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thecornflake
January 4th, 2006, 11:03 AM
I'm looking for some good books to inspire/help my fantasy writing. I've only really found one on Amazon that appeals to me which is the Complete Fantasy Writer's reference. I'm looking for more background and inspiration than a guide on the craft of writing - something covering worldbuilding, characters/races, technology, magic etc would be good.

kater
January 4th, 2006, 12:26 PM
I've only ever bought one, which was Orson Scott Card's How to write Science Fiction and Fantasy. I bought it because I was interested in what he had to say rather than wishing to use it as a definitive guide. It gave me a lot of ideas to be fair and I have used it more extensively than I thought I would :)

Expendable
January 4th, 2006, 12:56 PM
For fantasy, the best reference isn't in a book - it's a web page. Patricia Wrede's Fantasy Worldbuilding Questions (http://www.sfwa.org/writing/worldbuilding1.htm). They make a great addition to a writer's reference notebook.

For some basic fantasy elements, see The Tough Guide to Fantasyland by Diana Wynne Jones - it's in fun but covers a lot of the basics.

Some fairy tales books like Grim's Fairy Tales (http://www.gutenberg.org/etext/2591) - I suggest looking at Project Gutenberg (http://www.gutenberg.org/) for fairy tale books - they're a great fantasy reference.

It doesn't hurt to have yourself a library of fantasy.

Expendable
January 4th, 2006, 01:19 PM
Something else that might help is collecting information on the uses of herbs and plants in healing (and poison), life in a medieval castle, town & monastery and wilderness survival.

Actually building a small camp fire and lighting it with flint and steel will help you write about your characters making such a fire. Just don't do this inside your house.

Knowing some history helps too.

Banger
January 4th, 2006, 02:06 PM
I second Card's book :)

Expendable
January 4th, 2006, 02:33 PM
Magic's sort of tricky, you really want to make up your own way of magic rather than use anyone else's. Most go the elemental route.

tracyt1800
January 4th, 2006, 02:51 PM
I'm looking for some good books to inspire/help my fantasy writing.

Stephen King's "On Writing" really inspired me to get back to writing. It wasn't so much an aid to my fantasy writing, though, as it was an aid to get me to sit down and actually write.

I really enjoyed that book and always recommend it to friends that write or want to write.

David Forbes
January 4th, 2006, 04:59 PM
Another vote for the Card and King books. (I prefer King's, but both are good.)

Kathryn
January 5th, 2006, 04:04 PM
I enjoyed...

Worlds of Wonder- How to write Fantasy by Davis Gerrold
Word Painting- A guide to writing more desciptively by Rebecca Mcclanahan
Lessons from a Writing Life- Sometimes the Magic Works by Terry Brooks
Quote from opening Page
"This is for writers yet to be published who think the uphill climb will never end. Keep believing. This is also for published writers grown jaded by the process. Remember how lucky you are"

Card's book also gets a vote from me also!

Banger
January 6th, 2006, 10:20 AM
Another vote for the Card and King books. (I prefer King's, but both are good.)

King's book was great for motivation and sticking with it, plus it serves as a mini-biography. I don't recall any of his writing tips though :o