For those of you who don't know him, Terry Goodkind writes a series of fantasy novels that go by the name of "The Sword of Truth" I believe. His first book "Wizards First Rule" was solid but since then the books have gone steadily downhill. I think I gave up after the fourth one.
Orem Utah: What do you think distinguishes your books from all of the other fantasy books out there, and why should readers choose to read your series?
Terry Goodkind: There are several things. First of all, I don't write fantasy. I write stories that have important human themes. They have elements of romance, history, adventure, mystery and philosophy. Most fantasy is one-dimensional. It's either about magic or a world-building. I don't do either.
And in most fantasy magic is a mystical element. In my books fantasy is a metaphysical reality that behaves according to its own laws of identity.
Because most fantasy is about world-building and magic, a lot of it is plotless and has no story. My primary interest is in telling stories that are fun to read and make people think. That puts my books in a genre all their own.
So I guess readers who are interested in story rather than world-building and details of magic would have a good time reading my books.
No, you write fantasy. Not only that, it's derivative.
What I have done with my work has irrevocably changed the face of fantasy. In so doing I've raised the standards. I have not only injected thought into a tired empty genre, but, more importantly, I've transcended it showing what more it can be-and is so doing spread my readship to completely new groups who dont like and wont ready typical fantasy. Agents and editors are screaming for more books like mine
So you don't write fantasy, but you changed the face of the genre none the less. Amazing.
Haddonfield, NJ: Second Question - I've noticed similarities between your Sword of Truth series and Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time series...(Black Sisterhood vs. Black Ajah; The Order vs. The Seanchan; Richard vs. Rand both discovering their powers, both have Nameless evil Gods...etc.) I've often voiced my suspicion that these two series might be occurring on the same world...how crazy am I?
Terry Goodkind: If you notice a similarity, then you probably aren't old enough to read my books.
Kansas City, KS: What made you choose to leave out other common races(dwarves, elves, etc) from your books?
Terry Goodkind: Please refer to the previous answer, in which I explain that I'm not writing fantasy ... My purpose is not weirdo cultural diversity. I repeat: I am writing stories about important human beings.
Question: Lately I've found myself in many arguments defending your books against 'fans' who say they used to like your books but no longer do to the extent that they used to. Would you mind settling some debates by answering the question: What, if anything do you have to say to the people that voice the opinion that you're latest four books haven't been as good as the previous four and call them "too preachy"?
Answer: Don't be fooled. The assertion made by these detractors is a note wrapped around a brick thrown through the window. These people are not fans. There are hundreds if not thousands of fantasy books that fulfill their professed taste in books. Why would they continue to read books they claim are bad? Because they hate that my novels exists. Values arouse hatred in these people. Their goal is not to enjoy life, but to destroy
I pulled this from the Gone Gold forums and I couldn't agree with the sentiment there more. What a tool.