The Symbolism of the Fantasy Elements

Lord of the Rings, A Storm of Swords, The Mists of Avalon, The Once and Future King, A Dance With Dragons are only a very speck of the iceberg when it comes to books that have fantasy aspects stored within.

Many authors attempt to tackle this, showing the readers the world of fantasy that their characters reside in. It’s certainly not an easy task because the author is the visionary, the sole teller of the tale, who really wants the reader to see what he sees. Not only that, but the author may have had reason to describe things the way they did. Portraying that can be taxing and a disappointment when misunderstanding occurs.

Misunderstanding does occur and when that happens an entire tale is lost.

Fantasy is defined as a genre of fiction that uses magic and other supernatural phenomena as the primary plot element, theme, or setting. Notice that it said ‘primary plot element’. This means that in order for a book to be considered fantasy, it must carry these traits overall. For myself, I have had readers be totally shocked at the direction the story went once it got going. They thought that they were simply going to read a basic history book. And then I’d tell them these exact words “It is the most unusual history book that you will ever read.”

Primarily this is due to me as the author not wanting the reader to just be thumbing through a story meant to capture the time without encountering realistic problems and situations. These situations had to be believable. The reader had to believe that it is possible for Barry to be a medium, a person who sees ghosts. That is something that could very well happen. Demons and angels were thrown into the mix also, and for many believers in those beings, this was believable too.

It does not matter how much the author tells you separately in a work. The reader MUST grasp the author’s imagination.

There were several instances of fantasy mentioned in the “Secrets of Their Shadowed” series, situations such as the many ghosts Barry saw, the army of good and evil at play, limbo – heaven – and hell, his wayward premonitions, his run to the train station while in the mist of catapulted boulders. Out of all, there is one instance in particular–small it was–that I want to talk about. It took place in the very end of part two when Barry witnessed very tragic news. At that time, he was standing in a field of nightshades, and as we know that–though beautiful–nightshades are poisonous.

He said to us as he was dismayed:

The endless shadow of the night spared me no mercy, nor the stars that feared the moon either. I too feared that I was alone on this day of reckoning. I too glowed, searing red in a field of nightshades.

Barry stood within this patch of very beautiful, poisonous plants while distraught, while aching with tremendous pain from his loss, and you as the reader probably wondered why the poison from the flowers had no effect on him.

Throughout the series, we’ve noted that everything was geared to demonstrate Barry’s growth. He was a fighter for sure, but he also grew into something more powerful, a warrior. Because this was the case, like any trait of a warrior, things that would effect the average person won’t work on him. Barry was an honest soul within a body and he was circumferentially protected by the power of his spirit. No harm could come to him except from those on his level.




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