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8 Fantasy Writing Exercises

Watercolor fantasy illustration of a natural riverside lake forest landscape with ancient medieval castle on the rocky hill mountain background and blue sky with giant moon scene with fairy tale myth concept.

There is a lot of joy in writing within the fantasy genre. You’re given virtually an unlimited scope of creativity for your imagination to craft a tale. This means you’ll need to focus on creating cohesiveness within your narrative so all of the elements you wish to include can come together. These fantasy writing exercises will help you do just that.

#1. Read and write a lot. Like A LOT a lot.

This is the main thing that will help you get better. Writing is a skill that needs to be practiced to get better. Now sure – there are some authors that can creating a Saga that is incredible on their first writing effort. Maybe that’s you. The odds are that it isn’t you, however, which means you need to staple your pants to your chair and start reading and writing fantasy stories.

#2. Practice writing for an hour about something new.

The issue with writing in the fantasy genre is that everything is brand new. That makes it difficult to get started as a writer because you’re trying to create an authentic story from something that comes from your imagination. A way to resolve this issue is to set aside 1 hour of time each day for a week to write about something you’ve never written about before. This will help you get straight into the creative process without the same delays.

#3. Develop a taste for flash fiction.

Some writers don’t like the idea of flash fiction because the stories will typically not be accepted for publication. Flash fiction is 1,000 words or less for a story. On the other hand, flash fiction can also become the foundation for a much larger fantasy story that could turn into your first novel. Developing a taste to write flash fiction can help you be specific with your details and focus on your plot development so that your stories can have a natural beginning, middle, and ending.

#4. Use a prompt every day.

Just about anything can be a prompt. There are numerous bobblehead figures on my writing desk right now that agree with me. You can surround yourself with prompts or you can access several websites that offer these prompts with images that can get your fantasy writing off of idle. Even if you don’t plan to write one day, make sure there is a prompt available because you never really know from where the next great idea will originate.

#5. Remember forwards instead of backwards.

Ever had a moment of deja vu when you felt for certain that you’ve already done what you are doing? Some say that means you’re remember forwards instead of backwards. This type of experience is perfect for the fantasy genre. Take a few moments to write a sketch about a time when you had a similar experience and then see how this could apply to one of your characters.

#6. The dialogue that doesn’t have a dialogue.

A majority of our communication with one another comes from non-verbal cues. Our tone of voice, our body language, our facial expressions… these all add meaning to the actual words that we say. This can be particularly difficult to convey in the world of fantasy writing. As an exercise, try to create a dialogue between two characters where these non-verbal cues are the only communication tools that are used. This will help you to develop the descriptions required to bring readers into these moments so they can understand what the characters are doing with some consistency.

#7. Go backwards instead of forwards.

Sometimes the best stories are written backwards instead of forwards. Many mysteries are told this way, for example. Take one of your older stories or a short story from anywhere and reverse it. Any story will work, but doing this from a fantasy perspective will help to develop your skills for this genre. It doesn’t have to be a long writing exercise – a reverse summary is often good enough and that can be 500-750 words.

#8. Phone it in.

When an important character leaves, but a writer wants to keep them around in the reader’s memory, then they have to be included in the narrative even though they are not there. An absent character is often talked about to stay relevant, but there are other ways to keep them moving forward. Friends who haven’t seen each other in decades are still friends – how does that happen? Describe it in this exercise.

These fantasy writing exercises are designed to help you work on the actual skill of writing. By being creative and absorbing ideas from many different sources, you can find your own writing voice to create your own Saga one day. Choose one or choose them all and get to work – that’s really the only way to go.

Melissa G Wilson

Melissa has been a leader in the book writing, publishing and marketing arena for the past two decades. To date, she has helped more than 100 thought leaders write, publish and market their books. Her clients include executives such as Dan Weinfurter a seven-time Inc 500 winner and Orlando Ashford, President of Holland Cruise Lines.

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