What kind of Fantasy is “One” closest to?

02 Dec

This evening I was asked, “If you were to compare your story to another one, what would you say it is closest to?”

After a moment’s reflection, my response was, “Possibly Terry Goodkind {Sword of Truth}, but maybe not as in-depth, but more detailed than Terry Brooks {Shanara}.  If I were to compare it to a storyline, maybe a comparison to Dragonlance {Weis and Hickman}, without as many magical races interlaced…”

The conversation went on from there, and I did my best to explain my reasonings – that the story was very human-centric like Goodkind’s series, with only one demi-human, a dwarf, actually in the current timeline of the story (not counting flashback stories, of course), but I didn’t think my writing was quite Goodkind intense, while at the same time, it was a story that involved quests and travelling in search of magic relics, like Brooks’ Shanara series’, yet without the heavy overlay of elves and other races.  I went further to explain that this story was about two rival sets of human Gods, and as such, it needed to be primarily centered around human society.  This did not mean that the other mystical and demi-human races were not in this world, just that I did not feel a need to force them into the story in the first book.  Later books will definitely bring the other races and creatures more into play, but still this will remain a primarily human-centric story, since the other races – for the most part – are not really concerned with the affairs of man, other than how those affairs effect them.  And quite frankly, it matters little to an elf or gnome who humans choose to worship, so long as the object of worship does not compel war upon them specifically.

I thought this was an interesting perspective to share, since it is honestly not one I had given much thought to as I was writing, nor even as I was seeking publication.  As I explained in the course of the conversation, I never felt a need to copy someone else’s style nor story – I set out to tell a story I had imagined.  And though I certainly drew influences from many authors before me, the actual context of the story I believe to be uniquely my own.

I recently saw a forum post that commented that there seemed to be no new fantasies out there that did not have vampires, werewolves or both.  This is in reflection in large part to the popularity of the Twilight series, just as the previous popularity of the Harry Potter books spawned a wealth of teenage wizard/magician series before it.  When I was young, there were maybe a dozen different series trying to follow in the steps of the Hardy Boys by Dixon.  I think this will ever be a pattern in modern story-telling: someone will have a unique perspective, and many will come out of the woodworks to copy it.

Well, that is not my intent.  But I would really enjoy some feedback on this from anyone reading this:  Do you think my style is reminescent of anyone else, do you believe “One” is copy-catting any current theme presently over-popular in the market today, or do you feel after reading it that it is a unqiue story all its own?  Please participate in the survey below, and by all means, contact me directly with any specific ideas or comments…

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Posted by on December 2, 2011 in Uncategorized


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