Readers of fantasy novels have certain expectations from the books that they read in the genre. Most of them might’ve read the works of authors such as J.R.R. Tolkien and J.K. Rowling. These readers are likely to have been exposed to a lot of imaginary worlds. So, if you’re planning to write a fantasy novel, it can be a complicated genre.
Although you’re not bound by certain rules, there are some key elements that your fantasy novel needs to have. Besides coming up with an original story, you must make sure that it fits somewhere in this genre. This is essential for attracting the readers of fiction novels. Let’s try to understand some of the basic elements that fantasy novels must have:
A fantasy novel will always have certain things that can never exist in the real world. Some of them are witchcraft, weird creatures, sorcery, and supernatural powers. These are the things that have no evidence or logic that can prove their existence. They, therefore, are considered more magical. In the fantasy genre, these are the things that set it apart from the other genres in fiction.
Every story in the genre of fantasy needs to have some sort of a magical system. This is one of the key elements that gives it a place in the fantasy genre. The magical system is totally imaginative and can also be quite unique. If your novel has such an element, it will be something that the readers might’ve never come across before.
2. A world of fantasy
There’s a process in fantasy writing that’s called world-building. When it comes to building a world of fantasy, J.R.R. Tolkein is always considered the original master. In The Lord Of The Rings, the detail and depth that he used to create Middle-earth is simply amazing.
The novel also uses The Silmarillion, which is a supplementary text. Creating an imaginary world is absolutely necessary for a novel to be categorized as fantasy fiction. Even if your fantasy novel is based on this planet, it must seem like an entirely new world.
3. Interesting characters
You can decide on the number of characters in your story, but fantasy novels require several characters. This is especially true if you’re planning to write a book series. By creating a diversity in your novel’s main characters, you’ll generate a lot of interest in readers.
You’ll be able to sustain their engagement over several novels. There’ll always be a main character in the story that stands out. Your readers will experience most of the story through this particular character.
You can consider a few different types of conflict that would take place in your novel. The inner conflict, which your characters will experience as the story progresses. Then there are small-scale conflicts that happen between the story’s characters. You’ll also have large-scale conflicts that involve an external force that’s powerful and intimidating.
The most important among all conflicts is the central conflict. Most of the books in the fantasy genre have this central conflict which keeps the readers hooked. This is also a key to all the excellent stories. In fantasy fiction, these stories often stretch across several books in a series.