1. dhampirefangs

    dhampirefangs Member

    Dec 16, 2018
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    No childish atmosphere for my setting

    Discussion in 'Fantasy' started by dhampirefangs, Dec 22, 2018.

    I dig out an old project. It’s a Dinotopian- like book idea just for adults. And I thought: “Hey! That would be nice to read.”. I had written a plot plan. So, now the problem is that it sounds very childish when I say that on this setting humans and dinosaurs live (partly) peacefully together. How can I avoid this?
  2. animagus_kitty

    animagus_kitty Senior Member

    Apr 2, 2017
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    Indianapolis, Indiana
    “Critics who treat 'adult' as a term of approval, instead of as a merely descriptive term, cannot be adult themselves. To be concerned about being grown up, to admire the grown up because it is grown up, to blush at the suspicion of being childish; these things are the marks of childhood and adolescence. And in childhood and adolescence they are, in moderation, healthy symptoms. Young things ought to want to grow. But to carry on into middle life or even into early manhood this concern about being adult is a mark of really arrested development. When I was ten, I read fairy tales in secret and would have been ashamed if I had been found doing so. Now that I am fifty I read them openly. When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness and the desire to be very grown up.”

    In the interest of preserving his message, I've left the whole quote by CS Lewis, but I'd like you to pay particular attention to the last sentence if you're not already familiar with it.

    "When I became a man I put away childish things, including the fear of childishness."

    Do you think (read: do you have cause to believe) that dinosaurs are, themselves, a childish topic? Have you been taught, by some well-meaning mentor or society at large, that to be overfond of things long dead is childishness?
    Ask Spielberg if Jurassic Park is childish. If Jurassic World is primarily aimed at children. While it's true that Dinotopia may have been aimed at children, and Flinstones was as well, just being 'about' dinosaurs doesn't make it childish.

    Perhaps I like my soapbox a little much, but I really dislike the idea of a topic being 'childish'. Not because I'm very grown up, mind you, but because I object to the idea that any single element of a story, be it dinosaurs, or magic, or even unicorns, automatically makes the medium a childish one.
    Here's another question, a slightly different one. Think of Avatar: the Last Airbender for a moment, if you're familiar with it. Sure, it's a 'young adult' show, but it dealt with very real and very serious issues. Lost parents (and also misplaced parents), disappointing your father figures, feeling like you've failed, being disastrously wrong...for all it was what you'd expect from a show focused around 3 kids from 12 to 16, it was so much more than that.

    Write the book you've always wanted to read, I was told once. If the book you want to read is about dinosaurs and humans getting along about as well as humans and wolves, then think about what it is the setting needs to feel 'adult' to you. Very few settings (and even very few plots) are inherently childish.

    Again, sorry if I've gone on too long. >_> this sort of question distresses me.
    J.T. Woody likes this.

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