Tag: J.R.R. Tolkien

Watership Down

Fantasy Books . . . What’s in a Label?

How useful are genre labels? Book categories? Age-range banding of books for children or adults? “Affixing ‘labels’ to writers, living or dead, is an inept procedure . . . a childish amusement of small minds.” – J.R.R. Tolkien

The Marvelous Land of Snergs, book cover

The Origin of The Hobbit – Holes, Snippets, and Snergs

Where did The Hobbit come from? “In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit.” According the now well-known story: “. . . grading papers . . . he came across a page which had been left blank. . . . an inveterate doodler . . . on that blank page, Tolkien wrote the sentence, ‘In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit.’” But significantly, Tolkien was also very familiar with a 1927 book titled The Marvelous Land of the Snergs, about a race of small human-like beings, “only slightly taller than the average table.”

Ringers: Lord of the Fans

Ringers: Lord of the Fans – Insight from Fans into Tolkien’s LOTR

Fantasy is like an exercise bike, said Terry Pratchett, British fantasy author, interviewed in the 2005 fan-documentary, Ringers: Lord of the Fans. It doesn’t actually take you anywhere, he said, but it develops the muscles [of belief] that will.

The Nature of Magic, in Le Guin and Tolkien

The description of magic, and the underlying concept of it, is variously tackled in many a fantasy book. What does it feel like to use magic? Is it…

“There and Back Again” – Sense of Place in Fantasy Literature

“There and Back Again” . . . In fantasy literature, the story often involves a journey from place familiar to place unknown. Leaving your small cottage, you enter…