LINK: Someone Said Science Fiction Might Be On Its Way Out

I still hear this comment from time to time: is science fiction on its way out?

This claim almost always causes me to pause. No doubt, the bulk of my mental reaction is out of defensiveness, especially considering that I am currently attempting (in my own fumbling, fragmented way) to make a mark in the science fiction literary community; now, or so it seems, I’m being told I may have missed my window.

Even if someone could prove this missed window scenario to be an undeniable fact, don’t believe for a second I would just stop writing science fiction stories altogether. I enjoy the genre too much. I would write for my own amusement and as a way to push myself to understand science and physics. The true bummer, though, would be that my opportunities and avenues to share my stories with others would diminish greatly, which means so would some of the joy I take in writing them in the first place.

I recently came across Orson Scott Card’s thoughts on the issue of a potential end to science fiction literature as we know it, and I realized that, like all things subject to evolution, the science fiction realm I have been attempting to join is simply morphing into a different form.

Are We At The End Of Science Fiction?

Like anything in life that’s subject to the influence of evolution (which is…everything!), we science fiction writers need only learn how to adjust our craft and our marketing to match how the science fiction literary universe exists at any given moment. The cool part is…being that we deal in science fiction in the first place, we are already keenly aware of the evolutionary construct.

Hmmmm…maybe that’s what attracted many of us to this genre in the first place.


About Steve 46th

I like creating things. I draw energy and passion from music. I enjoy solving puzzles and mysteries. I would be quite happy spending the rest of my life playing games with words for the enjoyment of others.
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One Response to LINK: Someone Said Science Fiction Might Be On Its Way Out

  1. Catana says:

    Thanks for the link to Card’s essay. I skimmed over it lightly and will read the whole thing when I have more time, but he covers a lot of territory very well. I write (or try to write) science fiction that is reality-based rather than diluted with elements of fantasy. I also read a lot of science fiction, and when I’m looking randomly on Amazon for interesting titles, it’s becoming harder and harder to find straight SF. An article I read recently (sorry, I can’t remember where or by whom) took the position that, in a sense, most SF has always been fantasy. Space travel and interstellar war, for instance, have been the backbone of SF, one that most writers today are unwilling to let go of. Given the reality of declining resources, the coming need to cope with climate change, etc., the likelihood of our becoming space farers becomes less likely with every passing decade. The kinds of so-called science fiction that are most popular today are fantasies in which young people become heroes, overcoming overwhelming odds and saving the world, or out and out mashups in which magic is just as or more important than science. I think a lot of that is due to the influence of TV and film. But mostly it’s an escapist response to living in unsettling times that seem to be getting worse, and with no solutions on the horizon. When reality is too hard to deal with, people turn to fantasy.

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