The myths of the ages... tales, creatures, beings, deeply ingrained in the human psyche... part of the wonderful context we all share... marvelous artifacts of some unknown, primal existence unique to mankind...

A new feature, in perpetual beta, to build into some computer game and granting +2 to Lockpicking, yet another set of overpriced role-playing books, a female model to garb in skimpy clothing and foist on a league of adoring anime fans, yet another grasp available to Hollywood into wallets, and of all these things, ownership claimed by yet another multi-billion dollar industry, headed and manned by fleets of men in three-piece suits, their portfolios filled with fairy factories and dragon dealerships.

What is fantasy? Is it a collection of archetypes, elves, dwarves, dragons, etc., magical kingdoms, princesses and monsters, knights and wizards, and a feudal society mysteriously lacking in human rights abuses and bubonic plague? Is it d4, d6, d8, d10, d12 and d20? Was it ever in the brain of G. Gary Gygax? Words concatenated with no space between, lifeblood, runestone, EverQuest? Clubs, leagues, guilds? Swords with names, heroic quests, mystic sigils, rhyming spells, et cetera, et cetera? Speak to me not of your Squaresoft! No, fantasy is something rare and wonderful, something personal and introspective, beautiful, multi-faceted and rare. Anything you say that was ever said by any person before you is not fantasy.

There are some who Get It, or Got It. Tolkien, assuredly, got it, but no one ever proclaimed on a book cover as "The Next Tolkien" does. The people making the Lord of the Rings movies probably don’t. George Lucas used to get it, for the space of one movie, maybe< /i> two, but anymore? Doubtful. J. K. Rowling might get it, might not, we’ll know in three more novels. Oddly enough, one person who got it was American humorist James Thurber – check out his Fable For Our Time "The Unicorn in the Garden." Most fantasy novelists, however, don’t. Terry Pratchett doesn’t get it, but it could be argued that he doesn’t aim for it, maybe doesn’t even want it, certainly doesn't try to fool you with it like all the others. H.P. Lovecraft had it, oh man did he have it, poor guy, it was about all that he had, that and his letters.

Do you get it?

These inflammatory words brought to you courtesy Woodsprites Anonmyous. I hope no one I know in person ever reads this writeup.

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