Yet another quiz, this one found courtesy of Agent Kristen over at Pub Rants, and since I know she handles fantasy, I thought it might be worth my while to take…
The Fantasy Novelist’s Exam
Answering yes to any of the questions means you fail the exam and should stop writing immediately because you are nothing more than a scum-sucking copycat. The ghosts of Tolkien and Lewis will sic a horde of mushroom-craving hobbits and umbrella-wielding fauns after you should you admit to any minor stealing of their ideas.
So, I’m very busy patting myself on the shoulder because, hey! I’ve not answered yes to any of these questions so far! Wow!
Then I started to get further down the list.
#28. Is this the first book in a planned trilogy?
29. How about a quintet or a decalogue?
Um…Well, they aren’t really a trilogy, or a quartet, or a quintet even (I’ve got 3 definite stories, plus 2 still fermenting). The stories are generational, with several long-lived reoccuring characters (an oread, an elf or two, an extremely old and cranky dryad). But each story is definitely a stand-alone story. Okay, I think I’ll give myself a pass on those two.
#37. Do any of your main characters have names longer than three syllables?
Well, yes. Taviannah for one. But since she usually just goes by Tavi, I think I can get away with that.
# 39. Does your novel contain orcs, elves, dwarves, or halflings?
I admit, I do have elves and dwarves. but no orcs or halflings. Lots of nature spirits (dryads, naiads, etc.) vs. old-fashioned bad-guys like sirens, baginis, wights, and bogies. Again, I give myself an ok. Elves and dwarves were public domain long before Feanor and Durin.
#42. At any point in your novel, do the main characters take a shortcut through ancient dwarven mines?
Sorta. But it’s not a shortcut. One of the characters gets dragged into a stream by an over-protective naiad, and the others follow the tunnel the stream carves under a mountain to find her. Not really dwarven mines, though they do eventually run into dwarves down there.
#48. Do your characters spend an inordinate amount of time journeying from place to place?
Now, I am guilty of this, having them travel all over the world. After spending so much time creating it, of course I want to show it off to all the readers! But they do not wander for no reason. The plot actually calls for travel, not vice versa. And the 3rd book takes place in one city.
72. # Is “common” the official language of your world?
Mea culpa. An easily fixed thing though.
#74. Is your book basically a rip-off of The Lord of the Rings?
You know, I can actually answer no to that and not be lying.
Three partial yes’s out of 75. Not too shabby. I think I can safely plod along with my writing.
Those of you who write fantasy–how did you do?