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Using science to imagine a fantasy world

29 Mar 2017, 19:40 UTC
Using science to imagine a fantasy world
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

I’m a science writer by profession, but in the last few years I’ve started spending 30 minutes every day writing fiction. The first completed work was my science fiction novella “East of (h)Eden” (available from Amazon). Last week, I wrapped up the first draft of a fantasy novel, which is the biggest project I’ve undertaken since my PhD.
Most fantasy novels (as opposed to science fiction, or genres that kind of blend the two) don’t make much attempt at being scientifically plausible. After all, these are worlds where magic and monsters of some sort usually exist. On the other hand, a few fantasy novels are rooted in science, or at least a flexible alternative-reality version of it—A Wrinkle in Time and A Wind in the Door by Madeleine L’Engle come to mind, along with The Fifth Season and The Obelisk Gate by N. K. Jemison.
My novel, tentatively titled The Hole in the World, is definitely a fantasy, with magic and monsters. But I wanted to make the world in which it takes place a plausible one. For a number of reasons, I didn’t want the book to take place on Earth (or a typical fantasy facsimile) with human protagonists, ...

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