Why I Write Fantasy: The Three Fours #3: The Crow

More spoilers for a film that this time is a mere 24 years old. The last film that has, so far, made me run back to the cinema three more times after the first viewing was this one. A modern gothic fairytale with yet another fantastic soundtrack, an alternate contemporary world that was close enough …

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Why I Write Fantasy: The Three Fours #2: Bram Stoker’s Dracula

Oh yeah. The music, the costumes, the saturated colours, the visual style that played with realism and then deliriously ignored it to tell its story in its own defiant way, and managed to sweep me up in it. I watched this movie four times in a rather dilapidated cinema in Dundee, complete with decayed but …

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Why I Write Fantasy: The Three Fours #1: Highlander

Spoilers for a 30+ year old movie follow. And for Alien3 too. You've been warned. There are only three movies I’ve paid to see more than once in rapid succession, and each time I ended up seeing the film four times in the theatre. In each case I was lured into the atmosphere of the …

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Why I Write Fantasy: Memories of Nature and Other Fragments

Glen Clova, orienteering like a ranger or druid or both, the summit of Arthur’s Seat at sunrise, the Trossachs and trout over fire, Loch Katrine swimming, the shock of freezing, the amazement of finding warmer currents and following their course, shivering anew every time they were lost, wet bracken and green ravines down to running …

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Why I Write Fantasy: The Games of Fantasy Part 1: Game of Dracula

First things first: I don’t write fantasy because of games. I was entranced by fantasy first, games came later. However, there can be a positive interaction between playing games, exercising imagination, and coming up with story ideas. There is one as-yet unwritten story cycle that is definitely based on something I wanted to do in …

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Why I Write Fantasy: Inspirations – The Music of Fantasy Part 3: Gothic Dreams

Now the 80s weren’t just the metal years for me, though metal was undoubtedly my first true musical love. I was a mostly closeted Prince fan. (Not metal enough, despite the outrageous guitar skills – I tried to point that out, but my mates weren’t buying it back then.) I went to see the Sign …

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Why I Write Fantasy: To Connect the Dots…

Last week I talked about how sometimes ideas assail me, story concepts or character ideas that want to make the difficult transition from idle fancy to fully-fleshed reality. It is really easy to just daydream the good bits: the dramatic confrontations, the epic climaxes, awful betrayals, heartbreaking deaths, hard-earned victories. And any amount of acid-tongued …

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