AKA, I want to write a post, but it’s Christmas and I don’t want to put much effort into it so I’m just going to make a ranty opinion post. But I love fantasy, it’s the genre that really got me to love reading, and it’s the genre I love writing.
Prophecies/The Chosen One. I really hate them because from the moment you hear about it, you already know the outcome of the book. The hero is going to win and the other dude is going to be defeated.
The farm boy orphan whose guardians get murdered and then is taken in by a wise, old mentor. There is nothing wrong with being an orphan or having family get murdered or having some sort of old mentor. However, there is something very wrong with using the exact same combination over and over and over while expecting it to seem original.
Elves being perfect beings. I don’t mind elves. But when they’re all portrayed as the epitome of perfection, I get really sick of them.
The rebellion princess. This one can be done well, but if written poorly, your character can easily turn into a Mary Sue who shouts “I’m not like other girls!” at everyone she meets. Unfortunately, the latter is more common, and thus I’m not happy with this trope.
The FMC who’s there just to keep the character roster from turning into a sausage fest. Writers, you’re better than this. I’d rather see a character list consisting of only dudes than have the obligatory FMC who has zero personality and is just there for sex appeal/to get captured/to be annoying.
The romance subplot that was shoehorned in to appeal to teenage girls. This happens a lot in YA fantasy. I hate this so much that I’m going to make a post about it at a later time.
Little to no representation for the LGBT community. Contrary to popular belief, gay people didn’t just spontaneously appear one day. They’ve existed for as long as everyone else has, yet they’re never shown in fantasy for some reason.
The untrained warrior who masters swordplay in days. I don’t care if your character is a protégé (Actually, I do. I hate them with a passion.) but if he has never picked up a sword in his life and suddenly knows how to take down and entire army after swinging it around for a few minutes, there’s a problem.
Good people are beautiful and evil people are ugly. Back in Shakespeare’s era, this was commonly thought as true. But just so we’re clear, I’m writing this in 2012, where we know for a fact that it isn’t. Pretty people can kick puppies and ugly people can volunteer at soup kitchens.
Everyone is 100% good or 100% evil. Do not ignore the grey area. It’s what makes your characters human.
The dark, mysterious evil dude with vague motivation/who is being evil for the sake of being evil. Please, if you have an antagonist, give him some development. If it’s just some evil dictator who’s evil for no other reason than he’s got nothing better to do, scrap him and try again.
Well, that’s about it for today. This list might have a part 2 since these are just the ones off the top of my head. I’m not sure yet.