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emotion v. intellect

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  • darancgrissom@sbcglobal.net
    I was wondering, with all of the talk about cookie cutter plot lines, hack writting and such; how important in regards to fantasy fiction is emotional impact
    Message 1 of 2 , Jan 26, 2003
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      I was wondering, with all of the talk about cookie cutter plot lines, hack writting and such; how important in regards to fantasy fiction is emotional impact versus intellectual engagment. I know that to a certain extent the two are interconnected, the reader cannot be emotionally impacted if they do undertsand, sympathize, and be actively engaged by the story. However, the more original the story line is the greater the possibillity that the reader will not follw the greater story. When that happens the reader may lose interest.
      On the reverse side of things the more a writer goes for the cliche characters, which I think carry with them certain emotional baggage.
      . An emotional reaction, to a particular type of character. The reader not only knows how to react but is subconciously conditioned to react. I love a good selfrighteous villian who does more bad than good because of their inabillity to compromise. Instant dislike.
      On the other hand if you use too many stock characters you end up creating a saturday matinee serial, which was nothing but stock characters and stock footage.


      I like David Edding's Sparhawk books. Mostly stock story, with stock character, but the pantheon of the story and the philosophical questions were engaging, and the dialouge in Eddings books are usually really good. I think that goes for Robert Jordan, George Martin (though to a lesser degree), and R.A. Salvatore (more or less, depending on what he's writting.
      My conclusion is that sometimes convienant plot, and well used characters can be the most valuable of literary tools, as long as you have something else, of soem originality to say.


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    • Bill
      I agree that the books that engage my interest most are those in which a character makes me care for him or her, but it also helps if the writer has a viable
      Message 2 of 2 , Jan 27, 2003
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        I agree that the books that engage my interest most are
        those in which a
        character makes me care for him or her, but it also helps if
        the writer has
        a viable plot and a readable style of writing.(Don't ask
        much, do I?)
        And it's not necessarily cliched characters that can grab
        a reader's
        sympathies. Martin has an unconventional character who by all
        rights would be labeled Ye Villain (or one of them),yet I
        can't help
        but root a bit for him. Robin Hobbs' had another non-cliched
        protagonist
        and took three books to reveal the events that formed him in
        her
        Traders series
        On the other hand, Janny Wurt's current series, which has
        two
        fine main characters, is beginning to drag for me because the
        writing is overwrought.
        And Jordan could have written his series in half the books
        if he'd
        stop repeating the same scenarios over and over again.


        darancgrissom@... wrote:
        I was wondering, with all of the talk about cookie cutter plot
        lines, hack writting and such;
        how important in regards to fantasy fiction is emotional
        impact versus intellectual engagment.



        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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