"It's Fiction, Jim, But Not As We Know It"

Don't you just love it when journalists pontificate on the subject of science fiction and/or fantasy: "Read any good novels lately? Read any bad novels lately? My guess is that if you've read anything, for pleasure or interest, it hasn't been fiction. Book sales of fiction, particularly literary fiction, are down. By fiction I don't mean fantasy, as in Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings, I mean a story about our lives created from an author's imagination." Susan Mitchell in "Australian Financial Review", 19-20 March.

By way of explaining my position on this, it is noted that Susanna Clarke's novel, Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell, has been nominated for Best Novel in this year's Hugo Awards, and it was Longlisted for the 2004 Man Booker Prize; and David Mitchell's Cloud Atlas, which made the 2004 Man Booker Shortlist, has also been nominated for this year's Nebula Awards. But then, if it's good it can't be science fiction by definition, can it?

If you believe some people, sf is just space octopusses and ray guns. This wasn't true in the 1950s, so I can't see how it might be relevant now.

[Thanks to Damian Warman and Dave Langford's Ansible 213 for this quote.]

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Perry Middlemiss published on April 7, 2005 11:04 AM.

Patrick White's House, Auction Result was the previous entry in this blog.

Sydney Writers' Festival 2005 is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.

Monthly Archives

Powered by Movable Type 4.23-en