Sunday, 12 May 2013

What on Earth is Speculative Fiction?

Yesterday I attended the NSW Writers' Centre course: A Whole New World: Writing Speculative Fiction. Some of you may argue that I appear to be addicted to writing courses—those of you may be correct. But no matter how many courses I do, there is always something new to learn, especially if the course is taught by the wonderfully talented and inspirational author Pamela Freeman.

I think yesterday's course is edging out all the other courses as being the best I've attended to date. Not only was it extremely informative, packed full of great, read-to-apply information, but it was also specifically about Speculative Fiction—try saying that five times!

For those of you who are asking: 'what on Earth is Speculative Fiction?' Well, it's an umbrella term for the sub-genres of Science Fiction, Epic Fantasy, Urban Fantasy, Fiction of the Fantastic, Horror, Paranormal, Alternate History, Historical Fantasy, and of course: Kids/YA which includes all of the above sub-genres. Basically, Speculative Fiction encompasses my favourite shelves in a bookshop. And yes, I'm one of those weird people who still buys books from a bookshop. Sadly, we are a dying breed.

The first book in my YA trilogy crosses multiple sub-genres in Speculative Fiction, mostly Fantasy, Paranormal and a bit of Horror thrown in for good measure. Seeing as I am currently plotting and planning my sequel, I was specifically interested in hearing how to best structure stories which arc over multiple books. I had been struggling with Plot Point 1 in my second book, but with Pamela's help, I was able to see that Plot Point 1 is actually the climax from my first book! Finally, everything started to fall into place and my fingers itched for a keyboard.

It was a really great and an inspirational day, and as always, wonderful to meet like-minded people who share my passion for writing and reading Speculative Fiction. Hopefully, in a few years time, there will be many more Australian Speculative Fiction authors on the shelves of bookshops. Of course, I'm hoping my name will be amongst them!

Until next time,


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