August 30th, 2011

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Speculative Fiction vs. everything else

Originally called "Genre vs. Non-Genre" but everything has a genre, so really, it's about speculative fiction vs. things that aren't.  Other genres have their own quirks.

But you know what?  That assembling-a-story-from-clues is something I always do.  I do that all the time, because the mainstream culture doesn't make a whole terrible lot of sense to me.  It's just another culture to me, tossed in with the billionty other cultures I've observed over various lives.  I have a lot of knowledge stored, but it's fluid rather than static.  I tend to derive rather than assume.  That gives me a totally different perspective than what most people have. 

So yes, I write the same way, little flicks of data, small concrete details that indicate what of importance is happening in a story.  It doesn't particularly matter whether I'm writing about aliens, which I do often, or ordinary people in an ordinary world, which I do rarely.  It's always written with those mapping-points so people can figure out which world they're in and what's going on there.

I don't read much mundane fiction because it's almost never worth the assembly process.  Like putting together a puzzle of a blank wall.  And I often feel the same way about the mainstream culture in general, which is why I'm far more intrigued by practical nonfiction, or nature, or something like that.  If all I'm going to get is a picture of someone's inane sex life or workplace grumbles, I might as well go watch paint dry.

Meanwhile, my favorite authors are turning people into cats, arranging for humans and vampires to live together, and generally bending reality into fascinating new shapes.  Now those are worth putting the puzzle together for.
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Poetry Fishbowl on Tuesday, September 6

This is an advance announcement for the Tuesday, September 6, 2011 Poetry Fishbowl. This time the theme will be "pets and livestock." I'll be soliciting ideas for animals that live with people, alien or fantasy pets, familiars, interesting equipment for pets and livestock, ways that pets influence people, the effects of livestock on culture, places where animals may be found, historic examples of pets and livestock, and poetic forms in particular. 

If you're interested, mark the date on your calendar, and please hold actual prompts until the "Poetry Fishbowl Open" post next week. Meanwhile, if you want to help with promotion, please feel free to link back here or repost this on your blog.

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Linkback Poem Poll

For the September 6, 2011 Poetry Fishbowl I'll be offering a poem to be posted one verse at a time in exchange for linkbacks to the "Fishbowl Open" post next week.  You have a choice of:

"The Picket Fence Committee" -- 18 verses, Monster House
"The Shadow of His Passage" -- 15 verses, Path of the Paladins

Everyone is welcome to vote.  I'll check the poll Wednesday evening and close it if there's a clear winner.  Otherwise I'll leave it open a little while longer.

Poll #1774409 September 2011 Linkbacks Poll
This poll is closed.

Which of these do you want as the September 2011 linkbacks poem?

"The Picket Fence Committee"
8(57.1%)
"The Shadow of His Passage"
6(42.9%)