In this blog post, I’m going to write about fiction and fantasy, and my thoughts about writing the two.
I can think of three different meanings for fantasy, so let me clarify what I mean.
Fantasy is a genre of fiction; meaning, a classification for marketing purposes. Other genres of fiction are Romance, Western, Historical, Science Fiction, etc. Fantasy-genre fiction is about magic and magical creatures; a Fantasy story might have fire-breathing dragons in it, or a housecat might turn into a puma.
However, please note that nowhere in this blog post will I write about Fantasy-genre fiction, even Fantasy-genre fiction that I myself have written. You’ll need to go to other people’s blog posts if you want to read about shapeshifting housecats.
Fantasy also means an elaborate want or wish. As in “Paul Ryan has a fantasy about becoming president.”
Lastly, fantasy means a simplified story. To explain what I mean by this, I have to tell you what a “story” is.
A story (without the simplified modifier) is a writing that is fiction. Well, any work of fiction, whether it’s a children’s story or a New York Times bestseller. contains three elements—
1) The hero has set a goal to accomplish something; he intends to accomplish something positive, or to stop something bad that is happening now, or to prevent something bad that will happen in the future. In pursuit of his goal, the hero makes plans and takes actions.
Note that the hero doesn’t just want or wish for something to happen (or not to happen); he has set a goal of “I will make this happen” (or not happen).
When the hero’s goal is thwarted (as it must be, or there is no story), the hero makes new plans and takes new actions.
2) The hero has opposition. Some person, group of people, or natural force opposes the hero achieving his goal.
3) The opponent is much, much stronger than the hero. Oh, he/it/they has a weakness, but it is a seemingly irrelevant weakness. Conversely, the hero has a strength, but it is a seemingly irrelevant strength. (For example, the evil Army general might be allergic to cat fur, while the hero might be an expert on plants of the Amazon rain forest.) The bottom line: It seems impossible that the hero can defeat the villain, however much you want him to.
Both those words (seems impossible) are important. If the hero sets out to achieve something difficult, but with enough hard work and dedication he can (barely) achieve it, this is not a story. Conversely, if the hero is deluded into setting a goal that is flat-out impossible (for example, a man who is five-foot-two wants to become Heavyweight Boxing Champion of the World), readers will cast this story aside, uninterested.
Besides all fiction stories having the same three elements, all fiction stories have the same structure: Normalcy-The goal-Rising action-The crisis-Resolution. At the crisis, it not only seems certain that the hero will never achieve his goal, but he now also faces death or ruin besides.
Let me remark that writing fiction is hard. This is because it goes contrary to how real life works. In real life, if you try three times, three different ways, to achieve something—by then, you’ve either achieved your goal or you’ve quit. People do not normally keep trying to achieve something when they keep losing yardage on every play. Also contrary to real life, when the powerful villain has the hero in his clutches and is about to kill him—well, someone usually can’t save himself from this.
It takes lots of thinking and planning on the author’s part, to come up with a story that meets the requirements of fiction. As I said before, writing fiction is hard. Trust me on this.
But I (in my Doctor MC persona) am a soft-core pornographer; so I have an alternative to writing difficult-to-write fiction. I have the same option as what many fan-fiction writers take: I can write fantasy (a simplified story).
There are as many kinds of fantasy (simplified) stories) as there are kinds of fantasy (an elaborate want or wish): romance fantasy, vengeance fantasy, money fantasy, hero fantasy, sex fantasy (a.k.a. porn), etc. In fan fiction, any kind of fantasy is called fluff.
A fantasy throws out the universal structure of a fiction story; in particular, a fantasy has no crisis. A fantasy also disregards at least one of the three elements of fiction.
1) If a fantasy throws out “goal-directed action,” you get a story in which events happen to the hero and the hero doesn’t make anything happen. This kind of fantasy isn’t interesting, because the stories don’t move toward anything; such stories come across as “a day in the life of Joe” stories.
2) If a fantasy throws out the opponent, you get stories in which the hero enjoys easy success, again and again. In a vengeance story, the bad guys whom the hero is trying to kill, put up no more resistance than targets in a shooting gallery. In porn, the hero propositions a babe, she says yes, he beds her, the hero propositions a second babe, she says yes, he beds the second babe…
3) If the fantasy throws out the fiction-element that the villain is much more powerful than the hero, you get porn stories in which yes, the hot babe has a boyfriend who doesn’t want his girlfriend boinking the hero; but the babe’s boyfriend is a 97-pound weakling. In vengeance porn, a bad guy might have a bodyguard, but the bodyguard is a fat, slow geezer who spends most of his work-hours sleeping in the guardhouse.
A fantasy (simplified story), because it does not have all the elements of fiction, is interesting to the reader if and only if the reader shares the fantasy that the simplified story is built on. So for instance, a porn story in which the hero works his way through a sorority house, boinking every woman there, would be fascinating to straight men, whereas gay men would react with “Meh.”
(This principle also explains why wives and girlfriends are generally uninterested in porn movies. The porn movie does not have the three elements and universal structure that would make the porn movie be fiction; and the wives and girlfriends don’t share the elaborate want or wish that the porn film is built around.)
I write the stories that I would rush over to Amazon.com to buy, if someone else had written those stories. Well, sometimes I buy from Amazon, stories with drama and can’t-put-the-book-down suspense that lead up to the-hero-is-doomed crises. At other times, I go to Amazon to buy porn stories where life for the hero is one nonstop cakewalk. Since I write what I would want to read, sometimes I write fiction stories (which are more difficult to write, but they also give me more satisfaction), and sometimes I write fantasies.
Here’s a listing of my stories, broken down by fiction stories and fantasy stories—
Fiction (containing the three elements of fiction, plus a crisis)
Three More Wishes: Be Kind To Your Genie (M&F1)
The Bimborg: Part Nanobot, All Woman
The Hypno-Talker of Zlar (HTOZ1)
Nerd Saves Women (HTOZ4)
The Hypno-Talkers of Zlar FOUR-IN-ONE (Books 1 and 4)
One More Genie (M&F2)
More Genie Problems: Can the Hero Billionaire Hold off Judgment Day? (M&F3)
Wishes, Genies, Sex, and Death: Marvin and Fatima THREE-IN-ONE
Ring of the Wizard Vampire
The Mind-Power Avenger
The Inseminator: A Parody
Fantasy (some of these have a final crisis, just to give the story more kick)
Captive of the Barbarian King
Names Have Power: Tim’s Magic Voice Makes a Harem
Hypno-Talker’s First Download (HTOZ2)
Revenge at College (HTOZ3)
The Hypno-Talkers of Zlar FOUR-IN-ONE (Books 2 and 3)
Ye Olde Book of Magic
Bimbo-Midas: His Magic Touch Changes Women
What You Want Most: Magically Given