1. Burlbird
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    Burlbird Contributing Member Contributor

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    Future Earth in a space opera setting

    Discussion in 'Setting Development' started by Burlbird, Nov 29, 2012.

    I've been struggling with recently rediscovered space opera setting that I've created when I was just a teenager. To cut the long story short, it's set thousands of years in the future, somewhere in our galaxy. Humanoid, start trek-type aliens, however exotic they might look, are all considered human off-shots - inbreeding of early colonists, natural and introduced mutations, genetic engineering... it doesn't really matter. Human worlds have been settled for so long most of the people just consider themselves native to their homeworlds....

    Now, while it doesn't play a significant part in any of the story lines, I 'm puzzled with the role our good old Mother Earth should play in the setting. There are so many worn-out concepts in scifi, but if I choose one, I want it to be somehow reflecting of the "real"/present world. So tell me, what do you think:

    1. A backwater planet is recently discovered to be the cradle of all humanity - like sub-Saharan Africa nowadays, with all the consequences
    2. For some times a planet is known to be the home of the very first "modern" civilization - like Iraq nowadays, with all the consequences - but most people doubt it could be the birthplace of the species
    3. The homeworld of humanity is completely erased from collective memory and history - much like in Asimov's Foundation - and there is some reason (religious perhaps?) that it's left that way
    4. The Earth is known by name and significance throughout history, and it's home to an utopian society - much like in Star Trek
    5. Everybody knows about it, and consider it a place of worship and pilgrimage - it's a tomb world, or a temple world - a sort of Holy Land, Mecca or Jerusalem
    6. Nobody is sure which planet IS actually Earth - and a number of mostly primitive worlds claim themselves to be the real birthplace of Humanity
    7. It's a desert wasteland, radiated, desecrated, depopulated or with sub-human population - but is kept as neutral grounds by the great galactic powers
    8. Most of the above combined in some way.
    9. Something completely different?
     
  2. captain kate
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    captain kate Active Member

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    It's science fiction. Earth can be pristine, or overcrowded, or ecologically ruined. It's all up to imagination. It could have a complete ring built around it in orbit (Carl Sagan thought that could happen in the far future.) or really anything you want. You could put space elevators into play.

    My advice is to settle on what you, alone, want it to be. As writers, we need to be able to stand on our own when it comes to making decisions in our novels, and then work through and learn how to edit.
     
  3. Burlbird
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    Burlbird Contributing Member Contributor

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    I know, but frankly, I thought some online brain storming with people who don't care might shed some light on what I might settle on. :cool: I never really cared about the issue when I was a kid, because stories were told from the POV of an interstellar traveler who never visits Earth. But now, I'm in a limbo, with several paths to choose from. I'm not looking for others to choose them for me, but to discuss them, or other possibilities so I could get a clearer view into the matter (from a neutral point-of-view).

    So, what would you do? - if you were to write about a future so distant nobody even looks like you and me? :)
     
  4. captain kate
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    captain kate Active Member

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    I'm already writing a universe now where there are insectoids, some species look like crabs, other cats on two legs, and the usual humanoid. I've got plenty of story to write for sure.
     
  5. Jetshroom
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    Jetshroom Active Member

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    In the sci-fi I'm currently writing, Earth exists, but it completely unimportant to the story so I won't be mentioning it. However, in my story, "Earth" encompasses our whole solar system, and all the ships in the fleet so the meaning of the word has transcended being the name of the home planet.

    Perhaps consider WHY humans left earth in the first place, and you might come to what it's state is now. Was it scientific curiosity? Was it impending doom? Did we just want to get rid of a worthless third of the population? Each why presents a different scenario as to how the earth would end up.
     
  6. James Berkley
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    James Berkley Banned

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    maybe its a museum? the posiblities are endless

    in my sci fi im working on it has the capital of a Theocratic State on it. outside of their their is not much on Earth anymore, and the theocracy says its off limits.
     
  7. SGTGerman
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    SGTGerman Member

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    I see the importance of this however I think you are making a concern when there's no need to. You said yourself people consider themselves native to the other planets now, and with the interbreeding etc why would earth be so..."important"? None of the choices you have listed are the wrong answer and only you can decide which one fits since you are the one writing the story.


    Hope that helps.

    SGT.
     

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