This had to be done... There aren't enough cynics around

World of Fantasy

After a few political rants, it is time to give the fantasy writers a run for their money... Haven't we all wanted to enter the magical realms of Harry Potter, Richard Cypher/Rahl, Luke Skywalker and so many others? What we can't live, we will write. Here are some important stuff one ought not miss while penning a fantasy world of their own...
  • "You are the Chosen One, Harry"-Albus Dumbledore in Harry Potter series
The protagonist, preferably a male, should always be raised by foster parents because his parents were killed by the antagonist when he was a baby thanks to a prophecy. Every word is important. There has to be a 
prophecy which should be something in an iambic pentameter or a dactylic pentameter. As the child grows, not knowing his destiny, bullied by locals, one day, an accidental irreverence leads to a cascade of events culminating in something like:
"Yo're a wizard 'Arry"
"Richard Cypher, You are the true Seeker"

This moments should be typically taking place on a stormy night while the "local guardian" of our hero makes the proclamation that changes our hero's life for ever.
  • "The Prophecy said I'd fall in love with the One"-Trinity in The Matrix trilogy
The Love interest, preferably of the protagonist's opposite sex, unless of course you can brave a few stones directed at you and a few copies burnt by our good old Right Wing folks, adds glamour to the clamour. Make sure you catch it on your cell and sell it to a local news channel. Free Publicity and you can become the voice of the sexual minority. On a typical scenario, "she" should be smart and sassy, capable of defending herself. Yeah, it is fiction so you can have it that way.

The sexual tension works wonders when your story is adapted for a motion picture, who knows, with a few innuendos and a couple of racist remarks, Disney will be more than happy to produce it for you.
  • "Bazinga"- Sheldon Cooper in The Big Bang Theory
The third person is the Fun Element. A goofy guy (Ron) or a female with deadpan expressions and humor (Cara Mason) or an animal/android. However, another way to go is have The Mentor as the third in the quest (Gandalf/ Zedd). Either way, (s)he should provide wisecracks and ensure the leads do not get to do anything more than PG-13. And he should also be the one that slays the trusted monster of our antagonist in the penultimate chapter or give his life (only to be revived later).
  • "I will rule them all"-Lord Voldemort in Harry Potter, Lord Rahl, Emperor Jajang in Sword of truth, Darth Vader in Star Wars Series, Sauron in The Lord Of The Rings and virtually every villain in the history of fiction
The Antagonist should be a psychotic megalomaniac. He should be all powerful and invulnerable to all but one thing, which our hero uses to destroy him . Despite his tyranny, people should worship him. Despite treating the soldiers despicably and zero tolerance for failure, they should be loyal and most importantly, he should keep killing folks for the sake of killing.

He should be distant and cool and very much unlike Arnie as Dr. Freeze (Batman and Robin), he should never utter absolutely silly one liners with no shame ("Cool Party", "Chill", "I am a cold man", "Let me break the Ice"). Stupid puns are off limits. Choose a spine chilling name preferably with Lord or Count in it (Lord Rahl, Lord Voldemort), you do not want a psycho killer called Captain Black Underpants. And his anatomical features should be distorted because he "pushed the boundaries"
  • "Only one Man can do this Mission"-from Narashimha, a tamil movie par excellence. 
The Quest is the most important thing. Have the trio look for something that will help them kill the evil guy(like the Horcruxes or Hallows or Stone of Tears). If not send them to a place where they will do something like destroying a ring or a death-star. The perilous journey should be filled with sub-quests where our hero tries to help the local people, which in turn leads to him learning something new about the quest and himself, and serves to initiate hormonal cascades culminating in love.
  • "You may call me Mistress Denna"-Denna, Sword of Truth
Minions are an important aspect of any super-evil force. Those big guys in a Nazgul who say "No man can kill a Witch king" and get killed by a little girl, or the hooded Dementors and their deadly kiss, the leather clad Mord' Sith whom I wouldn't mind kissing but for that Agiel, all make their respective masters even more powerful. Our hero can make himself a name by defeating these vile minions who capture him, yet cannot just kill him like that and instead try an elaborate "domino" mechanism where a ball falling on a lever ultimately unleashes powerful magic-in 2.5 hrs, giving the hero time to escape.
  • "You were out there saving the world as i rotted here"-Thaddicus Zorander (SoT)/Aberforth Dumbledore (HP)
The mentor, while being wise and powerful now, should have been a power hungry arrogant arse in his young days, often helping the previous evil that would befall the world and planning on becoming omnipotent before an untimely death resulting from the very evil he aided changes his tracks(Gellert Grindelwald/Pahnis Rahl). Of course, he should never tell anything directly, like if he wants the hero to eat pizza, he should say it in riddles until our defeated hero orders it mainly because he was hungry after roaming all over the place and finally when the pizza does come, the mentor should give a mysterious-know-it-all smile.
  • "Luke, I am your father"- Darth Vader
The final revelation should be something like this, after all, it is all in the blood. So it not only manages to bring the tragic anti hero persona to the fore, but also manages to bring in a moral dilemma to the protagonist. For all we know, Richard is Darken's son; Luke is Anakin's son and Voldy and Harry are distant relatives
  • "Love is the biggest magic of them all"- Dumbledore/Zedd
In the final battle where the good guys are outnumbered 1000000 to 1, the hero should OFFER to sacrifice his life in exchange for a massive army promised to his ancestors. Just as the original good guys are almost killed, the new force joins hands and the allies destroy the millions of bad guys because they are invisible/invincible/dead/all of the above. The villain should be defeated by love something beyond his comprehension. This doesn't work with the tragic-villain concept mentioned above.

Another popular setting is a dystopian future where our hero can bring back order with the aid of cool gadgets and a dash of your own brand of outrageous philosophy like in Starship Troopers. Invent a game, you can have your own twisted set of rules. But the common rule is that unless the hero is injured/cheated/killed his team should ALWAYS win and he should play the most important position-seeker or striker or opening batsman. (Of course if he dies you should bring him back with a combination of magic and love)

Finally, the most important tool of them all is Time. Making it a character allows you to go for alternate timelines, change the past, allows your hero to be his own great grand dad, kill Nazis, Aliens, Zombies and Goblins all in the same book. That much is all i can say for now as my sci-fi-alien-travelling-to-the-past-to-fight-shiny vampires-alongside-wizard saga is going to begin.