Why People Read Fantasy Books

Why People Read Fantasy Books

Even fantasies can bring us the most real experiences.

Some people hold the belief that as we get older, our tastes and interest should mature along with us. With this in mind, these people believe that if we do not "grow up" and change our interests, that we are immature and not worthy of their time.

However, it is not our tastes that define our maturity level. Our interests do not explicitly define who we are or what we are like. Some people prefer to read more "sophisticated" texts, such as "Crime and Punishment," or casually read the works of Shakespeare. Others, like myself, prefer taking a step into worlds of fantasy, where anything and everything is possible.

Fantasy books open doors to realms beyond what we know and accept as reality. Some stories take the world that we live in, along knowledge that we already hold and incorporate fantastic elements into it, while others build entirely new worlds, settings, and ideals for their characters. Each new novel and series introduces the reader to a new world, and strives to not only build the characters, but establish the world that they live in as well. When a reader adventures into a new world with all new rules from those that they know, the reader comes to rely on the protagonist of the story to lead them through the world, which creates a bond that is impossible to replicate in most other media. These bonds, along with the adventures that take place in these novels, are nearly timeless and can be returned to at any time. It is this timelessness that makes fantasy books irreplaceable in the heart of any book reader, and it plays a large role in having readers explore even more fantasy novels.

Well-written fantasy books are capable of bringing the readers to worlds beyond the realm of their imaginations, and showing them things that they would not believe. Some of the best fantasy books have been able to permeate the very fabric of our society, where there are very few people who haven't heard of them. The epitome of this kind of fantasy novel is, of course, the "Harry Potter" series. First published in 1997, "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" (or "Philosopher's Stone" in other parts of the world) began a worldwide sensation that helped to define a generation. Nineteen years later, the phenomenon continues with the release of the book "Harry Potter and the Cursed Child" on July 31. Many people who grew up as the books (and movies) came out found refuge in the adventures of Harry, Ron, and Hermione, and learned lessons about life, friendship, and love that they would not have learned otherwise. These people also return to the series at various points in their lives, during high points, low points, and any points in between. No matter when they go back, they always hold this message from author J. K. Rowling in their hearts: "Hogwarts will always be there to welcome you home."

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10 Essentials For A Writer-Friendly Coffee Shop

The best and most inspiring coffee shops all have a story.

Living in 2018 is pretty great. Not for the technology (although, it’s nice as well), not for the politics (ha ha ha), and not for the possibility of self-driving cars in the near future (honestly terrifying). No, I’m happy to live in 2018 because of a single trend: coffee shops.

Coffee shops are the THING now! And in the small college town I live in, there’s one on literally every corner. My absolutely ideal afternoon is one spent in a coffee shop. I love coffee and I love cozy spaces, so they’re pretty much perfect. As a writer, coffee shops have played a large role in my productivity as well. After visiting many different coffee shops, I’ve compiled a list of what makes one the most optimally writer-friendly.

1. Fascinating characters

Some of my best dialogue has come from overheard coffee shop conversations, no joke. I’m not sure what it is about them, but sitting in coffee shops makes people talk like they’re in a private living room. What does this mean? Intimate dialogue perfect for insertion in your latest story.

2. Trustworthy baristas

You know those baristas I’m talking about. The ones who remember your regular order, suggest new and adventurous drinks or give you an extra shot of espresso for free. Once you find them, stick with ‘em.

3. Good music

At my hometown coffee shop, Groundhouse, I can always tell which baristas are on duty if I listen to the music. ‘80s rock playlist? It’s the high school guy's shift! Soft indie? It’s my friend Eden! Acoustic covers? Groundhouse’s owner! Some of my favorite music has been discovered in coffee shops as well. I’m constantly lifting my phone to my mouth and discreetly asking Siri “what song is this?”

4. Insta-worthy aesthetics

Because if it’s not on Instagram, did you really drink coffee? (no. the answer is no.)

5. Big coffee mugs

If you’re spending $3.50 on a latte, it better be worth it. You’re not here to play around.

6. Comfy chairs

Because you’re going to be at the coffee shop for a while, writing thousands of words and getting chapters slammed out. Trust me, I know from experience it’s better to sit in a comfy chair during those thousands of words.

7. A background story

So the best and most inspiring coffee shops all have a story. Maybe they were started by a starving college student 10 years ago. Maybe it’s a family business. Maybe it’s owned by two brothers who wear beanies. Whatever the story, it’s gotta have a good one.

8. A favorite drink

(Chai tea latte, always and forever!)

9. Outlets

If you’re there for hours, the electronics will need juice.

10. Good tea

For the British-inspired days.

What else do you look for in a writer-friendly coffee shop?

*read this post and more written by young authors on the Project Canvas blog!* Project Canvas is a book of writing advice and motivation | 60 contributors from 9 countries... learn more!

Cover Image Credit: Olivia Rogers

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Saying Farewell to "The Fosters"

Thank you for giving representation to those who feel voiceless.

"The Fosters" first aired in 2013 on Freeform, back when the channel was still called ABC Family. Five years and 100 episodes later, it's time to say goodbye.

For months fans of this hit television show took to Twitter circulating the hashtag #RenewTheFosters trying to give the show one more season. Sadly, in January it was announced that the show would end this summer with a "three episode finale."

In short, "The Fosters" revolves around a family of many kids (many who have been adopted) and their moms, Lena and Steph. Each episode follows the family and various struggles that are currently taking place within society; recently, part of the show's plot focused on immigration and the flaws within the system.

From day one, "The Fosters" has represented unconditional love and diversity, something that the fan base has cherished. Various ethnic backgrounds, gender identities, and personal struggles have been brought to the forefront during this show's five year run.

Even though the Farewell Season has begun, it's been announced that there will be a spin-off show following Mariana and Callie, two of the main characters.

"The Fosters" will truly be missed as it gave representation to those who feel most voiceless. The show has made a lasting impact on its viewers and the television industry; from this, hopefully other shows will take the initiative to incorporate more diversity into their cast and characters.

Tune in on Tuesdays at 8 p.m. EST on Freeform to watch the Farewell Season.

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