6th October – 24 Days and Counting

27. What draws you to the fantasy genre?

One of the main draws of fantasy for me is the extent of worldbuilding you get to do. All books require some worldbuilding, but fantasy (like sci-fi) allows you scope to create everything.

J.K. Rowling’s clever wizarding world allows readers time to reflect on the issues in our own world.

I love the challenge of developing social and economic systems that make sense. I don’t like fantasy that sounds like a computer game, where “gold” can be found by anyone and exchanged for anything. If it was that plentiful, it wouldn’t be worth much… So I enjoy thinking about the logistics of my worlds, and trying to figure out how things work.

One of the other draws is the opportunity for extended metaphor and fable. In ‘Rise of the Darkwitch,’ I’m exploring themes of sectarianism, racism, pressure on young people, and responsibility. I’m able to do that in a fantasy world by creating my own worlds, from which people can make their own interpretations. Using a totally alien setting allows the message to reach more readers.

Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings trilogy explores themes such as the destruction of the environment.