Is having a book adapted a good experience for the author?Read More
Category: Intergalactic Medicine Show
Writing novels may not the best way to make a living. A look at the financial reality of authorship.
Why does speculative fiction not appeal to mainstream readers? The answer, “It just doesn’t interest me” does not interest me. So after years of observation, I’ve drawn a few (non-scientific) conclusions. The answers are more complex than a choice to avoid the science fiction section of the bookstore.
What is it about science fiction and fantasy that does not appeal to the average reader? Is it a preconception about adolescent choices and an over-reliance on spaceships and dragons?
Why do I read science fiction and fantasy? It turns out the answer may be in my psychological makeup.
Nobody likes a critic, particularly an author who is on the receiving end of a negative and very public judgment. While some authors can shrug off a poor review with ease, other authors feel as judged as the book itself.
I’m currently reading Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic, which is a comic book based on the two video games that are based on the extended universe of the science fantasy sextology. Although it captures the flavor of the Star Wars universe, it’s about as far removed from the original series as pasteurized processed cheese-food product is from cheese.
“Being a fan is like being in love,” says Lynn Karlsson, a fanfic writer. “You just want to eat, sleep, breathe, and love these characters, and spending time with them is the most engaging thing that you think of.”
I was fifteen years old when I invented the genre of fan fiction, a form of writing where the author takes characters or universes created by someone else and writes stories about them. That was the year I wrote my first short story involving me, Kirk, and Spock, which is also the year that I invented the genre’s worst cliché: the Mary Sue story, where the character exists as a thinly veiled avatar of the writer.
Fifteen was also the year I attended my first convention, where I learned that fan fiction had thrived for years before me.
When Ann Tonsor Zeddies read excerpts from her latest book, Blood and Roses, for a private group, she did not have to bolster her confidence by imagining her audience without their clothes. She had only to look up. The audience, members of the Clothing Optional Dinner Club, were all naked — as was she.
The word “blog” entered our lexicon with a vengeance: a techie buzz-word that appeared in 1999, the word “blog” was voted the most popular word in the year in 2004 . This gave rise to the phrase, “Haven’t you read my blog,” seconded by, “You’d know what I was doing, if only you had read my blog.”
Yael Sela-Shapiro did not wake up one morning and say, “I think I’ll translate English science fiction into Hebrew” — but after passing a test given by a small translation agency, it happened just the same. Armed with a slew of dictionaries and reference material, she began her work. One day, while translating Pullman’s His Dark Materials, she came across the words “General Oblation Board,” also known as “gobblers.”
And here’s the problem: Hebrew does not have a word for “oblation.”
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