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Re: [Fantasy Fiction Dungeon] genrefication

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  • Saje
    One thing about literature--even genre literature--is that everyone has their own take on things. I disagree with you about Heinlein, and Spider too, for that
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 1, 2006
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      One thing about literature--even genre literature--is that everyone has their own take on things. I disagree with you about Heinlein, and Spider too, for that matter, though I do agree with you on the whole paranormal romance genre, for the most part. There's very little that's new being done right now in that sub-genre, though I think it's due for a shake-up as well. I know people who write in that sub-genre...Some are better than others.

      I personally like Simon Green's Nightside concept, though the Deathstalker stuff left me cold.

      My own stuff originally started out as an RPG, which I have since adapted into novels. The setting is interesting, but I can change settings without missing a beat because it's more about the characters than the setting.

      I write what I want to write...and have gotten some excellent reviews out of it. I'm not into the abstract stuff. I write adventure stories with a science fantasy backdrop. Stuff that captures the imagination and keeps the reader's attention, with lots of twists and turns.

      If it suits you, check out my website...

      http://www.sajewilliams.com



      ----- Original Message -----
      From: Marc Vun Kannon
      To: fantasyfictiondungeon@yahoogroups.com
      Sent: Friday, March 31, 2006 4:55 PM
      Subject: [Fantasy Fiction Dungeon] genrefication


      Originally the genres started out as stories that put
      more of a focus on the genre elements that seperated
      it from regular literature. What annoys me about so
      much of it is that the story element has gotten lost
      in favor of the genre element, not that it needs to
      be, but because the writer had some brilliant idea for
      some 'new' or 'original' race, magic system,
      technological item, quest, throne, etc., and wrote the
      story to show off his own brilliance. The characters
      are there to move the story along from one performance
      to the next. The perfect example of this is Simon R.
      Green, whose books are little more than character(s)
      walking around from one new object to the next until
      the story comes to some relatively uninspired
      denouement in which most of these museum exhibits play
      no part.
      I haven't noticed that having actual scientists and
      engineers weigh in has helped anything, except to slow
      down an already dull story with a pointless passion
      for accuracy. I agree that Spider's books are all
      about people, but that's because Spider can actually
      write stories. Except, of course, that he continually
      tries to be a second-rate Heinlein (who was himself
      second-rate) rather than a first-rate Spider.
      Uniqueness is not a virtue in stories, since it only
      means that no one will understand it. Nor should it
      ever have to be striven for. If the story is the
      written to satisfy the author, not written for a
      demographic, then it will be as unique and original as
      the author. My primary concern is to do something that
      I've never seen before, but will do what needs to be
      done to make my story work. Beyond that it becomes
      yet another factor in my story, the consequences of
      which I have to discover. Many times I've seen books
      that come out after I've finished mine that have much
      the same events happen in them, and I worry that
      people are going to think I copied them!
      But merely making something that's "like a vampire,
      except..." is not what I would call original.
      Saberhagen's Dracula in The Dracula Tape is far more
      original than any of these daylight dwelling, emotion
      eating, psychic parasites some people come up with,
      especially in the paranormal romance realm where every
      other book features a vampire. In my latest novel I
      invent vampires completely by accident. I didn't even
      realize the character had all the characteristics of a
      vampire until after I'd written the story. It's a
      fairly standard vampire, but that's okay, since the
      story wasn't about him being a vampire. And when I
      write my story explaining the origin of dragons, it
      won't be because I want to talk about dragons.

      --- Saje <soulsaje@...> wrote:

      > Science fiction started out as "gizmos and gadgets"
      > written by folks who didn't really know any science.
      > Then actual scientists and engineers weighed in and
      > it changed the themes a bit. As was quoted in a
      > forward to Spider Robinson's Callahan's omnibus
      > (which I'm listening to in audio book right now) it
      > finally came to be about people.
      >
      > I know what you mean about novelty... I'm don't TRY
      > to write something unique--it just so happens that
      > my imagination works that way. So far I have yet to
      > get a less than glowing review...the only complaint
      > I've gotten from a reader is that she didn't like
      > the liberties I took with mythological figures.
      >
      > Not that I give a DAMN about that. I kinda figured
      > I'd get some of those reactions from the pagan
      > community.
      >
      > I like taking familiar themes and doing something
      > different with them. I don't like abstract
      > literature, personally, or stuff I can't relate to.
      > If the guy's screwing a bug-faced person, I don't
      > want to know about it. I take that as weirdness for
      > weirdness's sake.
      >
      > I've had my stuff compared to Zelazny's once or
      > twice, but, other than that, there aren't a lot of
      > comparisons to make. I've never read anything that
      > I can point to and say "that's what it's like."
      >
      > But what I believe it is...is entertaining.
      > ----- Original Message -----
      > From: Marc Vun Kannon
      > To: fantasyfictiondungeon@yahoogroups.com
      > Sent: Friday, March 31, 2006 12:20 PM
      > Subject: Re: [Fantasy Fiction Dungeon] Note From
      > Robert Jordan about his medical condition
      >
      >
      > It just seems to me that there is a great desire
      > on
      > the part of some writers to discard classic themes
      > and
      > stories in favor of gizmos and gadgets. There is
      > a
      > vast space between rehashed cliched crap and
      > material
      > so cutting-edge the reader can't relate to it. I
      > like
      > to think my own work, for example, is located
      > somewhere in that space, or Bujold, Meluch,
      > Duncan,
      > Gould, Huff, Hoffman, and many others.
      > Ultra-modernity is just as much a disguise as
      > untra-conventionality. One hides poor writing
      > under a
      > cliche, the other relies on novelty and the
      > accompanying lack of standards to hide the fact
      > that
      > it isn't up to any standard.
      >
      > --- Saje <soulsaje@...> wrote:
      >
      > > I don't know about it being a "modern fetish,"
      > but I
      > > do have to say I'M tired of reading the same old
      > > crap rehashed. I don't write it, and I sure
      > don't
      > > want to read it. It's one of the reasons I've
      > > avoided reading epic fantasy for quite some time
      > > now. I'd rather read just about anything else.
      >
      > Marc Vun Kannon
      >
      > http://www.marcvunkannon.com
      >
      > Unbinding the Stone--To do the things that Gods
      > cannot.
      > A Warrior Made--Now available from Echelon Press.
      >
      > Fantasy at its most magical. Sit and read a
      > spell!
      >
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      Marc Vun Kannon

      http://www.marcvunkannon.com

      Unbinding the Stone--To do the things that Gods cannot.
      A Warrior Made--Now available from Echelon Press.
      Fantasy at its most magical. Sit and read a spell!

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