To this day, I still remember my first read of Watership Down, and, though it is considered fantasy, I got that same indefinable charge I get reading Scifi. Adams took something ordinary and not human, and gave it humanity, simply by reinventing rabbits. In doing so, he revealed absolute truth about human nature.
Telling the unvarnished truth is what scifi (and fantasy) is all about. It’s why the scifi audience comes back time after time. There is something about the far future setting that lends itself very much to the object lesson. Perhaps because it is so very far away that, like Adam’s rabbits, we can separate ourselves from it. These genres have also been dominated by men for years, with a few exceptions.
Most notably, Andre (Alice) Norton and Anne McCaffrey were my influences. Dragons you could ride, power controlled by your mind, stones that transport you from world to world. In fact, it’s a very small club of women who have contributed to scifi, but I do believe they are responsible for the great surge of women now reading scifi. Those of us who began as girls, and continue to read the genre as women.
We could speculate all day if it is this crowd who brought SFR into being, and I do have a feeling they are part of it. I admit to being a bit flummoxed by the resistance of some scifi readers to the blending of romance in their genre. The epic life and death nature of the genre screams for romantic story lines.
It feels like a natural combination to me, but it takes all kinds. The idea came to me to ask my readers a few questions about their preferences. I’m curious.
Are you female? How much romance is too much romance for scifi? How often do you read SFR, and who are your favorites? Who got you started reading scifi?