Common Errors in Fiction Manuscripts, Part 7

Overdone Dystopia

While we’re dealing with speculative and science fiction, I’m going to deal with overdone dystopia in SF literature. Just as the evening news focuses on catastrophe, so does SF literature focus on a future that’s gone to fiery regions in a wicker contraption. In fact dystopia has become so common in SF that it’s simply an accepted scenario. We’re all going to wear gas masks. It’s always going to rain. Crime rules. Conscience fled on the arm of Hope and humanity is more cyborg than biological.

Although there is still an audience for this type of literature (and as long as male adolescent geeks exist, so will this literature), it would be refreshing to find a writer who dares to push the boundaries of SF and go where the greats of the Golden Age dared venture – into new territory.

So, global warming is a fact. Instead of writing about a devolved world, however, why not write about an adapted world? What if coastal cities became canal cities and transportation was via overhead rapid transit rail and canal boats powered by wind and solar? What if high-density housing developed into a version of the hanging gardens of Babylon?

Now that could be fascinating reading.

Comments? Questions? We’d love to hear from you.

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