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Thread: I wonder if..

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..Tolkien had taken one of the tales from The Silmarrillion and expanded it to novel length or LOTR length would it have been as readable or successful as either the Hobbit or LOTR?
I think there are three stories that would have done well as novel length, stand-alone books. Turin Turambar, Tour and the Fall of Gondolin and Beren and Luthien. The hardest to make into a stand-alone would be Beren and Luthien because there is the whole history of the Silmarils that needs to be present for the story to make sense, but it wouldn't be impossible if the Lay of Leithian is used for reference.
I personally like the Silmarillion the way it is now, but it wouldn't hurt to imagine it in novel length.

The individual stories would be quite a read, of course, but there is the matter that they're all interwoven with each other, so in order for it all to make sense, Tolkien would still have to provide a lot of historical background (such as the whole affair in Valinor and all that). It's rather hard to make them into individual stories, since each one require another to explain it, but it might just work. When we all first read the Sil., I doubt any of us really understood everything. There must've been a lot of flipping for the appendix and the family trees and everything, but despite all this, we still fninshed it and understood it. So, a lengthier version might not really present a comprehension challenge.

However, making it into a novel would mean lessening the historic taste of it. Right now we see it as a history, and I take every word in there to be significant and important. A novel might not make readers feel that way, but a novel, on the other hand, might give the readers more understanding of the characters.
Tolkien would still have to provide a lot of historical background (such as the whole affair in Valinor and all that).

One chapter where a wise person would provide some historical background, like the chapter "Shadow of the Past" in LOTR, would surely suffice. It worked for LOTR, hence I can't see why it would not work for the Silmarillion as well.
It would make things difficult for the reader, as we all experienced in the Sil. And besides, the LOTR had less historic background to provide. The making of the Ring and its powers of destruction were all that were needed. But the history for the Sil. is much more complicated. Though it is possible for it to be compacted into one chapter, as the proffesor demonstrated, it would be a confusing read. But, as I said before, it would not really lessen the reader's enthusiasm.
ok since its been so long since i read the sil, ill prbably rembewr key pts

ok so this is how u set it up.
beren asks to mary the chick
dad says go get me a sil
so berens like ok
and then he comes to the wisest person he know's (me) and says
yo, wot the heck is a silmaril? where do i get one? wth?
and so i say like
beren my bro, sils were made along time ago in this magical place
in this magical place there were god like bings
and they all floated round and had a good time
so then they made elves
and men
but they mdae elves, thats the important bit
and so one of these elves that travled over to there magical land
he was good with his hands
so he built stuff
like jewels
so he got rerally good
and so he put some magic light in 3 of his jewels
and they were like, the best bling ever
everyone one wanted them
so then this bad guy is like, dude i could get so many chicks with that (or something)
and so he gos and kills the smith guys dad
and steals the family's jewels...
nyway, he puts them in his crown
and he kills nyone who tries to take them away
and now ur suposed to go do that for a chick?? dude

i could so b a author
Well, I could see that prologue being used, but if they desire any of we diehard Tolkien fans to view it, they better try again, for I consider it out-Peters, Peter Jackson. Orc Grinning Smilie
It could be good for a movie version starring Leslie Nielsen or Adam Sandler.
comeon, i one an aard for that quality piece of literature :P