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Fantasy: March 08, 2023 Issue [#11846]

 This week: Clothing
  Edited by: Robert Waltz
                             More Newsletters By This Editor  

Table of Contents

1. About this Newsletter
2. A Word from our Sponsor
3. Letter from the Editor
4. Editor's Picks
5. A Word from Writing.Com
6. Ask & Answer
7. Removal instructions

About This Newsletter

When I get a little money I buy books; and if any is left I buy food and clothes.
         —Desiderius Erasmus

Never judge a stranger by his clothes.
         —Zachary Taylor

Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society.
         —Mark Twain

Word from our sponsor

Amazon's Price: $ 2.99

Letter from the editor

In a story, most of your characters will probably be wearing clothes—this editorial isn't about that kind of fantasy.

While some people like to devote entire pages to details of the colors, styles, and stitching involved, that sort of thing bores me, so I don't have any advice for it. Except that I'll skip over any descriptions.

But in general, there are several different reasons to wear certain clothes, apart from the most obvious (to conceal those areas marked "private"):

Practicality: One wears clothing suited to one's profession. Thus, a blacksmith might favor a leather apron, a cook wants no loose-fitting garb that might catch fire or contaminate the food, and a farmer isn't going to wear long, flowing robes.

Social status: Those of the so-called higher social classes might want to emphasize that they don't work for a living, so they won't wear clothing befitting a blacksmith, cook, or farmer (for example), but rather something impractical for manual labor to highlight their life of relative leisure.

Religion: One's tradition might dictate one's fashion.

There are probably more, and I'm sure you can think of them. But what I really wanted to do was talk about various fashion inventions, and why some of them might not belong in a high-fantasy setting.

Velcro: This is probably the most obvious. Invented in the 1950s, and inspired by one of nature's many annoyances.

Zipper: Only a bit older than Velcro, this began to be a thing around the end of the 19th century. Before then, clothing was held together by ropes and...

Buttons: Early versions of buttons were around long before the Roman Empire, but they can be finicky, and the ubiquitous plastic ones are a modern convenience.

Bras: I probably don't need to remind you that brassieres are fairly new, what with all their annoying hooks and fasteners. I'm just including this to note that you'd think the French word for "brassiere" would be "brassiere," but it's not; it's "soutien-gorge," which can be literally translated as "neck support."

Socks: While some versions of socks have been around for a long time, they were generally a pain to create, so were expensive and not widely used among the peasantry.

Some kinds of fantasy writing allow for anachronisms, but you can at least make it clear why a zipper might be used on clothing in a medieval-style castle.

Editor's Picks

Some fantasy for your perusal:

Unexpected Meeting  [13+]
Sarah's visit to see her favourite statue is slightly different than expected.
by Osirantinous

 Magic or Illusion?   [E]
A stage magician with money problems meets real magic for the first time.
by Eliza West

 Snow Creatures  [13+]
My Writer's Cramp entry for Dec 10
by Beck Fires the Boiler!

The Oubliette  [18+]
Night was never so black. The walls of the pit offered Franz nothing.
by Tileira

 Dwarven Prophetic Song  [E]
Mighty power of incantation, aid the dwarves in their sword creation.
by Tadpole1

 Wraith  [E]
A visitor in my room at night
by T.L.Finch

The Legend Of Brenna Morgan  [13+]
Legend of lost love
by La Belle Rouge

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Word from Writing.Com

Have an opinion on what you've read here today? Then send the Editor feedback! Find an item that you think would be perfect for showcasing here? Submit it for consideration in the newsletter!

Don't forget to support our sponsor!

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Ask & Answer

In my last editorial, "Time, I went on about time.

Aiva Raine : I like time travel novels. It's somewhat easier for me to forgive continuity errors than in other stories. Well, provided they aren't too egregious.

On the topic of time and space, I do highly recommend The Elegant Universe or The Fabric of the Cosmos by Brian Greene. He does an excellent job explaining the timey-wimey stuff. grin.

Definitely the sort of thing I'd read.

So that's it for me for March! See you next month. Until then,


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