Notes from New Sodom

... rantings, ravings and ramblings of strange fiction writer, THE.... Sodomite Hal Duncan!!

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Strange Fiction

Recently, Jay Lake's been trying to "map the genre device", with some interesting results. As an offshoot, he queries the role of authorial intent and reader experience in the decision over whether or not this work or that is SF. My take on it is that these are only important if we're treating genre as a label applied according to consensual/conventional criteria. Jay, however, seems to be looking for some more objective criteria, SF viewed as an aesthetic form which has particular requirements:

At the risk of going over territory I've already explored in other blog entries (particularly "SF as a Subset of SF") and repeating what I've said on Jay's journal, I'm going to try and gather together my own thoughts here and see if I can't flesh out my own ideas on what I'm coming to think of as strange fiction. I'm going to separate this out into different entries, cause otherwise it might well be the most motherfucking huge entry to date (and given my disregard for concepts of brevity, that's saying something). What I'll try and do is update this entry, turn it into a contents page with links to each section.

So anyway, let's start with the question of what type of label SF is. Are we talking about a marketing category or an aesthetic form? And if we're talking about the latter, are the boundaries of that form consensual (and therefore malleable) or are they objective?

Update: Contents:


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Talking of strange fiction, you should read The Coma by Alex Garland

mental, crazy genius...

7:46 pm  

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