This article is by Walter Rhein.
There is an inherent paradox in the phrase “focused ambiguity”. Yet the disconnect achieved by putting those two words together approximates the mental state necessary for writing good fantasy.
One of the big mistakes a lot of new writers make in their world building is too much of a focus on practical construction. However, unless the overall theme of your fantasy book is economics, you really don’t need to explain how your “diamond city in the desert” gets enough drinking water to support its population.
An effective novel always has a strong connective thread, and, in fantasy, every character, setting, and action can be molded to function as an integral part of the extended metaphor that supports the novel’s overall theme.… Continue Reading
Fantasy is a genre where the mythical and made-up can be reality, where the fact that something is physically impossible doesn’t stop it from burning down your town or stealing your babies.
In this series, I’ll be looking at the creatures of fantasy – where they came from, how authors have used them, and what potential they have in the stories we’re writing now.
I’m starting with fairies. They are also known as the fey, the little people hiding in mystical groves, winged humanoids often thought to be pretty or playful – but not always quite so benign. Various other critters have been grouped under the fairy banner – imps, sprites, gnomes, nymphs and goblins, for example – but in this article I’ll be talking about the kind that are only ever called fairies or some variation thereof.… Continue Reading