The Hour of the Dragon is a novella written by Robert E. Howard about Conan the Barbarian. It was published in serial form in Weird Tales Magazine during the mid 1930s. This is an unusal tale because in it Conan sits the throne of Aqualonia. Also this was one of Howard’s last stories before he committed sucide. I could regale you with a summary of the story or hit the main points of it. I chose to inspire you to read it or listen to it as I did.
Today’s writers have many distractions stealing our writing time, so quality sometimes gets lost in the search for quanity. If a writer has so much distracting them, then what chance does the reader have? Internet, television, the ipad, laptop, xbox, playstation, work, family, friends are all clamoring for our attention.
Back when Mr. Howard was writing, there were also distractions, but stories didn’t have to compete with televisions or even movies. Work, a lack of books and education were the distractions. A lot of the classic authors started by writing for magazines and dime novels. Jack London, Ernest Heminway, and many more, went on to become masters of the pen. Overcoming the distractions of their day with intense, tight, clean writing, we have been given great gifts if we are willing to reach for them. It seems most writers today have overlooked these gems from the past. How much can we as modern day writers learn from these writers, I think it is time we pay the homage they so richly deserve. Without their writings and stories, we wouldn’t be here, the stories we grew up listening to or reading wouldn’t exist. I also believe that we should stay in touch with modern authors because in the far future they will become classic authors that those distant writers in the future will look too.
Listening to Mr. Howard’s stories have given me a new appreciation for these authors. I am looking foward to discovering new thoughts, ideas, and a better grasp of writing by studying the old masters, while staying in touch with modern authors. Hopefully I have inspired you to look beyond current writers to new old writers. Cheers, james