Tricky sci-fi/fantasy question

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Fenris
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Tricky sci-fi/fantasy question

Post by Fenris » November 5th, 2010, 1:30 pm

Hi Nathan,

I know that generally magic=fantasy and technology=science fiction. So...what happens when the magic is simply clever programming?

This has been maddening me ever since an idea for such a MS popped into my head about a week ago.

Thanks,
Fenris
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sbs_mjc1
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Re: Tricky sci-fi/fantasy question

Post by sbs_mjc1 » November 5th, 2010, 2:48 pm

That would still be sci-fi, wouldn't it, since the magic is explained by technology?

I think the line for fantasy magic is that there is not scientific explanation.
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Nathan Bransford
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Re: Tricky sci-fi/fantasy question

Post by Nathan Bransford » November 7th, 2010, 10:35 am

There are no strict rules about genre. Does the idea feel more like fantasy or feel more like science fiction? Usually it leans one way or the other.

As always, don't over think genre!

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Re: Tricky sci-fi/fantasy question

Post by Fenris » November 7th, 2010, 3:54 pm

Nathan: thanks, that's what I thought, just wanted to make sure.

sbs_mjc1: You bring up a good point; I didn't express it very well. What I meant is that it's originally attached to a computer program, but eventually gets manifested in the real world. So it's like a hologram that actually affects the physical world. I wasn't sure if that made it 'magic,' since that's what it looks like, or if it was still technology even though it wasn't being run by a computer. Since it originated in technology, it does seem more sci-fi, but...it's kind of a complicated concept. I'm having trouble explaining it in full, but that's the essence of it.
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Re: Tricky sci-fi/fantasy question

Post by Jaligard » November 9th, 2010, 3:09 pm

I like Orson Scott Card's explanation (paraphrasing): if there will be rivets on the cover of the novel, it's science fiction. If there will be dragons or elves or forests, it's fantasy.

It's the same section of the bookstore. Target agents that rep both genres and don't sweat it too much. [/my $0.02]

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Re: Tricky sci-fi/fantasy question

Post by Fenris » November 9th, 2010, 3:26 pm

Jaligard:

A very valuable two cents. I particularly like the paraphrased quote. :)
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