There was, perhaps, no more appropriate title for a panel at San Diego Comic-Con International this year than “Rulers of the Realm,” a chat with several very impressive fantasy novelists you all know and love. Because my goodness do these folks ever know how to create entire worlds. And thanks to the magic of the Internet and recording technology, you can live (or re-live if you were there) the whole thing right here, right now. Ain’t life grand?!
Featuring the impressive minds behind Half a King, Magician’s Trilogy, The Kingkiller Chronicle, Outlander, and A Song of Ice and Fire, Joe Abercrombie, Lev Grossman, Patrick Rothfuss, Diana Gabaldon, and George R.R. Martin (respectively) spouted off some of their own wisdom and silly wonkery that helps to craft and create these vivid, impressive worlds that have become icons in the epic fantasy genre.
For readers and aspiring writers alike, the panel discussion’s illuminating, inspiring, and helpful — there’s plenty of good advice here, including a lengthy chat about the merits — and drawbacks — of maps, the importance of taking credit for the cleverness of your accidents, and why history is helpful even in imaginary worlds. And, of course, there’s a good deal of talk about the obsessive nature of the fandoms these worlds create, the art of killing characters, and the fascination of kings and royalty — with a couple of good ol’ Harry Potter jokes thrown in for good measure.
Which of the writers from the panel is your favorite? Sound off in the comments.