on poul anderson’s brain wave

I FOUND MY AGING COPY OF BRAIN WAVE when I discovered Joachim Boaz’s site Science Fiction and Other Suspect Ruminations. I read Joachim’s take on Poul Anderson’s novel—he considered it “vaguely good”—and the comments submitted by his readers and I disagreed with certain observations of theirs. So, I want to address a few of those CONTINUE READING

yet more on science fiction and fantasy (is this modern science fiction part 6?)

I JUST HAD A ‘WHAT A COINCIDENCE’ MOMENT! They are not all that dissimilar from deja vu moments, except the sometimes slightly scary feeling that accompanies the latter is rarely part of the former. When coincidence occurs to me, I am usually delighted, rarely frightened into believing some form of pre-determinism, as deja vu can CONTINUE READING

modern science fiction and the gimme part 5 – on modern fantasy and the gimme

If I said that all ‘modern’ fantasy can be traced to one author and one story, J.R.R. Tolkien and The Lord Of The Rings, few would argue. While aficionados and historians can make arguments for the influence of Lord Dunsany, James Branch Cabell, and others, almost all the well-known fantasy titles of the CONTINUE READING

modern science fiction and the gimme part 4 – on various genres and the gimme

This is the fourth of five essays (all titled “modern science fiction and the gimme part 4” or 3 or 1) addressing aspects of the acknowledged “laws” of plotting and story-telling in modern science fiction. It is not necessary to have read the first two parts to understand this part. Here are a few CONTINUE READING

modern science fiction and the gimme part 2 – on the rule of the gimme

ALL FANTASTICAL LITERATURE depends on a state of being known as the ‘willful suspension of disbelief.’ That is, the reader enters the story prepared to toss all skepticism aside for the sake of the story! This term was coined by Samuel Taylor Coleridge in 1817 in his Biographia literaria (or ‘biographical sketches of my CONTINUE READING

modern science fiction and the gimme part 1 – on certain laws of science fiction

Modern Science Fiction and the Gimme Part 1: On Certain Laws of Science Fiction is the first part of five interconnected essays on ‘modern’ science fiction and fantasy. They are intended to be read as a piece when all five are posted over the next week. This essay started off as an investigation into CONTINUE READING