Journal 9-10

I am a science fiction fan.  I am a science fiction dreamer.  I am a science fiction creator.  I am completely unashamed of this, and if one were to accuse me of it (to make me ashamed of it) I would point out that without science fiction dreaming, we would still lack many of today’s marvels.  Just over 110 years ago, dreamers were told that human beings would never fly.  70 years later, man was on the moon.  So to be accused of enjoying science fiction, I would say “yes, yes I do!”

The science fiction fan is not painted in a flattering light.  The stereotypical fan is fat, smells funny (secondary to lack of showering,) and has no taste when it comes to science fiction; any and all things science fiction are things he (he because THAT is the stereotypical sci fi fan,) must like.  Allow me to show how this is not the case.

I will admit freely (and willingly if anyone wants to ask,) that I have made the pilgrimage: Comic-Con.  I have elbow to elbowed in the grandest of all science fiction crowds.  I have heard Bradbury speak.  I have seen the autographs of the entire starwars cast (I have Carrie Fisher’s) and I have thumbed through the ENDLESS pages of pulp comics and novels that are available at such a convention.  Doubtlessly I have inherited some of my science fiction preference from my uncle (a Marine veteran with a degree in history and a job in electronics,) in that much of what is out there is boring.  I NEED science fiction that has full worlds behind it and under it.  If a book does not have politics, flora, fauna, technology, and an extensive history, chances are it gets relegated to the “crap” pile that is ever accumulating titles.  The science fiction fan is dedicated to finding plots and stories that immerse them.  Some require fewer details than others, but many enjoy the “fully immersive experience.”  Star Wars and Star Trek have such extensive canon that this is the logical place for most SF fans to start!

Gamers are much the same way.  I will admit to have playing table top games in the form of Warhammer 40K as a teen.  It was not just a game however.  There is extensive canon (many novels, some movies, some computer games, even a prayer book that every good Imperial Guardsman must memorize and believe in.)  For this reason, every staged battle became a part of the story of our galaxy.  Every model on the table was an ancient warrior with many victories, or a terrified youth with no hope of ever experiencing glory.  Gamers are the same as SF fans.  They seek immersion.

Video gamers can be a bit different from table top gamers, but desire for immersive experience holds true.  Fallout 3.  HALO.  Gears of War.  Mass Effect (though the ending of this trilogy has unleashed an onslaught of fan wrath and hatemail.)  These games  have compelling stories, music, graphics, and feeling that all combine to make YOU the hero of a universe.  Who does not want to be a hero from time to time?

I will be blunt: Science fiction and fantasy, whether in the form of computer games, console games, books, table top games, comics, or graphic novels, entice people to be a part of strange and phenomenal stories.  I put down regular novels (yes I read them too,) and will thin k on them for a while.  When I put down a piece of science fiction that has mesmerized me, I continue to dream.

-Howard

One Response to “Journal 9-10”

  1. Warren Rochelle says:

    You heard Bradbury speak: very cool. Nice post.