Category Archives: General

Of Flags And Things [Updated]

As I’ve mentioned before, I have a day job. The office where I work is situated next to a set of railway tracks, and across the tracks from the office is a small business park. From my window I can see a few of the buildings in the business park, and one in particular has always held a minor fascination for me due to the presence of a flagpole, from which they would regularly hang various flags from around the world. Whenever they changed the flag, which would usually happen about once every two or three weeks, I would find myself experiencing a small burst of excitement as I tried to identify the nation behind the fluttering pennant. Those flags were a strange little bright spot in my otherwise humdrum working life.

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Science Fiction: Serious Literature or Commercial Pulp?

One of the arguments I regularly hear from the literati is that science fiction doesn’t count as ‘serious’ literature, usually backed up by the claims that sci-fi is nothing more than a pot-boiling thriller set in space, or that sci-fi doesn’t carry some deep and meaningful message like serious literature does. I’ve even heard all science fiction referred to as “cheap trash with absolutely no literary merit whatsoever”, and when I’m exposed to such uninformed assertions I can’t help but be incensed. Now, given that I’m a sci-fi writer myself you could be forgiven for thinking this is just a knee-jerk reaction, but I truly believe that science fiction (or any other genre fiction, for that matter) can have a place alongside serious literature.

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