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Bill: Written to fit the theme of Capricon 27. There should be more “Schoolhouse Rock” in today's world!


Words & music by Bill Sutton
©2007 Mad Tom Music

“Deconstruction Rock is brought to you by…The New Yorker!”

Genre fiction isn’t so hard.
You can get a lot of pleasure with a library card.
But telling your friends what you read
Is never quite as easy as the editor says.
The definition’s blurry
If you get into a hurry
Tell me, is it Sword and Sorcery?
Or Epic? Or High Fantasy?

So, what’s a choosy reader to do?
If you want to make it simple there’s an answer for you.
Here’s a list of questions to ask
To make describing fantasy an easier task.
So, when your reading’s rigourous
You know you can rely on us
Just check off every item
(And then don’t forget to cite ’em!¹

“High Fantasy should contain one or more of the following elements, with Item #1 paramount:”

Does it have a made-up world?
Yes, it has a made-up world!

Is there magic in the air?
There is magic in the air!

Are there languages to learn?
There are languages to learn!

Are there monsters in their lairs?
There are monsters in their lairs!

Are there gods who walk around?
There are gods who walk around!

Are there elves and dwarven folk?
There are elves and dwarven folk!

Is there a battle and a quest?
There’s a battle and a quest!

Is technology a joke?
Yes, technology’s a joke!

So, if it looks like Tolkien, reads like Tolkien,
Sounds like Tolkien, bleeds like Tolkien,
Quests like Tolkien, sings like Tolkien,
Fights and wins and rings like TolkienThen it must be…

The Sword of Shannara.

“The more you know.”

¹List elements from Wilson & Alroy on High Fantasy Novels


from And They Said It Wouldn't Last, released August 16, 2016
Words & music by Bill Sutton
©2007 Mad Tom Music
Bill: Vocals, Guitar, Bass; Brenda: Vocals, Bodhrán
Recorded at Bedlam House Studios




Bill & Brenda Sutton Indianapolis, Indiana

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