1. Fallenfeather
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    Fallenfeather New Member

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    Dark Fantasy

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by Fallenfeather, Dec 11, 2009.

    So the definition(from Wiki) of it is:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dark_fantasy

    Dark fantasy is a subgenre that combines elements of fantasy, including marvelous abilities, with those of horror.
    Another definition of the genre is "a type of horror story in which humanity is threatened by forces beyond human understanding."


    I understand that it is a combination between Horror and Fantasy but its not really clicking with me.I would really like to give it a try but I have no idea where to start.How much is horror should it have, and not go over board since its a combination of two genre etc.

    How exactly would you go about writing one, and has anyone written one on here that could give me some pointers? =)
     
  2. Phantasmal Reality
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    Phantasmal Reality Contributing Member

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    First of all, I recommend that you read some stories written by the authors cited in that Wikipedia page. That should give you a good idea of what Dark Fantasy is and isn't, and how it's handled.

    Dark Fantasy is not my area of expertise, but I don't think you should worry too much about the balance between fantasy and horror when writing it. I mean, almost every horror story that isn't about serial killers has some element of fantasy in it--whether it be ghosts, or zombies, or vampires, or possessed dolls--so the question of "balance" is really just a question of taste. Do you want a fantasy story that is scary at certain points, or a horror story that has some elements of fantasy in it? Just write the story according to your vision; it'll become whichever one it's meant to be.
     
  3. Enslaved
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    Enslaved New Member

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    I always thought dark fantasy simply describes a story in a dark, gruesome, "realistic" fantasy world. For example Conan the barbarian is what I instantly associate with dark fantasy, even though there is nothing what I would describe as horror in it.
     
  4. TWErvin2
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    TWErvin2 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Fallen Feather,

    Maybe this is a little off the topic but:

    If you really don't know what dark fantasy is, and you're not familiar with it--not having read much, why would you want to focus your efforts on writing in that subgenre?

    And in the end, going overboard, by having too much horror (or even not enough), may not be relevant. Each writer has their own writing style and voice, which includes the genre elements they include. Maybe it would be that you're interested in a certain market and what they accept, but then the question isn't really valid, as you'd have the answer to your question at hand--by simply reading what that market publishes.

    Good luck as you move forward,

    Terry
     
  5. Rei
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    Rei Contributing Member Contributor

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    Don't worry about these lables. That's for the publisher to do. When you are ready to submit your writing, obviously you need to find books that are similar. When you do, use the term that the publisher uses in its guidelines or catalogue. These definitions are useful for publishers, libraries, and literature teachers. In my experience, they tend to be a distraction to writers.
     
  6. CDRW
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    CDRW Contributing Member Contributor

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    Is it just me or does "Dark Fantasy" sound suspiciously close to "Fairy Tale"?
     
  7. writewizard
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    writewizard Contributing Member

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    I like the person who sugguested reading some previous material first. That's a great idea. How can you write about something you don't know about? I've tried and it's never worked well for me, I always have to poor a bit of research into it.

    Fantisy, to me, is make-believe; while horror is real. I myself would see a Twilight or Harry Potter look alike, but I'm unsrure as to if other fans agree with me.

    As for the balance, I wouldn't think that it would matter too much. It's your book. You're writing the material. It's your balance.
     
  8. Kas
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    Kas Contributing Member

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    The genre distinction sounds pretty vague. Most of Stephen King's "horror" has a strong supernatural element. By the definition given here, he is more a writer of dark fantasy than one of horror.

    I've often heard George Martin's Ice and Fire series referred to as dark fantasy. Going by literal interpretation, I would agree. The story is definitely "dark" and there are some horror elements as well, though they are few and far between. The whole thing is actually rather light on fantasy in general.
     
  9. HorusEye
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    HorusEye Contributing Member Contributor

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    Write what you wanna write, then leave it to the squareheads to stick it into their little genre-boxes so they can think they understand what it's about... They love that stuff. They're probably the same people who iron their socks. Don't worry about it as a creative person, it'll only restrict you.
     
  10. Lilah Jae
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    Lilah Jae New Member

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    First things first, if you don't know what it is, you'll have a hard time conveying your ideas the the reader. It'll be unbelievable. Read some Dark Fantasy that's already out there to get the idea.

    Plus, just because you write a story with Dark Fantasy intentions doesn't mean it'll be labeled as such :3 And if you try to put a specific amount of this and that (like horror), it'll seem a little weird. Why don't you try to out line a plot and write from there? Things will flow how they should and whatever is needed will come naturally. If you force something it won't be as believable.
     
  11. Cosmos
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    Cosmos Contributing Member

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    To be honest I'm a bit torn about how I feel you should approach this as either way I don't like the possible end result. The thing is if you do not read some dark fantasy you might end up with something entirely not dark fantasy, and if you're aiming for that you might miss the mark. But if you do read some dark fantasy you might be unconsciously influenced and find your writings looking entirely too much like what you've read. I'd say you should pull together an outline for your story and then go read some. That way you shouldn't be swayed too much by what you read, but you won't be marketing your story as something it's not.
     

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