Greetings fellow blog-readers. I have been selected. I am unique. I, alone amongst all of you have been chosen, and have been given the honor of posting a guest-entry. Maybe one day (if you are as amazing as I) you will be selected also, but until that day I laugh at you. Hah.
By way of brief introduction, I am a sorry attempt at a fantasy writer, who spends more time thinking about what he would like to write than actually writing. Once upon a time I did write a great deal, but nowadays “Once upon a time” is about as far as I get. It’s due to this past experience with fantasy writing (however brief and awkward) that I’ve been asked by my good friend “Skydekkerix” to shit all over his blog-space.
My (pen)name is Akash, and I will be your under-qualified teacher today. Pay attention class. The topic of today’s lesson, as you may have already guessed, is Fantasy Writing, so sit down, pay attention, and don’t fiddle with anything (or anyone).
Fantasy writing is the most open and unrestrained genre. Those who write it need only a platform from which to throw the reader, and a general idea of direction. After this, anything can happen. Don’t confine yourself to the stereotypes or the “norm”, you have zero restrictions, so playing it by-the-book only lets the reader down. Be as creative as you can with the fantasy.
Fantasy contains within it all other Fictional genres. Romance, horror, crime, mystery, science-fiction (yes it’s on the same shelf!), western, inspirational and of-course Action-adventure. You can still slay dragons, and send a party on an epic adventure, but you can also solve the mystery of who slew the dragon, tell an inspirational story of the prisoner of a dragon, a horror of a village under the tyranny of a dragon, throw jets or spaceships against dragons, or make them fight cowboys (they made cowboys fight aliens, so why not dragons?).
Raise the integrity level. A book that re-uses the creatures, magic or places from another book is immediately less effective in holding a readers attention. Every fantasy book should be the creation of something new. You can pull it out of anywhere and it can be as crazy as you want, just make it new, and make it work. Instead of a dragon, call it a Dranakar and make it come from the sky realm where all things are woven from the chaos of the roiling cloud. Give the thing cloud-like skin instead of scales and make it breathe frost instead of fire. It’s easy, just spit out whatever your subconscious throws up and poke it till it moves.
Finally, if you’re writing a good story with material that has been used a thousand times, ignore the first half of this blog. If you are doing this, it means that you’re writing with a perspective or mood that has not yet been abused, and are therefore writing “Original Fantasy”, even if everything in your fantasy has been seen before. Continue to write that story, and it might just be a best seller. I will forever hate you.
Thank you very much Skydekkerix for allowing me to have my way with your blog, and for giving me an excuse to get some practice writing. I needed it.
Thank you to everyone else for taking the time to read this, and I hope to see some posts from all of you in the time to come…Ok, I’m kidding, I really don’t care.