Bitchy, bitchy, bitchy...
Pratchett takes swipe at Rowling
Writer Terry Pratchett has poked fun at Harry Potter author JK Rowling for saying she did not realise she was writing a fantasy novel.
He wrote to the Sunday Times:"I would have thought that the wizards, witches, trolls, unicorns, hidden worlds... would have given her a clue?"... [BBC]
...and not because "Rowling is now PTerry's bitch."
In a recent interview with Time magazine, Rowling said she was "not a huge fan of fantasy" and was trying to "subvert" the genre.
The magazine also said Rowling reinvented fantasy fiction, which was previously stuck in "an idealised, romanticised, pseudofeudal world, where knights and ladies morris-dance to Greensleeves". [BBC, cont'd]
Brilliant. JK Rowling has reduced "PTerry" and to incoherent rage and Neil Gaiman to grim rumination.
On the one hand, they want to claim the Harry Potter books as fantasy. It really pisses them off that such a huge commercial success isn't counted squarely as a coup for the fantasy genre.
On the other hand, they really don't like the fact that a card carrying non-fanboy is kicking asses all over the best seller lists. Evidently, PTerry has some long standing insecurities in this department.
PTerry thinks it's just obvious that books with trolls and broomsticks must be fantasy, and furthermore that Rowling is stupid to say that she didn't realize she was writing a fantasy novel. But that doesn't stop him from berating Rowling for not knowing anything about the fantasy genre. Because, obviously, if she knew anything about fantasy, she'd know that just because you've got a dragon in your book doesn't mean you're not keeping it grittily REAL.
If you want to claim an author's work for your genre, you've got to at least credit the author with knowing basic genre conventions. PTerry should make up his mind. He can either accuse Rowling of being a dilettante who doesn't know anything about fantasy, or he can call her a traitor who actually writes fantasy but pretends that she doesn't. He can't have it both ways.
I don't really have an opinion on any genre fight in any medium. However, I do admire this post by an aspiring fantasy writer about why fantasy writing tends to suck.