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Out of Nowhere by Patrick LeClerc.
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mark211What, if anything, has SFF to say about Manchester?2017-05-29 13:57:00
mark211In Last week's discussion, QM contributor Wesson commented: "Personally, I think we're overdosing on realism right now." Now, of course, I am inclined to agree. But nevertheless, this week I have been wholly distracted by the awful event in Manchester that happened at almost exactly at the same time as I am writing this one week ago. Partly, I wonder if it is because one of the victims of the blast, 14 year-old Sorrell Leczkowski, went to the same high school as the daughter of a friend of mine. Quite possibly not - I mean, I don't know her, or the family. And does anyone really need any kind of connection, however remote, to feel the wind knocked out of them by an event such as that? 2017-05-29 14:02:49
mark211I fully appreciate this is quite a different kind of subject from the ones we normally discuss here and I am also aware that some of us really won't want to discuss it further - or certainly not in the context of writing science and fantasy fiction. However, ...2017-05-29 14:04:12
mark211... fiction does have extraordinary power in our lives. Millions of people will sit glued to their TV sets following the lives of completely fictitious characters as if they were following their own lives. And good fiction - good science fiction - can inspire, can change perceptions, change minds, change attitudes and so on. Overly didactic works can simply annoy, but ... what about this? What can SFF say about something like this? Can it say anything at all? Let us know what you think.2017-05-29 14:07:32
micheledutcherIn sci-fi the heroes are often viewed as dissidents and terrorists. For instance in The Walking Dead the small group near Atlanta comes upon another group who says, "Yes, we have heard of your group. You kill everyone who gets in your way and you don't care who you hurt." In Logan's Run, the main character is forced out of the city by a supercomputer who tells him "I have now negated your lifeforce. If you don't want to die, you need to leave because the guards will be coming for you. They will see you the same as any other dissident." Even a child's film like Wall-E has the good robots eventually labeled as outsiders causing havoc would need to be hunted down and destroyed. I am not meaning to imply that the terrorists who carried out this terrible act are the heroes. Rather that, in Science Fiction at least, the rebels are usually so desperate to change things that they are violent and referred to as dissidents.2017-05-30 11:26:28
WessonTouchy subject but I think I understand where mark is coming from. I agree with Michelle to the extent that sci-fi heroes are often rebels but 'rebel' doesn't necessarily mean 'extremist'. A rebel can respond to reason, an extremist can't. Trouble is, I've seen too many SFF writers with such a poor grasp on current events that they don't understand extremism is an equal opportunity employer that can strike anyone, minorities included. I know that sounds a bit trollish but I've always hated stories with white / male / rich/ straight / christian villains - as if those are the *only* people capable of fanaticism. I'll take a moment to flip off Handmaid's Tale again. Ranting aside, my heart goes out to the people of Manchester, I hope they can come back from this. 2017-05-31 21:46:05
GordonRowlinsonI'm a little confused. I can't think of much Scifi fiction about terrorism. I don't know why. Perhaps stories of what terrorism is like in the future would work. Maybe is too negative a subject. I can only think of two stories. In How It Was When the Past Went Away by Silverberg a terrorist puts a drug in a community's drinking water and makes everybody forget the past couple years. Some characters do better when the past goes away. Come to think of it, it is entertaining as no one dies from the terrorism. Terrorism is a negative subject. Terrorists are viewed as cowards and creeps. Ya can't have a story where they win. In the Ground Zero Man by Bob Shaw, a man creates a device that can explode all the nuke bombs in the world. He thinks this will make people dismantle nukes. However countries merely find a way to have nukes that are not effected by his device. 2017-06-01 11:00:20

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