I’ve recently been reading a bunch of wuxia / wushu novels. Those novels amuse me, many of them an interesting glimpse into the culture and differing viewpoints that the writers have compared to ‘Western’ writers.
Having been brought up in South-East Asia myself, I have a weird relationship with Chinese culture (specifically, modern day China). I can read books like that and many of the terms and concepts make perfect sense to me, though at the same time, some of the things they espouse as ‘ideals’ don’t sit well with my more Western upbringing.
On the opposite side of this, I’ve read a few Wuxia novels written by Western authors. They never feel right, the books themselves always feeling just a little off.
In many ways, that feeling of ‘offness’ seems to happen with other LitRPG books too, series that you realise are written by non-gamers. There’s just something that isn’t right about such books, that there’s something ‘lacking’.
I guess, if there is a point ot this post, is to be careful about writing in genres that you don’t fully understand. While I love military scifi, I know I can’t ever write in that genre. I just know that I don’t have the right background or understanding to get it right. It’s the same with non-gamers trying to write LitRPG, unless they are willing to really put the time in, it becomes VERY difficult to do so well.