Monday, February 12, 2024

Science fiction needs a hint of romance


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My love of science fiction started early, when I read DUNE by Frank Herbert. But I always found that these books were written by men and for men. They relied heavily on the technical aspect, and they portrayed male protagonists, with very few female characters. Even the new movie versions of Star Trek are still men-oriented. Star Wars made progress with the last trilogy with Rey as a female Jedi, and more females in the new Disney series. It's about time.


As an avid reader, I scoured the library for sci-fi and fantasy novels by female writers, like Ann McCaffrey (Dragon of Pern series), and Marion Zimmer Bradley. Then, I discovered the Dock 5 series, by Linnea Sinclair, the undisputed queen of Sci-fi with romantic elements. Linnea’s books even had cat-like animals called furzells. Her stories contained plenty of action, strong women characters as ship captains, and they navigated the stars, making no apologies. I had found my niche.

This kind of science fiction written by women does not focus on the engineering of the spaceship, or the weapons, nor does it explain how people traverse intergalactic distances. It is set in a future where space travel technology exists and is commonplace, where man has met alien cultures and spread throughout the universe... like in Star Wars or Star Trek.

So, when I decided to write, I wrote what I love, space adventure with strong women as protagonists. Of course, there are brave heroes, and often cats in my stories as well. Write what you know, right?

As for the angels in my books, they are a select group of gifted people with supernatural talents, in charge of keeping the balance of good and evil in the universe. This said, they are still people, with a body and a heart.

The Blue Phantom glows like a beacon in black space, appears and vanishes, and never registers on scanners. Rumors say it will save the righteous, the oppressed, and the downtrodden… and slay the unworthy without mercy. The space pirates fear it. Their victims pray for it… but its help comes at a price…

Vijaya Schartz, award-winning author
Strong Heroines, Brave Heroes, cats
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