Today's Top Ten is Favorite Authors in the X Genre. In my case, substitute FANTASY for X.
I'm not a huge fan of High fantasy so don't be shocked to find Tolkien is missing. I never made it more than halfway through The Two Towers before I threw in the towel (though I'm hoping to make a project of reading the whole Lord of the Rings this fall).
The Ten, in no particular order:
Katherine Kerr. Her Deverry series is the one and only 10+ book series to capture me. It is at at least 15 books at this point, I believe.
Neil Gaiman. Particularly for the Sandman comics and The Graveyard Book. I have read only a tiny fraction of his prodigious output, but he makes the list with Sandman alone. Also his Doctor Who episode The Doctor's Wife, though it is technically sci-fi (I guess).
Naomi Novik. Novik is shaping up to be the premiere writer of great fantasy friendships. Uprooted and the Temeraire series both center on amazing bonds of loyalty and companionship.
Diana Wynne Jones. Her Dalemark Quartet cemented me as a fantasy reader in my early teens. Howl's Moving Castle, Castle in the Air, and the Chrestomanci series are all wonderful as well.
Ursula K. Le Guin. She is perhaps better known for her speculative fiction, but her Earthsea Cycle holds a very strong place among great fantasy series.
Jane Yolen. Her Great Alta books (trilogy, I think) were formative for me, and she wrote the fantastic Briar Rose, among others.
Susanna Clarke. Even if she never writes anything else ever again, Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell makes her one of the greats.
J.K. Rowling. I mean, duh.
Tanith Lee. I love her Unicorn trilogy, and she writes some really great reimagined fairy tales.
Philip Pullman. It is criminal that His Dark Materials doesn't have the same popularity as Harry Potter.
(Original Top Ten Tuesday concept from The Broke and the Bookish)