Questions tagged [science-fiction]

Stories about space, technology, the future, and other things that could be real but aren't.

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5answers
389 views

How to progress a fantasy novel that is also slice of life?

I am currently writing a novel where I mix the genre fantasy, sci-fi, and slice of life. My plan is to make the main character to save the sci-fi city using fantasy. And beyond that, I also use slice ...
8
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3answers
1k views

How best to describe multiple alien species in a short amount of time?

I am in the beginning stages of writing what might be a space opera. The story starts in a society that consists of three planets that all fall under one governmental domain. The problem I'm running ...
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11answers
11k views

Inventing names for Sci-Fi characters

How can I invent names for fictional characters in a future-setting Sci-Fi story so they won't be connected to any existing culture? I considered the following options: Invent some random names. ...
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3answers
152 views

Is my novel Fantasy or Sci-Fi?

I have a Wattpad account and I've been entering contests... I've been using the fantasy genre to describe my novel, but I just saw descriptions of fantasy and sci-fi and now I'm wondering if my novel ...
12
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13answers
4k views

In modern Sci-Fi/Fantasy, does real world racism need to be addressed?

I have read through a lot of questions regarding questions of a similar nature, but all of the questions I looked at involved fantasy worlds that were removed from the "real world." In my novel, I ...
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3answers
130 views

Modifying common fantasy species like elves, dwarves, etc.?

So I'm writing a science fiction story, with more fantasy that actual science. When I say "sci-fi" I really mean space opera. There are intergalactic companies, entire planets dedicated to ...
10
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4answers
2k views

Managing alien languages in Sci-Fi creatively

I’m writing a story where alien races are in constant communication with humans, but I don’t want it to be awkward or have to use language tags like “...he said in x language.” Maybe I could have a ...
3
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3answers
184 views

When writing science fiction or horror, how to prevent the villain from becoming less scary as they are fleshed out?

I'm trying to write a horror short story about a shape-shifter, but I have trouble keeping it from sounding like a science fiction story. The story starts out with a creepy tone, with a person close ...
6
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4answers
2k views

How to make “new apprentice” type info-dump less boring

I'm writing a story wherein a teenager X gets suddenly and involuntarily enlisted in an sci-fi army. I need to explain certain technology to the reader, and the army needs to explain certain ...
3
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2answers
537 views

Basics in the world building of a novel

About a year ago I started developing something like an alternative world. About two months a go I finally found some time for more work on this theme and now I am collecting information from few ...
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1answer
136 views

How do I teach my protagonist high level programming? [closed]

I am working on a science fiction story about robots and the protagonists needs to hack the main computer to stop the robots. Edit: The protagonist knows a little bit of programming but not enough to ...
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2answers
139 views

Concerns about my novella trilogy's main antagonist

In my novella trilogy that I am writing, Of Aliens and Men, the leader of the main antagonist faction, an alien organization called the Empyre (pronounced: Em-peer) Empire, Empress Erika II holds nigh-...
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3answers
546 views

How can a portal be hidden for 5 years but found by children? [closed]

I am writing a story in which two children, ages 12-14 years old, discover a portal to another dimension. The portal is roughly the size of an average door and has existed for five years prior to ...
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0answers
23 views

Finding a book series, I read the first book awhile ago and would like to finish the series [closed]

I read a book a while ago and I'm try to remember its name. The book was about a an outcast who used to be a the general of a rebellion against a colony of planets. These planets had faster than ...
8
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6answers
809 views

Is it safe to create a wiki for a book (or something featured in it) before the book is published?

I'm working on a sci-fi novel, and it contains a lot of fictional creatures, which are in some ways separate from the novel because I came up with them a while before I actually got the idea to write ...
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3answers
3k views

How far into a speculative novel should one go before introducing the central conflict?

By speculative, I mean mostly science fiction, fantasy or intrigue. For example Neal Stephenson's Anathem, which is a 900-page book, goes well past the 200-page mark before the central conflict ...
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4answers
118 views

Would you advise against having a fictional continent as the setting for a Science Fiction story?

Let me elaborate. In things such as Game of Thrones and Lord of the Rings (so, high fantasy), fictional continents are quite often the setting. I don't recall ever seeing this in Science Fiction. My ...
9
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7answers
3k views

How does one avoid inevitable influences being obvious when writing something like superheroes?

So I have been debating writing a story idea I have had swimming in my head for a long time. I love superhero comics, and I love the more character driven aspects of the stories. I have been ...
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3answers
147 views

Would it be bad taste or honoring to name a Starship after historical places, ex: Pompeii?

In my book, Earth is gone and are all the counties and a majority of the population and cultures. A small population is left and they make a home on another planet. Now, just under 200 years later, ...
2
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3answers
113 views

How do I deliver a historical plot reveal?

Right before the climax of my scifi fantasy novel, there's a big reveal about who the bad guys really are and how they influenced the magic system -- throughout history. This reveal will be the much ...
1
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2answers
34 views

wreckage or wreckages

I'm trying to describe a ring of broken, destroyed spacecraft. I want to use wreckage ring or ring of wreckage or ring of wreckages. Wreckages is an interesting word that I'm confused about. I've ...
3
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3answers
202 views

How to maximize reader comprehension if worldbuilding is complicated?

Parts of my worldbuilding are critical to the plot. If readers don't understand the world, they won't understand the stakes for the protagonist and the failure conditions. Edit. Please don't assume ...
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1answer
107 views

Hierarchies and Role Titles - How do come up with them

I'm looking to see what everyone has used in the past to come up with hierarchies and position titles for your novels. For example, instead of using "President", "Prime Minister", "Pope", "Bishop", ...
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10answers
6k views

How to avoid or mitigate heavy science lingo and “technobabble” in a science fiction story?

Background I am currently working on a small science fiction story (as referenced in a previous question of mine). The main protagonist of the story is an autistic biologist who gets stranded on an ...
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1answer
137 views

Wrtting Sci/Fi Novel with some Sumerian influences, how to bridge a lengthy time gap in my storyline?

I'm writting a novel (in Spanish, I'm from Chile) based on Sumerian culture separated in two periods (Present & Future). Present: archaeologists find some new sumerian stone tablets that hide ...
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14answers
7k views

How can I get 2 characters to bond while standing alternate watches?

Setting is standard space opera. I am writing a story in which 2 characters are crewing a spaceship. The characters are: (1) the captain, a female in her early 20s, who has grown up on the ship and ...
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3answers
178 views

I'm trying to write a blog about future tech and science - where can I find ideas?

I watch Isaac Arthur and John Michael Godier; I’m looking for a site to help me write an online blog, that talks about a future science tech or idea every week (or every month; depending on my ...
7
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4answers
267 views

Writing a letter from the future

I'm writing a letter from the future to my dear friends, posing as the child they're about to have. The main aim of the letter is to be amusing, but also to give some perspective (you don't need to be ...
4
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2answers
150 views

Fiction copyright, mythologies and interpretations of ancient texts?

So, I understand that ancient mythologies and their characters such as Zeus etc are part of the public domain. However, what happens to individual interpretations of ancient texts? For example, a ...
5
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4answers
396 views

Is anything like the propulsion systems (warp/impulse drives) copyrighted from being use in other sci-fi novels?

I'm currently writing a sci-fi/fantasy novel that mostly takes place on a star/space-ship but I'm stuck on if i'm available to use names of the propulsion drives, such as Warp or even Impulse drives. ...
11
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6answers
1k views

English words in a non-english sci-fi novel

In the modern world, english is a well-estabilished technical and scientific language. Some terms have become so commonly used that they are accepted in my native tongue (words like "computer", "PC", "...
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2answers
192 views

What are the top most important key elements for a computer game story?

I am a programmer and in the middle of developing a TBS (turn based strategy) computer video game. Those kind of games have a flow of what is commonly known to gamer as 4X, that is, explore, expand, ...
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8answers
6k views

How can I make a “meeting in VR” less dumb?

I've written myself into a sci-fi cliche which I have never seen done well: two characters meet in virtual reality. The gist of my scene is one character has been in a pseudocoma, more aware of her ...
10
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7answers
872 views

How should I introduce new and complex technologies or tools?

I'm writing a Science Fiction book. While this book doesn't push reality very far, there are some new technologies and tools that I have added. One tool is used more frequently than all the others, ...
3
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5answers
261 views

How do I describe Newtonian physics to the reader in a way that is realistic yet not too complex?

I have a story where I adhere strongly to plausible physics for space combat (some behind-the-scenes development for the story: How to Conduct Plausible Space Combat Intercepts and Tactical Options ...
5
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10answers
976 views

My first comedy plot draft is very bland - how far can I go on calling this out?

I'm currently working on my first book, a sci-fi comedy set on an alternate history Earth which has progressed at twice the rate of our own planet (they were at our current tech when William the ...
12
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9answers
2k views

How do you show, through your narration, a hard and uncaring world?

As I've already mentioned, I'm working on a sci-fi novel. One of the main feelings that I wanted to represent when I started is the sense of a vast, empty, artificial world, mostly cold and uncaring ...
19
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10answers
6k views

Is it time to start closing up my novel?

I realize this may be a duplicate question. I've seen, for reference [ How long can a first novel be? ] yet I think my situation is a little more specific. I find myself in a similar situation. My ...
16
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19answers
8k views

The role of the supernatural in hard science fiction

The response to this question makes it clear to me that I haven't quite asked the question I had intended, the answers are useful but not quite what I'm looking for. So different but related ...
12
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7answers
1k views

Spiritual elements in a science-fiction novel

Does using unexplained spiritual elements (soul, "spiritual"/non-physical beings, afterlife, God, etc.) in a story with a futuristic setting make it science fantasy rather than science fiction?
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14answers
4k views

The role of inexplicable events in hard science fiction

The modern world has few true mysteries, among them the fate of the Roanoke colonists and the crew of the Mary Celeste but do such happenings have a place in futuristic settings? In settings with ...
26
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13answers
4k views

The unknown and unexplained in science fiction

Science fiction has been defined as a genre where the "incredible" elements are "recognizable as not-true, but also as not-unlike-true, not-flatly- (and in the current state of knowledge) impossible" (...
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3answers
896 views

How do I plot the defeat of an all-knowing, god-like antagonist?

I have a plot bunny lingering in my head about a rag-tag band of defective cyborgs facing off against a god-like supercomputer. I've outlined a great deal but I'm frequently finding that it's ...
25
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13answers
7k views

Can I conceal an antihero's insanity - and should I?

I have an idea for an anti-heroic sci-fi character whose character arc runs from spoilt rich girl, to a refugee in the rubble of human civilisation after an alien invasion, to crewmember and then ...
12
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7answers
661 views

How do you build a story from a world?

I have some material for a "world" (more fantasy than sci-fi at this point). I've noodled around with this world off-and-on for ages but have never had a story to put in the world. I have some brief ...
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1answer
202 views

How would mushroom call mycellium home? [closed]

I'm wondering for some time.. How would mushrooms fruiting body call it own mycelium? Imagine you're that fruiting body and after releasing your spores you are about to die.
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8answers
3k views

Sci-fi change: Too much or Not enough

I am in the process of editing a short story. It is science fiction of the "if this goes on" kind: I take a social trend I see, and paint its event horizon - a troubling future. 1984 and Fahrenheit ...
21
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5answers
6k views

Is every story set in the future “science fiction”?

Science Fiction is a "big tent" genre, and we all know it when we see it. Even if we argue about the specific tropes – and what might make something lean heavily towards another classification (...
13
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5answers
2k views

Sense of humor in your sci-fi stories [closed]

What kind of humor do you find appropriate for your sci-fi stories? I realize that the question might seem so broad, but I think the target group for most sci-fi stories has a sense of humor that ...
4
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1answer
110 views

Write a story based on characters from an old novel

I am considering writing a "history" of the Morlocks (based on the characters in the H. G. Wells novel). Question: Is this allowed, or do I need permission from his descendants?

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