Questions tagged [science-fiction]

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

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1answer
82 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 ...
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2answers
129 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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1answer
132 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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3answers
538 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 ...
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4answers
107 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 ...
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3answers
137 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, ...
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3answers
109 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 ...
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2answers
30 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 ...
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3answers
192 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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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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1answer
102 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
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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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11answers
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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1answer
136 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
176 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 ...
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2answers
133 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 ...
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2answers
191 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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4answers
357 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. ...
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1answer
176 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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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 ...
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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 ...
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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 ...
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1answer
108 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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8answers
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Is a lack of character descriptions a problem?

I have written a novel in which none of the characters are ever described. It started out by accident (3 chapters in when I realized). Question: Is this a good/unique approach or shot myself in ...
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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 ...
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7answers
636 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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5answers
200 views

20 Minutes into the Future - problem with setting the period

I have just finished a short story, set in what is known as 20 Minutes into the Future - a time frame that's only a little into the future from our own. There is a change from modern times, but it is ...
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5answers
5k 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 (...
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8answers
5k views

Can I bring back Planetary Romance as a genre?

This question is about genre and reader expectations. I'm not trying to change my story to fit a mainstream genre. I have already taken steps to broaden it's appeal, but it's too late to create an ...
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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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4answers
998 views

When an imagined world resembles or has similarities with a famous world

Arguably this might belong in worldbuilding.stackexchange.com, but the question has to do with a fiction story and its relation to other fiction in the real world. I have a plot which involves an ...
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6answers
3k views

I have a unique character that I'm having a problem writing. He's a virus!

Yes, you read that correctly. My villain character is literally a virus. He thinks and behaves just like any other character does, mentally and personality-wise, but his body is best described as a ...
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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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3answers
4k views

Is Social Media Science Fiction?

I am writing a science fiction story (actually a screenplay for a film, but I imagine that for the purposes of this question the same rules apply) and I have been told that it isn't really science ...
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7answers
5k views

How do I create uniquely male characters?

In How to write strong female characters, Standback says that the best way to write a strong female character is to make her uniquely female, the type of character that can not possibly be male and ...
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2answers
119 views

Future battlegrounds

What makes a battle scene tense and visceral is the immediate danger and the fast-paced action and reaction. For that, the human soldier needs to be on the battlefield, in the action. Here's the ...
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2answers
220 views

Characterizing a sentient robot: inhuman PoV

Following the previous question: Characterizing a sentient robot: sensory data I'm writing a robot character with a particular PoV. In the previous question I wanted to talk about sensory data; here ...
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4answers
142 views

Characterizing a sentient robot: sensory data

I have a sentient robot in my novel. Truth to be told, I have many. Sentience is somewhat cheap to achieve, meaning that there are multiple artificial beings that can be considered sentient by our ...
4
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3answers
371 views

Using substitution ciphers to generate new alphabets in a novel

A substitution cipher is a method used in cryptography to encrypt the meaning of a text. In the most common form, a substitution cipher changes every letter in the target text with another, making it ...
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2answers
136 views

Handling Earth-based religions on a foreign planet

For some context to my question: The story I'm currently writing takes place on another planet. It is never mentioned whether Earth exists (or had existed), but the characters are all human, have ...
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4answers
134 views

Is it a bad idea to use footnotes to describe new technologies in a science-fiction novel?

I am wondering if we can use footnotes to describe technologies used in a science-fiction novel instead of describing it by switching from an omniscient POV, that describes everything in a poetic way, ...
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2answers
128 views

What are some ways to make absurdity of certain ideas in fiction more palatable?

I am writing a science-fiction short story where there are a lot of pseudoscientific ideas being dealt constantly. I was wondering how to reduce the absurdity of some of those ideas using literary ...
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3answers
1k views

Is time travel science fiction or fantasy?

The line between science fiction and fantasy is often blurred. And that's okay. Genre is often more about marketing than anything else. As a general rule though: SciFi has science and technology ...
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3answers
87 views

Research on an alternate history novel

I love alternate history scenarios; however, I just want to start writing. Should I do research or just start writing and go with it with some research along the way?
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12answers
5k views

Problems Blending Sci-fi & Traditional Fantasy?

I have been cautioned against blending: Traditional fantasy elements Such as magic systems and exotic, less plausible creatures (on a scientific level - magic tends to explain away these beasts) ...
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3answers
155 views

Finding resources for sci-fi writers on Quantum Mechanics

I don't have the financial resources to hire a scientific consultant to ask him whether my science-fiction plot is realistic, so I was wondering if there were any resource that teach Quantum Mechanic ...
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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 ...
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5answers
886 views

In the background of the Future

As I've mentioned multiple times, I'm writing a military sci-fi novel. The focus of the story is war, and that happens far away from Earth. However, I'm starting with my MC's "normal", on Earth. It is ...

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