How Real does Sci-Fi have to be?

There was a discussion about the realness of SF over at one of the Nanowrimo forums. It seems that they read my “Laws Science Fiction” page and I was trashed – the page and me personally.

Also – I wouldn’t worry too much about that website. Personally, I think their “laws” are a load of crap, and that anyone who talks about “laws of writing” in that way should probably go take a hike. :-p

And another:

That website is crappy. Just reading the laws show their ignorance of Science Fiction. I doubt they’ve ever read Asimov.

My own personal opinions are stated clearly in the list of laws, so you might be able to guess what I think about the kind of writing that these people produce.

I imagine that I have sold more stories than everyone on that thread combined. In my brief stint as an editor, I had to read a lot of the stories that these people obviously prefer, and my eyes still hurt when I think about it.

via How real does Sci-Fi have to be? | National Novel Writing Month.


one commentor said:

The web site referenced has some good points to make, but it takes some uncomfortable hard lines on some things.

The author then goes on to describe how his or her novel is about an alien that (in my view) is really a human in a rubber suit. If you want to write about humans. Using SF to hide your true intentions seems like laziness to me. I guess some people find it easier to cast a story in a an sf setting so they will not have to do the hard work of character development and creating believable conflicts and plots.

There was only one criticism to my list of rules that I could buy into. Writing SF is fun so writing a story that breaks all the rules, but is fun to write and read is the only excuse for not following the rules.

This give me the AHA moment and I will add a disclaimer at the end.