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Posts Tagged ‘Isaac Asimov’

I met Isaac Asimov many years ago at a science fiction convention called EveCon. In one panel discussion (where he was not on the panel, but in the audience), an impassioned young woman was asking the writers on the panel to create a new word for a female hero. She thought heroine was a lesser word, and read a list of words she’d come up with that were more suitable. I was about to respond (having been recently introduced at a poetry reading as a poetess rather than a poet), when Isaac raised his hand.

“Young woman,” he said, “why not just use the word, hero? I see no need for a separate word. A hero is a hero no matter the gender or species.”

My feelings exactly! And after Isaac Asimov’s wonderful answer, there was no need for me, or anyone else on the panel to respond.

Here’s a quote on writing from Isaac Asimov: “What lasts in the reader’s mind is not the phrase but the effect the phrase created: laughter, tears, pain, joy. If the phrase in not affecting the reader, what’s it doing there? Make it do its job or cut it without mercy or remorse.”

I, like many writers, need to heed these words, and thoughtfully edit my stories before presenting them to readers.

 

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After skimming this article, I discovered I hadn’t read all of the books mentioned, so I’ve added a few novels to my “To Read” list. Most of the books on the list I’ve read. I agree with the article’s authors – The Lord of the Rings, War of the Worlds, Dune, A Game of Thrones, The Hunger Games, Foundation, The Martian Chronicles, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, The Left Hand of Darkness, The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, etc. have changed science fiction and fantasy, and added to the genre.

There are other authors who’ve changed my perception of Science Fiction and Fantasy, but the writings of JRR Tolkien, Jules Verne, HG Wells, Ray Bradbury, Isaac Asimov, George RR Martin, Suzanne Collins, JK Rowling, Frank Herbert, Ursula K. LeGuin, Douglas Adams, and the other authors listed in this aricle stand out.

By the way, the artwork featured in the post is nice, too.

What do you think of 21 Books That Changed Science Fiction and Fantasy Forever? Were your favorites named?

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I visited this post just to see if I’d read any of the Science Fiction novels listed!

I had – five to be exact. And of that five, I hated one of them. (No, I’m not going to tell you which one I loathed). Of the remaining four, I think I liked Dune by Frank Herbert (and his other novels set in this world) the best.

Though lists like this perhaps nudge readers to pick up a good book they’ve missed, I think they also do a disservice to the dozens of should-read books they ignore. For me, what I noticed most about this particular “top ten,” was the lack of female writers. Let’s not forget the ladies!

Do you agree with this “top ten” list?

I hope you’re enjoying my blog posts and links. Want to show some love? Visit my Amazon page and consider buying a book. 🙂

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