Who was Taliesin?

I am a bard, and I am a harper,
I am a piper, and I am a crowder.
Of seven score musicians the very great enchanter.

The Death-song of Uther Pendragon

Taliesin was  poet of Arthurian Britain, the author of The Book of Taliesin, a collection of ancient Welsh poems. According to legend, he was a companion of Bran the Blessed and King Arthur. We have him as our mascot as a symbol of the ancient British literary tradition.

Okay, but who are you guys?

We’re a bunch of independent authors with similar  goals and outlooks who want to share beautiful and inspiring prose, poetry, and art. We mostly write in speculative genres such as fantasy and science fiction.

What’s the aesthetic here?

Our banner mentions “the good, the beautiful, and the true”, a tripartite formula for defining the highest ideals of literature and philosophy which goes back to Plato and is echoed in many other thinkers. We reflect that in the following ways:

  • The good: Goodness exists and is better than evil. We reject approaches to literature which are nihilistic or relativistic.
  • The beautiful: Literature should be beautiful. We reject sloppy and careless writing that shows no attention to craft.
  • The true: Truth is better than lies. We reject the notion that the writer has no responsibility to reflect the reality of the world in his writing.

These three ideals all have an influence on each other. Because writing must reflect goodness, we won’t write stories that glamorize wickedness or tell “true” stories that encourage evil. Because writing must be beautiful, we won’t tell cheap morality plays or dry recitations of facts. Because writing must be true, we won’t tell pretty lies or play to convenient falsehoods.

That’s a heck of a charter

Yeah, and none of us are grandmasters so we’re probably getting it wrong a lot of the time. We aim high, though.