Diversity in Fantasy: We Can Do Better.

Diversity in Fantasy

One of the best things about writing in the fantasy fiction genre is that anything goes. I’m not saying there aren’t rules – there are – Harry Potter wasn’t able to bring his parents back from the dead, the One Ring gave Frodo powers, but not without consequence.  If done correctly, magic or superpowers shouldn’t be a panacea to all life’s problems or there would be nothing at stake, nothing for our hero to overcome or run up against. There are limits to magic and rules that govern fantasy worlds.   But – the good news is, as a writer – you make the rules!  You can create a fictional world of fish people, so long as you can convincingly explain to the reader how they’re able to breath under water, what kind of teeth they have for eating prey and how they’re able to navigate the darkest depths of the ocean.  Fantasy – no matter how far-fetched – must have a basis in reality or you risk the reader suspending their disbelief.

Which is why a lot of fantasy worlds draw from science, historical events, real people or historical periods.  Doing this provides the reader with a recognizable framework through which to view the world.  Going forward, let’s call that framework belief glasses.  As long as the writer provides the reader with a pair of belief glasses, the reader should be able to comfortably navigate the writer’s world and not get taken out of it.  So when you’re creating those glasses, why create ones that only see white people?  Why create glasses that can see dragons but not women in positions of power?  Why not make full-spectrum glasses? Continue reading “Diversity in Fantasy: We Can Do Better.”

Why We Procrastinate. (Pt 1)

MAKES (1)We’ve all been there before – when facing a looming deadline for a research paper or work presentation – we somehow find ourselves binge-watching episodes of Stranger Things on Netflix or re-alphabetizing our book shelves.  We have every intention of doing the thing…eventually.  We even set arbitrary deadlines for ourselves: I’ll do it at 11 o’clock.  And when 11 o’clock comes and goes and we still haven’t done the thing, we move the finish line.  I’ll start tomorrow.  I’ll start Monday.  I’ll start the first of May.  I’ll start in the New Year.  In the meantime, we stew in anxiety, guilt and self-hatred.  Why can’t I do the thing?  What’s wrong with me?  Will I ever do the thing?  Can I even do the thing? Continue reading “Why We Procrastinate. (Pt 1)”

It’s Never Too Late: 10 Writers & Artists That Were Late Bloomers

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In a world where it’s all about the next, young innovative person to come along, it’s easy to feel like we have passed our expiration date as writers or artists.  But does creativity have an expiration date?  Is there such a thing as “too late” when it comes to creating?

Continue reading “It’s Never Too Late: 10 Writers & Artists That Were Late Bloomers”