Monday, 14 September 2009

Fantastic Beards

What is it with fantasy authors and beards?

Of course, not all fantasy authors have mighty beards. Some, like Arthur Conan Doyle, Gene Wolfe and Rudyard Kipling make do with glorious moustaches. Others like Tolkien, Howard, Lewis and Vance are respectably clean-shaven, though Howard once sported a rather controversial moustache.

I mention it because I also have a beard. I suppose it stems from some sort of Samson complex, where I feel vulnerable and insufficiently "armoured" against the world without my beard and long hair. It's interesting that many fantasy authors choose to have beards, especially big bushy ones like those above: gives me a kind of "kinship" with them.


  1. I suppose I fall into the camp of beardless fantasy authors, though I have only recently started publishing anything. I haven't shaved this Canadian Thanksgiving weekend, perhaps I should continue growing my facial hair.

  2. I definitely think you should. Fuller beards are starting to become somewhat fashionable (though fashion never convinced me to do anything), so it couldn't hurt. At worst, you could just shave it all off again.

    I think I stopped shaving about the same time my sister got married, so my significant other's a good five or six years old. Not too shabby.