What are the parodies of?
Most of these parodies are of Terry Goodkind's fantasy series Sword of Truth and the reason for this is because, well the books are terrible and deserve mocking. Filled with ludicrous plots, shallow lame characters that masquerade as noble heroes, a black and white good versus evil storyline and just for cheep thrills a bit of kinky sex. The writing is of poor quality and yet the author truly believes his own hype that he is the greatest fantasy writer of all time, not that he writes fantasy, oh no that would be beneath him. Terry in fact writes stories about "Important Human Themes" which is definitely not fantasy, despite the magic sword and dragon.
But the most insidious part of the books is the Objectivist philosophy that underpins the actions and events that take place. Terry is a dedicated follower of Ayn Rand's teachings and the actions of his hero, Richard Rahl, and the Wizard Rules he lives by are inspired from her work. This means that it is perfectly OK for the hero to kill peace protestors because they are in his way, or to order his troops to commit genocide, rape and murder because it is alright for them to do it because they are the good guys. Seriously. Strawman villains are set up merely to present Richard with a seemingly moral choice to make, very much like Jack Bauer in 24, and no matter how bad the action of the hero it is presented as the right choice because it was the only moral thing to do and with no negative consequence because Richard is always right. Especially if it involves a chicken-that-is-not-a-chicken.
For most readers they don't even notice how strange all this stuff is until it is pointed out to them and the sudden realisation of exactly what it is they've been reading is akin to being born again. I myself read through seven of these awful books before I saw the light. It was a collective realisation of this that gave rise to the Goodkind threads on the Westeros Literature Forum, which is where these parodies were originally posted. At the time of this writing there have been 46 threads of 400 posts each in the Goodkind threads on Westeros and this has created a rich long history all of its own which would require a long document to fully explain everything. Two noteworthy things to point out is the definitions of the terms "yeard" and "Lemmings of Discord".
- A yeard refers to a ponytail and beard combination which can be seen in almost any picture of Terry. The word originated as a misspelling of beard which became a joke that we picked up and ran with in the threads. Sometimes Terry is referred to as "The Yeard", a definitive term and insult all rolled into one.
- Lemmings of Discord
- The name given to "haters" of Terry by his most loyal fan My*. This originated in an email that My* sent to Pat of Pat's Fantasy Hotlist in which he attempted to insult Pat by calling him a "Lemming of Discord", a title so obviously brilliant and hilarious that we only wish we came up with it ourselves.
Further details about the Goodkind parodies and indeed a full index of parodies (up to about the start of 2008 when Min stopped updating her blog) can be found on Min Donner's blog - Sandstorm Reviews. You can find the most up to date Goodkind thread by checking out the Westeros Literature Forum. The thread may be a page or two down if there has not been any recent activity but it should be possible to find it. If you want to read through all 46 Goodkind threads I recommend using an advanced search to find them. Search for the word "goodkind" making sure you click the option for "titles only", select the "Literature Forum" from the drop down list and I recommend turning the post previews off too.
On this page I present 14 parodies which I wrote between 2006 and 2010. Some of these are parodies of songs but most are crossover stories with something else, like a TV show, a movie, literature or a children's cartoon. If I was to recommend just one of these parodies to read I would say The Objectivist Wizard of Os, this is the longest parody here, but there is plenty of comedy to enjoy even if you are unfamiliar with the work of Terry Goodkind. I was particularly inspired at the time and wrote the entire four part parody in just two days, as The Yeard himself would say it was "pure stream of consciousness, raw Goodkind". Enjoy.