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DragonMaci

Fantasy Without Magic

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Historical is innacurate because, as I said before, it presupposes the story being set on Earth. I am talking stories not set on Earth.

The term "historical" isn't inaccurate though, when used in conjunction with the term "fantasy". Historical in this case is an adjective that describes this particular type of fantasy, ie. one that is based on a specific time period on Earth. It does not necessarily mean that the story occurs on Earth.

But again, this is just a general convention. Fantasy as a genre is particularly ill-defined. You asked a question, and we're just telling you what it would probably be categorized under. If you dislike it, feel free to call it whatever you like. "Magic Free Medieval Dragon & Sword Fantasy" or whatever.

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Yes, ever the joker you are :-P.

No! I never joke! :P

Can I ask whether you started this thread merely out of curiosity or whether you actually intend to write something like this, or even if you are just considering maybe doing it.

Curiosity.

Though knowing you, the last two don't seem that likely.

Indeed. I doubt I will ever write that style. Mind you I once thought I would not write science fiction stories, but, as you know, I am considering at least two science fiction novels, one of which may even be a series.

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1. Do you think the fantasy genre would work without magic?

This is, in my opinion, not a well-posed question, because it is unclear exactly what the boundaries of the fantasy genre are, as well as exactly what magic is. You go on to ask:

2. Would a story with many of the lemeents of fantasy, usch as a medieval setting, without magic even be a fantasy story?

Again, the difficulty turns on the unclarity of the "fantasy" and "magic."

As an example, consider Orson Scott Card's "Worthing Saga." The book consisted of a collection of stories (two novellas and some short stories, I think) set in a particular fictional world. Card wrote one of the stories first, and tried to get it published in a science fiction story collection of some kind. The editor wanted him to try to publish it in a fantasy collection, because it seemed to the editor like a fantasy collection: it was set in a very low-tech world with hints of magic and other characteristics normally associated with fantasy, so the editor thought of it as a fantasy story. But Card had a much more science-fictiony explanation for how the world of the story came to be the way it was, which came out in the later stories. However, there were certain "magical" elements of the story which were not well-explained. Were they magic or science fiction?

Or take Atlas Shrugged. When it first came out, I imagine it seemed like science fiction, and if I remember correctly, Rand said it was set in the future relative to the reader. Yet as time goes on and the things in the book become more antiquated, it begins to seem more like alternate history fiction. In a hundred years, I imagine it will seem like medieval fantasy.

3. If it would not be a fantasy story then what genre would it fall into?

I suppose the best distinction that can be made is to ask how it portrays the past. In the case of medieval-like settings, does it seem like a romanticized portrayal of medieval times, with rolling green fields and knights in shining armor, or is it a more realistic portrayal full of warmongering tyrants and peasants dying of starvation and disease? In the former case, I would call it fantasy, in the latter, historical fiction.

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This is, in my opinion, not a well-posed question, because it is unclear exactly what the boundaries of the fantasy genre are, as well as exactly what magic is.

The fantasy genre is books like Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, Forgotten Realms, Dragonlance, and the Discworld Novels. Magic, as in the mythical power, not as in what Penn and Teller used to do.

Edited by DragonMaci

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No actually strictly speaking, fantasy is any fiction piece (including mediums such as TV etc) that include elements of the fantasic etc:

"A type of fiction that bends or transcends the rules of the known world, allowing such conventions as time travel, talking animals, and super-human creatures."

Which certaintly includes your sort of fantasy, but also science-fiction.

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That is how the fantasy genre is actually defined, and how the vast majority of people use it. If you mean a less accepted, sub-genre, then you really need to be pointing this out to people.

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That is how the fantasy genre is actually defined, and how the vast majority of people use it. If you mean a less accepted, sub-genre, then you really need to be pointing this out to people.

I have seen many definitions that disagree with that. As for most people, yes, that is true, but only because they changed what fantasy in terms of the genre meant for no good reason. I refuise to adhear to a definition change that has no good reason behind it. The main reason was laziness. I refuse to adhear to a definition change done out of laziness.

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No, that was the original definition of fantasy as a genre, I think if you look you will find that it existed before teh fantasy sub-genre you talk about existed....

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The fantasy genre is books like Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, Forgotten Realms, Dragonlance, and the Discworld Novels.

That's not a definition of what fantasy as a genre is. It's just a bunch of books that happened to be fantasy. In any case that's a pretty narrow cross section of what the fantasy genre.

I agree with the above poster that your original questions were very poorly phrased, due to the fact that you seem to have a very limited notion of what the fantasy genre consists of.

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I have seen many definitions that disagree with that.

Many? Show me some.

As for most people, yes, that is true, but only because they changed what fantasy in terms of the genre meant for no good reason. I refuise to adhear to a definition change that has no good reason behind it. The main reason was laziness. I refuse to adhear to a definition change done out of laziness.

The point of categorization is to let identification become easier. The categories expand when the previous identification become insufficient in terms of description, not out of laziness. For instance in describing the color blue, there may be variations that span from navy, electric, torquoise, violet, to indigo.

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