Fonts, Writing

U = Urban Fantasy

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Unquiet Spirits – Sinister Visions http://www.sinisterfonts.com/

Urban fantasy

Urban fantasy is basically a fantasy story that takes place in an urban setting, historical, modern or futuristic. They are not limited to the city, but need to be primarily in an urban city, one that reflects a reality that is known to us through history, extrapolation or contemporary settings.

Urban fantasy is distinguished from high fantasy in that it is set primarily in a real world and brings in myth or legend to live side-by-side with a verisimilitude of reality.

The term has referred to many things other than the fiction with which today it is associated. The coinage of urban fantasy as genre began in the 1980’s.

Urban fantasy is an extremely popular genre replete with vampires, zombies, werewolves, and all manner of creepy crawly things from legend, folklore and myth.

Vampires, werewolves and zombies are among the most popular, but urban fantasy is limited only by the writer’s imagination and there are as many jumping off points as there are cultures and stories in the world. It makes for a pretty big field.

In future posts I will visit some of the great authors, well-known and not as well-known, and their works. There are far too many to even begin a list here.

Until then you might want to try your own hand in a walk on the fantastic side of things:

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/SoYouWantTo/WriteAnUrbanFantasy
http://www.authorsalon.com/page/general/fantasytropes/

~lisa

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2 thoughts on “U = Urban Fantasy

  1. So–who reads urban fantasy? Escapists? Those with vivid imaginations? Those who like feeling scared? Or is it a dark comedy? Combination of all or some?
    Being a realist and reading only realism, I am trying to understand the lure of fantasy although admittedly anything regarding space exploration fascinates me but I view that as futuristic not fantasy, perhaps I am simplifying it too much.

    • A very wide variety of people read it for many different reasons. Fantasy often resonates with core beliefs and often contains strong themes ranging from the meaning of life to just what a human is. It deals with all issues and contains many subgenres, with a little bit (or possibly a lot) of magic or the unreal on the side. As to your questions — the answers would be all of the above and then some. Fantasy includes all the thrill of a fairytale (often an all grown-up fairytale), the over-arching themes of a world of mythologies, and first and foremost a constant question of “What if” and “if that, then what”. I will try to answer your questions in more detail in a future post. Readers? Do you have any input on this? ~lisa

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