Originally published June 1, 2015
My friend and colleague, Dianne Lynn Gardner agreed to visit today. She is deep a project that will bring her beloved Realm to the screen. It has been quite a journey. After writing Ian’s Realm, a trilogy, and then expanding the story to include two more books due to be published, she fell in love with the idea of bringing the Realm to the screen. To have something worthwhile to show, you have to know how to build a world other people want to visit!
Please welcome Dianne Lynn Gardner during one of her short stays here with us in the reality of the the Pacific Northwest.
It’s not enough to lay on the grass, dandelions by your ear bouncing under the weight of a bumble bee, clover blossoms tickling your toes, as you stare at the white puffs of moisture changing shapes against the blue. No. It’s not enough to just lay there and listen to the breeze as you absorb the warmth of the day. You aren’t satisfied until you squint at the clouds and see the shape of a giant lizard morph into a dragon, and then as moments pass the formation becomes a butterfly stretching its wings over you, hovering between you and that burning star you call the sun. Soon it dissipates into nothing again. A cloud again. The shadow that had shielded you, gone.
Your imagination took you into a portal of time. For a few moments you weren’t really on your front lawn. Cars didn’t drive by, airplanes didn’t fly over your house. The phone didn’t ring. In fact, in the fantasy world you just left,, those things didn’t exist. Your stay was ever so brief. Completely harmless. But you were there.
Some people choose to stay longer.
Though it’s my opinion that all fiction is fantasy because it was made up in the mind of the author, the genre has a skeleton more exclusively defined. Speak the word fantasy and castles and battles fought with broadswords and bow manifest in the mind’s eye.
There are other kinds of worlds and the more imaginative author will seek to find different scenery to entertain the reader.
Two questions. How and Why?
“How” is left to the artist who paints a dream. It could be a combination of places the author loves. Maybe there were fields where he once walked. Perhaps in his childhood he remembers a house at the end of the street that had a basement unexplored. Sometimes a forest is so dark and deep he might remember hearing voices screaming from its core. Many memories and imaginings can dream up a fantasy world, and to build that universe in detail is an art. An exciting journey, with endless possibilities. All one needs to do is squint a little as though looking at the clouds, and pretend.
Stories such as Through the Looking Glass, the Wizard of Oz, Narnia, Lord of the Rings and many other fantasies take their main characters into worlds with incredible obstacles to overcome. Those obstacles represent trials common to us here in the real world. Good- versus-evil-type trials. In a fantasy story, magnifying the consequences of wrong choices, and glorifying the triumphs of perseverance, loyalty, courage and honor prompts the reader to consider issues they are facing in reality. In some way, those prompts can help to influence decision making — hopefully for the better.
This is why we love fairy tales, dragons, castles, princesses and knights. It takes us away from this world, if only for a while. And the really good stories give us something to bring back.
Dianne has a long list of accomplishments include a number of published books, and several award winning trailers and short films. Visit her on her website: https://www.gardnersart.com/