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Writing Fantasy and Science Fiction (Teach Yourself: Writer's Library)
Written by a science fiction author, this guide provides advice for readers on how to write for the genre. The craft of writing novels which stretch the imagination is explored.
Paperback, 192 pages
Published December 3rd 1997 by Teach Yourself Books
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Jan 13, 2013 Charles rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: aspiring writers, writers needing help with the elements of storytelling
This is a refreshing book about writing that tackles the building-blocks of story: setting, plot, character, and voice. I've probably been reading the wrong books on writing, but the majority of what I've read before -- even of what I've been assigned to read as part of creative writing courses -- are loose collections of exercises for the aspiring writer to complete, well-worn advice to "write every day" and "show, don't tell", and useless musings about the author's own life. Rather than do tha ...more
This is a useful little book for inexperienced speculative fiction writers. In particular, the final chapter on getting published lays it out simply and succinctly, and the 'Further Resources' point in the right direction. I don't seek out books like this any more -- not because I'm experienced, just because I get more from workshops and peer critique. But I picked this up at the Lifeline Bookfest for a couple of dollars, and it was a good refresher on the basics. It's more of an overview of the ...more
Much better off reading John Gardner's "The Art of Fiction" which has aged more gracefully than this book and will improve your ability to write. Those effects will carry over into effective sf/f. Stableford's effort seems the most focused on summing all the possibilities that are open in sf/f, and much less on the writing. This book's best advice might be that you will only get better not by reading it, but by writing your stories.
This is a solid guide to fiction writing in general, and SF & Fantasy writing specifically. Stableford takes a straightforward but careful approach to the unique challenges inherent in creating stories set in unique worlds with unique characters.
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