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Subgenre Study: Off-world Fantasy

Most fantasy can be divided into either real-world or off-world fantasy (sometimes called second world fantasy).  The distinction is obvious: real-world fantasy takes place in the “real world” (so most urban and contemporary fantasy, as well as things like historical fantasy/alternative history) and off-world fantasy takes place on a different world of the author’s own […]

Subgenre Study: Dystopia/Apocalyptic Fiction

This week on Subgenre Study, we will be looking at the seemingly-increasingly popular subgenre of Dystopia, or Apocalyptic Fiction.  This is a subgenre of science fiction that takes place anywhere from the near to far future which portrays a bleak view of the future, usually one in which humanity has or is going through some […]

Subgenre Study: Sword and Sorcery

GUYS I got to touch an ALPACA.  Although it was fairly bad-tempered.  I may let you see when I finish photoshopping twisty evil moustaches on the pictures. Anyway, on to the topic at hand.  Sword and Sorcery is perhaps the best known of all fantasy subgenres.  Some people will swear that it IS fantasy.  Swords, […]

Subgenre Study: Fantasy Romance

This one’s a bit on the edge, Squiders.  One could argue that this is a subgenre of romance rather than a subgenre of fantasy (and some argue that Romantic Fantasy is the proper name). You may be confused.  A lot of fantasy has romance subplots already (especially things like urban fantasy/paranormal romance) so what separates […]

Subgenre Study: Hard Science Fiction

Science fiction can be divided into two subsections: hard and soft science fiction.  Hard scifi is focused on the actual “science” part of science fiction and is much more interested in maintaining scientific accuracy than other subgenres. Hard science fiction also tends to have a certain feel to it.  The science tends to take a […]

Subgenre Study: Urban Fantasy

Urban fantasy is so pervasive these days that I mentally divide fantasy into urban fantasy and everything else. Like the other subgenres we’ve discussed, its definition is a bit fluid.  Wikipedia says it doesn’t matter what time period the story is set in – if it’s in a city, it’s urban fantasy.  A lot of people […]

Subgenre Study: Dark Fantasy

Oh, dark fantasy.  Supposedly my husband’s favorite subgenre.  But like so many other speculative fiction subgenres, one that is very hard to stick to a definite definition. Dark fantasy, in my own personal opinion, is fantasy that strives to point out the dark, the gritty, the horrific.  It sometimes, but not necessarily, borders on horror.  […]

Subgenre Study Guide

In celebration of the first anniversary of Where Landsquid Fear to Tread, I am putting together a Subgenre Study Guide for you.  I will be updating this post periodically with new subgenre studies as they come out (every Friday, at the moment), so if you would like, you can just favorite this one and everything […]

Subgenre Study: Cyberpunk

Ah, cyberpunk, the father of all other punks. Cyberpunk is a subgenre of science fiction that became popular in the 1980s.  It tends to involve a world where data and computers are ubiquitous, cyborgs are common, and the world has more or less gone to hell.  William Gibson’s Neuromancer is considered to be a leader in […]

Subgenre Study: Science Fantasy

This is a tricky one.  For one thing, people can’t even agree whether it’s a subgenre or its own genre.  And once you reach some sort of consensus on that, getting people to try and agree on a definition – well.  Science fantasy, I hope we can all agree, is, as the name implies, a […]