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Thursday, 7 April 2011

F: Futuristic, Fairytale and Fantasy

Have you ever asked yourself: "If we should write what we know, how can anyone write about the FUTURE as Sci Fi Fantasy"?

 The answer is: Use your current world as the structure around which readers can relate to your story
and then you spice it up with the What if's  that every author should be asking themselves.


Of course a knowledge of technology and innovation is also key. So you may have to research what you don't know.

Fashion Designers, artists etc. all look towards new and original designs and it is the same with writing novels.


 Authors seem to revel in the Dystopian idea of the future of a depressingly woebegone world, which personally I loathe. I like the aftermath plotlines of survival, but so often the novels and films on this appear to revolve around a bunch of men with guns and other weapons fighting for supermacy, which again seems disappointingly clichéd.

So how do you see the future?

The 10th Kingdom Stardust [Blu-ray] The Hobbit: 70th Anniversary EditionAgain I love Fairytale stories like The 10th Kindgom, Stardust, The Hobbit, but I don't tend to read many. I have decided to try another Neil Gaiman novel soon.
Can you recommend any?
  

19 comments:

  1. I agree that people should start thinking outside the box (Woo! Cliche! :D) when it comes to some tried/tested storylines/world-building.

    One thing I didn't do with my sci-fi novel was...research. Oops. :D

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  2. I read Brian Yansky's Alien Invasions and other inconveniences (YA) and I loved it - stoicism on the cold edge of despair. I also read Across the Universe Beth Revis very believable that we would evolve these strategies for control and survival.

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  3. 'Use your current world as the structure around which readers can relate to your story
    and then you spice it up with the What if's that every author should be asking themselves.'

    Brilliant advice that can apply to any genre! But you've also encapsulated what I love about science fiction in that sentence, and, as you go on to say, if you don't know something you can always research it.

    Personally, I don't mind stories of a not so shining future. However, they need to have a unique element or twist that hasn't been done before. Otherwise, like you say, they become nothing more than clieches.

    Awesome post!

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  4. Oops...that was meant to be 'cliches'!

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  5. There was a movement recently towards 'optimistic SF'. I liked that one. The future doesn't have to be bad.

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  6. I tend to like dystopian futures. I like finding out what went wrong to diverge society in such a way. Authors and filmmakers come up with some interesting reasons as to the "why" - that's probably my favorite element.

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  7. I like the idea of Atlantis returning :)

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  8. I'd love to see what Neil Gaiman novels get recommended as I'm so sorry to say I ain't read any!!

    I love fairytales - a sci-fi fairytale would be nice!! Take care
    x

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  9. I approve of the idea of Sci Fi being a bit less grim (not to be confused with Grimm, that's fairytales!) You've hit the nail on the head with the predominance of woebegone macho men with guns squabbling over a futuristic world!
    Love the notion of taking what you know, in the here and now, as a basis for What Ifs. Enjoyed the post very much. Thanks.
    All best
    Karla

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  10. I agree about thinking outside the box. But I don't write dystopian, so it's probably easier said than done. :)

    I love fairtytale stories, too! I recently read Stardust, which was delightful, and I have the movie in my Netflix queue.

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  11. I don't like the way a lot of Dystopian focuses on a depressing, miserable world, either. A few stories is okay . . . but then everyone seems to be doing it. At least some other Science Fiction is more upbeat. :P

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  12. I have always had one foot outside the box and constantly being told....get back in the box. HeyHo!

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  13. Great post, Madeleine. I like the idea of optimistic sf.

    XX

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  14. I agree about the common dark view of the future. I read an article recently about the progression of how we viewed the future starting from around the 50s. Fascinating read about how our faith and hope in the future has been rocked.

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  15. Interesting! I have no recommendations, and while I wish the future would be amazing ... I see wars happening all over the place and natural disasters ... maybe I'm a pessimist about the future! I should work on improving my attitude!!!

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  16. I loved the 10th Kingdom. In my reading, I lean a bit more toward fantasy than Sci-fi, but in my television watching I lean a bit more toward Sci-Fi than fantasy. I watched all of the Trek incarnations. I loved Babylon 5 and TekWars. Oh, and the Star Gate stuff when I still was willing to pay for cable.

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  17. You're right: "What if's?" are the best way to write what we know in SF&F. We should write what we wonder. =]

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  18. Neil Gaiman's American Gods is a must read, although since I've just joined your blog, I'm not sure if you've read it before. Its list of awards is longer than Gandalf's beard.

    Grant @ Grant's Big Blog

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