Science fiction is awesome. Its awesomeness simply can't be contained in an hour, a day, or even a week. Nope - we need a whole month dedicated to its celebration!
The breadth of the genre is limitless, just like that of space itself. Science fiction takes us out into new realms built up among the stars, bringing us along on spaceship journeys to fantastical new worlds. We watch as characters interact with "new life and new civilizations," subtly exploring our own ideas about connection, relationship and culture. Sometimes when these civilizations collide, there is peace. Other times, there is war and death.
But science fiction doesn't have to be like that. Other narratives keep us right here on Earth, taking us forward through time to new and exciting adventures. Perhaps in these tales humanity has discovered wild new technologies that reshape life as we know it; perhaps they've eschewed technology for idyllic retreat into the simple life. Or perhaps their ancestors blew it all up, and the last remnants struggle to survive in post-apocalyptic wastelands.
Science fiction can alternately take us backwards in time, creating alternate histories by making a few subtle tweaks. What if there had never been a Dark Age? What if the early attempts at technology in our history had taken society leaps and bounds ahead centuries before the Industrial Revolution? What if masterminds had harnessed the power of steam to take our technology in a completely different direction?
Then again, science fiction doesn't have to travel far at all in terms of time or space to make a big impact. What if a miracle drug discovered in the next few years has dire, unforeseen consequences? What if a small war in an abandoned corner of the planet turns into something huge? What if an alien were to show up on your doorstep tomorrow? What would you do?
All of these are science fiction, and all are wonderful. The smallest tweak to 'reality' as we know it or the largest conceptual leap are both welcome in this wonderful exploration of what is, what was, and what could someday be.
Suffice it to say, the ichor of science fiction pumps liberally through my veins, and that ichor is good. To celebrate this month, I'll be talking with and showcasing some terrific scifi authors. I'll be sharing some new and exciting science fiction excerpts and fictional bits. And I have a very special Mechalarum-related announcement that I'll be posting very soon!