3 February 2014, Writing Ideas - Writing Science Fiction, part 184 Extrapolating Military Technology, Military Simulation
Announcement: There is action on my new novels. The publisher renamed the series--they are still working on the name. I provided suggestions as did one of my prepub readers. Now the individual books will be given single names: Leora, Leila, Russia, Lumiere', China, Sveta, and Klava--at least these are some of the suggestions. They are also working on a single theme for the covers. I'll keep you updated.
Introduction: I wrote the novel Aksinya: Enchantment and the Daemon. This was my 21st novel and through this blog, I gave you the entire novel in installments that included commentary on the writing. In the commentary, in addition to other general information on writing, I explained, how the novel was constructed, the metaphors and symbols in it, the writing techniques and tricks I used, and the way I built the scenes. You can look back through this blog and read the entire novel beginning with http://www.pilotlion.blogspot.com/2010/10/new-novel-part-3-girl-and-demon.html.
I'm using this novel as an example of how I produce, market, and eventually (we hope) get a novel published. I'll keep you informed along the way.
The four plus one basic rules I employ when writing:
1. Don't confuse your readers.
2. Entertain your readers.
3. Ground your readers in the writing.
4. Don't show (or tell) everything.
5. Immerse yourself in the world of your writing.
I am writing about the extrapolation of science and technology to be able to write science fiction. I made the point that it is almost meaningless to try to fully extrapolate a universe (world) that is 10,000 years in the future (and maybe 1,000 years in the future) without applying some cultural and technological shaping.
By shaping the cultures of your science fiction universe, you can shape the science and technology that is extrapolated. Here is how I culturally shaped the universe of The Chronicles of the Dragon and the Fox to make the 10,000 year extrapolation work.
The major areas in warfare technology are:
8. Environments (personal equipment)
As I write below (every day), one of the points of these posts on extrapolating technology is to give you ideas on how to write a theme and turn it into a plot. So, although combat and military operations might be the main part of a novel, the training portion can equally be an important contribution to the work. I give as an example, Starship Troopers. In a modern variant, simulation both during initial training and post boot camp would hold its own. In my science fiction Ghost Ship novels (not published yet), simulation plays a very important part in shuttle crew training between planets.
In any science fiction novel with long duration interplanetary travel, simulation will play a large role in military operations and training. This should keep a large portion of your travelers busy during the space flight--or should.
Most importantly, you need to make the simulation fit in the context of the novel and the times you have developed. Extrapolation of technology will make simulation a critical part of all training and in ways we can imagine, but few have in their writing. Here's your opportunity.
Also remember, I'm trying to show you and give you examples of how to write a science fiction theme statement and turn it into a plot.
For more information, you can visit my author site http://www.ldalford.com/, and my individual novel websites: