Tag Archives: Writing

50 Best Sci-Fi Books of All Time – What Is The Best Science Fiction Book Ever Written? | Esquire

Plenty of imitators have tried to match the heights of our No.1, but none have come close.

By Adrienne Westenfeld, Mar 21, 2022


Since time immemorial, mankind has been looking up at the stars and dreaming, but it was only centuries ago that we started turning those dreams into fiction.

And what remarkable dreams they are—dreams of distant worlds, unearthly creatures, parallel universes, artificial intelligence, and so much more.

Today, we call those dreams science fiction.

Science fiction’s earliest inklings began in the mid-1600s, when Johannes Kepler and Francis Godwin wrote pioneering stories about voyages to the moon. Some scholars argue that science fiction as we now understand it was truly born in 1818, when Mary Shelley published Frankenstein, the first novel of its kind whose events are explained by science, not mysticism or miracles.

Now, two centuries later, sci-fi is a sprawling and lucrative multimedia genre with countless sub-genres, such as dystopian fiction, post-apocalyptic fiction, and climate fiction, just to name a few. It’s also remarkably porous, allowing for some overlap with genres like fantasy and horror.

Source: 50 Best Sci-Fi Books of All Time – What Is The Best Science Fiction Book Ever Written?

How Campus Novels Reveal the Power—and Danger—of Pure Ideas ‹ Literary Hub

Tara Isabella Burton on the Combination of Isolation, Vulnerability, and Hunger for Knowledge

By Tara Isabella Burton, March 9, 2022

From article…

Every few years, I go through entries of my now-defunct Livejournal: a journaling website I used with obsessive regularity throughout my teenage and college years.

And I believed, with childish conviction, that books—and only books—could teach me how to live. I remember once patiently explaining to a classmate that I planned to spend my semester working on an erotic novel set in fin de siècle Paris.

–From article…

Invariably, my attention turns to my earliest entries on the platform; largely written during the three years I spent in somewhat feral isolation at a red-brick, ivy-trellised boarding school in New Hampshire. They are, of course, what we might now call cringe: agonizingly earnest, intellectually rapacious, emotionally overrwrought. But they are also, in their way, beautiful.

Back then, I believed that everything I ever learned in class applied directly, and exactly, to the life I would one day live. I would write thousands of words after Latin class, meditating on whether I was more like pious, self-controlled Aeneas or the passionate Dido: her heart constantly aflame. (The answer was, naturally, the latter, although I often wished I could develop the capacities of the former). I would write about reading Antony and Cleopatra in my senior Shakespeare seminar, and wonder aloud—to a “friendslocked” audience of ten or twenty strangers—whether all human relationships demanded performative artificiality.

My emotional life and my academic life were intertwined, as they had never been before, and never would be thereafter: in college, in grad school, in adulthood. What I read—whether in class or sequestered away on my school library’s third-floor mezzanine, sufficiently ill-attended that it doubled as an infamous campus hookup joint—mattered to me.

Source: How Campus Novels Reveal the Power—and Danger—of Pure Ideas ‹ Literary Hub

How to write like Ernest Hemingway: a style guide | High Culture | Big Think

The author of classics like “A Farewell to Arms” and “The Sun Also Rises” is known and loved for his simple yet effective writing style. Here’s how to imitate it.

By Tim Brinkhof, January 18, 2022

Ernest Hemingway is famous for his style as well as his stories (Credit: Ernest Hemingway Photograph Collection / Wikipedia).

Today, more than 60 years after his death, Ernest Hemingway is known not just for his moving stories but his technical writing skills.

According to E.J. Gleason, professor of Irish and American literature at Saint Anselm College in New Hampshire, Hemingway had found his artistic voice before he turned 26.

His signature writing style, characterized by short phrases constructed using plain, everyday English, left a profound impact on the literary world, shaping generations of aspiring fiction and non-fiction writers that followed in his footsteps.

Although Hemingway’s way of writing may seem straightforward, it is by no means simplistic, let alone easy to imitate. A less talented writer might hide their lack of substance behind difficult words and convoluted sentences, but to write like Hemingway requires both a great effort and real intellect. Like a surgeon, Hemingway stripped his stories of any and all insignificant or superfluous information, until only a basic skeleton and a handful of vital organs were left on the page.

Source: How to write like Ernest Hemingway: a style guide – Big Think

That Time of Year: Chapter One | Garrison Keillor

Signature from site…

It’s been an easy life and when I think back, I wish it were a summer morning after a rain and I were loading my bags into the luggage hold of the bus and climbing aboard past Al, the driver, and the bench seats up front to the bunks in back and claiming a low bunk in the rear for myself.

We’re about to set off on a twenty-eight-city tour of one-­nighters, two buses, the staff bus and the talent bus (though actually the tech guys, Sam and Thomas and Albert and Tony, have most of the talent and the rest of us just do the best we can). I kiss Jenny goodbye and she envies me, having been on opera and orchestra bus tours herself and loved them.

The show band guys sit in front, Rich Dworsky, Chris, Pat and Pete, Andy, Gary or Larry, Richard, Joe, Arnie the drummer, Heather the duet partner on “Under African Skies” and “In My Life” and Greg Brown’s “Early.”

Fred Newman is here, Mr. Sound Effects, and we’ll do the Bebopareebop commercial about the meteorite flying into Earth’s atmosphere about to wipe out an entire city when a beluga in heat sings a note that sets off a nuclear missile that deflects the meteorite to the Mojave Desert where it cracks the earth’s crust and hatches prehistoric eggs of pterodactyls, which rise screeching and galumphing toward a tiny town and a Boy Scout camp where a lone bagpiper plays the Lost Chord that pulverizes the pterodactyls’ tiny brains and sends them crashing and gibbering into an arroyo, and I say, “Wouldn’t this be a good time for a piece of rhubarb pie?” and we sing, One little thing can revive a guy, and that is a piece of rhubarb pie. Serve it up nice and hot, maybe things aren’t as bad as you thought.

Source: That Time of Year: Chapter One | Garrison Keillor