Sunday, August 5, 2012

Fantastical Creatures: Dragons and Unicorns and Snarks, oh my!

So I have my blog posts almost all plotted out for this week, but I didn't have anything specific for this blog today. I have two books I'm participating in either tours or read-a-longs for, and so have to post for that. I'm doing a guest post for another blog on Thursday and having a guest blogger on one of my blogs on Friday, so Monday on this blog was the only day I didn't have something planned for.

I suppose these are just a few thoughts and musings I've had over the weekend. I've been thinking a lot about fantastical creatures lately. Depending on what fantasy world you're currently immersing yourself in, there are quite a host of them in literature.

Of course there are your run-of-the-mill dragons, goblins, unicorns, trolls/ogres, elves, dwarves, shape-shifters, and other general stuff. The next tier has more specific creatures--specific to the world they inhabit. This would Orcs (Lord of the Rings) which are just a glorified form of goblins, hippogriffs and mandrakes (Harry Potter) and trollocs and Myrdraal (Wheel of Time). And then there are the REALLY twisted ones like George R.R. Martin's White Walkers, J.K.Rowling's Dementors, and Robert Jordan's Aelfinn/Elfinn. (Think freak-you-out-of-your-shorts terror!)

And of course there are the ones that always stay with you. For me, it was the 1980s The Neverending Story that always stuck: Rock Biter, a luck dragon that looks like a golden retriever, except it flies, and the Nothing, which had no shape or mass at all.

Some fantasy writers put their own spin on the classics (most of Rowlings creatures have a place in classical mythology, but she molded them to her wizarding world). Others invent brand new things for their fantasy worlds (i.e. just about every high fantasy writer out there!). Either technique can be fun, challenging, and awesome, as long as it's handled well. I'm just dwelling on this because I'm doing world-building for my high-fantasy story.

So, what are coolest fairy tale creatures you've ever come across? :D

8 comments :

  1. I love all the fantastical creatures you mentioned. I enjoy both ways authors create their creatures. I'd love to hear about your world building because I write high fantasy too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I did a post a week or two ago talking about a few of my world-building details, but I'm still working on it. I'll post about it here from time to time, but once I've got a good foundation, we should totally chat about it! :D

      Delete
  2. My absolute favourite are the elves! Yep! They are fierce, good-looking (LOL) and protective. I like them. A. Lot. Also dragons! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm a fan of elves, too. Doesn't hurt that my buddy Orlando Blood was no. 1 elf in the LOTR movies! :D Thanks for visiting! :D

      Delete
  3. I found Robert Jordan's Myrdraal spooky cool when he introduced them. And I remember having a soft spot for Ursula K. Le Guin's Gebbeth too. There are, of course, so many others.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've never read Le Guin, though I've heard great things about her work. I saw a tv version of Earthsea, and, despite some cheesiness, which I chalked up to the film version, I thought the story was pretty great. And I agree that Jordan's badies were pretty creepy! Thanks for stopping by! :D

      Delete
  4. Replies
    1. I'm into dragons, too! Sometimes simple is best! Thanks for stopping by Alex! :D

      Delete