Thursday, June 19, 2008

Playing orbital billiards

The more I research for my science fiction, the more irritated I get at how much bad sf there is in the world. I have no science background to speak of. I've never taken a physics class, and I didn't do a single science elective in college (I was in the UK for that). So if I can spot mistakes in a cold read of a SF piece, it makes me wonder how much more ill-educated the writer was.

I really enjoy good science fiction, though, so that's what I try to write. This evening my husband's been sketching diagrams of orbits and orbital transfers while I've asked him questions and double checked on a few things. This novel I'm working on is YA SF, and is actually a rewrite of a project I attempted a few years ago. I did it all wrong the first time, though. I tried to hard to make it too many different things, when in the end of the day I wanted to write a coming of age story in outer space. So that's what I'm doing.

And will all of my science be perfect? No. Probably not. But hey, I'm gonna work hard to get it as accurate as possible. Being married to an aerospace engineer helps (and the daughter of a metallurgical engineer, and the niece of half a dozen other types of engineers, cousin to a few more...)

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