Academic Papers as Fantasy
An idea that I’ve had floating around in my congested writer’s head is the idea of using an academic paper as a means of telling stories and world building.
I already have several concepts running around for stories that I could tell with this form of writing but I have run into a couple of issues that I think that this type of writing would run into.
The first, and probably most daunting for me, is the fact that all of the primary and secondary source documentation that these essays would need to cite and use as arguments would have to be written first, which could be a dry and uninteresting process.
One solution for this would be to have someone else write the essays and ask for the primary and secondary sources from the world builder. This would introduce an element of surprise and would also prevent the world builder from slanting their source documents to fit the essay that they want to write.
Of course, this means gathering writers that you trust and like their writing style so that the stories are interesting and stay true to the concept.
Another problem I could see with this approach is that, without a narrative drive for the essay, it might be a bit boring to read and would really only be interesting for people deeply invested in the world you’re trying to write about. I think of this as the long form reddit posts that people write about fan theories. For those invested in the fandom, these essays can be intensely interesting but for those on the outside they’re fairly boring.
I think that overall this is an endgame type of concept, most suitable for once you’ve completed, or nearly completed, the narrative arcs that you’ve set out and are trying to fill out the concepts and ideas that you’ve explored in your books.
So, for now, these ideas will remain on the back burner. But I’d love to hear if anyone would find these interesting, ways to keep readers and invested and other ways to bring this concept to market.
Posted on August 5, 2022, in genre, writing and tagged fantasy, genre, infodump, marketing, short stories. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.
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