This past weekend I was re-reading some old editorials written by Isaac Asimov (bundled in Gold). One (the book chapter is called "Outsiders, Insiders", originally published in the Feb 1986 issue of Asimov's Science Fiction magazine) deals with the "brotherhood of science fiction".
Asimov mentioned that the annual voting for the Nebulas "seems to rouse hard feelings and contentiousness every year". In 1986 Asimov seemed a bit dismayed by the mean spiritedness that had crept into his beloved literary genre during his life time.
Why Can't We Be Friends?
|Good humor man.|
"Let's be friends. There are endless worlds of the mind and emotions to conquer, and we can advance more surely, if we support -not fight- each other."
There have been times when the political tone of a science fiction story turned me off. Glenn Reynolds mentioned that Robert Heinlein might not be viewed as "politically correct" in these times.
|cover by Patrick Woodroffe|
|cover by Darrell Sweet|
I went through a similar binge and bust affair with Gordon Dickson. It was Dickson who gave me my fill of military science fiction. After a while, I just wasn't interested in blowing things up any more.
Through all the darkness of Heinlein, Hogan and Dickson there was always the light of Asimov, Clarke, Vance and many others who managed to stay on my "good side". We all have our personal interests and tastes and we are free to pass our money on to only those authors who provide us with what we are looking for. I learned to ignore the dark side of science fiction that I found troubling, politically or otherwise.
free speech, but we live in a society where some types of speech have been criminalized. Someplace between our desire to stoically withstand distasteful speech and our desire to promote edifying and entertaining speech is a gray place where we feel the need to complain about what other people are saying. Can we do so in a civil manner, without distorting and demonizing, without allowing ourselves to turn into mean and ugly mobs?
Related Reading: About the Hugo by Larry Correia
|More book and magazine covers.|
Amazing Stories cover art (to the right).
2016: political science fiction