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In Defense of the Writer and the Fantasy

I had no intention of writing about this, but it came to mind when my sister and I were browsing the internet last night looking at silly stuff about Harry Potter and having a good laugh, when I came across this site:

I know there are probably thousands of them going around, and I’m not here to debate about religion and dispute her facts. You can go read it yourself, because it’s clear whoever wrote this hasn’t read the books and only took what they heard from others. Not only that, certain passages in the book are clearly taken out of context and anyone who’s read all the book at least once can see that. And did I mention this person actually believe in black magic? That J.K. Rowling is actually trying to start some occult and gathering follower and secretly teaching them through her books with real spells and magic? I’m so rolling my eyes right now. But you can go read the article. I didn’t get on here to talk about. I did get on here to defend the writer though.

Why do writers, particularly those of fiction and fantasy, need defending? Well it’s not defending as much as it is pointing out facts. First and foremost though, to anyone who thinks fantasy writers, myself included, are trying to start an occult. I need to point out three things.

1) Fiction is Fiction
2) Fiction is Fiction
3) Most importantly, fiction is fiction

That means that:

1) Fiction’s not real
2) Fiction’s not real
3) Most importantly, fiction’s not real!

People like the ones on that site are the opposition we writers face and not just people with extreme views like this one, but a lot of people have the impression that just because we writers write about it, we believe it or we’re trying to preach or glorify something. I had to learn this when I was younger and people would ask me if my main character shared the same faith as I did. And it is this:

Writers write whatever the hell they want!

New writers remember this. I wished I had known it. It would have made my writing a lot better a lot sooner. We can’t be afraid to write about things that might stir a little controversy or get some extreme reception like the above article. Here’s the thing about fiction writers. Our, especially fantasy writers, goal is to make the fiction, the supernatural and thing that we know not to be true to appear real. So we do our research, give symbolic names and references every now and then and mix truth, myth, falsehood, and folklore to make a story. Just because my novel may have a name from pagan influence or any other background doesn’t mean that’s what I believe in. I choose the name and give it to a character who matches the name and if it isn’t the case, I redefine it. It makes for a more interesting story and is a creative writing device! It’s not glorifying anything. It’s a story. It’s not real and the elements and themes I use have nothing to do with my religious beliefs and or lack of them, and I hate when people accuse writers of believing in something, whether it be true or not. It’s fiction and anyone who has a problem with it can get over it or ignore it. There are more important things and more serious matters to worry about than wondering if fantasy writers are trying to gather followers for a cult? Really?

Besides, bad publicity is publicity and I say bring it on. What better way to get someone to read something than telling everyone they shouldn’t read it. People don’t take such ridiculous accusations on face value… well not in cases like these (people take gossip on face value all the time). They have to see for themselves. So I say call my book worshiping the devil and needing to be banned all you want. More books sales for me… once I finish editing this damn book.

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