Tuesday, May 14, 2013

WRITING FANTASY HEROES

Writing Fantasy Heroes is a splendid book, filled with some excellent advice and tips on how to make your characters leap off the page. Every chapter is a gem, and well-worth studying. My favorites are "The Hero in Your Blood," by the excellent duo of Janet and Chris Morris. Cecelia Holland, Ari Marmell, Orson Scott Card, and Howard Andrew Jones are also on hand to share their skills, their experience, and their writing process. This is a valuable book for anyone who wants to write, and even if you have no designs other than to read and enjoy the works of others, this book will give you some excellent insight into "how it's done." There are many other authors who contributed to this wonderful volume, and Jason Waltz deserves kudos for assembling such a splendid cast. If I may pick one nit . . . I am more than a little familiar with the works of many of these authors, and while I found the use of their own creations to be a natural, a given, I would have liked to have read more about what authors, what books, what scenes and passages inspired them, taught them, showed them the way. I'm hoping a second volume will be forthcoming, and they will take us back to the roots of fantasy and adventure: E.R. Eddison, Lord Dunsany, Talbot Mundy, H.R. Haggard, Edgar Rice Burroughs, Fritz Leiber, to name a few. Writing Fantasy Heroes belongs on everyone's shelf --whether it's your regular bookshelf or your research shelf, it doesn't matter. Just buy it!