Fantasy imposes order on the universe. Or, at least, it superimposes order on the universe. And it is a human order. Reality tells us that we exist for a brief, beleaguered span in a cold infinity; fantasy tells us that the figures in the foreground are important. Fantasy peoples the alien Outside, and it doesn't matter a whole lot if it peoples it with good guys or bad guys. Putting 'Hy-Brasil' on the map is a step in the right direction, but if you can't manage that, then 'Here Be Dragons is better than nothing. Better than the void.
I wish more fantasy, especially the dominant fantasy that draws heavily on British and Christian lore, would wrestle with its own ethnospecific nature and what that means when the story is set somewhere where more than one belief system is in operation. If all you do is pay lip service to it, you can get the kind of thing where the writer has thrown one Hindu god into a Christianist fantasy (rendering said god by default a demon or otherwise inferior to the dominant religious system of the story, which is such an insult), and the hero is able to vanquish it by chanting a spell in church Latin.
I suppose each of us has his own fantasy of how he wants to die. I would like to go out in a blaze of glory, myself, or maybe simply disappear someday, far out in the heart of the wilderness I love, all by myself, alone with the Universe and whatever God may happen to be looking on. Disappear - and never return. That's my fantasy.
We are now edging across the boundary - always a porous one - between self-justification and fantasy. Matthews' story is by no means a complete fantasy: we can recognise every event. But the frame of reference is somehow shrinking, and momentous world events being rewritten around the actions of a minor player.
Man is a fantastic animal; he was born of fantasy, he is the son of "the mad woman of the house." And universal history is the gigantic and thousand-year effort to go on putting order into that huge, disorderly, anti-animal fantasy. What we call reason is no more than fantasy put into shape. Is there anything in the world more fantastic than that which is the most rational? Is there anything more fantastic than the mathematical point, and the infinite line, and, in general, all mathematics and all physics? Is there a more fantastic fancy than what we call "justice" and the other thing that we call "happiness"?
Jose Ortega y Gasset
Fantasy is a product of thought, Imagination of sensibility. If the thinking, discursive mind turns to speculation, the result isFantasy; if, however, the sensitive, intuitive mind turns to speculation, the result is Imagination. Fantasy may be visionary, but it is cold and logical. Imagination is sensuous and instinctive. Both have form, but the form of Fantasy is analogous to Exposition, that of Imagination to Narrative.
It's the fantasy of first love. If you've been married for 400 years, as I have, it's nice to experience first love again and you can vicariously through a book. And it is such a fantasy. It takes you away from doing the dishes and the laundry. I think of this as a contemporary romance rather than erotic fiction.
E. L. James
Fantasy is my favorite genre for reading and writing. We have more options than anyone else, and the best props and special effects. That means if you want to write a fantasy story with Norse gods, sentient robots, and telepathic dinosaurs, you can do just that. Want to throw in a vampire and a lesbian unicorn while you're at it? Go ahead.
So let's not get frightened when the children read fantasy. It's the compost for a healthy mind. It stimulate s the inquisitive nodes, and there is some evidence that a rich internal fantasy life is as good and necessary for a child as healthy soil is for a plant, for much the same reasons.
Fantasy was something I'd read as a child. And, in fact, my teachers despaired a little bit because I refused to give up Enid Blyton. Then I walked through the wardrobe with C. S. Lewis, and I don't think I actually have returned fully from the wardrobe. So, fantasy was something that was in my life from quite young.
A lot of people feel like urban fantasy is a shortcut that gets you around world-building, because it's set "in the real world." But it doesn't really work that way, as I found out. You have to come up with just as consistent an internal cosmology and magic system as you would if you were writing high fantasy.
There's a rule for what makes good fantasy work, and it's as strange as any riddle ever posed in a fairy tale: In fantasy, you can do anything; and therefore, the one thing you must not do is 'just anything.' Why? Because in a story where anything can happen and anything can be true, nothing matters. You have no reason to care what happens. It's all arbitrary, and arbitrary isn't interesting.
Teresa Nielsen Hayden
Honestly, I think there's a cycle to the popularity of fantasy and fairytales that usually coincides with times of unrest or hardship in our own world. By retelling these legends or immersing ourselves in fantasy realms, we can safely explore the very real, very day-to-day darkness of our own lives.
Sarah J. Maas
Poetry restores language by breaking it, and I think that much contemporary writing restores fantasy, as a genre of writing in contrast to a genre of commodity or a section in a bookstore, by breaking it. Michael Moorcock revived fantasy by prying it loose from morality; writers like Jeff VanderMeer, Stepan Chapman, Lucius Shepard, Jeffrey Ford, Nathan Ballingrud are doing the same by prying fantasy away from pedestrian writing, with more vibrant and daring styles, more reflective thinking, and a more widely broadcast spectrum of themes.
I think it simply comes down to fantasy being the language I speak. While I cannot get into epic sword and sorcery, I see the world as having the potential to be slightly off-kilter. I have run into people who do not quite seem human - though of course they are - and have been privy to coincidences that almost make me believe in magic. Fantasy is sometimes just asking yourself, 'Well, what if you are wrong? What if the world doesn't work the way you think? What would that mean?
Karl Marx predicted the eventual withering away of the state and the 'dictatorship of the proletariat,' when the people would rule, which was sheer fantasy because it was sheer fantasy because it was based on grossly erroneous assumptions about human nature, as history would repeatedly demonstrate.
I believe there is no part of our lives, our adult as well as child life, when we're not fantasizing, but we prefer to relegate fantasy to children, as though it were some tomfoolery only fit for the immature minds of the young. Children do live in fantasy and reality; they move back and forth very easily in a way we no longer remember how to do.
Dealing with the impossible, fantasy can show us what may be really possible. If there is grief, there is the possibility of consolation; if hurt, the possibility of healing; and above all, the curative power of hope. If fantasy speaks to us as we are, it also speaks to us as we might be
We are all the judges and the judged, victims of the casual malice and fantasy of others, and ready sources of fantasy and malice in our turn. And if we are sometimes accused of sins of which we are innocent, are there not also other sins of which we are guilty and of which the world knows nothing?
THE NAME OF THE WIND has everything fantasy readers like, magic and mysteries and ancient evil, but it's also humorous and terrifying and completely believable. As with all the very best books in our field, it's not the fantasy trappings (wonderful as they are) that make this novel so good, but what the author has to say about true, common things, about ambition and failure, art, love, and loss.
I guess one of the most magnificent things a novel can do is to change your perspective on the world, and to give it some sense of wonder, and that's what I find so exciting in writing fantasy, especially fantasy for children. Because already, I think children have a very special and unusual way of seeing the world.
I love the word 'fantasy'... but I love it for the almost infinite room it gives an author to play: an infinite playroom, of a sort, in which the only boundaries are those of the imagination. I do not love it for the idea of commercial fantasy. Commercial fantasy, for good or for ill, tends to drag itself through already existing furrows, furrows dug by J. R. R. Tolkien or Robert E. Howard, leaving a world of stories behind it, excluding so much. There was so much fine fiction, fiction allowing free reign to the imagination of the author, beyond the shelves of genre. That was what we wanted to read.
At its best, fantasy rewards the reader with a sense of wonder about what lies within the heart of the commonplace world. The greatest tales are told over and over, in many ways, through centuries. Fantasy changes with the changing times, and yet it is still the oldest kind of tale in the world, for it began once upon a time, and we haven't heard the end of it yet.
Patricia A. McKillip
People normally view my work as fantasy, which on some level is true, but I do think that my work is more magical realist than fantasy. I believe in the fantasies within each of our realities, i.e., I portray very relatable human issues in a very realistic tone, yet in a magical setting.
All I ever wanted to do was be on stage, if possible acting in Shakespeare. And to be as good as I could be.There was nowhere else I wanted to go. TV was of no interest. Films were just a fantasy. Yet I was convinced that when we found ourselves in that world of fantasy and sci-fi, it was our classical background and our training that equipped us for that larger-than life-world.
It's easier for me to write certain character types because of my own life experiences, but I find it too artistically limiting to only write about red-headed kids who grew up in small town Montana. That's really part of the fun of fantasy, I think. Our imagination is basically unlimited. Okay, that's a terrifying thing about fantasy, too.
Audiences seem to have a limitless appetite for vampires and for fantasy in general. Unlike many other British actors, I haven't been building up my pension appearing in films like 'The Lord of the Rings' and 'Harry Potter,' but fantasy has now got a grip on me. I am also appearing in 'Game of Thrones' as the head of the House of Lannister.
The problem with a lot of people who read only literary fiction is that they assume fantasy is just books about orcs and goblins and dragons and wizards and bullshit. And to be fair, a lot of fantasy is about that stuff. The problem with people in fantasy is they believe that literary fiction is just stories about a guy drinking tea and staring out the window at the rain while he thinks about his mother. And the truth is a lot of literary fiction is just that. Like, kind of pointless, angsty, emo, masturbatory bullshit. However, we should not be judged by our lowest common denominators. And also you should not fall prey to the fallacious thinking that literary fiction is literary and all other genres are genre. Literary fiction is a genre, and I will fight to the death anyone who denies this very self-evident truth. So, is there a lot of fantasy that is raw shit out there? Absolutely, absolutely, it's popcorn reading at best. But you can't deny that a lot of lit fic is also shit. 85% of everything in the world is shit. We judge by the best. And there is some truly excellent fantasy out there. For example, Midsummer Night's Dream; Hamlet with the ghost; Macbeth, ghosts and witches; I'm also fond of the Odyessey; Most of the Pentateuch in the Old Testament, Gargantua and Pantagruel. Honestly, fantasy existed before lit fic, and if you deny those roots you're pruning yourself so closely that you can't help but wither and die.
Nobody wants to see the truth. Everybody wants to have the fantasy. When I look back at the books I was reading in my childhood were selling some sort of fantasy as well. Most stories are not going to tell the deep suffering of every day. No book prepared me for the suffering I would experience in life because the word "suffering" does not even describe what the suffering is. No story is going to tell you that, and no words can tell you that.
A lot of the strength of an RPG world lies in its foundation: its systems, lore, and when appropriate, its magic systems. While there are elements tied to 'Project: Eternity' that at first glance seem to be classic fantasy, that's intentional - we do want to recreate some elements of a High Fantasy experience.
The traditional American husband and father had the responsibilities-and the privileges-of playing the role of primary provider. Sharing that role is not easy. To yield exclusive access to the role is to surrender some of the potential for fulfilling the hero fantasy-a fantasy that appeals to us all. The loss is far from trivial.
Faye J Crosby
The first rule of world-building is available physics, which basically means that if you want it to feel real, it has to follow the same rules as this world, from gravity to how human behaviour works. If you have a fantasy element that doesnt obey the laws of physics, make sure that it has a fantasy explanation.
The first rule of world-building is available physics, which basically means that if you want it to feel real, it has to follow the same rules as this world, from gravity to how human behaviour works. If you have a fantasy element that doesn't obey the laws of physics, make sure that it has a fantasy explanation.
Anthony Ryan is a new fantasy author destined to make his mark on the genre. His debut novel, Blood Song, certainly has it all: great coming of age tale, compelling character, and a fast-paced plot. If his first book is any indication of things to come, then all fantasy readers should rejoice as a new master storyteller has hit the scene.
Michael J. Sullivan
While the whole 'God Butcher Saga' had elements of fantasy, sci-fi and horror all mixed together, 'The Accursed' is very much high-fantasy. Right out of the gate, we've got elves, talk of fantastic worlds, strange creatures, Malekith riding a flying tiger, as well as more dwarves, giants, trolls and elves than you can possibly count.
Importance of dreams is not in using - importance is in having. You think dreams must mean something real, that fantasy bad for the soul. All wrong, all wrong. Fantasy just as important as reality. Reality is feeding body - finding food for keep alive. Fantasy feeds spirit. Soul need food same as body, and dreams, philosophies, stories, creations, all food for spirit, see?
Garry Douglas Kilworth
Fantasy consists in a morbid fascination with unrealities, which secretly transforms itself into a desire to make them real. Imagination is a form of intellectual control, which presents us with the image of unrealities in order that we should understand and feel distanced from them. In imagination we dominate; in fantasy, we are dominated.
In a closed urban fantasy, the magical world is secret and no one knows about it. In an open urban fantasy, everyone knows about it. So with a closed fantasy, you have to figure out how the world keeps itself secret, and with an open one, you have to figure out how knowledge of magic has altered the world we know.
For fantasy is true, of course. It isn't factual, but it is true. Children know that. Adults know it too, and that is precisely why many of them are afraid of fantasy. They know that its truth challenges, even threatens, all that is false, all that is phony, unnecessary, and trivial in the life they have let themselves be forced into living. They are afraid of dragons, because they are afraid of freedom.
Ursula K. Le Guin
Fantasy is not antirational, but pararational; not realistic but surrealistic, a heightening of reality. In Freud's terminology, it employs primary not secondary process thinking. It employs archetypes which, as Jung warned us, are dangerous things. Fantasy is nearer to poetry, to mysticism, and to insanity than naturalistic fiction is. It is a wilderness, and those who go there should not feel too safe.
Ursula K. Le Guin
How can I call security a woman's primary fantasy if I am saying it is also her primary need? Because while her primary need is the security of a home and a family circle, her primary fantasy is that someone else will earn enough to pay for them. Hence the focus of 2 billion women on the latest royal wedding.
I had this fantasy of becoming a neurosurgeon. You know, the normal Jewish boy fantasy, but I wanted to be a neurosurgeon for some reason. So I started in this unpleasant way. I was an assistant to the coroner, opening up corpses, taking the innards out, opening skulls, taking the brains out.
When I write a book, I put everything I have into it; so the more I have, the more the books become. Some people get freaked out by them: mostly the people who believe, mistakenly, that fantasy is about escaping reality. To them I say: If you have a problem with reality, you should be spending more time dealing with your life, and less time reading popcorn fantasy.
Matthew Woodring Stover
if you miss what seems so glamorous; if you miss what seems so fantastic to have, don't worry. It may be just a matter of fantasy to have it. Real things are rare but real to have. serendipity and the vicissitudes of life determine what is real, ideal and what is a fantasy. The real future is uncertain to all.
Ernest Agyemang Yeboah
So many people think that if you're writing fantasy, it means you can just make everything up as you go. Want to add a dragon? Add a dragon! Want some magic? Throw it in. But the thing is, regardless of whether you're dealing with realism or fantasy, every world has rules. Make sure to establish a natural order.
V. E. Schwab
Much blood has also been spilled on the carpet in attempts to distinguish between science fiction and fantasy. I have suggested an operational definition: science fiction is something that COULD happen - but usually you wouldn't want it to. Fantasy is something that COULDN'T happen - though often you only wish that it could.
Arthur C. Clarke
Everybody has their own America, and then they have pieces of a fantasy America that they think is out there but they can't see... So the fantasy corners of America... you've pieced them together from scenes in movies and music and lines from books. And you live in your dream America that you've custom-made from art and schmaltz and emotions just as much as you live in your real one.
I love fantasy. I grew up reading fantasy. But, I wanted to put a somewhat different spin on it. The whole trope of absolute good versus absolute evil, which was wonderful in the hands of J.R. Tolkien, became cliche and rote in the hands of the many Tolkien imitators that followed.
George R. R. Martin
Before the Wright brothers flew, flying was fantasy. Before the civil rights movement, people getting along together and the races being equal was a fantasy. Things change because we imagine a different world, a world that is not. And I think that imagination is one of the most important and defining aspects of human existence: our ability to imagine a world that is not.
Lyra learns to her great cost that fantasy isn't enough. She has been lying all her life, telling stories to people, making up fantasies, and suddenly she comes to a point where that's not enough. All she can do is tell the truth. She tells the truth about her childhood, about the experiences she had in Oxford, and that is what saves her. True experience, not fantasy - reality, not lies - is what saves us in the end.
I'm interested in the parallel narrative of our fantasy lives. How the moment of 'now' that is palpably real, is surrounded by our memories, our dreams and hopes, the stories and connections that our brains make as we navigate a universe of fantasy, or unreality, or surreality. I'm keen to explore this very human experience, how our minds create our own realities, a blend of fact and interpretation of fact.
Many readers simply can't stomach fantasy. They immediately picture elves with broadswords or mighty-thewed barbarians with battle axes, seeking the bejeweled Coronet of Obeisance... (But) the best fantasies pull aside the velvet curtain of mere appearance... In most instances, fantasy ultimately returns us to our own now re-enchanted world, reminding us that it is neither prosaic nor meaningless, and that how we live and what we do truly matters.
Many readers simply can't stomach fantasy. They immediately picture elves with broadswords or mighty-thewed barbarians with battle axes, seeking the bejeweled Coronet of Obeisance ... (But) the best fantasies pull aside the velvet curtain of mere appearance. ... In most instances, fantasy ultimately returns us to our own now re-enchanted world, reminding us that it is neither prosaic nor meaningless, and that how we live and what we do truly matters.
YA stories feature a young adult protagonist or protagonists and usually focus on that character's journey toward maturity (the tradition of the Bildungsroman.). Learning about love / relationships is an important part of that stage in our lives, so it's not surprising so many writers are building strong romantic elements into their YA stories. I don't remember quite such an emphasis on romance in the books my children read as young adults, so I do think the approach has changed. Within my genre of fantasy, there's been an upsurge of paranormal romance, partly generated by the Twilight books, but also reflecting the popularity of this sub-genre with adult readers. There are far more female fantasy writers (and female fantasy readers) than there were, say, twenty years ago, and perhaps female writers are more confident about including a good love story in a fantasy novel. (2012 Interview by Helen Lowe: The Supernatural Underground: An Interview with Juliet Marillier Discussing "Shadowfell".)
... my father loved to take photographs of me. When I was nine I made my own costumes for a school play and I experienced becoming different characters. I loved to document myself as different images and I think my work evolved after this favorite activity. The photographs I exhibited in New York juxtaposed reality and fantasy. There was everyday life and fantasy was dismantling that reality.
Westcliff thinks that St. Vincent is in love with you.' Evie choked a little and didn't dare look up from her tea. 'Wh-why does he think that?' 'He's known St. Vincent from childhood, and can read him fairly well. And Westcliff sees an odd sort of logic in why you would finally be the one to win St. Vincent's heart. He says a girl like you would appeal to... hmm, how did he put it?... I can't remember the exact words, but it was something like... you would appeal to St. Vincent's deepest, most secret fantasy.' Evie felt her cheeks flushing while a skirmish of pain and hope took place in the tired confines of her chest. She tried to respond sardonically. 'I should think his fantasy is to consort with as many women as possible.' A grin crossed Lillian's lips. 'Dear, that is not St. Vincent's fantasy, it's his reality. And you're probably the first sweet, decent girl he's ever had anything to do with.