it's great

Medieval Africa sees the rise and fall of large Western Sudanic Empires like Ghana, Songhai and Mali. There’s the Fatamid Caliphate in the North, not to mention other polities like Kanem-Bornu and the Swahili States, or the Kongo Kingdoms further South and those of Zimbabwe. We have Axum/Abyssinia in the Northeast, along with the Nubian Christian kingdoms. All of these feature “fascinating, dynamic, cataclysmic and downright exciting events” for which any fantasy writer should salivate. Abyssinia even has a castle called Gondar–no kidding! Gondar!

The world’s largest and most populated landmass, Asia, is brimming with medieval histories. From the complicated intrigue that sees the rise and spread of Islam in Western Asia, to the nearby Sasanids (Iran) and later Safavids, the numerous Caliphates, the expansive Gupta period of India, the Tang to Yuan dynasties of China or Queen Himiko of the Yamato to the Kamakura Shogunate, Asia has all the “religious, political, social and economic upheavals, the rise and fall of dynasties, conquest, epidemics” that should keep both fantasy writers and readers satisfied through the Butlerian Jihad and possibly the discovery of the spice melange!

I don’t even have the blog space to touch on the continents of North and South America–from mound builders in Mississippi to pyramids in Mesoamerica. And the best thing is, all of this offers us not only diverse faces, but (most important in my estimation) wholly different folklore, mythologies, cultural dress, weaponry, building structures and more to inspire our dreams. So the question remains, why is the fantasy genre so self-limiting? Why is it so few writers have bothered to expand beyond the western end of Middle Earth and give us instead stories out of Far Harad?


The Danger of Party Favours

“Not because some marketing strategist in a skyscraper with a suit decided to make something pink.”