Recently, as many of you know, I’ve been hosting a feature on my blog discussing the various reasons that people love speculative fiction. I think this genre moves all of us in different ways, and because of that, it means something different to everyone. I love celebrating unique perspectives.
I also love collecting quotes.
This is a rather well-known quote among the genre crazy fans (like myself), but I love what George R. R. Martin says, and I love how he says it. That’s probably why I tend to collect quotes out of books and look up things authors say. I hoard them like a dragon would hoard his treasure. Authors say such incredible things that resonate so profoundly with me, so much better than I ever could.
Books will never bore me for that reason, and neither will the people who work so damn hard bringing them to life.
So I’m smashing my love of genre, and my love of quotes together in this post. Enjoy.
The best fantasy is written in the language of dreams. It is alive as dreams are alive, more real than real … for a moment at least … that long magic moment before we wake.
Fantasy is silver and scarlet, indigo and azure, obsidian veined with gold and lapis lazuli. Reality is plywood and plastic, done up in mud brown and olive drab. Fantasy tastes of habaneros and honey, cinnamon and cloves, rare red meat and wines as sweet as summer. Reality is beans and tofu, and ashes at the end. Reality is the strip malls of Burbank, the smokestacks of Cleveland, a parking garage in Newark. Fantasy is the towers of Minas Tirith, the ancient stones of Gormenghast, the halls of Camelot. Fantasy flies on the wings of Icarus, reality on Southwest Airlines. Why do our dreams become so much smaller when they finally come true?
We read fantasy to find the colors again, I think. To taste strong spices and hear the songs the sirens sang. There is something old and true in fantasy that speaks to something deep within us, to the child who dreamt that one day he would hunt the forests of the night, and feast beneath the hollow hills, and find a love to last forever somewhere south of Oz and north of Shangri-La.
They can keep their heaven. When I die, I’d sooner go to middle Earth.
― George R.R. Martin