Friday 10 August 2012

A Genre Of Things?

Embrace your inner geek

Science fiction was created by geeks, who prefer objects to people.

An over-simplification?


But it also explains the predominance of 'ideas', concepts and technology in SF literature. And the cardboard characters who are often servants to the exposition.

If science fiction was created by geeks, then fantasy was created by dreamers, no?

But geeks are people too, and they dream.

So what do they dream about?

Super powers to defeat the bully with. Maybe genetically engineered super powers, or maybe some cool cyborg add-on. You know, that anyone could use.

Aliens - someone not-human who we can maybe talk with. And sympathise with. Maybe even crave the existence of. For do not geeks sometimes feel like aliens themselves?

A future where people are reasonable and wise, and where they are more likely to co-operate than threaten or fight. So no more stranger-fear.

A narrative that doesn't revolve around the troublesome issue of sex and relationships.

That last part is especially pertinent. Most relationships in SF, even non-platonic ones, remind me of the puppets in Team America. Only with less energy.

But what about the 'big picture'? The evolution of society and the endless possibilities that await us, if only someone could just see them?

Well, considering the traditional unease with which the geek sits in the present, it's not surprising that only the most far out and different future will suffice. A place that a geek would think would be a cool place to walk through.

A fantasy, in other words. A fantasy that would draw a geek in and make them reach for their wallet to purchase the book or comic and immerse themselves in it, away from the real world for an hour or two.

For is this not the role of all fiction?

And every character type gets their own fiction.

For the geeks who lament the lack of geekiness creeping into the genre, the lack of 'ideas' and 'hard science', the answer should be obvious.

The world needs more geeks.

The laws of supply and demand would deliver then.

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