1. AndrewReily
    Offline

    AndrewReily New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0

    Genre troubles.

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by AndrewReily, Dec 28, 2009.

    So, obviously I'm new to these forums, and somewhat new to writing in general.
    I've written a couple of short stories and have started to find my voice to the point where I feel I'm ready to start a full novel.
    Now, all the advice I've heard thus far is "write what you read", basically just make sure to stay in a genre that I enjoy.

    Now for me it's obvious that I LOVE speculative fiction, but from there I'm not sure...
    My two favorite sub-genre's from this is probably science-fiction and modern fantasy.

    As for the modern fantasy, I've never really had a setting I could enjoy.. And I feel that although I love it, I don't see myself writing more than a short story in it.

    Now I've had ideas in my head, letting them circulate and seeing if I still liked them with coming months and I did. Hurray.

    This fell into science-fiction, and I still like the setting, and even the beginnings of a story-line that I've started..

    The problem is, I'm currently enrolled at an art school (not for writing, this is more of a side thing I wont go into it more) and my teacher was talking to the multitudes of video students about plot lines.

    He is an ex Bio major, and he said the worst thing that can be done is putting in something unplausable.
    This scares me, because I don't want to be that idiot who writes about the iron boned aliens that gets made fun of by people for a while.

    Am I just syking myself out? Or what.. But either way I feel like I'm not... Qualified enough? At least to be writing science fiction.

    Meh.. Anyone that can calm me down would be a god-send..

    BTW, sorry if this is in the wrong forum. I think it was, I looked around for a bit and decided this was probably the best.
     
  2. TWErvin2
    Offline

    TWErvin2 Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2006
    Messages:
    2,528
    Likes Received:
    561
    Location:
    Ohio, USA
    With Science Fiction, it often requires research so that you don't make obvious gaffs. Also note, with SF there is hard and soft science fiction. If your background isn't really in physics, chemistry and biology, then you'd want to stick closer to the soft science fiction.

    With soft SF, it doesn't mean you ignore basic scientific laws or logic, but how and why things work on the technical/scientific side take a back seat.

    Hope that makes sense.

    Terry
     
  3. AndrewReily
    Offline

    AndrewReily New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2009
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0
    It kind of does, I had that plan already.. I mean I know I can research, and I'm pretty good at math so maybe I can keep it decent to physics, I'm just worried if I try to make it to... Hard I guess?.. It would seem forced and fake, you know?

    Like should I stick to soft and just do general research and be safe?
    Or push what I can do, and hope I don't make any blatant mistakes? (Only example I can think of is the Cloverfield monster, which I know isn't writing but, how it's legs size could in no way support it's mass.)
     
  4. Operaghost
    Offline

    Operaghost Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2009
    Messages:
    217
    Likes Received:
    0
    Something implausible in sci-fi? What like teleporters that can split you into atoms and project them miles across space, or giant talking robots that can change into vehicles, or a computer based world run by machines where there are no rules, a strange traveller who travels in a blue box.. the main point of science fiction is the Fiction part, yes you can run into problems if writing about things which do exist and can be researched, but as for anything else its fair game, after all, why should anything form alien worlds/alternative dimensions have to adhere to the rules of our own world, just because we can’t exist without sunlight or oxygen for example doesn’t mean that other things can’t plausibility ionly becomes a problem if you are trying to be realistic.
     
  5. Phantasmal Reality
    Offline

    Phantasmal Reality Contributing Member

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2009
    Messages:
    207
    Likes Received:
    8
    Location:
    Sacramento, CA
    As TWErvin said, there is (sort of) a difference between hard sci-fi and soft sci-fi.

    In hard sci-fi, faster-than-light travel is definitely a no-no, as is anything else that has been proven to be impossible in our universe. (Time travel, piloting a spacecraft through a black hole, etc.) The focus is also on the "hard" sciences, such as math, physics, astronomy and chemistry.

    Soft sci-fi focuses more on things outside of "hard" science--sociology, psychology, and political science--and may allow impossible things such as faster-than-light travel.

    In the end, the terms aren't universally agreed upon and the boundaries aren't always clear. What I just presented is the best approximation I can give.

    Don't be afraid to write something far out; you can worry about which genre it falls under later. Will some people make fun of it? Sure. There are people who will make fun of anything that smells of science fiction or fantasy, but they're not the ones you're writing for. The people who you are writing for will love your idea no matter how crazy it is--as long as you write it well. :)
     
  6. Rei
    Offline

    Rei Contributing Member Contributor

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2008
    Messages:
    7,869
    Likes Received:
    32
    Location:
    Kingston
    That's the worst thing for HIM when reading or watching a movie. One thing you must do when listening to this kind of advice is deciding if it really is purely a case of personal preference or if what they are telling you is something you need to be wary of. Besides, he probably wasn't even talking specifically about those genres, anyway. It is very irritating when watching/reading something with a real-world setting and you see something that you know wouldn't happen.

    Everyone has already talked about science fiction, so I'll point something out about fantasy. The most basic definition of the genre is a story that has one element of the impossible. We can't tell you what to write, but unless you want to write hard science fiction that has everything in it based on scientific theory, RELAX. If you allow yourself to believe it, so will the reader.
     

Share This Page