Though few will admit to this, the greatest enticement to read and the most compulsive allurement to write fantasy lie in its nonpareil darkness. The depths of evil and Godlessnesss to which fantasy only has access is the #1 reason it’s readership is so large, so hungry.
Fantasy consumers are among the most bizarre fans you’ll find. The genre of fantasy spawned comic books; now we have comicons and opening night madness at theaters. Humans go gangbusters for the dark, the mysterious, the unexplained, and the evil of fantasy.
Still not convinced in the seduction of fantasy?
I’m a fantasy writer. I have to remind myself of that in the midst of my hectic life. I’m sure in the mix of everything that’s been happening lately, we’ve both forgotten that. Being a fantasy writer is not a solution to any problem, but it’s an explanation of a condition. The way I operate as a human and an intellect is directly affected by the fact that I am a fantasy writer.
What are you trying to say? Speak plainly.
If you insist. The seduction of fantasy writing, for me, was the opportunity to build new worlds, create new characters that our world has progressed far beyond. I loved the medieval time era: the dark ages, (hold onto that name). Now, I could care less about the sorcery, torture, and immorality that era brought with it,–and what renaissance attempts to bring back– I enjoyed all the best parts of the dark ages.
Here’s the seduction of fantasy; as in life, so in imagination: you cannot have the good without the bad. Good and evil come in a set, like salt and pepper. The two, as far as they pertain to human existence, are inseparable without divine intervention. I was drawn to the good, eschewing the evil, but the evil was still there. The closer I came to the good, the closer I was growing to to the evil. Seduction is a slow, methodical process. Even the word, though culture has designated it primarily to sexual interaction, is pleasant to say… but in an indulgent way.
The conditioning of fantasy:
To prove my case about the seduction of fantasy in our culture, I first need to establish the conditioning that has occurred. Like the seduction we’ve experienced, the conditioning is also subtle; we may not even realize it is happening. The conditioning of fantasy slowly turns out hearts to its own perspective. The worldview of fantasy, like everything else in the genre, only hightens the realities around us.
The City of Rebellion:
There was an ancient city named Tyre. Tyre and its sister city Sidon are mentioned a few times in the Bible. They were close, like Sodom and Gomorrah. Not close geographically technically, but close in their evil and wickedness. Tyrians were wealthy, pompous, and slave traders. They ruled the sea, sold refugees to other nations, and lived for themselves in pride and arrogance. For their affront to God, their mockery of His authority, and the maltreatment of the Israelites, God had them destroyed… 3 times. I have two, well-researched posts on their destruction, (it is my favorite Bible study).
We feel satisfaction, almost glee at the destruction of such a wicked people. It’s enjoyable even to hear how they’ve been wiped out for their evil. As Christians, we feel a righteous satisfaction.
The City of Repentence:
Nineveh, (Uh oh, here it comes), capitol of Assyria, built by Nimrod during the days of Babel. Nineveh was great in size, (a 3 days walk from end to end), great in prestige, (one of the oldest cities on earth), great in power, (there were millions of people living in Nineveh), and great in evil, (they could not even tell their right hand from their left). If ever a city deserved to die, it was Nineveh. The people were so corrupt, so evil, they could no longer tell the difference between right and wrong. Lawless, Godless, hopeless Ninevites. Yet, God sent Jonah to preach repentance and the people of Nineveh turned to God. So, He spared the city, wow!
How sad is it that the majority of readers get more satisfaction from the judgment of God on Tyre than they do the Mercy of God to Nineveh? This is the seduction of fantasy, it draws, it conditions(desensitizes), until we don’t know reality from fantasy. The ultimate goal of fantasy as an enitity is to capture you, your mind, your heart, eventually your soul. Satan owns media, it’s his baby, his own personal project that he’s been working on for centuries. I’m grouping books in media because the word just means “getting information out there”.
So, why am I a fantasy writer?
If this entire post has been to bad-mouth fantasy, why am I a fantasy writer? I obviously hate it. Well, yes and no. Yes, I hate the genre; I hate the way people have polluted it and abused it, (George RR Martin). But fantasy is more than a genre, it’s a tool. As a tool to portray a message, I think fantasy is the most beautiful writing device ever imagined. The purpose of fantasy as a tool is to blow up reality so that we can see clearly what is going on.
Also, I never asked to be a fantasy writer, or even a writer at all. I hated writing in school. Whether it was essay, creative writing, or just fill in the blanks on a test: I couldn’t stand it. I didn’t like penmanship or italic, language or editorial studies. This isn’t something I brought about. Fantasy is my weapon in writing, words are my chariot.
God gave me a gift to be linguistically inclined, and an affinity for fantasy. The methods of seduction and conditioning are not merely germane to fantasy, and are not exclusively the weapons of evil. They are means and methods of subverting the subconscious and infiltrating the mind with a message. The world does it, Christians don’t enough. The subterfuge of the devil’s work in media must be confronted and countered, and that’s where I come in. How contrarian and paradoxical does a Christian Fantasy writer sound? Yet, by the foolishness of preaching will people come to salvation.
As always, thanks for reading.
–the anonymous novelist