Sunday Musings: Space and Beyond
Last year, I signed up for “Somewhere Out There,” a Worlds Without End reading challenge focused on works that take place in the vastness of space. I only managed to complete about half of my required reads. This year, I am trying again with the “Space Opera” challenge:
I’ve filled out my desired reads for all the rest of the challenges I’ve selected for 2016, but once again, I’m struggling with science fiction. It’s not like there aren’t a million plus one scifi books out there, but clearly, this isn’t my genre fiction preference. I’m okay with that. My name is Wendy and I prefer fantasy fiction. But, while I certainly don’t *hate* scifi, I am curious as to why I don’t have more of it on my book shelves. Considering my television and film viewing portfolio, you’d think that would be the case, but, I’ve realized, perhaps belatedly, that television and film tends to lean more towards science fiction than it does fantasy. Farscape, Star Trek, Lost (sort of), X-Files, Star Wars, Killjoys, Babylon 5, Firefly, Battlestar Galactica, Pitch Black, and all the superhero movies and shows I’ve loved fall firmly into the scifi category (well, scifi in the loose sense of the word in terms of actual science. More on that later), yet what I read seems to lean more toward fantasy.
Perhaps the simple answer as to why there is more scifi on screen is because it’s easier to make a spaceship than a dragon? Or perhaps its easier to get the general public to accept the possibility of aliens or the supernatural than it is the purely fantastical. It’s much easier to present such things in books for an audience who is already eager and willing to accept the realms of magic without needing every element of imagination explained away.
Not that science fiction, as we call, is pure science. The diehards of the genre despise the inclusion of works like Star Wars where the “science” is non existent. It’s really just fantasy in space, but because it involves said space and space travel and laser beams, it gets a pass, even without George Lucas trying to inject midichlorians into everything.
Anyway, I digress. The point of this musing is that I, Wendy Browne, intend to read more scifi this year. More books involving space, that final frontier, and perhaps even some actual science (and math too — ref: Binti). There will be a few Star Wars books, because duh, and Tiara and I have decided to go through Lois McMaster Bujold’s Vorkosigan Saga. I could fill out the challenge with that alone, but variety is a good thing. I’m particularly interested in reading scifi books by fantasy authors I’ve enjoyed, including Bujold and Steven Erikson. Maybe try to continue with the Ender series.
So here we go, 2016. To the stars. To the stars.