In the course of an interview for MilSciFi.com, they asked me if science and technology played a major or secondary part in my novel. My response was:
Science and tech are certainly present, and indeed are major plot points, but they’re props, background. To be honest, I loathe sci-fi that reads like an owner’s manual or doctoral thesis. To me, science fiction is about people responding to advancing technology and scientific discovery. It’s the struggles of interacting with the applications, the implications, that I find so fascinating. In my opinion, science should be a catalyst, not a character, in genre fiction.
Now I realize there are plenty of readers who enjoy and expect a high dose of hard science in their fiction, so different strokes, etc, and while I make an effort to include geek-speak, uber-tech, and even gun-porn in my stories, I firmly believe fiction is about people’s struggles, failures and triumphs. I never want the hardware to overshadow the wetware. (so to speak)
I’ve commented on my fanboy fascination for cyberpunk in general, and William Gibson in particular, but opening up the question to all genres of horror, pulp, fantasy, sci-fi, I am curious to know why you read speculative fiction, and what elements are you drawn to/do you look for?