After I got off work today, I vowed to clean my disgustingly messy room. It didn't happen.
But... I did sit down in front of my bookshelf and I read passages from all of our favorite series, such as Harry Potter, Hunger Games, and Percy Jackson. Ah, childhood. And procrastination. What an epic combination. It got me thinking: why were we all so captivated by these books at some point or another?
Let's delve into an analysis, then.
-What I was drawn in by: the thought of a magic school where kids cast spells all the time and lived with each other in beautiful towers got me. Seriously, who wouldn't want to be Harry or Hermione? I mean, yeah, Voldy was a little scary, and lots of people died, but they got over it. Eventually.
-Suzanne Collins is a beast. How can a person introduce the idea of children killing each other and gain fans from it?
-What I was drawn in by: though I wouldn't necessary want to be a tribute in the Hunger Games, I really wanted to be a fly on a wall in the arena. Experiencing all the technology and and violence would be super cool (if I wasn't a part of it).
-Okay, I think we can all agree the movie wasn't superb, but I loved these books when I was in middle school. I really wanted to go to Camp Halfblood every summer and know that my father was Zeus, the butt-kicking Greek god of the sky.
-What I was drawn in by: exactly what I stated above. Wouldn't you want to play a game of Capture-the-Flag with... real swords? (gasp) And wouldn't it be great to meet all your half-brothers and sisters that have the same god or goddess as their dad or mom?
In conclusion to my short but pointed analysis, a pattern arises: The authors of Harry Potter, the Hunger Games, and Percy Jackson all created worlds in which we wanted so desperately to immerse ourselves. I think this is what makes the genre of fantasy great-- visionaries mold together what they most desire and make their own universes out of it.
So, if you write fantasy short stories or novels and are interested in the setting of your work, ask yourself: if I couldn't live in this time period, which one would I want to live in? If I like mythology, how can I use that to further add details to my world?
I'll be pondering those questions as I clean my room, unfortunately! Happy Monday.