1. MustWrite
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    MustWrite Member

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    Is there a certain style or voice Fantasies must be written in to be accepted?

    Discussion in 'Fantasy' started by MustWrite, Nov 25, 2013.

    I am writing my first Fantasy, and though I read as much as I can in that genre, I wonder if I am writing 'in the right way' to be accepted by fantasy publishers/readers. I have read widely, [in many genres], and inevitably some of those books have affected the way I write, though of course I want to let my own 'voice' to develop as I write, etc, I wonder if there is a 'correct' form that fantasy readers expect to see? Hope this question makes sense and doesn't seem really dense.
     
  2. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    No, there isn't. You will find a great deal of diversity in voice, style, point of view, and so on, in fantasy literature. Just write a great book.
     
  3. TessaT
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    TessaT Contributing Member

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    The only correct form that I hope to see when I read any book is punctuation, spelling, and POV. By POV, I simply mean being inconsistent with what POV you're using.
    Don't focus on type, or form. Just write your book, write your story, write your soul down and see what happens. :)
     
  4. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    I agree @TessaT, except as to POV. You can find fantasy novels that change POV - character to character, first to third, and so on, within the same work. Just do it skillfully and not clumsily.
     
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  5. TessaT
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    TessaT Contributing Member

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    That's what I meant by 'inconsistently', though I didn't make that very clear. :p
     
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  6. Keitsumah
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    Keitsumah The Dream-Walker Contributor

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    lol, coincidence here. I do that in my very book -since i read a book that had both MC's in first person but no warning as to who it was. So third person and first person IMO works well to keep that from happening.
     
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  7. TessaT
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    TessaT Contributing Member

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    I really hate reading and not knowing who's talking (or thinking). Sometimes it can be so confusing that I decide the book doesn't need to be read. It's sad when that happens, especially when the storyline had potential. I tend to find myself attempting to write from all POVs. It's actually a conscience thing to try and write in only POV. Oh, the bad habits we as writers need to break. lol
     
  8. Tharian
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    Tharian Contributing Member

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    On the POV topic, is it acceptable to break POV, i.e. third person, and write more 'actively?'

    For example, character A lives in an abysmal society. He's talking with character B, suddenly the subject of money comes up.
    You break POV and you go on an active rant about the society's system and how money is oh so terrible, or good for that matter, et cetera.
    Is it acceptable? It's meant to immerse the reader in the world, but it's very much written without a fourth dimension. So the reader is vaguely aware that the writer is directly talking to them.
     
  9. Steerpike
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    Steerpike Felis amatus Supporter Contributor

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    Sure, @Tharian so long as you do it effectively. There are plenty of books where the narrator or author breaks that wall and speaks directly to the reader.
     
  10. Keitsumah
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    Keitsumah The Dream-Walker Contributor

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    that reminds me of my experiment... has anyone here ever come across a book in something like "fourth" person? I'm wondering if I can pull off a book that does not go into the character's thoughts, but instead is like a complete observer. I have written in that style before, and it is a tad bit fo a challenge, but it is interesting to me nonetheless.
     
  11. Tharian
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    Tharian Contributing Member

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    An omniscient POV? You'd still have to write it (most of the time) in third person.

    Thank you.
     
  12. Luke Andrew
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    Luke Andrew Member

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    I don't think they is a correct way to write fantasy. There are popular styles to be sure, but everyone writes differently.
     
  13. Laze
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    Laze Active Member

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    I don't think so. You can write a book however you like, as long as it's punctuated well and the plot is gripping. I think a lot of time the reason why people is fail is because they force an idea, they sit down and try to rag a story out of their mind that just simply isn't there...

    Most, I repeat most good stories are spur of the moment ideas. Authors doing seemingly mundane activities and suddenly, they see a scene in their head which later becomes a masterpiece. If there's any specific criteria for a book to be good, that certainly wouldn't be a bad one. :rolleyes:
     
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  14. live2write
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    live2write Contributing Member

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    I have read Fantasy novels that are POV and Third Person. The third person approach tends to sound like a storyteller from another part of the world is telling you the conquest.

    What classifies a Fantasy novel or short story is the definition of what fantasy is according to publishers.
    As reading verbadum from Orson Scott Cards "How to Write Science Fiction and Fantasy", the general term he describes Scifi vs. Fantasy is Science Fiction follows the rules of our Universe and Fantasy breaks the rules of our universe.

    An example would be the world you created. Are there floating mountains that hover over water? Do the waterfalls fall up or down? Is there a magic that does not exist in this universe? Are the people different? Vegetation?

    Now technically there is gravity of course...maybe not, but cellphones, maybe they have something different. However lets say you would bring a cellphone into a fantasy world, you would expect one of the characters to not understand what it exactly is. In science fiction, most likely they may figure it out or have a knowledge of what it exactly does.
     
  15. Keitsumah
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    Keitsumah The Dream-Walker Contributor

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    I am a victim of spur-of-the-moment ideas. It gets annoying at times... the last one i had involved the story of a demon who is not really a demon anymore (he doesn't side with either God or Satan) but he's too scared to turn to God and ends up being helped along not by an angel, but a regular human girl! I can't wait to get that one going. :D but i have to finish the other 16 books i am planning to write...

    storytellers should be immortal. we can never live long enough to tell all the stories in our heads.
     
  16. Thomas Kitchen
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    Thomas Kitchen Proofreader in the Making Contributor

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    Amen, sister! :D
     
  17. Larissa Redeker
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    Larissa Redeker Active Member

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    If there is a correct way to write fantasy, I'm going in the wrong direction :D Why? Because I'm writing a mix of fantasy and sci-fi.

    Put your ideas to work, write it and don't think about "correct way", only think about the writing itself, as the other members say (and I hate POV changing when it wasn't been made in an creative and good way).

    There wasn't a correct way to write books about young wizards studying in and old castle when J.K. made it ;)
     
  18. jannert
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    jannert Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

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    I totally agree with you. I think this happens not because there are multiple POVs happening in a story, but because the writer hasn't made it immediately clear whose head we're in. I feel this sometimes stems from an urge to be overly cute with links (or lack of them), and some writers seem only too willing to sacrifice clarity for so-called 'clever' writing.

    My own personal philosophy as a writer is that I want to disappear. I want the reader to be unconscious of my writing style, and only conscious of the story I'm telling. I want my reader to be sucked in from the very first paragraph, and I don't want them to surface again until they reach 'the end.' In order to accomplish this I need to make link changes very clear, so the readers never have to stop and re-read because they didn't realise the POV character had changed.

    There is nothing more infuriating than reading several hundred words in a new scene before you realise the POV has changed. Unless the change is made clear within the first few words of the changeover, people will assume you're sticking with the previous POV. To find that's not true is incredibly disorientating, and badly interrupts the flow of your story.

    I know there are some people who value uber-clever writing, and that's fine. However, I'd say NEVER—yes, never—sacrifice clarity in the process—unless you deliberately want to play with, or challenge, the reader's assumptions.
     
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  19. Keitsumah
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    Keitsumah The Dream-Walker Contributor

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    hmmm.... quick question are there fantasy books with the POV in third person present tense? I'm curious about putting my book into present tense rather than past tense in order to make it more intense (at least for the reader because then they don't know if the character lived) there are two MC's, one of which is in first person, the second of which is in third person to avoid confusion. And each gets their own chapter.

    that's a lot of "tenses". :D
     
  20. Goldstein
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    Goldstein Member

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    I'm not sure of any novels, fantasy or otherwise, that are written in present tense. That may speak more of my reading habits than the rarity of the present tense, but...

    If you can do it, I think present tense can really work. Like you said, it makes things more intense, but it does have limitations. By having the story constantly be in the present tense, the reader can't take a break. Also, the passage of time can feel wonky.

    And for readers like me, it can be unsettling to read "he says" instead of "he said." But that shouldn't stop you.
     
  21. Jack Asher
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    Jack Asher Wildly experimental Contributor

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    The Hunger Games trilogy was written in the present tense.
     

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