Once upon a time…

Once upon a time, the plot of a novel hinged on danger to the protagonist from a meteorological phenomenon, and the author got it entirely wrong. The end.


About Thomas Weaver

For several years, I’ve been putting my uncanny knack for grammar and punctuation, along with an eclectic mental collection of facts, to good use as a Wielder of the Red Pen of Doom (editor). I'm physically disabled, and I currently live with my smugly good-looking twin Paul, who writes military science fiction and refuses to talk about his military service because he can’t. Sometimes Paul and I collaborate on stories, and sometimes I just edit whatever he writes. It's worked out rather well so far. My list of non-writing-related jobs from the past includes librarian, art model, high school teacher, science lab gofer… Although I have no spouse or offspring to tell you about, I do have eight cats. I currently spend my time blogging, reading, editing, and fending off cats who like my desk better than my twin’s.
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2 Responses to Once upon a time…

  1. More than once upon a time, the plot hinged on a scientific or medical fact which the author got entirely wrong. Which annoyed the crap out of the readers.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Some of the thoughts I talked myself out of including in the original post:

      When the novel in question gets rave reviews for its “science porn” (meaning an abundance of science-y science stuff that’s supposedly soooo much more scientifically correct than most sci-fi contains), I — as a reader — expect there not to be BLATANT errors such as a horrible sandstorm in a setting where THE AIR IS TOO THIN to carry any sand at all. Winds in excess of a hundred miles an hour HERE, on Earth, are a problem. Winds in excess of a hundred miles an hour on a planet where the atmosphere is practically nonexistent by our standards… are not.

      Over the summer I read Neal Stephenson’s novel Seveneves, which ALSO contains scientific inaccuracies. I didn’t mind nearly as much. I just kinda thought, “Dude, I’m pretty sure you can’t park the weight for a beanstalk that way…,” and went on. But, you see, the internet is not up to its metaphorical round little ears in blog and forum posts blathering about how perfectly accurate (and therefor ‘totally unlike all other sci-fi novels’) the science in Seveneves is. I don’t read science fiction FOR the science, but if every book reviewer and their dog is gonna say, ‘Ohmigod, this is sooooo accurate and correct and therefor sooooo much better than any other sci-fi ever written,’ I kinda expect that there not be blatant scientific errors. Maybe I’m just weird…


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