You may have heard Guy on another podcast because he is pretty popular and the authority on fighing with swords. He is The Sword Guy – pun intended. He studies historical books on how people use their swords and he translates them for modern audiences. Plus he recreates and teaches their style of fighting.
He discusses his newest book – The Windsor Method – and tells us about how things were done different. There’s a bit of a discussion on how movies get it right and wrong.
If you like swords, we have a good discussion on several and in the YouTube video he shows us a couple.
[00:00:43] Stephen: Hello, welcome to episode 1 0 5 at discovered word Smith. This is going to be a great episode. If you are a regular listener to author podcasts, I’m sure you’ve heard this, uh, person it’s guy Windsor. He’s the sword guy. [00:01:00] Aha. Um, it’s really a fun talk. I like hearing all about the swords and what he does.
It’s super interesting. So I think, uh, those of you that are interested in swords, those you, that like the sword fighting, he has a lot to say in his book, looks like it’d be something you should have. Uh, and possibly some of his other ones also. And as a reminder, if you do enjoy the author, if you enjoy this podcast and you’re interested in his book, go to the sh the website, the show notes and click on the link there.
Yes. It’s an affiliate link. It gives. Me a couple cents, uh, when you click it and buy the book so I can help support the podcast. The time I put into it, the cost of the software, the cost of the hosting, uh, et cetera, et cetera, but also it doesn’t hurt guy. Uh, and he still gets his commission on the book.
So you’re helping lots of people and getting a wonderful book. And that goes for every interview. Every author that’s on here, uh, clicking the [00:02:00] link, helps out multiple people, including yourself for getting a great. And there are a few other links I’ve added to the show notes. That is the services that I use.
If you are an author or thinking of doing a podcast, go ahead and click these, check it out. It doesn’t cost you anything extra and it will help support the show. The more people that do that. So, um, before we go too far, let’s get into the interview with guy. Here you go, guy. Let me welcome you to today’s podcast.
Discovered wordsmiths, how are you doing this?
[00:02:33] Guy: I’m fine.
[00:02:34] Stephen: How are you? I’m great. So usually when we get started, I asked people to tell us a little bit about you and what you like to do outside of writing. It’s all
[00:02:45] Guy: part of one package. Basically my day job is I find theoretical sort of fighting sources. So books written a long time ago about how to fight with swords, by people who actually did it, or their students actually did it for real.
And I recreate systems of [00:03:00] fencing that those. Represent. And I organized those systems into still, uh, by the, uh, modern people can train safely. And then I teach that as a kind of living martial arts by students. And that takes out quite a lot of my time. You can imagine there’s lots of parts of that physical training and practicing with weapons and teaching in person and teaching online and all that sort of stuff.
And the research and finding the sources and working with the sources and figuring out the language. It’s quite a lot. So when I’m not doing that, my three current hobbies before I do woodworking, the reason I love, I used to be a professional cabinet maker. Now just as a hobby, I do a bit of indoor climbing and I have recently taken up both watch repair.
So fixing like old watches, because it’s fascinating that a Y and most like amazingly mind-blowingly awesome. Be fantastic. Flying light. Oh, wow. [00:04:00]
[00:04:00] Stephen: Cool. I must say I normally here. Oh, I like to go hiking. I play some guitar. I read blah, blah. I’ve never heard anybody say yeah. I casually do plumbing as a hobby.
So. I mean competitions you identify or something like that? I didn’t say
[00:04:17] Guy: plumbing. I said indoor climbing
[00:04:19] Stephen: or climbing. I thought you said plumbing. I’m sorry. That’s totally different. Great. Okay. You’re climbing. Yes. I love doing that. Yeah. So the watch repair. That’s very interesting. Cause I know that’s a lot of little pieces.
[00:04:37] Guy: Yeah. And I’m easing into it. I just, I like watches generally. I just like. And I have this nice. All it’s not valuable, but maybe I’d pay like $70 for it on eBay. It’s sort of 19 late, 1940s, early 1950s to a swatch and it needs servicing. And I thought it’s going to cost me like two or $300 to get it serviced [00:05:00] properly because basically with the services that’s taken completely apart, clean all the pieces, reassemble it with the right oils and things that make it run smoothly.
You can’t just sunk WD 40 and hope for the best. You actually have to do it properly. And then they reassemble the whole thing, but it back. So it’s quite a lot of time from a skilled craftsman. So it was expensive. I thought, why don’t I do it myself? And I thought, well, I have no idea how to stop. So I bought a job, lot of broken watches on eBay, again, not very much money.
And some of them are courses. Some of them are mechanical and some are windup mechanical and some are automatic mechanical. They’re self winding. And I started by replacing the bad. No, of course wants to see how that goes. And eight of them started working again. So great. Keep them up a little bit. So I’ve got these completely unnecessary, like eight watches sitting around my house and what I’ve replaced, the broken courts movement, where the new horse movement and [00:06:00] that hasn’t gone quite right.
But getting that, and I’m just gently building up to taking one of the manual winding mechanical watches. Painting it and putting it back together and seeing what happens. I thought it’s better to practice on things I don’t care about. So it doesn’t matter if I just ruin it. Yeah. By reason, I kind of got into that just a few months ago and it’s taking up a lot of space,
[00:06:24] Stephen: so, sorry.
You’re very active. Even your day job with all the research you do, which connects to the books we’re going to talk about. But even your hobbies are active. Interesting. Not just sitting. It’s one of the things I talked to the parents about helping your kids find the passions in their life, the things they enjoy doing.
[00:06:47] Guy: Yeah. And the key to that really, I think I have two kids is to expose them to lots of different things. And when they show interest, just get too helicoptery about it, but just [00:07:00] gently encourage it. Oh, you’d like to do a drama club. I’m okay. We’ll find a drama club and they go to the trauma company. Isn’t that nice.
And if they get into it, they get into it. And maybe not lessons or horse riding or although my eldest is turning 15 soon and her birthday present is a lesson in an app by flying lesson. I really hope it doesn’t like woefully expensive.
[00:07:25] Stephen: Yeah. Yeah. That happens unfortunately, with some of the things. But I like that you’re doing that.
I did that with my kids a lot too. Yeah. So your day job, you do your research. Ancient old texts with weaponry and use that to teach people. Tell us a little bit more about that and how it connects to your books. Obviously they’re connected.
[00:07:48] Guy: Yeah. So if you think maybe late 14th century, a mastered arms writes down his ideas for how nightly combat should look [00:08:00] in a book.
And one guy who did that as called delivery and he wrote. Fantastic fetus it’ll feel the battalion, the flower Fattal roundabout 1400 or four existing copies in manuscript form various places. So we have, I don’t have the originals of course, but we have scans of those and having figured out the language.
So when he’s, when he says what he says in Italian, what in dodgy, Italian handwriting. So figuring out the handwriting and then when you’ve got the handwriting, figuring out the language, and then when you’ve got the language, figuring. What he’s actually trying to say and recreating the actions that he describes in the book.
And that involves, of course also finding the necessary equipment and finding people to make that equipment. There’s a whole lot of physical culture around it. And then figuring out the movement patterns, figuring out the tactics and the general approach to the system. And then figuring out ways to practice it without killing [00:09:00] anyone.
Cause obviously modern sport fencing equipment is not designed to handle relaxes for example, and then getting expressing that there, there are lots of different ways to think about it. There’s a fencing system where you can learn how to do this, and then you can fence with your friends and even fence competitively.
So. Adapted to a modern combat sport. It’s also intended as the original system is intended for professional warriors to go around killing their enemy. So you can train it as a martial art and the sort of true sense of the way as where your simulating situations in which somebody is going to die.
Obviously you have to simulate very strict policy about that. There must be no death. Safety is critical. Whenever you’re doing anything dangerous. Safety is the critical thing. Just like flying the [00:10:00] rules and regulations around flying. Uh that’s for good reason, because if you get it wrong, you could die.
And so part of it, I have this stick with your, for a minute. I have an interpretation of how I think his system works and how it’s put together on how you should move and act. When you asked, you’re using his system. Now I may be right. I may be wrong. The only way to find out is to test it. So I have, my students are part of that sort of testing prejudice.
So I teach them my ideas as to how this should work and we see how it works in real life. But also I have colleagues who are interested in this sort of thing. And so I need to publish my interpretation so that other people can see what I think of. And respond accordingly. For example, my book from medieval manuscript to modern practice, it has here is [00:11:00] what fury says in the original Italian.
So this is what I think the original Italian is. There may be mistakes in how I’ve read the handwriting for instance, then this is how I translate it into English. So this is what I think the text means in English and then maybe the states and translation. And then there are the pictures. Here is my explanation of how I would do this.
And then there’s a link to a video showing me all my students actually doing it. So every stage of my interpretation is exposed to criticism. There’s isn’t in the kind of positive sense. Yeah. So that kind of transparency, highly essential for any kind of research project, because if other people can’t respond to what you’re doing, you don’t have that, that testing committee.
You didn’t have any way of checking whether you’re going down a wrong path. Okay. So that’s, some of my books are [00:12:00] aimed at basically making my interpretation available to people so they can see what I think of it so they can respond to it so that I can improve it. But some people just want to fight with doors.
They’re happy to take my word for what you’re saying and all that. And actually not necessarily right now, interested in. The historical research side of it. They just want to pick up swords and whack their friends in a safe and authentic manner. So I have other books. We basically tell you how to do that.
So referenced the theory, but not a detailed analysis of why I think just simply this is how we do it by this. Got it. And then I have other books, which after a while I have one book, which is a translation of a medieval source, late fall, late 15th century. Combat manual written by a guy who Phillip a valley and the 14, 18.
So I, it was dated to the 1480s, uh, translated that because I felt my community needed a translation. And I thought I got a translation. I might as well put it in the book. [00:13:00] Sure enough. I put it in a book and people stopped critiquing it, like, ah, guy online. This says this and the line that you say this and put those together.
It can be annoying. But it’s essential. It’s absolutely critical. If you actually want to get good at anything, you have to have these feedback systems. And the one way to create that feedback system is to publish what you’re doing so that other people can critique it. And then as another aspect, all of this, which is why do people pick up swords in the first place?
It’s the 21st century. This is not, shall we say an essential, modern lifestyle? But people are drawn to the sword for all sorts of kind of personal development in spiritual reasons. Okay. And they are, there’s a whole kind of depth of practice [00:14:00] that, that opens you up to, okay. And most people have never been properly taught how to.
That’s B I’m dissatisfied with this. Maybe I have weak legs or maybe my left shoulder doesn’t work so well. Or maybe, I don’t know. I know I’m not eating properly or maybe I sleep badly or whatever, all these sorts of things, and they just don’t know what to do about it. And there’s a ton of people who are quite happy to tell you, this is the way to do it like this.
And for a small proportion of the human population, what they’re saying will probably be. But absolutely nothing works perfectly for everyone. A classic example by CIMIC response foods have this glycaemic index thing, but glycine response is particular to individuals. So you might eat a cream cheese bagel and it does nothing to your blood sugar.[00:15:00]
I might eat exactly the same. And it spikes my blood sugar quite badly. Yeah. And the only way to know if the task is to find out what foods spike your blood sugar, if you’re interested in that sort of thing, you have to test it. But most people don’t even know that. And so they take this there’s information coming in from all sorts of places and some source of the quite authority in some aren’t even doctors, less than they have a tough job to do, but they have to advise you.
About what works for most people. Most of the time, nothing works for everybody all of the time. And so what you have to do to get to where you want to go in martial arts or anywhere else is you have to figure out what actually works for you. You personally, right? And it may not work for your identical twin, but it’s not just about genetics.
And so my latest book wins. The method principles are. So the training is about figuring out what works for you. How to go about that and then how to incorporate that [00:16:00] into whatever training practices you want to do. Oh,
[00:16:02] Stephen: nice. Okay. So as gonna say, your books are, sound like a part historical part lesson and learning.
Is it, are they of interest to people that just like ancient swords and reading about them and seeing pictures along with people who want to actually learn.
[00:16:25] Guy: I don’t actually have any books on swords as objects, right? Obviously solids are objects. And I have lots of, for example, in my book theory and practice of historical martial arts, there is a chapter on how to choose the right training sword for you.
Yeah. Because people need to know that, but I don’t go into detail about is this historical stored and where it comes from. And other scholars have done that to a degree, which is, which goes way past my interests. I’m not that interested in sources, [00:17:00] objects. I’m interested in swords as things you actually use.
It’s a difference between some people collect classic cars because they just love classic cars. And then they’re all about classic cars and they have a garage full of them. Point is having the car and the car is the point. Other people maybe only have one car, but that really into driving it. Yeah. I’m much more on the driving end of the spectrum than I am on the collecting end of the spectrum.
Got it. Okay.
[00:17:28] Stephen: And so the new book, the Windsor method, like you just mentioning is actually helping to help people begin. It’s
[00:17:38] Guy: actually it’s for anyone who wants to get better at whatever art they choose to practice is generally aimed. Think the way the book came about was in 2019, I produced an online course on satellite training.
So how to train by yourself, cause that is a skill that many martial artists need to work [00:18:00] on because shopped at class or whatever, and there’s people to train with and it’s more fun to train with other people. There is a bunch of stuff. That you really should be doing that doesn’t actually require a training problem.
Right? One obvious example would be spraying, but there are also other skills that are sometimes best buy that on their own. Like for instance, hitting things really hard. You don’t want to hit your training partner, but you need to be able to hit hard. And so you have to hit things boxes, we’ll use a heavy bag or focusness or speed ball.
We use a wall target or a pal, or have somebody hold a tie for us to hit. I produced this online course and entirely at getting, giving people ideas and a proper yes. In out to train the fight. And then of course later the pandemic hit all the clubs and suddenly like my entire sword fighting community could only drain by themselves.[00:19:00]
And so I made the course available for me. It was 500. I hadn’t no one should hang $500 for an online course at the beginning of the pandemic when you, and if you’re going to keep your job or what the hell is going to happen. So I dropped it to 20 and anyone who wanted to get in who needed the course, but didn’t have $20 because, and then it just email me.
I’ll send them a copy of the game’s afraid. Right? So it created this quite large community of people who would training on their own, but training sort of the way I. And I realized that for many of them, the online courses are really good for that. Like, okay, hold the sword, like this swing a sword like that, this thing like that, they are less good at laying out the fundamental principles behind the thing.
Right. Books are perfect for that. So I thought [00:20:00] I need, what I need to do is produce a book that will solve. That problem of how do we present the principles in the most efficient way? So I wrote that book in 2020 and 2021, and it published it last year. And obviously it’s included in the online course so that people have access to the principles as they should.
But it’s also of interest to people who are not currently training salesmanship at all, because the principles of how you get better. And single historical citizenship or whatever you want to call. It are the same as the principles of getting better at storing or plumbing. Previous example,
skill development, craft balance is a thing. It is a thing. It is a fundamental skill that applies to pretty much every area of anybody’s life. And. [00:21:00] Ways of going about it that are better or worse for you? One thing that surprised a lot of people when the book came out is that my first thing is mental health.
Your mental health practices have to be right, so that you are in an emotional state to do the necessary practice, to get good at the thing you want to do right now for that physical health. Right? Because let’s say the art is painting. If you’re getting tendonitis in your rests from all this painting, you can’t paint.
So you need to know how to get your body into the state. It needs to be in to do the thing you wanted to do, whatever art, you practice, mental health, physical health, second, and then there’s all this other slightly more sort of specific stuff. But towards the end of the book, you get things like strike, but in the middle of the boat, you’ve got things like breathing.
[00:21:56] Stephen: And that’s, I totally get that important. Cause [00:22:00] I took a martial arts called and you started off with conditioning and strengthening and learning kicks and falls. And you have to start with that. You always get the people coming in and says, why want to do sword? Yeah. You’ll get that in about three years, you got to do all this other stuff to build up and especially, wow.
But yeah, it took an average of four years to get black belt
[00:22:22] Guy: for people that you only got the black belt. Pardon me what? I don’t need a black Scott Passover. Yes,
[00:22:29] Stephen: yes. Yeah. It would your last step before black belt, you started working with sword and then you get the second level of black belt. There was more sword work and we use staffs earlier, but swords related.
And that’s the other thing with the physical, they get heavy after you swing them for awhile. Yeah.
[00:22:49] Guy: People say that, but honestly, Okay. My absolute biggest is currently in Finland. So I can’t show it to you. It is about five foot long. God is about [00:23:00] 1820 inches. Wide blade is about three inches wide that the other help is a big sword.
It weighs about six pounds and I can throw it around with one hand without too much trouble. I can send you a video if you, because the thing is, if the sword is balanced property and you’re using it properly, it really. Heavy after a long time, it will start to weight you down a bit. But I view the sword as a labor saving device, like a washing machine or a toaster.
I want to kill that person every day. Right now I could go all the way over there and start punching them and exert an awful lot of force or I can just go boom. And they die. Perfect. So the sword is a labor saving device. Now, obviously I wouldn’t get anybody, but. The notion of soared beans, something heavy that resists your motion, I think is coming out the sword from the wrong direction, because it’s [00:24:00] supposed to make life easier, have a sword because it makes it easier to do the thing you want to do.
And I treat pretty much all of the things that I work with the same way. I’m fine with playing. For example, that damn sight, easier to learn, to fly a plane than it is the flap. Your arms.
[00:24:20] Stephen: That’s more expensive too, though.
[00:24:24] Guy: Right?
[00:24:26] Stephen: So your books sound like you’re, you’ve got the authority of old methods brought into the modern world sword fighting sword.
You sword everything based on what people have done for centuries.
[00:24:43] Guy: Yeah. Well, people did centuries ago. Yeah.
[00:24:46] Stephen: So, is there any other books out there that you like that you didn’t happen to write?
[00:24:53] Guy: Oh my God. As you can see from over there, there are a lot of books. [00:25:00] Yes. There are hundreds. It really depends on the topic.
I mean, usually for me, it’s about 200 books in for every one book that comes out. So pick a topic. What would you like a book recommendation on.
[00:25:15] Stephen: What did you like what some of the ancient texts that you’ve used for this newest method that you compiled?
[00:25:22] Guy: Okay. Okay. Each of my, by, uh, specific to one particular source.
So for example, when I’m teaching rapier, I’m usually teaching Rafia according to
great representation is the art and use art and practice of fencing, which was published in 16, 10, but I just happen to have, this is the book. Uh, let me just adjust this so you can see it on the camera. Right? This copy of the book is [00:26:00] 405 years old. Yeah. That you can get facsimiles and I do have facts, but this is a gorgeous.
I’ve only had this for a couple of months. So I’m still like super excited about it. You don’t normally have to go and find a 400 year old original. You can get these days, you can get scanned and we’ll have you. So the sources that I work with, uh, so I just showed you also, this is, uh, a field of Italia, just the angle, which is, this is a facsimile of.
The original of this particular manuscript is in the Getty museum in Los Angeles. And this is a very high quality, affects them. And they organized by a friend and colleague of mine called Michael Chittister and bound. He takes us so far that the choirs are hand bound in the same choir structure. So they have the same collation as the original.[00:27:00]
Wow. It means how it’s stitched together in the facsimile. It’s the same as how it does together in the original, by a level of detail that makes a tiny proportion of the population ecstatically happy. And I just happened to be part of that finding proportion. I actually learned bookbinding so that I could find my own facsimiles in the proper way, in the same way as the originals.
And then Michael. Stops producing these gorgeous facsimiles, which are bound. That is the originals of boundaries. Like, oh my God, that’s
[00:27:34] Stephen: the store geek. There is really, yeah. Yeah. I heard a Dacre Stoker did something very similar with Brahm Stoker’s Dracula. They recreated the first edition, even to the point where the pages were the same type of material and they added.
Uh, a smell and dust so that it was,
[00:27:55] Guy: oh my gosh.
[00:27:58] Stephen: So [00:28:00] where can people who are looking to learn about sword use? Where can they find your book?
[00:28:08] Guy: You can find all of my email@example.com, but also they can find them anyway, anywhere that books are sold. I won’t mention the world’s longest river, but there are other online establishment and of course, local bookstores in order than men.
And you can get them from your library. The lobby probably doesn’t happen in stock. They’re rather niche, but if you ask the library a nicely, they might order a copy it for you. And as any writer will tell you, that is a good thing for writers. When libraries order copies of their books, I guess library would be my number one choice.
So school.com will be my second choice and anywhere else on the internet will be my third
[00:28:48] Stephen: or even better go to sword school.com order two copies, one for yourself. And one for your local library.
[00:28:54] Guy: Now you said our genius. Yes.
[00:28:58] Stephen: That would be brilliant. Yes. [00:29:00] So we’d love people to do that and that’s a win all around.
Absolutely. So do you have plans for your next book? Cause I think you have four hours. It’s like, no, I’ve got about. 14.
[00:29:12] Guy: Okay. Something like that last track. And it also depends exactly how you count them, but yeah. So my next book, the one that I’m currently finishing up a work book on Amazon, which is the martial art of your delivery, which includes like wrestling and dagger, combat, and swords and Spears paradox is, um, producing a workbook, which has, I should have done the same thing with my Raphael workbooks, which actually might financially, cause there’s a kind of a quirky way.
Uh, the problem with a printed book is that it’s fixed in space and time and you can’t get videos. You can pick it up into the nominee. So what I’ve done is I’ve produced a hold up. So as a picture from the historical source, there’s [00:30:00] me explaining how to do the thing in the picture. And then there’s a link to a video.
So you can just point your phone at the QR code and it would take you straight to the. That’s cool. All right. Yeah. So you can see video of the action being done rather than just static pictures. So I’m doing that for my arm. It’s work. Um, you’re a
[00:30:19] Stephen: V a very large combination of very ancient methods and texts with modern technology.
That’s super, but the best way,
[00:30:30] Guy: it just strikes me that we have all these fantastic tools available to us, and it would be silly not to use. And when they invent lightsabers, I will never be the lightsaber. But you asked about my next book. So after the next word that comes out, the next major book I’m working on is talk about how to teach soccer, martial arts or anything else, because teaching is a skill in itself.
[00:31:00] As any other skill, it can be practiced. They can be taught, but in my community and historical martial arts, me. We don’t. We have any proper teacher training programs or teacher training resources or the up and coming young instructors. Because again, most people who stopped who ended up teaching historical martial arts, they do it because they’re living somewhere that doesn’t have an existing club.
So they have some friends who want to fight with swords and they start playing around with stuff. And then eventually they realize they have to start a club because they need access to maybe renting a space or insurance with. So they start the club and they need some of the teas classes in the cloud.
And so this person who started the club tends to end up teaching the classes and that’s not what they originally set out to do this originally set out just to hit their friends, sword, which is a perfectly good thing to want to do. And now they end up teaching when perhaps they don’t have any background or training or even interest originally in teaching.[00:32:00]
That’s me teaching is my absolute best learning environment. Right? It’s if I wasn’t teaching martial arts, I’d be teaching something else. And if I’m stuck on a problem woodworking problem or any other kind of problem, I conjure up an imaginary student and I teach them how to solve the problem. And that’s how I get access to my best bits of my brain.
So I teach because I want. Most people in my community teach because somebody has to, and they’re stepping up, right? So for them, I’m writing a book about how to go about teaching, how to make it basically effective. So the students learn, but also, so you don’t burn out as the instructor. It’s a pretty intense situation to be in, and it’s hard.
It’s a hard skill. And so. Using this book [00:33:00] so that my colleagues and friends have a resource. So those would have to teach at least have a method for teaching
[00:33:08] Stephen: as proven and authoritative you’ve it’s. It’s not the, Hey, I took a year of karate and they handed me a sword. So I wrote a book because now I’m an expert.
You’ve been doing this at your life.
[00:33:24] Guy: Yeah. I’ve been teaching for a living. So I think I’ve pretty much got a handle on how to do it, but they’re saying that I’m still, I am signed up to go on a Harcourt coach’s course next month, even though I don’t do Parker, I know the guy who’s running it. And he said, it’s okay for a non-par core person to come along because I want to see how they teach their teachers.
And I have colleagues and friends who are presentable high school teachers who have been taught to teach. So I’m running stuff by them and getting advice from that. Yeah, [00:34:00] there is an entire body of knowledge of teaching strategies and how to teach out there. It’s just some poor person running a club somewhere and have a day job and is busy in there that you can’t really expect them to do a few thousand hours of research just to become a bit better at.
When they’re not even particularly if I spend it, if I do that and then I can summarize it all and package it all in a sort of friendly format and send it out. And yeah,
[00:34:31] Stephen: and I think that’s very important because arguably you’re probably one of the main authorities on sword. You swordplay sword fighting in the world at this point.
So you’ve been studying it and doing it and researching more than probably anyone out. But you’re still have,
[00:34:50] Guy: I have colleagues at my level, for sure.
[00:34:52] Stephen: Okay. But you’re still humbled that I’m not the expert, so I know everything. It’s always learning more, always something [00:35:00] new and different, which is exactly what makes you the authority on this.
[00:35:05] Guy: I think it’s best if there’s a saying in martial arts, some people have 10 years experience and some people have one years of experience, 10 times just putting the time. It doesn’t necessarily. You have to be well in, in put it in fencing task, you have to be getting punted in the face regularly to keep progressing.
And the tricky bit is because, um, you know, a rising tide lifts all boats. And so as my community has gotten better and as my students have improved and what have you, they’ve gently pushed me off awkward, but I started with absolutely no qualifications or experience because they went no qualifications to be had.
And no. And so I’ve done what I could over the air to basically become as good as my students deserve, which is impossible. I will never be as good a parent as your children deserve, but you can at least [00:36:00] try to be his looking for ways to make that happen. When there isn’t a kind of properly signposted.
Correct. And that’s
[00:36:12] Stephen: a good analogy for writers because we’re going to talk right. Or stuff here in a minute, two writers do the same as martial artists pay. I’ve been doing this a week. How come I’m doing all these other things. Yeah. So have you heard from anyone like, like a movie director or a stunt man or something that said, Hey, we’re using your book.
We have some questions for this movie we’re making or whatever, a documentary, even right now.
[00:36:41] Guy: So people doing movies and TV and what have you, they are not looking for historically correct ways of using web. I know it’s not at all. It’s all good. I have colleagues who specialize in basically adapting historical martial arts for stage and screen.[00:37:00]
So whenever I do get somebody asking me, can you help with this? Like the other, I direct them to one of my colleagues who specializes in adapting these for. It’s not really my jam. If you think about it in any kind of stage or screen combat, everyone should see what’s happening, but nobody dies in an actual sword fight.
Nobody should see what just happened and somebody dies. Okay. So although there’s a huge kind of overlap in skillset, the fundamental goals of the activity, the completely different. There are some great fight directors out. There are very few good sword fights on screen because it’s very difficult to make a sword fight on screen work, unless they act as a highly trained people themselves.
I think of the fantastic kung-fu fights in the matrix. This the crew, the actors, the [00:38:00] cast were trained in Kung Fu for nine months or something like day in, day out for the night. So that they could do it well on screen. Now, if somebody sent it to me to be trained so that they could portray a medieval Knight.
Well, on the screen, I get all the sword stuff. Yes. I could help, but generally speak. They don’t want that. And yeah, it’s not really something I’ve ever put much thought.
[00:38:33] Stephen: Okay. I know when I watch some of the sword fighting stuff on screen, I always got a laugh. The one movie they all seem to make is one guy swinging the sword in the air guy, swings the block it, but it’s like an X up above their heads.
I’m like, where were you trying to hit? Yeah, I, that,
[00:38:51] Guy: that’s a thing you see a law is like people aiming for the sword rather than aiming for the. It’s not an N. Now the classic [00:39:00] is somebody turns and puts their sword in the way. And the other person, the beat later hits the sword. No, that makes sense. Also treating stores, like they’re not sharp, like hammering together then together.
Like their sticks, like the sword is think of a sword as a very large kitchen. It’s a blade. It does blade stuff. It’s not a, it’s not a, yeah.
[00:39:24] Stephen: You just smacked it together 20 times. Well, you’re not cutting anything now.
[00:39:29] Guy: Exactly. All
[00:39:31] Stephen: right. So before we move on to other stuff real quick, guys, tell everybody listening.
If they were in an elevator, why they should look at getting your book?
[00:39:41] Guy: Here’s a funny thing. I don’t like persuading people to buy my books. My feeling is my feeling is that if you see. They’re like you ever want. It is sorta cool. And if you think stores are cool and you see that book, you’re going to go, oh my God, I want that book if that’s enough.
So I put stuff in front of people, but I don’t try to persuade them [00:40:00] to buy it. I’ve never persuaded anybody to come to one of my classes. If somebody asks me what I do and I tell him what I do for a living and they say, oh, where’s the next beginner schools. I will tell them, oh, you sing somebody my age, do it.
Reassure them or, oh, do you think someone was this disability? I will reassure them and say, yes, of course you can. We’ll figure it out. But if they say, oh, okay. That was interesting. I suppose I just let it go because.
The way, some people who are interested
[00:40:32] Stephen: and I think that’s cool. That’s very valid and probably even stronger because I’m sitting here listening to you going, yeah, I checked that book out and because the martial arts style I haven’t done for a couple years and I like learning new stuff. I’m interested in the swords.
You’re right. Yeah. There you go. That’s the selling point.