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Everything I learned about writing fantasy I learned from Robert Newcomb.


  • The Hero must not know jack shit about how the real world works. Instead he must rely completely on his mentors to tell him things and never question what they tell him. This is so that the reader can learn about things as he does in massive info-dumps.
  • However the Hero must be fully competent in all sorts of weapon usage and woodcraft and things like that. This way he can fight his way out of any battle and be magnificent while doing it.
  • Parents are only there to cause angst for the hero. If they're loving and supportive they must die. If they're not then they're mean and abusive so that the hero must run away bemoaning his fate.
  • There are only two kinds of women, Virgins and Whores. (Pregnant women are inconsequential because the Hero can't seduce or be seduced by them. They're icky.)
  • The hero's true love can only be a virgin. If in fact he falls in love with a girl who is not the True Love, she will die horribly to cause the Hero angst.
  • Every girl wants the Hero. There are no exceptions to the rule.
  • The Hero can act or do whatever he wants, because it will be right. Logic doesn't have to play into this at all.
  • Culture is over rated. Just having a pseudo-Medieval setting is more than enough world building.
  • Evil is Evil. Good is Good. If someone is designated evil, then no matter what they do, it will be evil. If someone is designated good, then no matter what they do it will be good.
  • The Hero is the only one who can save the world. If he doesn't it's DOOOOOMM!!
  • The Hero is the only one who fits the Prophecy. There //must// be a prophecy. Preferably with things like Chosen One, Prophecy, Future of the World Depends on It, Ancient Evil and Dark Lords.
  • There must be a slave that the Hero frees who will become instantly loyal to him. [1]
  • The Hero is allowed to contradict himself in regards to what he knows. This is perfectly okay.
  • Despite being uneducated and a product of his "world" the Hero can and will install modern day values to other people who will accept it unconditionally. If the Hero doesn't abide by these values, it's okay because he's the Hero.
  • The Hero is always right.
  • The Hero can do things that no one else can.
  • Because it's magic is a perfectly legitimate excuse.
  • Logic is only secondary to whatever you want to do.
  • Characterization is over-rated. In fact it's not needed at all. Stereotypes are all you need.
  • The Hero is more important than anyone. Any other events that happen in his vicinity that would be potentially more interesting should be ignored in favor of whatever he's doing.
  • No matter how smart and cunning your villains are they automatically become stupid when confronted with the Hero.
  • The climax doesn't have to be at all climatic or satisfying as long as the Hero looks good or does something impossible. Better if he does both.


Essay
Essays

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