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for Writing Speculative Fiction: A Nerd's Guide

5/30/2005 c11 1firefly7071
o.O' I need to use this. -scribbles down URL on the everpresent notebook- Seriously. I'm thinking about writing a sci-fi type story (still can't decide on first or third person) and this is just... oy.

Nice point about the bullets-vs-laser thing.

Now all I need is a setting and a few side characters and I'm good. XD
5/28/2005 c11 35Scraper
Fascinating. Your style of writing sort of reminds me of one of my favorite writers here at fictionpress. Sadly, he writes no more, for a reason I do not know. Of course, I can spot major differences in your work and his.

This was nice. Very informative and well written.
5/27/2005 c11 Arkash
This is an interesting piece on weapons. Though you already sent me some, these are different.

I found the gravitic weapons the most interesting of all.

Good job! *_~
5/12/2005 c10 26Nickolaus Pacione
This essay is extremely informative because I wish I read this before I wrote "LAKE FOSSIL." Namely because I was very awkward in doing Sci-Fi. Coming from the H.P. Lovecraft horror background. I played around with some TABLOID themes with the story as in making BAT BOY appear in the story and then a Loch Ness kind of creature living in Lake Michigan. So what I see on FictionPress as far as Sci-Fi goes is inventive, but sometimes the horror genre on here is revomited up into something else unless someone writes in the Cthulhu Mythos.
5/6/2005 c3 Alnitak Z Orionis
I don't necessarily agree w. this.

I think it's more fun to work out ways to awoid war. There The fear of war and the weapons race could be just as interesting, if not more so.

But you have very good points in here.

Good job, as always.

P.S. You finally hit pay dirt in your speculations about 'The Watchers' in your 9th. chapter review. The question is, what are they trying to use the Rets for.
5/1/2005 c2 Arkash
I wish more people would take this to heart.
5/1/2005 c1 Arkash
Sounds good, I'm always looking to improve.

The other thing I would add is: I'm tired that thrashy stories get tons of reviews from one or two people, but when I check out the reviewers I find that they have no stories posted.
11/14/2004 c10 2Terragent
An interesting read.
A lot of what you criticise is the genuine underbelly of SF, but it seems not to go far enough IMO.
In many ways, a lot of SF (space opera especially) is written like heroic fantasy: you have the hero and a small party of friends/sidekicks going up against an enormous evil force, etc, etc.
Ever noticed how all the 'normal' good guys in Star Wars, etc, are completely useless? That, to me, is a very important plot-based flaw with a lot of modern SF.
Nonetheless, you're a good writer and you make valid points.
8/10/2004 c10 6Misty Spotts
this was great. villians really are the best part about stories. the worse they are the better. and the more human they are, the better too. i have yet to master having one person or group of people be the evil. it's more of a philosophy they follow, i guess. and i need to work on making them more dimensional.
thank you for reading and reviewing 'joshua'. i appreciate your advise. it's been a while since i wrote that story, and i have since done away with the modern technology. and i'm clueless when it comes to determining economic things. do you have any advise on how to construct countries in that sense? any basics to start from?
thanks so much.
8/9/2004 c1 el perro fantastico
thank you thank you thank you. i hate all that cliche crap. i could say more, but just email me if you want more of my explanation.
8/9/2004 c10 Mbwun
'To Reign in Hell' is also an excellent novel by Stephen Brust, and somewhat relevant to this chapter because, despite having characters named "Yaweh" and "Satan" it really doesn't have any villains.

I shall never tire of Nazi villains, probably because I shall never tire of seeing Nazis vanquished in new and interesting (and always violent) ways. Neo-Nazis, the PC terrorists, I could do without, though.

In all things, showing is better than telling. Remember that, folks-you heard it from Jave first. And if you weren't paying attention, then you heard it from me first.:)

'Chronicles of Riddick' was a mess, but 'Pitch Black' did a good job of making the serial killer character sympathetic, I thought.

There is one thing about making villains more vile, though: it also makes it harder for you to elicit pathos for them from the reader.

Thanks for the plug, and I assure you, though he won't show up for a couple chapters yet, Ethan Arcaneus is going to be a very sympathetic despot.

I always thought 'Riptide's' ending was a little forced, compared to their other stuff... and I mean, hell, even Mbwun got a little sympathy from the reader, why not that guy? Anyhow... you picked up 'Brimstone' yet?

~He Who Walks On All Fours
8/9/2004 c10 1Shadowofaman
Another good chapter, Jave. I can't spot any spelling or grammar errors except that you say "anyways" in your first sentence instead of always.
Your one villain sounds really sick, I'll have to check that out sometime. I'm also glad you mentioned the Xeno games and Metal Gear Solid.
Keep up the good work!
P.S. You might want to cover heros next chapter.
8/6/2004 c9 Mbwun
Screw space operas? Heathen!

I could go for less Tolkien copies, though. Get over it, people, he didn't write well, he just wrote a lot!:)

~He Who Walks On All Fours
8/6/2004 c6 6Misty Spotts
You might get this a lot after writing this column, but I'd really like your opinion on my story 'Joshua'. I have since changed many things in it, like whatever technology I was using.
Your column is fun to read, but most of it seems to be just you venting about all the shit out there more so than giving good suggestions.
8/6/2004 c9 1Shadowofaman
Glad you finally updated this-you do it after I do huh? Well get ready to update by next Tuesday then!
Anyway, I liked this chapter but wished that it was a bit longer, perhaps more in-depth into cliches and stereotypes, but I just like hearing them talked about.
No real grammar problems I could see.
Overall, good job and thanks for the plug!
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