Booking Through Thursday

btt2So! In my Official Capacity as a writer of science fiction and fantasy, I hereby proclaim June 23 Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers Day! A day of celebration and wonder! A day for all of us readers of science fiction and fantasy to reach out and say thank you to our favorite writers. A day, perhaps, to blog about our favorite sf/f writers. A day to reflect upon how written science fiction and fantasy has changed your life.

So … what might you do on the 23rd to celebrate? Do you even read fantasy/sci-fi? Why? Why not?

I’ve occasionally wondered why science fiction and fantasy writing have such little appeal for me.  Is it because I’m so bound to realty, so tethered to earth, that my mind refuses to suspend the disbelief necessary to fully engage in this type of fiction writing? Do I prefer reality based writing , the way my eyes are drawn to realistic artwork and my ears to tonal music, because it’s familiar and safe? 

I have immense respect for sci-fi and fantasy writers, for the humongous leaps their imaginations have made into an alternate universe where no man has gone before.  Occasionally I chastise myself for my lack of receptiveness to this genre, and urge myself to browse the sci-fi section at the bookstore. 

But somehow I can never take the leap, and shy away at the last minute as I might do if someone were to hold the door of a rocket ship open and invite me in.

“Thank you, but no,”  I would say, characteristically polite.  “I’m sure it’s lovely out there, but I prefer to keep my feet firmly planted on the ground.”

Now tell me,  if you read sci-fi or fantasy, what do you love about it?  And if I were to screw up my courage and take a leap into this genre, where would be a good place to start?




13 thoughts on “Booking Through Thursday

  1. I posted about Chrisopher Moore – you do have to take a leap into this genre, but what makes it easier is his side splitting overly sarcastic humour. I laugh from the start of the book to the end.

    My post is here!

  2. I might have said that too, until I read some literary sci-fi in The Time Traveler’s Wife, and Never Let Me Go. Then I read some fantasy with my daughters (Harry Potter, The Lighting Thief). I enjoyed all that, but I still don’t consider myself a sci-fi/fantasy reader.

  3. I liked sci/fi & fantasy a lot as a teenager but haven’t as an adult until I discovered Terry Pratchett. He’s a surprisingly good writer considering his output. The books aren’t always even. Some are impressive others just a fast read, but always entertaining. What gives his books that extra edge for me is that they are sharp-witted, sometimes hilarious, and pointed satire. That would be my recommendation, Becca.

  4. I supposed if I thought about my reasons for avoiding science fiction and fantasy, they would be very similar to yours. Very thoughtful answer!

  5. I’m not a big SF reader either, but Dune by Frank Herbert is one of my favorite books. Classics such as Fahrenheir 451 and Martian Chronicles are other good places to start.

  6. Oh, where would I point you to? what would be a good introduction to a wonderful field of literature? Do you want something to make you laugh? Or cry? Doomsday book by Connie Willis covers both; it’s a time travel book to the Middle Ages in England. Prize winners – the Nebula for science fiction, and World Fantasy and Mythopoeic Awards for fantasy, are good places to look for books to try. For fantasy – it depends – Tamsin by Peter S Beagle is a very good fantasy book. There are so many different kinds of fantasy, that you would have to try a few and see if you like elves, or fairies, or fantasy set in alternate worlds, using magic. I wish you could come see my books so I could point some books out and let you look at them!!! lol

  7. I don’t read sci-fi, although I toyed earlier in the year with a project of reading well-known women novelists who’d written literary-sci-fi, like Margaret Atwood, Octavia Butler, Doris Lessing and Marge Piercy. I might well do that one of these days!

  8. I hear ya. I can occasionally do some high concept literary science fiction. Outside of that though, I would rather commit ritual suicide than read most of that genre.

  9. I seem to have to take sci-fi/fantasy on a case by case basis. For the most part, it is not my genre of choice. However, having said that, Lisamm mentioned The Time Traveler’s Wife, Never Let Me Go and the Harry Potter books all of which I have enjoyed tremendously. So I can’t really say that I don’t like sci-fi/fantasy. I do…sometimes…

  10. Because sci-fi and fantasy cover such a vast range, it’s more a question of finding what you’d enjoy. Instead of completely diving in you may want to test the waters. The Handmaid’s Tale is less techy sci-fi and more speculative fiction. More in the middle would be Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card. I consider Ursula Le Guin’s sci-fi to be in the deep end, but her Earth Sea series is geared towards young adults so is pretty easy fantasy. For Peter Beagle I also recommend A Fine and Private Place or the Last Unicorn. If you like Arthurian lore than Marion Zimmer Bradley’s Mists of Avalon or Irene Radford’s Guardian of the Balance. If you want something with a more urban and modern feel than Charles de Lint’s Memory and Dream. Uh- I think that’s enough…. Any questions?

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