The week of July 30 through August 5th is Science Fiction and Fantasy Week on Goodreads and I decided it was time I participated.
“If you could travel to any fictional book world, where would you go and what would you do there?”
Pern. I would go to Pern in a heartbeat. As in the third planet from the star, Alpha Sagittarius as described by Anne McCaffrey in her Dragonriders of Pern series. Sure it might not have the best weather, (if you can call parasitic organisms that fall from the sky and devour everything they encounter except the barest rock, weather) but the rest of the wildlife more than makes up for the inconvenience. Because, if the series name wasn’t indicator enough, there be dragons. Telepathic dragons who form a lifelong bond with their riders. There are dragons who can not only fly but can teleport too.
So what would I do once I was there? Oh, I would enroll in the Harpers Hall and travel around the country singing ballads and telling oral history. What else?
Just kidding. I would sneak onto the volcanically heated sands of the hatching ground until my feet burnt off leaving nothing but nubs or I met and bonded with my dragon, whichever came first. (Let’s be serious, I would stay there even with my nubs for feet – who needs feet when you have a dragon? That’s what the wings are for.)
I loved these books as a teenager. They were a wonderful blend of science fiction meets fantasy, proving the two genres are not mutually exclusive. Yes, there were fire-breathing dragons, but there was genetic engineering, space travel, and the rediscovery of lost technology too.
I’ve always been fascinated with the intersection of magic and technology and how discoveries in the field of science blur the line between fact and fiction. In the next few years, we are on track to create invisibility cloaks simply by figuring out to effectively and efficiently bend light. We will be able to communicate around the world or even into space without any time delay as if we were in two places at once. We will even be able to control and move heavy machinery with our mind. We will even be able to potentially make matter out of thin air.
- Scientists get closer to creating real-life invisibility cloak – CNN
- Quantum Teleportation Enters the Real World – D-brief
- TESLAPATHIC: mind control for your car – Popular Mechanics
- Physicists Have Figured Out How to Create Matter And Antimatter Using Light – Science Alert
When it comes to magic, from the perspective of our ancestors, it would appear the witches won.
So where do we go from here? What will we still consider magic in the future when the impossible feats of yesterday become the humdrum daily life of tomorrow. I am sure we will come up with something, but until then all I can do is dream, wonder, and await the day I ditch my car to ride the friendly skies with my loyal dragon.
Here’s a snippet related to my upcoming novel inspired by the GoodReads Science Fiction and Fantasy Week Writing Prompt.
“Technology is a form of magic, if you think about it,” Wes replied as he adjusted his grip on the device on his hand so that his fingerprints fell into series of well-worn grooves. A bulb on one end flared to life. “Imagine if you didn’t know what a flashlight was,” he said swinging the beam around until it came to a stop on a wall made of rusted car doors, cracked glass, and broken chairs. “I could call myself a wizard right now, and as far as you knew, I would be telling the truth.” Wes opened his grip, and the barricade of debris was once again illuminated only by the light of a partial moon. A dog barked in the distance. Crickets resumed their chirping. “I would also be telling the truth when I say you should be careful with things you don’t understand.” He placed his empty hand on the new arrival’s shoulder. “And there is a lot here you don’t understand. At least not yet anyway.”
He gestured for the others to follow as he turned and walked toward the wall, coming to a stop where the collection of garbage appeared darker than the rest. The moonlight cast shadows across his face, but not enough to hide his knowing smile. “I’d ask you if you were ready, but I suppose it’s already too late for that to matter now.”
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