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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Lately as I've been reading more mature fantay novels I've noticed that the adjustment from not killing to killing is pretty unrealistic. I get that it is possible to get used to killing, but the whole >kill>vomit>okay now for the rest of the book, doesn't represent that. Personally I've hunted rabbits and such, but it was still a while before i got used to that. Just a pet peeve of mine
 

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Lately as I've been reading more mature fantay novels I've noticed that the adjustment from not killing to killing is pretty unrealistic. I get that it is possible to get used to killing, but the whole >kill>vomit>okay now for the rest of the book, doesn't represent that. Personally I've hunted rabbits and such, but it was still a while before i got used to that. Just a pet peeve of mine
Why have you hunted rabbits? What harm were they doing you? And if it took you a while to get used to it, why do it at all? What makes you believe you have more right to life than the rabbits?
 

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I mean, fiction tends to escalate extreme behaviors over time. Crime shows used to be campy like Starsky and Hutch, and now you get the police catching history's most deranged criminal every single week. Maybe it's just timing. If you came in with a really great story where the characters really had to deal with issues, maybe it would be seen as new and fresh. Everything comes back around. Heh, maybe?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Why have you hunted rabbits? What harm were they doing you? And if it took you a while to get used to it, why do it at all? What makes you believe you have more right to life than the rabbits?
It was just life. I know that they had life, but I did what I had to to eat. Thats it. Im not gonna argue about which life matter more, nor am I gonna regret past actions. Doing that would drive me insane everytime i killed a bug or animal. I just did what I had too and y'all can judge me however you want.

Damn I guess this question was too deep for this place lol
 

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Killing someone is not something any right minded individual would think of this day and age where there are social safety nets in civilized society that have taken thousands of years to evolve, as well as to what is right or what is wrong. However it happens, whether motivated by mental health, greed, participating in war, defense, or for pure survival, usually in countries where there are no social security safety net in order to eat.

Cannibalism is also abhorrent, as would be eating your own pet dog, yet people have resorted to it in some circumstances to survive.

Most fantasy, although set in a fictitious world, it generally mimics medieval times, spiced up sometimes by mythical creatures. Some fantasy stories are set in similar medieval feudal systems, where invasions and factions fought for supremacy and life spans were short lived, and the poor really were poor, and considered disposable by fiefdoms. Most historical fiction of these times would have to be bloody in order to be true to history.

Post-apocalyptic is similar where there is a natural disaster that stops the food chain in its tracks. The difference is usually the characters are civilized but are thrust into a dog eat dog situations alien to them with no safety net for anyone. They have to search their souls in a moral dilema in order to survive and to protect their family, be it to kill animals for food, or to repel those that would seek to steal their food. Or even to kill to get food.

Zombie apocalypse have the target as braindead, but really they are a substitute for a starving population prepared to eat you. This helps to overcome the moral dilemma in the way they are dispatched..

Just saying. ..
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Killing someone is not something any right minded individual would think of this day and age where there are social safety nets in civilized society that have taken thousands of years to evolve, as well as to what is right or what is wrong. However it happens, whether motivated by mental health, greed, participating in war, defense, or for pure survival, usually in countries where there are no social security safety net in order to eat.

Cannibalism is also abhorrent, as would be eating your own pet dog, yet people have resorted to it in some circumstances to survive.

Most fantasy, although set in a fictitious world, it generally mimics medieval times, spiced up sometimes by mythical creatures. Some fantasy stories are set in similar medieval feudal systems, where invasions and factions fought for supremacy and life spans were short lived, and the poor really were poor, and considered disposable by fiefdoms. Most historical fiction of these times would have to be bloody in order to be true to history.

Post-apocalyptic is similar where there is a natural disaster that stops the food chain in its tracks. The difference is usually the characters are civilized but are thrust into a dog eat dog situations alien to them with no safety net for anyone. They have to search their souls in a moral dilema in order to survive and to protect their family, be it to kill animals for food, or to repel those that would seek to steal their food. Or even to kill to get food.

Zombie apocalypse have the target as braindead, but really they are a substitute for a starving population prepared to eat you. This helps to overcome the moral dilemma in the way they are dispatched..

Just saying. ..
You are right but my point wasn't this. It was about how the explanation leading up to this was faulty especially in "world transfer" fantasy.
 

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A lot of authors write, at least partly, from their own experience, and a lot of the fictional projections in their books are based on that -- their own inner feelings and reactions. Being that probably most of us haven't killed someone, the scenario the OP described is probably derived from the author's own projections of what it may feel like to commit such a crime. But it may not come off as genuine to a lot of readers. I suppose it depends on the genre. If it's an accepted trope in the genre, that may be the reason it's placed there.
 

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If you aren't a vegetarian, you're doing way worse than killing rabbits for fun. You're certainly doing worse than killing rabbits for food.

I have not been a vegetarian for many years, but I am not suffering from delusions about the meat industry: its practices are abhorrent.

I mean, fiction tends to escalate extreme behaviors over time. Crime shows used to be campy like Starsky and Hutch, and now you get the police catching history's most deranged criminal every single week. Maybe it's just timing. If you came in with a really great story where the characters really had to deal with issues, maybe it would be seen as new and fresh. Everything comes back around. Heh, maybe?
This is really not the case. Stories are not getting more extreme over time. There are still campy crime shows and there were previously gritty, dour crime shows. There's a huge range of crime shows on the air right now, from cozy mysteries to horribly graphic thrillers. There are phases of popularity, sure, but looking at murder is nothing new.

It is rare to find psychological realism in genre fiction. It's in a subset of genre fiction, for sure. But another subset is more fantastical. It's candy, junk food, easy thrills, whatever metaphor you like. I think there's a range, really, of the very realistic to the extremely fantastical, in all genres. It presents differently in different genres, but it's there.

If this is a fantasy trope that upsets you, have you thought about writing your own fantasy? One that deals with killing in a more realistic way? I'm no fantasy expert, but with the popularity of "grimdark," I imagine there's a big readership out there receptive to the psychological tolls of killing.
 

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If this is a fantasy trope that upsets you, have you thought about writing your own fantasy? One that deals with killing in a more realistic way? I'm no fantasy expert, but with the popularity of "grimdark," I imagine there's a big readership out there receptive to the psychological tolls of killing.
Ha, yeah maybe :) I think I jumped into reading fantasy when "grimdark" was huge and got turned off a bit. I was looking for dragons and things and I got a lot of eww. A lot of it was over-masculine men. Not to be a jerk or anything, but I do hard work everyday in my day job. When people write super manly tough guys my reaction is a big, pfft...riiiight. But if there's a market out there for people with a soft side who feel things but still have to do what they have to do, then it's kinda the only thing I do write :LOL: Heh, maybe time will tell.

And I'm definitely not upset. Mostly just saying that quirky things are quirky. I think, in general, I'd never want to do exactly this thing and approach a story from a negative. Saying, "I want to write this story because I hate this story I read" sounds like it would suck all the enjoyment out of everything.
 

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I admit, I don't know anything about the fantasy market beyond grimdark existing. I watched the first few seasons of Game of Thrones and quit because enough already with horrible things happening to people and sexual violence. (If it's supposed to be realistic where's the male on male sexual violence btw? Rant over).

But I do know it's a big genre. And I know when I came into my genre, lots of people told me "romance is a fantasy" as if that meant the same thing to everyone. Everyone has different fantasies. Everyone has a different idea of what a good escape is. Hell, the showrunner for The Handmaid's Tale had a great recent quote about how the show is escapist, even though it's the opposite of fantasy.

(Though I do wonder about the crossover between some dark romance and the original novel).

For some people, escapism means over the top. For some people, escapism means realism. At least, things that feel realistic to them. Anything dissonant takes them out of the story, so they can't escape anymore.

People told me so many things about how romance had to be. I was very confused. I just wanted to write interesting stories about relationships. Why did I need an alpha hero (and wtf did that mean? Seven years later and I'm still not sure) who was mean to the heroine for no reason? What if that was not my idea of a fantasy?

I won't lie. The first few books I wrote trying to meet genre expectations did pretty well. One of them is my all time second best seller. But I did better when I started writing tropes and niches I actually understood, where I saw the appeal myself. And when I stopped trying to fit my dudes into this "romance hero construction" and let them be vulnerable... like real human beings.

I'm not saying they're the most realistic guys in fiction. They are idealized in certain ways, just as they're trainwrecks in other (genre acceptable) ways. But adding the realism I struggled to find was good for my career. Writing the books I wanted to read, but could not find, was good for my career.

(The books are probably out there somewhere, but as we all know, it's hard to stand out in a crowded market. I'm sure there are hundreds of great books I would love that I just can't find, because of the way visibility works).
 

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I admit, I don't know anything about the fantasy market beyond grimdark existing. I watched the first few seasons of Game of Thrones and quit because enough already with horrible things happening to people and sexual violence. (If it's supposed to be realistic where's the male on male sexual violence btw? Rant over).
I remember reading the first book before the show and before it really got big. A friend of mine lent it to me and I got exactly to the part where the author went into the woman's pov when she was forced into a marriage and sex. Describing her inner monologue and having her internally blame herself was a very, bookmark out moment. Nope, nope nope, bookmark out, done with this one. Then a while later it became the most popular thing ever and I was like, really? That kinda creepy book is what's big? Strange.

But Crystal, I'm glad that things worked out for you, getting to work what you want to see into what you can make work. It all sounds pretty awesome :) And it's always nice hearing that there's a way to put yourself and what you want into a book and still be able to hit the market.
 

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Lots of people write to markets they don't like successfully. But I think it's much easier, more enjoyable, and more likely to lead to success if you write marketable stuff you also like. Because when you actually get the appeal, it's much easier to write stuff that appeals to readers. It can work if you understand the appeal intellectually, but it's so much easier if you also find the things appealing.

And most of us have some stuff there, in some genres, because we all grew up reading and watching and listening to the same pop culture. Not exactly the same, of course. But we were all influenced by the banner stuff. Britney or Star Wars or boy bands or whatever we discovered at 12-16.

I think, in all mediums and genres, there's often a lot of people saying darker is better and more "real," but that's not any truer than lighter or funnier things being more real. Either can be real. And almost anything can be positioned in a comedic or dark way. I wonder why this is. It's curious.

I haven't read the GoT books so I can't say. It was interesting to see the discourse around the show, from a storytelling POV. Everyone was shocked by the MC not having plot armor. But he totally had that death coming! Like, of course he died! Duh! We're so used to MCs having plot armor. We have to learn to tune it out to enjoy many genres. (The Handmaid's Tale show is legit terrible about this. Stop acting like you're going to kill the MC! We know you aren't!!! Really, all the thrillers I watch do this to some degree. We know you won't kill the main character. Stop putting them in situations where they should die!).

I don't really like the whole killing everyone... like, even though plot armor annoys me, I'm glad it's there. I don't want my favorite characters to die unless it's really, truly necessary for the narrative & the story deals with the emotional fallout of the death too. Which is not usually the case.
 
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