Listen to it at Escape Pod.

This has to be one of the single most enjoyable science fiction stories I’ve read in a long time.

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Today, I was discussing a number of canonical works of British literature that me and a friend are going to be tested on tomorrow. We discussed The Turn of the Screw, Tess of the D’Urbevilles, Great Expectations, Alice in Wonderland, Wuthering Heights, Lord Jim, Silas Marner, and Sherlock Holmes.

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Listen to it at Escape Pod.

When Steve Eley announced on this week’s Escape Pod that the story was YA science fiction, I got excited. I’m a big fan of YA fiction, and not just because it wasn’t that long ago when I was in the target demographic for that particular genre. I believe that children’s fiction and YA fiction contains some of the strongest messages you’ll find in literature. These genres aren’t afraid to tackle the most universal and difficult themes. Lewis Carroll’s Alice books are mostly about the question, ‘Who am I?’ Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy is about the question, ‘What is right? What is wrong? What should I believe?’

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Listen to it at PodCastle.

I’m all about not judging a book or story by its genre. I believe that just about any genre is capable of producing gems of storytelling, as well as unmitigated dreck. When it comes to genre, I like to think of myself as an equal rights activist.

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Listen to it at Escape Pod.

Sometimes, people get into discussions on what ‘science fiction’ really is, or what ‘horror’ really is. This is the problem with genres that aren’t studied as much as ‘real’ literature. I like the Escape Artists definition, which is that science fiction is whatever Steve Eley thinks is science fiction.

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Oh dear, genre

June 1, 2008

I had a conversation with someone about literary genres the other day.

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