On Mon, 16 Oct 2000, Adrian Morgan wrote:

> Yoon Ha Lee wrote, quoting myself:
> > <laugh> The only co-writing I've done is with my sister (who made her
> > first pro fantasy sale just before her freshman year at college, like I
> > did in sf!). That was ages ago and we'd love to try it again now that
> > our writing skills have matured, but classes and geographical distance
> > have put a crimp in that.
> Oh, you'd be surprised. For the whole duration of our co-writing
> endeavour, Gabrielle and I were several thousand kilometres apart. We did
> it all through email and letters, which are perfectly serviceable media
> for the task. Basically you appoint one person to be the editor and to
> paraphrase everything so that it comes out in a uniform style, and then
> the two participants alternate in writing scenes and sending them to each
> other. Occasionally you need to discuss what's going to happen next, but
> this is only true for critical points in the plot.

<thinking>  Well, we're co-running a fantasy role-playing campaign
through email...but after years of living in the same household and being
able to discuss directly, it's hard to go to email and snail.

> > <rueful look> Theology gives me a headache. The Bible is a beautiful
> > work of literature, but there are huge chunks of it that don't make
> > sense to me. 'Course, there are huge chunks of American culture that
> > don't make sense to me, along with Korean culture, so what can I say...
> My favourite part of the Bible is the letters, because they're so very
> conversational - almost like reading email - and because the emotion and
> earnestness behind them comes out so clearly ("Oh you dear idiots of

I liked Psalms, Proverbs, and Revelation.  :-p  (I read the Song of
Solomon in 4th grade--read the Bible straight through, in fact--and was
completely confused....)  The letters intrigued me, but there's a lot
about the culture involved that I still don't quite understand, and
reading anything by Paul tends to make my teeth clench even when I agree
with him.  <sigh>

I have a Good News Bible, which is so colloquial sometimes it worries
me.  I really should acquire a NSRV copy.

> tremendous facts ..." instead of "Therefore..."). Reading the Bible
> seriously really requires at least two different translations. I've also
> learned a lot by reading commentaries - the famous series by William
> Barclay is a very competant one, and explains a lot about the original
> Greek words. And of course, very few Christians bother with much of the
> Old Testament, except in general terms.

I can imagine.  I actually found the Old Testament more interesting,
because I read it more as history than theology.

> > I confess in some ways math and science feel a lot more natural to me
> > than things like theology. OTOH I *was* going to be a historian, so
> > this isn't absolute. Best with your conculture/theology/writing
> > endevaors!
> I come from a rather scientific family. For example my Dad's a geologist.

I come from a rather medical family.  Dad's a surgeon, one aunt is a
dentist, another is some other kind of doctor, an uncle who's an
orthopedist, two cousins who are in medical research...eek!

At the level of math I'm doing, you're not worrying about metaphor or
ethics, but "truth" in an extremely limited and rigid sense.  Theology
takes all of that training and throws it to pieces.  Before I became a
math major, I could think about things without getting bogged down by:
well, *is* this "axiom" (or fundamental guiding principle) something I
believe to be true?  Ack!  Where's the logical connection between
Assertion A and Assertion B?  HELP!  There's a very good reason why I
take history every semester, and I marvel at those people who are so good
at one field that they turn their back on (almost?) all others.  (My
boyfriend the physics major would be a case in point.  I bullied him into
taking WWII in Europe with me.  I feel that people on both sides of the
humanities-sciences divide could benefit from each other...I think I do,
though unfortunately I'm only really good at writing, and only mediocre
in all the other things I do.)

However, the
more salient part, I guess, is that I come from an atheist/agnostic
family.  Our folks respect that my sister and I are Christian, because
they find it pretty irrelevant.  For them the Western-thought divide must
be even wider than for us, who grew up knowing a lot more Christians (I
went to a pretty liberal Christian private school) and with a lot more
contact with American culture.  The cultural ties in religion fascinate
me, mainly because it helps me try to make sense of where people are
coming from!

YHL, non-theologian
(Hey, I can't do everything.  I'm happy there are theologians out there
who can do what I find so difficult...and people in all kinds of fields.)