Monthly Archives September 2012

How to avoid the 50-page Burn-out.

I’ve spoken to hundreds of people over the course of the years, all of whom had one thing in common. OK, two – they were all frustrated and they all classed themselves as ‘aspiring’ writer. Why aspiring? I would ask. Those of you who read my occasional blogs know that my position on this is either you write or you don’t. I think it was the Bengali philosopher and poet Rabindranath Tagore who said “You can’t cross the sea merely by standing and staring at the water.” Their confusion with my posture is that they confuse ‘aspiring writer’ with ‘published
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Why Sci Fi? (Part 2)

In my last post, I established the cultural value of sci-fi. However, just because it has cultural value, does that mean it has literary value? In order to evaluate whether or not sci-fi/fantasy belongs in the larger category of literary fiction, we first need to define some terms. What makes literary fiction, well, literary? And what makes sci-fi/fantasy, sci-fi/fantasy? Literary fiction, I feel, is best described as a thought provoking work of art in book form. They are narratives that transcend time, genre, and resonate with ideas. At its best, literary fiction should be a learning experience, a spiritual experience,
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Why Sci Fi? (Part 1)

As a genre, science fiction and its relatives (from horror, to fantasy, to dystopias) are by in large dismissed by the literary community. To me, to dismiss sci-fi and fantasy is to dismiss George Orwell (1984), Margaret Atwood (Handmaid’s Tale), Mary Shelly (Frankenstein), Bram Stoker (Dracula), Jonathan Swift (Gulliver’s Travels), and Beowulf, to name a few.  Recently, Pulitzer-Prize winning author, Michael Chabon wrote of his frustrations early in his writing career when his sci-fi flavored stories were dismissed and ridiculed.  On the surface, the literary community makes some good points. The otherworldly impossibilities are often times nothing more than imaginative
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