Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Changing the field of SF publishing?

John DeNardo recently asked me to contribute a response to a new Mind Meld question for SF Signal. This week's question was: If you could change any aspect of the science fiction field, what would it be? Click here to see all the responses.


Jeff said...

If I could change one thing, I would put science fiction and fantasy in front of kids in the classroom. Let them read Huck Finn, but also let them read Fritz Leiber.

I hated English and American Lit in high school. That hatred stunted my growth as a reader and a writer by years.

I was further stunted in college, by the emphasis, once again, on "literature". It wasn't until I was deeply invested in becoming a writer that I began to read and appreciate the great "literature". But as Mozart said in the movie, "Who wouldn't rather listen to his hairdresser than Hercules. Or Horatio, or Orpheus, people so lofty they sound as if they shit marble?

What I wouldn't have given in high school to be allowed to write a book report on Lord of the Rings. Or something vaguely interesting. The school system take what should be a please and a delight and make it a chore to be dreaded and avoided. It doesn't have to be this way, and if it weren't this way, there would be more readers reading everything.

Jeff said...

Sorry, in my passion, I was hammering the keyboard and ended up dropping letters all over the place. Please read through my dribble.

katey said...

Thanks for posting this link-- it's something I spend a little more time thinking about than is probably sane, and getting all kinds of perspectives (some of which were enlightening, some of which were hilarious) was awesome. It's a good, scattered sample.

And Jeff, I just love you for quoting Amadeus. (Also: yeah, more Vonnegut, at least! Come on, people!)

JES said...

That was a great read. Thanks for posting the link.

I used to read SF like crazy... stopped sometime in the '70s, I think. I'd just read Delany's Dhalgren and something similarly mind-bending (but whose title or premise I can't remember), back to back, and was afraid if I kept going I'd crack up. And not in the "wow, wasn't that hilarious" sense.

I should dip a toe back in, methinks.

Anonymous said...

Public Exposure:

The suggestions were so useful when thinking about marketing, and several times I read how SF readers/writers and editors want to see short fiction get more exposure. Went to work at Borders yesterday and hung racks of Analog, Asimov's, and Science Fiction and Fantasy in the SF books section, as well as City Slab (the only horror fiction magazine we carry)in horror. If you have a favorite local store, ask the manager if s/he can please do the same. They want to sell these magazines too and get the extra exposure.

I'm surprised no one has launched an Urban Fantasy magazine, as that's dominating the fantasty/romance lists, and there are some exceptionally talented writers in this field--Justine Musk, that means you!