Q: How does writing speculative fiction affect your daily life (not as a writer but as a person)?
A: Being a speculative fiction writer means that life is rarely boring. I’ve always got some plot point to chew on, and the oddest details in life might inspire a story. I’m always asking, “What if?” and spinning thoughts from that. But it’s also entertaining because (at least for me), it’s fostered a tendency to take metaphor literally. You have no idea how disappointed I was to find out that “Entertaining Silverware” just sits there. I also find that writing speculative fiction makes me both more open-minded and more skeptical. Speculative fiction is about what-if, considering what could be true or become true, so it tends to break down the tendency to say, “This is impossible.” On the other hand, when everything could be true in some world, I find I’m less inclined to proclaim (even to myself) that “this is so” in our world. My reaction to a theory or belief that sounds plausible is not so much to accept it as to acknowledge that it could make a good story.
Lindsey Duncan’s story “Family Tree” was
published on Friday, 21 December 2018.
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