I was down in the local bookstore the other day and browsing through my favourite section – the fantasy/science fiction section. It didn’t take me long to notice something. Other than the fantasy section being crowded by Robert Jordan, Twilight and its sequels and J.R.R. Tolkien, the fantasy being sold the bookstore could be classified into three different types:
1. Epic Fantasies;
2. Vampires; and
3. Wizard schools
Fantasy is supposed to be the field where anything goes. If you can dream it, you should be able to write it. But it seems as though Fantasy has become bogged down by retelling the same stories again and again.
Vampires are big right now. But when haven’t they been big? Ever since Bram Stoker brought Count Dracula more than a hundred years ago (although I speak under correction). Harry Potter brought the wizarding schools into the spotlight. And J.R.R. and his buddy, C.S. Lewis really created the Epic Fantasy field.
What about those wide open areas in the Fantasy field? It seems as though they’re only a myth. Like the Fantasies people write about.