Who is the better Writer?

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untitledI love Pub-talk; it’s my favorite part of the bar experience. Usually I’m the DD, so I spend more time talking than drinking.

Saturday, I had a great literary conversation while sharing a drink with my sister. I only had one drink, mind you; I would hate to get a DUI while dressed as an elf. After the con, there was an after party at Cook McDoogles, which is an Irish pub in my city’s downtown. My sister and I were talking with two brothers, attendees of the con, when one of them asked an interesting question. Who is the better writer: J.R.R Tolkien or George R. R. Martin?

My initial instinct was to blurt out Tolkien. His books are classics and he’s practically the father of fantasy; however, this does not make him a perfect writer. His writing suffers from info dumping, plot holes, and plot-stopping scenes and characters. That doesn’t mean I’m naming George the winner. He has his fair share of faults as well: A first chapter that doesn’t establish the main conflict, no clear main protagonist, and the overuse of dream sequences. I think I’ll save my opinions for a later post. I want to hear from you. Who do you prefer?

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4 thoughts on “Who is the better Writer?

  1. I had a hard time with this poll. Whereas I enjoy Martin’s novels more than I did Tolkien’s, I think Tolkien is still a more gifted writer whose greatness has withstood the test of time longer than Martin and J. K. Rowling for that matter. We should not forget how long his books have held captive our imaginations compared to others. We do not know if Harry Potter or Game of Thrones really WILL become classics. They are popular now, but will they remain so? Tolkien has already proven that his will remain a forever classic.

  2. I chose Martin, mainly because I’ve also read some of his other series of books, notably his Wild Card series. Although Tolkien is certainly the king of world building, I think I’d be more interesting in reading another GRRM book before another JRRT book.

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