Gi suilon! Let me introduce myself, my name is Andrew. I'm currently a high-school student with a love for Tolkien and his wonderful world of Middle-earth. On this blog I try to post at least once a few times a month about something from Tolkien's life or works that I find interesting. Occasionally some bits of fandom news or events is sprinkled in every now and then too.
Tolkien isn't my entire life though, after being inspired by Tolkien's stories and Peter Jackson's interpretation on screen I've been getting involved in filmmaking the past few years and am currently pursuing that as a profession. I'm also an avid musician who has been playing violin since the age of 4. As a soloist, I'm currently working on Lalo's Symphonie espagnol, but I also participate in a number of ensembles including the Lindalë String Quartet and two full orchestras.
Some of my earliest readers might have known me from Animato Studios where I used to make stop-motion videos with my siblings (often involving Middle-earth). While I haven't had much time to snap plastic bricks together lately I can still be found playing with them every now and then.
After all that the rest of my time is mostly consumed with the never-quenched monster of school. Well, it's not really quite that bad. I enjoy history and most of the other subjects aren't horrible. I especially like reading about the Middle-ages, Reformation period, Colonial era, and the World Wars.
My Journey to Middle-earth
Every Tolkien fan has their story about how they discovered Middle-earth began. Mine began several years ago when I was flipping through our family’s colossal collection of DVDs. I stumbled upon several discs titled, “The Two Towers, Special Extended Edition”. Immediately they stuck me as set apart from all the rest.
At that point my thirst for more information regarding the topic was quenched and I forgot about them for several more years until again, when I was about ten or eleven, I was searching for DVDs to take on a long car trip. Again, I saw the discs. By this point my parents thought it would be OK for me the watch it. I packed it along for the car ride but never got a chance to see it. Afterwards I kept thinking about the films and almost sat down to watch them numerous times, almost. Thankfully, something held me back. Up until this point The Lord of the Rings was really just a name on a DVD to me. Then the Christmas after I turned 12 I received a book called The Hobbit from an Aunt and Uncle. I opened up the cover and was immediately drawn into the fantastical and wonderful world of Middle-earth. Almost a year later I received a copy of The Lord of the Rings for my birthday. I immediately dove into it and closed the last page of the Appendices 2 months later. Each time I finished one of the books I watched the corresponding film.
The next Spring I checked out a copy of The Silmarillion from my local library. Besides getting terribly confused by some of the names and family trees I loved it. A little over a year later I had gone through it twice more. During this period I discovered that my favorite toy company, LEGO, would be making a line of sets based on The Lord of the Rings and Hobbit films. I instantly jumped on board and started saving my pennies. After my second pass at The Silmarillion I read The Children of Hurin and got a copy of the Unfinished Tales. By now I was fully engrossed. My newfound love for Middle-earth also led to an interest in its creator. I read through Sir Gwain and the Green Knight; Pearl; and Sir Orfeo as well as The Legend of Sigurd and Gudrun. Then I was finally able to lay my hands on Humphrey Carpenter’s wonderful biography.
4 years since looking into a Hobbit hole for the first time my collection and interest is still growing at a rapid rate. Unfortunately, I seem to be the only one happy about this progression. My family thinks the constant barrage of Tolkien trivia, news, stories, and random musings have gone on too long, 3 1/2 years too long in fact! This blog is an attempt to alleviate my family (which will probably be futile) by trying to keep at least part of my constant bubbling contained somewhere else. Hopefully by doing so someone out there will find my posts interesting or enjoyable to some degree.
I tend to consider myself more of a purist when it comes to Tolkien's works, but I really enjoy the Middle-earth movies made by PJ & Co and have them to thank for inspiring me to pursue film. Movies are a very different medium for telling stories and changes will have to take place in an adaptation. Regardless, I'll often argue against (discuss really, I try not to get too worked up about it) certain deviations or elaborations with other fans. My opinions on some of these changes will sometimes appear in posts.