January 25, 2011

Kender Stew and a bit of a rant about Fantasy... again. [review and musing time]

So here's my problem with the Fantasy genre, and why I think it has a bad reputation. You can define the genre by it's setting and plot. In a medieval-style world, a powerless man has to overcome a great evil to save his people. This is a genre where anything is possible, and somehow writers have managed to retell the same story in the same place with the same characters hundreds of times. Even some of my favourite books fall into this category. I still read them because I feel they have something new to add to the tradition, but really, why does Fantasy have to be about world-changing events and good conquering evil? Why does it always take place in the same aesthetic time?

Kender Stew is a short story in the Dragonlance's Reign of Istar anthology, and it only
fulfills on of my criteria for a new fantasy movement - the plot is unique. It isn't about saving the world - it's just about people developing and coming to terms events in their lives, like any other drama text. There are certain Fantasy elements that work their way into the story-telling, making the character more complex and the story as a whole more juicy for Fantasy-lovers. There's no reason for there to be so few stories in the Fantasy genre that think outside the box. That's what Tolkien was doing when he wrote The Lord of the Rings, and since then very few people have actually followed in his footsteps.

1 comment:

  1. Excellent blog! And thanks for the comment on my Black Swan review.