time (second if you count July 2016), Mythical Astronomy is popular in Poland… November statistic show this. The Amber Compendium blog had 2 484 visits so far (compared to 1005 in October, 1078 in September, 1178 in August, 578 in July, 78 in June, 230 in May). But as the example of George R.R. Martin is writing modern mythology demonstartes, too many essays are just as bad as too few… This essay received great attention in its first days, but after Astronomy Explains came out, hardly anybody would read it, until it was re-published on my newly founded WordPress blog in late January 2017. This short (and challenging) texts was overshadowed by a text about ideas and characters more familiar to the average reader – Daenerys, Jon Snow etc. This means that I shouldn’t publish the next translation – The Grey King and the Sea Dragon – right now. The seeds sown in Green Zombies must be given enough time to rippen and bring forth fruit!. But there’s another danger – although the results of a poll I’ve created last month say that people prefer to read the translations chapter-by-chapter, as I publish them one by one on my blog, only few people participated in it… and I imagine those who did, are already well-acquainted with The Mythical Astronomy. They already know it, they’re its fans, so of course, they’ll read it no matter what. Chapter-by-chapter, one essay in 8 parts, or one lenghty texts…
But there are many readers who don’t know M.A. or aren’t really into it… at least now. So, they most likely haven’t read Green Zombies yet… I imagine they don’t even know what the h*** it is…
Therefore, I shall launch a new PR campaing to promote those new translations – Facebook, Twitter, forums, ASOIAF blogs, fan-sites…
And yet, I shouldn’t forget about those dedicated fans who have already read those essays. And mayhaps this new venture, which I call Operation Yule 2017, will bring some new readers to Mythical Astronomy.
I shall not let their newly rekindled enthusiasm for Mythical Astronomy fade! Słomiany zapał, a Polish idiom which means that ‘somebody’s enthusiasm burns away as quickly as straw’, would describe this danger perfectly.
What do I propose?
A permament, interesting and reliable stream of Mythical Astronomy tidibits, fun facts, theories, news, speculations, ideas… and not only from M.A., but from various real-world mythologies and folklore as well… Tolkien, Star Wars, C.S. Lewis. James George Frazer, phiolosophy, art, litarature, Robert Graves…
Operation Yule 2017
… is inspired by the custom of Advent Calendar, known so well in Poland… the dearest memories from childhood… waiting for Christmas… Looking for the First Star (Venus, the Evenstar), so the Supper might start on the Christmas Eve… winter solstice, yule, pudding, gingerbread, cakes, warm chocolate, roraty (Advent masses at Church), lanterns, candles, the fir wreath! Gold and purple and green and red! Saint Nicholas… and the Advent Calendar. Tiny boxes for each day of The Advent… and this custom I will adapt…
Beginning on the First Sunday of Advent, the 3rd December 2017, a short post will appear at The Amber Compendium, The OIL forums and my Twitter profile. A short theory, some interesting fact, some topic from mythology… everyday until Christmas Eve.
I have yet to decide whether every day I’ll realease one fact, or one fact from each topic (Tolkien’s Legendarium, Star Wars – since The Last Jedi premiere is co close, Mythical Astronomy & ASOIAF, real-world mytholgy, Christmas customs in Poland/worldwide).
What do you think?
Yours sincerely, Bluetiger, Head of the Mythical Astronomy Poland.