It boggles my mind how an innocuous topic can be ruined by critics. It seems like that is a hallmark of our culture these days as well as the “Cult of the New” which I posted about last evening. All of these problems trickle into everything and make it so people simply can’t have any fun anymore. And in fact, that’s the goal: the critics want us not to have any fun, to be as jaded and devoid of any joy as they are. In their world it’s about dragging everyone and everything down instead of lifting things up.
That’s the danger we face, and honestly, Space Opera is a concept that combats that behavior. The whole concept of space opera is non-realistic fun. Something you can looik up to the stars and have your eyes go wide. Something so grand and epic and heroic that it could never happen but it hits our collective consciousness all the same. That’s where the science fiction of the 1920s-1960s led to us, and that’s what we’re devoid of in our storytelling now.
Tor dot com declared that it’s Space Opera Week, something that I’ve co-opted, frankly, because I love Space Opera more than them. If you go on twitter, you’ll see that hashtag populated by my friends, not tor fans. You’ll see me tweeting at great Space Opera writers telling people to applaud them, not the writers of their blogs. In fact, this is what you get in celebration of space opera on the Tor site:
The truth is, I’m not really a Space Opera kind of girl. Left to my own devices, I will not-infrequently choose the sort of book that has at least one psychic animal and an ill-advised romantic relationship in it. You don’t see a TON of space in those. Unless you’re reading Anne McCaffrey, and hey, those are some AMAZING cats.
Well, at least Tor doesn’t seem to think Anne McCaffrey is irrelevant. Unfortunately we have a space opera blog that says it isn’t interested in space opera. That’s not the case here.
I wrote Star Realms: Rescue Run because I love space opera more than anything. I love it in my gaming, I love it in my fiction. Space battles between worlds are interesting. The geopolitics of the colonies vs. the extreme corporate Earth of Star Realms is even more interesting… and we haven’t even gotten to the weird alien species in the story outside of small mentions. I like to build up the world from the ground up. From the human outward. But the hallmark of space opera is that it reaches that outward plane to where it bends the mind. And that’s why it’s great in a nutshell.
I’ll be writing more for #SpaceOperaWeek as well several of my friends. You might want to check out castaliahouse.com this morning as Jeffro Johnson is killing it on the topic. Space Opera Week will be written by people who love space opera, even if it’s not on the original site.