Whose head has gotten bigger: J.K. Rowling or George R.R. Martin -

Tasty Tatty

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Speaking of this.... what the fuck is it with Sci-fi and fantasy debutants saying they don’t read the genre?

When it’s obvious that at least half those claiming they don’t, do?

Do they think it makes them look more like bright eyed bushy tailed ingenues?

Because if they wanted to write actual adult literature they would be.

To me they look like lying twits or pretenders who’d balk at having to read anything approaching Proust or the likes the of The Name of the Rose, Umberto Ecos most accessible work.
Most of those so-called writers belong to a generation that doesn't like expectations. Even someone who's subverting conventions about the genre like GRRM still follows some basic rules of fantasy himself. Say, you can see the Beauty and the Beast trope in Sansa and Sandor, but it's obviously not going to end up the same. Ditto for Jaime and Brienne, where Brienne is the "beast" here. These writers beileve that not following rules make them groundbreaking, but they'd have to be very creative to actually pull that out and we know they aren't.


Example: multiple people thinking that he either intends to kill off the main characters, or plans a bad ending. That isn't how ASOIAF is written and it never has been. Yes, there's grim and 'realistic' stuff in it, but it's always a consequence of a poor decision. The Red Wedding and Ned's execution didn't happen because he's a novelist Joss Whedon who thought 'lol let's make the readers suffer', they were necessary plot devices that came from character choices. He mentioned that in a Storm of Swords he wrote the Red Wedding last even though it happens mid-book, because he couldn't bear to write it, as it felt like killing off some of his own family.
Those people tend to be show-watchers who are convinced that the most deaths it has, the better the show gets. I've met a few and they don't care how inconsistent the show can be, as long as something unexpected happens, they're happy and convinced they're watching a top-notch tv show. Most of Martin fans who have read ASOIAF aren't like this and are quite fed up with people like this (cough cough).

That's why I believe this delay on the books it has nothing to do with Martin losing enthusiasm for his work or because he hasn't written or finished. I think he's expecting the hype for the show to fade away so these show fans will also move away to something else and book readers can enjoy in peace. Because, I'm sure that as soon as the books are released, we'll have articles like "ten things Game of Thrones predicted about the books" or "five plots that were better than Martin's books".

I dunno how involved you guys are in the ASOIAF fandom, but I was until some time ago. Martin is quite a troll. After the show first introduced Euron and show fans were salivating over him, he released a chapter with Euron that painted him as the real motherfucker he is, wearing a crown that put the show stupid flower crown to shame (I'd bet my head on Martin changing that part just after the episode). ASOIAF fans were having a day laughing at show-Euron and this caused a lot of GoT fans be salty (npi). These people are going to move on to the next shinny thing, so Martin doesn't even need to compete with the show. he probably just want to have the spotlight on himself and his fans to move on from this trainwreck of an adaptation. It's not like they even care about spoilers. I've read certain characters will die in the show and I'm sure they will also die in books. Is this a spoiler? Maybe, but I definitely don't mind. I want to know the "why".
 

RadicalCentrist

kiwifarms.net
Most of those so-called writers belong to a generation that doesn't like expectations. Even someone who's subverting conventions about the genre like GRRM still follows some basic rules of fantasy himself. Say, you can see the Beauty and the Beast trope in Sansa and Sandor, but it's obviously not going to end up the same. Ditto for Jaime and Brienne, where Brienne is the "beast" here. These writers beileve that not following rules make them groundbreaking, but they'd have to be very creative to actually pull that out and we know they aren't.
Brienne and Jaime? What's that? Sorry, it was cut :^)

Also if you think GRRM is anywhere close to Ruin Johnson, master of "subverting" expectations, you need to read his other books.
 

Allanon

kiwifarms.net
Most of those so-called writers belong to a generation that doesn't like expectations. Even someone who's subverting conventions about the genre like GRRM still follows some basic rules of fantasy himself. Say, you can see the Beauty and the Beast trope in Sansa and Sandor, but it's obviously not going to end up the same. Ditto for Jaime and Brienne, where Brienne is the "beast" here. These writers beileve that not following rules make them groundbreaking, but they'd have to be very creative to actually pull that out and we know they aren't.




Those people tend to be show-watchers who are convinced that the most deaths it has, the better the show gets. I've met a few and they don't care how inconsistent the show can be, as long as something unexpected happens, they're happy and convinced they're watching a top-notch tv show. Most of Martin fans who have read ASOIAF aren't like this and are quite fed up with people like this (cough cough).

That's why I believe this delay on the books it has nothing to do with Martin losing enthusiasm for his work or because he hasn't written or finished. I think he's expecting the hype for the show to fade away so these show fans will also move away to something else and book readers can enjoy in peace. Because, I'm sure that as soon as the books are released, we'll have articles like "ten things Game of Thrones predicted about the books" or "five plots that were better than Martin's books".

I dunno how involved you guys are in the ASOIAF fandom, but I was until some time ago. Martin is quite a troll. After the show first introduced Euron and show fans were salivating over him, he released a chapter with Euron that painted him as the real motherfucker he is, wearing a crown that put the show stupid flower crown to shame (I'd bet my head on Martin changing that part just after the episode). ASOIAF fans were having a day laughing at show-Euron and this caused a lot of GoT fans be salty (npi). These people are going to move on to the next shinny thing, so Martin doesn't even need to compete with the show. he probably just want to have the spotlight on himself and his fans to move on from this trainwreck of an adaptation. It's not like they even care about spoilers. I've read certain characters will die in the show and I'm sure they will also die in books. Is this a spoiler? Maybe, but I definitely don't mind. I want to know the "why".
That's a good point, though I think it might bite him in the back. When GoT finishes, it's going to give a certain level of satisfaction to the book readers who are sick and tired of waiting for him to finish (before the show started, he was almost finished with Dance with Dragons, now that's the only book he's released since, and that was just the second half of Feast for Crows. Nothing has advanced in his book for as long as an actual Westerosi winter). Waiting for GoT fever to die will drain away the casuals who think it's 'LOST but dragons', but it may also lose him a lot of book readers who just watched GoT for some closure.

I personally started as a book reader that got sick of the slow pacing when Feast for Crows hit and stopped reading. The show has renewed my interest, because it's done so many things so badly, I want to see it written by someone writing a novel, and not a tv series that needs a new cliffhanger every 60 minutes. Watching the Littlefinger plot resolve without a magic flying machine, him briefly going insane and handing Sansa off to be raped for literally no reason and then hovering around being useless until he dies would be nice. Watching the Stannis plot and the Tyrell plot and Dorne and the hints that Tyrion - not jut Jon - might be a secret Targaeryn, and all the others eventually resolve without the rampant stupidity of the show is also motivation to continue reading it, but constantly seeing him push prequels and spin offs and stuff instead of writing the last two books (which I believe he shortened. I recall it being more books previously) is pretty agitating.

I know he recently chuckled about how GoT killed a bunch of characters he has no plans to kill, and that he's intending to write stories about them that the show can't (my top guesses for that are Robb's son and Margaery) but you can't just tease and troll and then not follow through by actually writing the book, man. For all of JKR's many flaws (like that time she accidentally wrote a worse final book than the fanfic that got 'leaked' as the final book online) at least she did manage to finish her books. You can block her on twitter and ignore the Fantastic Beasts and still enjoy the Harry Potter series in its completion if that's what you're into. Right now the best anyone has who wants more ASOIAF is to watch its bad fanfic version on HBO, and if something were to happen - an accident, a disaster, whatever - where GRRM died unexpectedly, that's all readers may ever have.

I rambled away from the point there, which I meant to say, that I agree with your perspective on the TV casuals. Many people seem to think it's totally okay to just abort perfectly good plots and make up contrived excuses to mass slaughter characters because it's 'surprising', while not realizing that it only highlights the plot armor on characters more, because in a world where people can fall on their back with a pack full of unstable TnT and not be harmed but another person can wave their hand with one and instantly explode, you can pretty much tell when you're looking at someone you don't need to worry about except during big season finales.

Brienne and Jaime? What's that? Sorry, it was cut :^)

Also if you think GRRM is anywhere close to Ruin Johnson, master of "subverting" expectations, you need to read his other books.
It's not completely cut, it's still there and has been brought up to 'text' instead of 'subtext' in the final season, it just got smothered by them refusing to write the catalyst that pushed Jaime away from Cersei until the end of the seventh season for some reason. Like the show can't admit that Cersei isn't actually supposed to be well liked, and her being a 'strong female character' is actually supposed to be undermined by her manipulations blowing up in her face due to her own arrogance, and the people she has in her corner being pushed away by her own sociopathic tendencies. The book clearly seems to be leading toward Cersei losing to the Tyrell's because she made her bed and now she has to lie in it, but the the show just decided to explode that plot and give her a goth outfit instead. Because she's just so cool.
 

RadicalCentrist

kiwifarms.net
It's not completely cut, it's still there and has been brought up to 'text' instead of 'subtext' in the final season, it just got smothered by them refusing to write the catalyst that pushed Jaime away from Cersei until the end of the seventh season for some reason. Like the show can't admit that Cersei isn't actually supposed to be well liked, and her being a 'strong female character' is actually supposed to be undermined by her manipulations blowing up in her face due to her own arrogance, and the people she has in her corner being pushed away by her own sociopathic tendencies. The book clearly seems to be leading toward Cersei losing to the Tyrell's because she made her bed and now she has to lie in it, but the the show just decided to explode that plot and give her a goth outfit instead. Because she's just so cool.
Oh, that sounds much worse than just cutting it. Glad I avoided the HBO show like the plague, it just sounds more and more like an abomination.
 

Allanon

kiwifarms.net
Oh, that sounds much worse than just cutting it. Glad I avoided the HBO show like the plague, it just sounds more and more like an abomination.
I'd actually say they're handling Jaime and Brienne well in this season - there was even a decently emotional scene where he decides to knight her because she's the most deserving person he knows - but it's really only because they've finally started removing the cancer on the plot that is Cersei Lannister. At some point they started buying into the concept that 'strong women doing strong things is cooler than men doing it' and it keeps derailing the plot into stupidity. See: Littlefinger being useless for no reason, "Azor Ahai could be a woman wink wink", Tyrion constantly getting outmaneuvered by Cersei through s7, Sansa weirdly fangirling Cersei and saying total nonsense hype you'd hear from fandom, and Dany forgetting every lesson she learned on her way to the Seven Kingdoms and just reverting back to shouting "BEND THE KNEE!" at everyone she meets.

At this point I say it's worth watching like a particularly decent 'what if' fanfic might be, for where it theorizes the story might go, but it's at the best of times an extremely stripped down and hyped up version of what the book might have, and more often a product of the writers very obviously having no idea why certain things happened or certain characters behaved the ways they did in the books.

Also they totally retconned the Tyrells from fierce warriors to 'we weren't cut out for fighting, roses and lilies, you know'.
 
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Elwood P. Dowd

President of the Maxliam Fan Club.
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Speaking of this.... what the fuck is it with Sci-fi and fantasy debutants saying they don’t read the genre?
Not exactly a "debutante," but just saw the other day that Ian McEwan informs us that he's writin' lit-errr-a-churre and not SF. With a book about self-aware AI and (possibly) the Singularity. Nothin' Science ficction-y about any of that. ?

'It drives writers mad': why are authors still sniffy about sci-fi?

http://archive.li/GFf5d

I sometimes wonder if Vonnegut's parody of an SF author, Kilgore Trout, has so permeated our consciousness association with him as kind of become inescapable.
 
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griefsquirrel

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He literally uses a DOS computer to write his books so this is probably legitimately true.
I need to sperg out about this:

As the other poster said, DOS is very fast as it's barely there as an OS. He also uses WordStar which is actually very decent software if you got the process down. The simplicity of the environment can be a psychological plus. There's no multitasking, no distraction, no checking out twitter, the news or YouTube. Just turning on the computer, waiting a few seconds (yes seconds) until you're at the DOS prompt, starting WordStar might -depending on the machine- be actually almost instant and then it's just you and the screen with words on it you've written. When you're done you save, wait until the drive light is off and just turn off the computer at the switch that physically disconnects the power. (power cycling wasn't software controlled in these machines) Don't even need to close the program.

Software became a lot more complex but also a lot more bloated, especially because commercial software companies need to release new versions to make money even if there's often nothing really left to improve to convince the buyer he needs that new version. (they're trying to solve that now with these software subscriptions which is of course pure BS and doesn't really favor the customer at all) Open Source has the same pressures for reasons way too complicated to put in one post (it has a lot to do with the culture of the whole open source community) and programmers often end up "optimizing" the perfectly fine working wheel that does it's job until it's a square. People really underestimate how we are actually actively devolving in the quality of software in some areas, especially because some people need to justify their job.

If he'd use floppy disks as backup (I doubt he does, but who knows) that'd also be a lot safer than modern variants. Early day floppy disks last a ridiculous amounts of time. (around the late 90s-early 00s the manufacturing quality took a nosedive) I have some floppy disks that kept their data undamaged for more than 35 years, that's probably longer than some people reading this are alive. This is straight up not possible with flash because of the way it works, the charged cells will just lose their content after a few years. The more modern the flash memory is, the more unreliable they will be long-term because of the way it's made so you'll be able to fit more data into it. Also if some bits become hard to read in magnetic storage mediums you can just try to read them over and over again as often as you want and take the bit that came out the most at average, or just skip them if that doesn't work. In simple data like text that'd mean a few scrambled letters or words. If that happens in flash memory, the way it's structured everything is just gone and everything after it too. There's no way to restore it.

Production processes got a lot more reliable and cost-optimized which means you don't have the yields of non-working hardware today you had back then but the stuff that worked and still works today will do so for a long time. Modern computers aren't really made of the kinds of components you can be sure will still work ~30 years down the road. We had to cut some corners to make computers the cheap consumer products they are today.

Also regarding the topic, Rowling is absolutely insufferable. She got a lucky shot in and now act like she's god's gift re: writing. R. R. Martin is your typical spergy old-school elderly intellectual but from all I've seen of him he seems like an ok dude if you can get past that. If I was in his shoes I'd be tired of writing on that story too and rather enjoy the fruits of my labor as long as I'm still alive and kicking so I absolutely cannot fault him for that. It's good that he doesn't have children. Writing is somehow often treated like some kind of successor system where it's often for some reason seen as perfectly acceptable for the kids to pick up writing the story the parent didn't continue because they died. That happened to Frank Herberts "Dune" universe and his sons completely ruined it. I think they still take turns raping his corpse. Rowling does have children but she's young enough to ruin the franchise herself.
 

Ginger Piglet

Fictional Manhunt Survivor
True & Honest Fan
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J. K. Rowling. She was never very good to begin with, and her non-Harry Potter books have been panned when she put them out under a pseudonym then all of a sudden the press reverse-ferreted and lauded when Saint Joanna was revealed as the true author.

She has never encountered an adverb she didn't love, and she doesn't think things through. For instance, if wizards have perfected teleportation without error to the point at which it's a rite of passage akin to learning to drive in reality, how come an enterprising wizard hasn't set up a magical equivalent to Amazon for instant delivery by mail order? Or even teamed up with a normie to disguise it as, say, research into quantum entanglement for similar instant delivery of break bulk cargo? Elon Musk would eat that shit up, surely. The disruption factor is off the charts.

I read the books. The first one was annoying even for a kids' book. The second one was tolerable and the third and fourth was actually okay. The fifth was amusing up to a point but the sixth and seventh she was just phoning it in. When it was insisted that the film of the seventh one be split into two for no justifiable reason it set off many warning bells. Then all of a sudden she starts virtue signalling about how Hermione was black and Dumbledore was gay even though there was no indication whatever that this was so in the text. AS for this Fantastic Beasts spin off, I hear the sound of dead horses being flogged in huge quantity whenever I glance across it in the discount DVD bin in Tesco.

George R. R. Martin is a good writer but he seems to have fallen in love with the protection from editors that ASOIAF has granted him. For instance, he really likes filler and kudzu plots and I think the root of the problems with Game of Thrones on the television come from the fact that he never really knew what the ending was going to be in the first place. He needs an editor, badly. Long books are not bad in and of themselves but not when they're full of padding for its own sake. I suspect that if The Winds of Winter ever comes out, it will be 4000 pages and advance the plot roughly two inches. Also, by his own admission, his battle scenes are lifted from Bernard Cornwell.

If you want to read low fantasy done well, I recommend Joe Abercrombie's "The First Law" series, of which the eighth volume, A Little Hatred, appears this September. It has two advantages over ASOIAF, namely, that firstly, it actually goes somewhere with the plot, and secondly, it isn't full of fucking filler. There's no endless descriptions of clothing or food or plot tumors that are of no real consequence whatever. Also, it contains Sand dan Glokta, Logen Ninefingers, Monzcarro Murcatto, Major West, Nicomo Cosca, Caul Shivers, Carlot dan Eider, and other unbelievable bastards who at the same time you just can't help rooting for. And it isn't stuck in medieval stasis either - the first volume is clearly in the Renaissance era while the upcoming one is set in an early industrial age equivalent.
 

Bob's Ghost

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The cover was awesome and it had illustrations at certain points of the book. The funny thing was that his female friend was a big part of it and she was the main character in the next one. It was actually well done. The second book involved a dangerous magical weapon and at the end a witch (they were basically a group of witches in the books but not faggy wiccan types, like it was cool) who was her mentor pointed out that the weapon itself is neutral "like an a-bomb, it only does whatever the person who wields it does". That's why I'd pin it at least in the late 40's. Also in the first book the kids used pens with ink jars so I assume that if researched it was some time in the early 20th century.

I really wish I could remember the title. It was something "A time soon enough" or something. I read it in middle school and honestly I'd read it again. I normally don't judge books by their cover but if the cover art is good I buy it just for that alone even if it sucks. This did not suck. Harry Potter wishes it could have the cool creepy tone and well written characters it had. Of course every soccer mom would lose her shit because it involved really evil spirits off the bat. Harry Potter eased into like a little bitch.
The book you're thinking of is The Figure in The Shadows by John Bellairs. The sequel is The Letter, The Witch and The Ring. FITS is actually the second book in the series, the first is The House With a Clock In Its Walls, and I suggest you avoid the movie they just made of it.
 
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Tasty Tatty

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I rambled away from the point there, which I meant to say, that I agree with your perspective on the TV casuals. Many people seem to think it's totally okay to just abort perfectly good plots and make up contrived excuses to mass slaughter characters because it's 'surprising', while not realizing that it only highlights the plot armor on characters more, because in a world where people can fall on their back with a pack full of unstable TnT and not be harmed but another person can wave their hand with one and instantly explode, you can pretty much tell when you're looking at someone you don't need to worry about except during big season finales.
There is more to this than people just doing it for the shock. Marvel, Star Trek, Star Wars, Doctor Who, and many other media are being "rewritten" rather than adapted, and it's up to the adapter's woke sensibilities, based on how they are convinced they're not only more fitting to understand a topic than the author, but they also feel they're morally superior to her or him.

The reason many old things keep getting rebooted or remade is because they need to be more "aware" of social issues, as the original media wasn't. I mean, how Star Wars dares to not have a female protagonist? How Star Trek dares to not have a female protagonist? How Doctor Who dares to not have a female doctor? These people could well create their own stories, but 1. they don't have the talent for it and 2. it's not about create: it's about "improve" it so they won't feel guilty over enjoying politically incorrect and problematic franchises.
 

Ginger Piglet

Fictional Manhunt Survivor
True & Honest Fan
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There is more to this than people just doing it for the shock. Marvel, Star Trek, Star Wars, Doctor Who, and many other media are being "rewritten" rather than adapted, and it's up to the adapter's woke sensibilities, based on how they are convinced they're not only more fitting to understand a topic than the author, but they also feel they're morally superior to her or him.

The reason many old things keep getting rebooted or remade is because they need to be more "aware" of social issues, as the original media wasn't. I mean, how Star Wars dares to not have a female protagonist? How Star Trek dares to not have a female protagonist? How Doctor Who dares to not have a female doctor? These people could well create their own stories, but 1. they don't have the talent for it and 2. it's not about create: it's about "improve" it so they won't feel guilty over enjoying politically incorrect and problematic franchises.
This explains a hell of a lot about why The Force Awakens was a retread of A New Hope. I was kinda hoping that they'd go down the Extended Universe route with the Yuuzhan Vong. For those not in the know, in the Extended Universe novels these were an extragalactic species of plantlike beings that used entirely organic / biological technology, augmented themselves and genetically engineered themselves, and treated mechanical / electronic technologies as heretical. They also were completely immune to the Force to the point at which Jedi and other Force users couldn't even detect their presence using the Force. That would have been far superior because it would have required light side and dark side Force users to work together to defeat them and thus actually bring balance to the Force in that way.

But no. Let's just remake A New Hope and insert extra "representation." Ugh. The laziness.
 

Maxliam

Professional Niggo
kiwifarms.net
The book you're thinking of is The Figure in The Shadows by John Bellairs. The sequel is The Letter, The Witch and The Ring. FITS is actually the second book in the series, the first is The House With a Clock In Its Walls, and I suggest you avoid the movie they just made of it.
Dude, you rule. I was racking my brains trying to remember the name of it. I had no idea that movie was based on the same series as the FITS. I wanted to reread that book as an adult. I actually liked how the story was structured and even as a kid I knew this was some quality writing that is rarely seen in the young adult genre. I did read the sequel but it didn't have as much of an impact as FITS. Don't get me wrong, it was a good book but I think FITS was better.

I was going mad trying to remember the name of it.

This explains a hell of a lot about why The Force Awakens was a retread of A New Hope. I was kinda hoping that they'd go down the Extended Universe route with the Yuuzhan Vong. For those not in the know, in the Extended Universe novels these were an extragalactic species of plantlike beings that used entirely organic / biological technology, augmented themselves and genetically engineered themselves, and treated mechanical / electronic technologies as heretical. They also were completely immune to the Force to the point at which Jedi and other Force users couldn't even detect their presence using the Force. That would have been far superior because it would have required light side and dark side Force users to work together to defeat them and thus actually bring balance to the Force in that way.

But no. Let's just remake A New Hope and insert extra "representation." Ugh. The laziness.
I think the unsettling thing to realize is that after the fact that Palpatine WAS right to create a massive clone army. And we can't have a CIS white hetero (canon is that he was banging Bai Ling's character, yes that Bai Ling had a small role in the Prequels that was in a deleted scene) male being right!
 
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Marco Fucko

Welcome to the fruit fields.
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This thread is really useful for reading what fans of literature do and don't like, recommendations, etc tbh.

On topic I pick Rowling because I read Casual Vacancy front to back (it was a gift, I felt obliged) and it made me stop reading for a few years because it was so fucking boring it gave me an existential crisis.

There's this dual interview with Martin and Stephen King where the final question was "what's your process". King responded with "unless I have an appointment or something, I pound out six pages a day", his thought process being he will self edit after the work is done. Wanna know Martin's response? "I agonize over literally every word." Doesn't matter that he has an old ass computer disconnected from the internet when he is his own distraction.

I liked ASOIAF but it made me lose interest for some reason, and I recall dropping the show shortly after the Purple Wedding and Oberyn Martell v. The Mountain. I think it was because the season afterwards was bad.

 

Dropped Burner

You got any biscuits for sale in there?
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"I agonize over literally every word."
I have the same problem but I bet that problem would go away after I had 3 highly popular novels in the bag. I mean it's not like the language in the books is anything great. He's one step above Stephen King (I find that mediocre pop authors swarm around this guy like flies). If King can pump out his uninspired slop, GRRM should at least be able to fart out 2 more books in 8 years.
 
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Marco Fucko

Welcome to the fruit fields.
kiwifarms.net
I have the same problem but I bet that problem would go away after I had 3 highly popular novels in the bag. I mean it's not like the language in the books is anything great. He's one step above Stephen King (I find that mediocre pop authors swarm around this guy like flies). If King can pump out his uninspired slop, GRRM should at least be able to fart out 2 more books in 8 years.
I respect King's racket but pretty much no author in the public eye has really stand out prose. That's probably at least partially on purpose, since they have to be as accessible to normies as possible.
 

Tasty Tatty

kiwifarms.net
I liked ASOIAF but it made me lose interest for some reason, and I recall dropping the show shortly after the Purple Wedding and Oberyn Martell v. The Mountain. I think it was because the season afterwards was bad.
Most people that dropped the show did it around that time.

It's not a coincidence that's when the show started to take a completely different path from the books.
 
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