Over the long Thanksgiving weekend, I started looking ahead at the Tolkien Quest. What I found was that even though we’re more than halfway through the allotted number of chapters in The Silmarillion, we’re not quite halfway through with the book itself. That means some of the upcoming chapters are long, and likely no less dense per page.
I’ve talked this over with my fellow Quest blogger, Libromancer’s Apprentice, and we agreed that in light of these longer chapters, the density of them, and the upcoming holiday wherein family tends to factor (whether we want them to or not), that we could afford to give ourselves permission to stretch some chapters to two weeks instead of just one. The longer chapters in question are actually about three times as long as the typical chapters so far, but I don’t want to lose momentum, and the two of us… we’re pros at this by now. I think we can handle two weeks.
I promised her I’d get a schedule going this week, and I know there are some of you who follow this blog that are interested in keeping up with us, so… two birds, one stone. Here’s the updated posting schedule that I’ll be keeping:
XVIII. Of the Ruin of Beleriand and the Fall of Fingolfin – 12/3
XIX. Of Beren and Lúthien – 12/17 (long chapter)
XX. Of the Fifth Battle: Nirnaeth Arnoediad – 12/31 (skipping a week for Xmas week)
XXI. Of Túrin Turambar – 1/14 (long chapter)
XXII. Of the Ruin of Doriath – 1/21
XXIII. Of Tuor and the Fall of Gondolin – 1/28
XIV. Of the Voyage of Eärendil and the War of Wrath – 2/4
Akallabêth – 2/18 (long chapter)
Of the Rings of Power and the Third Age – 3/4 (long chapter)
The Silmarillion – Final Review – 3/5
I’ve even created draft posts with these dates already plugged in just to ensure I don’t screw it up.
After we complete The Silmarillion, my intention is to take a break from the quest. It’s not really a break for me, just a change in tactic. Here’s the deal. We’ve been chugging along on this quest since August 2015, and until this point — with but one exception — we’ve been doing this one chapter per week through The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and now The Silmarillion. That’s freaking awesome to me. I’m rather proud of what we’ve accomplished so far. I’m looking forward to the next leg of the journey.
As I mentioned some time back, I want to revisit The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings on my own terms with The Silmarillion now “revealed” to me. After all, how often does a person get the opportunity to read their favorite story as though it were brand new all over again? I’m not going to miss that opportunity, and I really want to do this while The Silmarillion is fresh on my mind, before alternate and earlier versions start clouding things. I have no idea how long this will take, but I’m thinking probably a couple of months. I’m not going to deep dive them again, I just want to experience the stories with the greater insights now in play. And if I’m being honest with myself, I think I really need some extra time to continue processing The Silmarillion before moving on. This just makes sense to me all around to break here temporarily.
After that leisurely revisit, Libromancer and I seem contented to move into the rest of Tolkien’s Legendarium. If that still holds after the break (somewhere around the beginning of May?), we’ll start plotting a course through the Unfinished Tales. Those of you who are more familiar with the extant Legendarium have confirmed for me this is the next logical point. And if anyone wants to join in the quest at this point, it’s a great jumping on point.
If anyone has any questions, feel free to ask either here or via the contact page or whatever. Thanks for your patience, and for those who are playing along, thanks for that too.