Breaking the Fourth Wall

Where is all the ‘really good’ epic fantasy going?

There is a lot of fantasy out there, and many of it wears the trapping of ‘epic’ but when you get down to it’s just bland – and often ‘breaks the fourth wall’. Honestly I am beginning to think that many authors these days are just lazy. I mean I know they are not – I know the effort required to finish a first draft, let alone the re-writes, but come on… you know what I mean?

This is becoming an regular rant of mine, but here I am trawling through my over flowing bookshelves (at home, not in the store) looking for something to read and coming up short.
An example. It really pisses me off when I get a book that has great world building, really epic and original stuff – inventive, fully formed and unique – and then they lift what is essentially a model of the Catholic Church and dump it into their fantasy world with only the smallest of tweaks to make it fit. But it doesn’t fit. It sticks out like a sore thumb. And it’s really frustrating. The author has gone to so much trouble building their world only to drop the ball with this?
Yeah, I know there is some great stuff coming (Michelle West’s new one is out next week, and Rothfuss’ is due in March etc) but I’m looking for something now.

It’s just disappointing. And it’s also annoying when you get ‘reviewers’ reading books by writers like Scott Lynch who a brilliant job (for the most part) and snidely make comments like ‘but where is the fantasy?’ because it’s not dripping in magic – um, ever read GRRM?

There was a time that the market was awash in true epic fantasy – what happened? Is it publisher pressure or is this all they are being offered? Is it the market or marketing?
I am sure as hell going make sure that I don’t go that route with my own work.

– end rant.

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