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Saturday, July 25, 2009

Good Fantasy

I've long had some thoughts about what makes for really good fantasy, and I've come to the conclusion that that there are a few elements that must be present. One of the most important things that must be in any good fantasy novel is, I think, comedy. Now, I don't mean roll on the floor with laughter comedy, but there must be at least something that makes you feel good when you're reading; something that makes you smile. The Lord of the Rings certainly has this. Who can resist a grin when Tolkien describes hobbits and their oddities? Or when Gandalf says "Fool of a Took!" The Chronicles of Narnia also has plenty to make one smile. I particularly like the dufflepuds. And Harry Potter has comedy in spades in the antics of Gred and Feorge (Oh, I'm sorry, Fred and George) and all the little ways that Rowling so perfectly captures adolescent nuances. In my own book I have also attempted to capture the adolescent ways in such a manner as to make people smile and say reminiscently "I knew somebody like that!" or "That was so me in junior high!" I also have a humorous character or two, but I will have to talk more about that later . . .

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Teacher by day...

I've fallen behind on my writing goals... way behind. This has only served, however, to show me how hard I have to work to balance everything in my life. I'm a teacher, you see, and even though it is the middle of summer, I still have lots of teacher-related things to get done. I fell behind because I had teacher training last week and had to put my other activities on hold for a little while. When the school year officially starts, I'm going to have to schedule in time to work on my writing endeavors so that I do not just grind to a halt, like I did this past week. I'm going to have to master being a teacher by day and a writer by night (and a wife and mother all the time).

Today I accomplished getting three more pages of synopsis written, and it feels good to be back to work on it, despite the fact that I have no idea if I am doing it properly. I have never seen an example of the sort of synopsis that one sends in to agents and publishers, and my searches online have yielded no satisfactory results. I guess I will just have to plod along and hope that I am doing it properly. With only one chance to impress the people I am querying, I would hate to do it wrong!