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11 May 2014 @ 09:37 pm
dynastic nonsense  

I swear to god, real political dynasties are so complicated & disbelief-suspending that if you wrote them people would be like OH HOW CONVENIENT.

For example, I’m reading about Joanna I of Naples. Joanna’s grandfather was the 3rd son, never intended to inherit anything, except he and his next oldest and next youngest brother got sent away to be hostages and treated brutally for 7 years just before he returned his oldest brother died and his next oldest brother who had been imprisoned with him got God in a major way and absolutely refused to take the throne so Joanna’s grandfather ended up on it. OH HOW CONVENIENT.

Her father was merely the youngest & wildly ambitious brother of one of the French Louis…es…and since he wasn’t going to inherit squat was determined build his own empire which he did. OH HOW CONVENIENT.

And then she herself was the 2nd born but her older sister died before age one and the next-born, a boy, died at 8 days and then next one was another girl and then BOTH HER PARENTS DIED when she was five leaving her the oldest surviving heir OH HOW CONVENIENT

Joanna then grows up to be the sole (western, anyway) female monarch of her age to rule in her own name. HOW FICTIONAL OF HER AFTER ALL THAT CONVENIENCE

It is, in fact, also all perfectly awful, because there are a lot od tragically dead people involved, and many of them are babies, but honestly, you’d just get stared at if you did that in fiction.

Or, for another example (this isn’t dynastic, but) there was the tsunami of 1755 that wiped Lisbon off the map and reduced Portugal’s standing in Western world politics from Major Player to “we’ll just be the protectorate for all those lovely lands you conquered, thanks” status.

I mean, seriously, can you imagine? *writing epic fantasy, doo dee doo, here are all these major players from this country doo dee doo WHOOPS TSUNAMI GAME CHANGER ALL Y’ALL ARE DEAD NOW AHAHAHAHAHA MOVING ON*

srsly, i totally wanna do that o.o

(x-posted from The Essential Kit)

Deborah Blakedeborahblakehps on May 12th, 2014 12:18 am (UTC)
Back away from the history books slowly...
ruford42 on May 12th, 2014 02:09 am (UTC)
Somehow I just imagiine Robert Drake and crew looking down from their ship and scratching their heads, "Uhh...Yeah, they're already more twisted than anything we can come up with! Bye!"

P.S. I may have to finally give LJ and resort to your blog, holy cow is it complicated to post a response now.
aberwyn on May 12th, 2014 02:41 am (UTC)
Yes, I've gotten criticized for the length of the Deverry civil war, 105 years, when the war in Brittany lasted exactly that long. And it was a smaller country (it was a country at that time) than Deverry.
mikaela_lmikaela_l on May 12th, 2014 06:41 am (UTC)
I know that feeling. If I decided to write something based on the life of Princess Cecilia Vasa who was the Black Sheep of the royal family, people wouldn't believe me.

Anyway, I would totally read that if you wrote it. I've been longing for Post-apocalyptic fantasy. Which might explain why I have doodled with a postapocalyptic fantasy idea, about the aftermath of a widespread disease ( a la the Black Death).
Chrysoulachrysoula on May 12th, 2014 03:35 pm (UTC)
I dunno, the dynastic stuff seems exactly like what I see in fiction. Look at all the coincidences required to put Daenerys in possession of 3 dragons and functioning as the legitimate exiled heir, etc etc. Dead babies and empire building just feel like history/political drive/etc. to me. but possibly I am too fantastical myself?

The tsunami would definitely be stare-worthy though, unless the story wasn't focused on the empire but some individual making their way through life.
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