I have always been a reader of fantasy literature. You'll pretty much always find it lumped together with the sci-fi section in a book store, but the big difference is that fantasy lit is based on magic.
Yes, it's true that Agent Darcy and Ninja Steve novels are a mix of sci-fi and fantasy. However, I still consider them to be primarily fantasy stories, in the way that their world is full of ghosts and, well, some other cool creatures that I'll start to introduce in book two. Then again, book two is mainly about robots, so maybe I've defeated my own claim here.
Anyway, here's the point I want to make. Fantasy is often treated as a lesser genre of writing. The big literature critics out there prefer stories about sad people living in New York. Don't get me wrong, I've read some great stories about sad people living in New York. That being said, I'd much rather explore a world full of magic.
One of my FAVORITE FAVORITE FAVORITE fantasy authors is the one and only Patrick Rothfuss. His books are full of exciting, heart-wrenching, musical sentences that are unlike anyone else's. And they're fantasy!
This week, he posted a piece of an old interview that Terry Pratchett gave, in which the interviewer makes the TERRIBLY mistake of treating fantasy literature like it isn't real literature. You just have to read what Terry Pratchett said to this guy:
Without a shadow of a doubt, the first fiction ever recounted was fantasy...Guys sitting around the campfire telling each other stories about the gods who made lightning, and stuff like that. They did not tell one another literary stories. They did not complain about difficulties of male menopause while being a junior lecturer on some midwestern college campus. Fantasy is without a shadow of a doubt the ur-literature, the spring from which all other literature has flown. Up to a few hundred years ago no one would have disagreed with this, because most stories were, in some sense, fantasy.
BOOM! BAM! KA-POW!
I love it.