Guys! Everyone is Wearing Hats Again!

A beginners guide to writing science fiction, fantasy, etc for male literary fiction writers who have decided to give it a go, possibly for financial reasons, despite having no real knowledge of, or interest in, the form. 

Lesson Three. Cheer Up.

You know what? You don’t have to write a dystopia. I mean, I get it, the world is full of bad stuff. It is. Not many world leaders are taking global warming as seriously as they might, social media has a dark side, people can be absolute shits. You aren’t the first person to spot this though. There is a lot of dystopian fiction out there already.

Were you thinking about adding zombies to the mix? Sorry. You won’t be the first. Same goes for vampires.

But do you know what there isn’t a lot of? Utopias. There is Utopia, of course. That’s a famous one. But you’d be surprised how few there have been since then. I think it’s partly because a utopia requires a bit more world building, a bit more work convincing your reader of the veracity of your set-up, but you aren’t afraid of a bit of hard work, are you?

Of course not. So have a go at…

Guys! Everyone is Wearing Hats Again!

The future. Despite the problems of the twenty-first century, everything worked out for the best. People wear hats again, because they think hats look nice, and they’re right, they do. Everyone is happy.

I’m telling you, stretch that out to two hundred pages or so and you’re laughing. First come, first served as usual. Good luck, writers!

2 Comments »

  1. OK, but where’s the dramatic drive in a Utopian novel? ‘Everyone’s happy’ doesn’t leave much room for plot. More’s Utopia works because it’s ironic: it depends on a lot of hoping and even more coercion, and he knew that.

    • That’s a fair point, but where is the dramatic drive in a dystopian novel? Because it is coming from the world, and not the characters, the story is arguably going to be pretty flimsy. Dystopian fiction can be great, but not every novel needs to be driven by a character’s need to overthrow the Ubermayor of Stab Town. Small, quiet stories are valid too.

      All I’m really suggesting is that there is potentially a gap in the market for a novel set in the future that doesn’t feature a chapter where someone has to eat their own dog to survive.

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