Friday, March 09, 2007

My Very, Very Belated Response to the Mundane SF Movement Manifesto

Hey! I'd forgotten about this. Given that I'm trying to start a movement of my own (sort of), I figured I should share this half-serious look at the Mundanes, originally posted to rec.arts.sf.written 5/30/05. I've deleted some extraneous group-specific stuff, but, otherwise, here's what I wrote then:

The Manifesto. (That link doesn't work at the moment; the whole "mundanesf" domain appears to be down. But I can point you to the Mundane SF Blog.)

1) How wonderful, another excuse for metric bargeloads of dreary near-future check-out-my-politics science fiction. I've finally washed the slipstream out of my good jacket, and now this comes along. [sigh]

2) I keep hoping for the Rayguns-and-Spaceships Manifesto, but I guess I need to wait longer.

3) I'm sure they mean well, but the last two hundred years have been one long line of people with Manifestos who meant well. That is an incredibly cheap shot, yes.

4) What I really want to see is writers who want to write real science-fiction stories - not warmed-over Hollywood retreads (official or option-begging), not what-everyone-else-is-doing, not what's-selling-this-year, not well-it's-partially-SF-and-partially-fantasy-with-a-dollop-of-nurse-novel-and-just-a-scintilla-of-romantic-suspense. If they want to write dreary near-future stories, well, OK, that's nice for them, but they'd better be damn good writers. (And even then I probably won't want to read them.)

5) If you want to write a particular kind of story, do it. But saying that everyone else who writes anything else are misguided fools is not only dangerous intellectual arrogance, but also the kind of hubris that nemesis just loves to clobber. I am morally certain that some signatory of this Manifesto will commit a Galactic Empire story within a decade. I hope to be there, pointing and laughing, though it will be much more fun if it's a really good Galactic Empire story.


sdn said...


maybe you need to write a manifesto.

Anonymous said...

This isn't a response. Your untimeliness isn't a problem, but you could at least do some footwork to figure out what it's about before spouting.

Andrew Wheeler said...

Thank you, Mr. Anonymous. I'll be sure to take your opinion into account, and treat it with the respect due to an anonymous commenter on a random blog.

I was hoping to look over the Manifesto again, but it seems to be off-line at the "footwork" is a little difficult at this point.

I'm not sure I can blame the current flux of near-future doom 'n' gloom on the Mundanes, but they were calling for something like this not all that long ago, so it's an obvious connection. I only hope there's a similar burst of Space Princesses in two or three years.

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