Gazing upon a sea of wonders: SC2023 Reading Challenge
It's readin' time
As an archivist of all things existing across countless realms, I cannot afford to write it all by myself. Fortunately, I am far from the sole keeper of knowledge in this vast reality. I possess a great number of encyclopedias written by other beings, some as otherworldly and alien to me as I might be to you, dear reader. On regular occasions, a whole section of my library begins to buzz and teem with activity. Words sprawl and bloom on paper in the comforting melody of history being recorded.
I enjoy partaking in the general turmoil and lay down knowledge from various worlds that I insert amongst the other almanacks, hoping that some might reach my fellow scholars. Though this time I had been quite busy to engage much in discussion, I do miss the pleasant talks about this species or that peculiar individual.
Usually, after a period of high activity, the room knows some rest. Fewer words appear as the books heated by the friction of the metaphorical quill have the chance to cool down. This calls for some reading, while the sentences are still warm and full of promises. Though I lack the omniscience to read each and every publication, I gather as much as I possibly can. Doing so, some of them stood out of the crowd to me, and these ones I crave to make them known to you. The avid reader will probably recognize some names and titles, but I always try my best to keep some surprises up my sleeves.
Figures of old venerated to this day
Old King Caed — Cathedris
I can now rest easy. The two gods that intrigued me most, Qetzel and Old King Caed have been given an article. Since there was little information about him, I wondered what made Caed the "old king" of the gods, and Stormbril delivered as always! I just love the idea of the god of authority, which faded over time until it was unable to prevent Qur from blasting him. A brilliant and beautiful article, filled to the brim with various chunks of information.
What I learnt
Leviathan — Wow that's a lot of stars
If you know me, you know I can't resist when I see an article titled Leviathan. I love the concept of these creatures so much that I want to know which approaches other writers take when writing one. And to say the least, Leviathan deserved his name! I'm also really fond of cities built on the back of giant creatures, but putting the focus on the wellbeing of the creatures is refreshing and wholesome. I also like how everything in this article is told through the history of Leviathan's life, centuries passing by in the length of a paragraph, which enhanced the feeling of the gigantism of zaratans.
What I learnt
The Dark Lord Malchène — Dark Lord Seduction Plan
What is fantastic about this article is that it feels very short, and I wondered if it was really 300 words long. Yet, it packs so much information that it can serve as an introduction to society and the enmity between the Light and the Dark. Being efficient and short is a valuable skill, and Amélie has mastered it by using small and concise boxes that give all the core information. Plus, props to her for linking a SC prompt to a regular prompt!
What I learnt
Shade-Speak — Eivrall
I love steganography — the art of hiding messages in unrelated media — and this article does a great job at explaining how it works and how a group of underground activists might use it to communicate across the internet. What I prefer is that for the members of Ru, it has really become like a true language, reflecting their culture, and ideals, and it might have known an evolution close to that of a natural language. A simple yet great take on a fascinating concept!
Smudge-script — Summerdark
Another cipher-based language with a completely different purpose. Through its users, the language has become a symbol of protection and hope, even to those who aren't able to decipher it. I like how from a symbol of death and dread it evolved to become the symbol of protection, learning and exploration.
What I learnt
Color Shift — Spaceport
I like how, while simple, the Color shift is thoroughly explained, especially the meaning of the... colour shifts. My favourite part is that fluffypedes rarely display the colour of fear, but when one does, it propagates to all neighbouring worms, turning the vicinity bright red. One of my favourite methods of communication, and a cool defense mechanism!
What I learnt
So you want to be a Finder — Evenacht
To make the whole article a cohesive job offer while still giving out all the information is a tour de force. The pictures that separate each row of text anchor the article into the world and highlight the most important part of the offer. If I were a ghost, no doubt that I would join the Finders with an incentive like that, even if the turnover is quite high!
Fanfiction Authors — OUAT Fanfiction
Granted, I know very little about Once Upon a Time, as I only watched the first episode years ago. Thus I don't know how much of the article is original worldbuilding since the author themselves claim that their world is "not intended to be completely original". Despite that, I always love it when stories include authors as demiurges, so I was hooked from the start. I like even more the idea of having fanfiction writers as legitimate authors who have a real influence on the original story and can be troublemakers. Finally, the figurative "faraway place" being secondary fictional worlds is a nice twist to the prompt.
Search and Rescue Department — Turien
Another interesting choice of presentation! This time we are presented the profession through a report written by a rookie in the S&R Department. The numerous sticky notes give us an idea of the personality of the team's members and their relation to each other, in addition to some bit of information that can be deduced. A great format that is easy to read and a biased narrator is a good idea to describe this organisation that has its fair share of secrets. The supervisor's feedbacks at the end were a nice bonus.
And that wraps it up for this Summercamp! Now for what is to come... I have no idea where I will go creatively for the next months. First thing first I will soon move to a brand new city, have a real (and exciting) job for the first time, and probably die from the Mediterranean heat. In the meantime, I might write some, maybe go back to Oblogga, maybe experiment. And I have a lot of reading to catch up!
I still have one thing to do though... I'll still make time to put together the Reading Challenge Big List!
Stay safe out there, and keep up your great work!