Thursday, May 10, 2012

Slipping Philosophy into Fiction

I’m not the sort of writer who spends a lot of time and effort seeking to capitalize on my political leanings.  While I certainly have personal convictions and I occasionally make a political statement or two, I don’t see my literary work as a means of indoctrinating others to my brand of philosophy.  Instead, I try to entertain my readers and present stories that can be enjoyed by a broad audience.  People can take what they want from it.

Every writer ends up speaking from their own beliefs to some degree, so I’m not saying I never interject my ideology into my works.  However, in my opinion, there are too many authors and entertainers out there who try to beat you over the head with one viewpoint or another, but when it comes to marketing that can be counter-productive.  Keep in mind, for every person who agrees with your impassioned rants, there are many more who will disagree and be less inclined to purchase your material.

 Science Fiction has always had its share of object lessons and metaphorical messages.  Writers have often utilized the “fantasy” of the genre to expound about some social injustice or potential threat, but the best of these tales have been careful to maintain the integrity of the entertainment, so readers disinterested with the moral ramifications can still appreciate the overall story.

Looking to my own works of fiction, there are generally little snippets of philosophy tossed in now and then, though the most successful use of it can be seen in The Guns of Mars.  The backdrop of the story is a sociopolitical struggle between the rights of the individual and the dictates of the State.  The Scientific Fundamentalists represent those who desire strict order and control in the name of human progress, where Morgan Asher and his allies represent the sort of Libertarian individualists we see standing up for their rights throughout history.  Even as we explore this clash of philosophies, there is an action-packed adventure that can be appreciated by anyone, regardless of their ideology.

Thrown into the mix are some interesting scientific concepts, and future technology that brings this up to the level of “hard” Science Fiction.  The world is exposed in a clear manner, so you can understand how humanity might progress over the next 250 years.  It’s my most “serious” work of fiction, and the reviews have reflected that.

This is the must-read novel a lot of people haven’t heard about yet, so don’t be shy about spreading the word.  Do me a favor; stick a link to this post on your facebook page, and let’s see what happens.

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