Fantasy Tropes and Stereotypes
Fantasy TropesDiscussions of fantasy tropes and stereotypes may include: The Chosen One, The Dark Lord, The Quest, The Hero's Journey, The Lost Heir, The Evil Empire, Prophecies, etc.
Fantasy StereotypesWe'll also talk about magic systems and fantasy world building, including races and racism, social structures, politics, religion, and everything we face in real life that fantasy addresses. When possible, I'll include examples from current and historical works. Let me know if there's a particular fantasy trope or stereotype you'd like to see discussed.
Genre Fiction versus Literary Fiction – Literary Fight Club
Literary Fiction Success Defined I recently read a blog post where the author was explaining her take on the difference between genre fiction and literary fiction and her definition of success for each genre. She describes readers of literary fiction like this: “Lovers of literary fiction fall deeply in love with the idea of the work and the internal growth within the characters. They love the experience of reading the work, its beauty and simplicity. The introspection which the story demands is the most compelling element of literary fiction, aside from its eloquently flowing cadence.” I’m going to go out on a limb here and suggest that based on…
Kill The Girl! Women In Science Fiction And Fantasy
Women In Fantasy and Science Fiction – Why are women treated so differently than men? Updated April 2018—Over the last couple of weeks, I read several articles about gender disparity in SF/F. It all started with the article “I Hate Strong Female Characters” by Sophia McDougall published in The Statesmen. Pretty soon, I had also come across articles like “Sleeps With Monsters: Reading, Writing, Radicalisation” a two part article from blogger Liz Burke over at Tor.com and then “Gender Bias in SF/F Round Table” a two part article from blogger Matt Gilliard at 52Reviews.com All three of these bloggers had a lot to say about gender disparity in science fiction…
Defining High Fantasy
In a previous post, I talked about the definition of Low Fantasy. Today, I’m tackling defining High Fantasy. High Fantasy takes place in a purely fictional world which has its own unique physical properties and laws of nature. The time period is flexible and the story can be in the present, the distant past or some time in the future. In High Fantasy, the fantastic takes front row. Often, the extraordinary is commonplace. Elves in Shannara wield swords of power and magical stones while children go to Wizardry schools, carry magic wands and learn to make potions and charms. Horns call dead heroes, animals talk and dragons rule the skies.…
Defining Low Fantasy
A few weeks ago, I broke my first blog. I mean really broke it. Rolling server error messages, dead end re-directs, page not found messages… you name it, it was happening. The blog had become possessed by what seemed like every malcontent server imp ever documented. My hosting Yoda finally proclaimed the blog beyond resuscitation so I took it down, renamed it and rebuilt it better than ever. Since then, I’ve been working a little magic, getting all the old posts back up, taking the opportunity to improve upon what was there before. One of my first posts on the now deceased blog was an attempt to talk about High…
Defining Fantasy ~ It’s More Than Just Wizards
I was sitting in my glorious animal print wing back chair, fighting my way through a particularly nasty plot snag in my own work in progress when my attention began to wander. I don’t know about you, but sometimes, my attention is like a disobedient child, roaming about wherever my imagination happens to lead it. Frustrated because I needed its full cooperation on those plot knots, I pulled out my magic lasso and threw a rope around my fleeing attention, snagging it just before it made it out the door. Hand over hand, I reeled in the uncooperative beast while it fought me like some moss-covered behemoth from the deep.…
What Is Missing In Fantasy?
I recently finished reading The Black Company series of epic military fantasy novels by Glen Cook. There’s cast of thousands, sorcery, battles, betrayals and death. I’m now reading the Malazan series of epic military fantasy novels by Steve Erickson which also contains a lot of sorcery, betrayals, battles, death and a cast of thousands. On the surface, both of these fantasy book series are considered to be epic military fantasy and both appear to have a lot of similar elements, but beyond that, the two series are nothing alike. The results of playing around with permutation gadget I showed you in my previous post, “Unique Fantasy Combinations – Oh, The…
Unique Fantasy Combinations – Oh, The Possibilities
I spent some time this weekend wondering about unique fantasy combinations. I was reading some of those blogs and web sites that create lists like: “25 Best Fantasy Novels” or “Ten Best Fantasy Novels You’ve Never Read.” That search turned up the usual suspects, but it also took me down a few new bunny trails and into the darker underbelly of our virtual world where I found lists of the very worst, most dreadful fantasy books – and not just those lists where a blogger calls a book stupid or an author ignorant, either. One site in particular wasn’t shy about voicing their detailed negative opinions about books and calling…
Falling in Love With Fantasy
When did you first fall in love fantasy books? Me? I was about eight when I discovered fantasy books. As an even younger child, I had a whole stack of those Little Golden Books that I hoarded like a dragon with his gold. You know the ones, right? Small, 15-20 page children’s books of fairy tales like Little Red Riding Hood, The Three Little Pigs, Hansel and Gretel, and The Little Mermaid all beautifully illustrated and bound in a hard cardboard cover with golden binding on the spine. I tell you what, I flat wore those books out. I think I still have a few well-loved, dog-eared remnants stored in…