It’s been almost twenty years since I had my last year in secondary school. During that time I was mad/bored enough to take Sixth Year Studies English and a big part of the course was to write about a certain genre of book. Being as I was burying my head in Blade Runner, Akira and Ghost In The Shell at the time I picked sci-fi. If my memory serves me correctly I ended up doing an essay about ‘Brave New World’ by Aldous Huxley and ‘Do Androids Dream Of Electric Sheep’ by Philip K Dick (because Blade Runner). The essay itself was probably terrible but my main take away from the whole thing at the time was a long discussion about the definition of science fiction as a genre.
“Science Fiction can probably be defined as a warning against currently human behaviours as they reach their obvious conclusion”he said with confidence. I was eighteen years old and didn’t really have the tools to argue with a guy who knew way more about this kind of thing than I did.
“Just because you put little green men in a story does not mean it is automatically science fiction”.
This memory suddenly came bolting into my head today as this is pretty much exactly what I’ve done whilst describing my book as sci-fi. There’s not really any grand theme about taking a feature in society at the moment and putting that forward to the natural conclusion. The story itself is very much in the present day and doesn’t feature anything like a driverless car or genetically altered meat produce. It’s a small Scottish fishing town with a little green man hiding in it.
Have I been doing this wrong all this time?