A Quest of Shorts

Ragnarok Online

So I’ve made another ridiculous quest for myself – as I do all the time.

In this particular occasion, I’ve decided to pursue short story submissions all around the net, hoping to one day build a good enough repertoire. In the matter of a few days, I’ve consumed so much information which has made me ashamed to call myself a writer for not knowing this very stuff – y’know, about writing. I mean, how ever have I gotten this far and have my work published in so many verticals without even knowing Asimov’s basic specific definition of the difference between science fiction and fantasy?

Nevertheless, I’ve already embarked in this journey – of shorts. Sorry for repeating that pun, I just like it for some reason. I’ve even thrown a few of this in my most recent novel, Crypto Ecstasy. In any case, I’ve assembled a database of potential online magazines and publications to submit short stories, and what do you know? There is a lot of them – like a lot! Hence, I figured this wasn’t such a bad idea after all. This will give me enough time whilst I tend to my 500px portfolio (which views are growing exponentially, btw).

Some of the sites I’ve found to name a few:

Since I’ve started this quest, I’ve been bombarded with new jargons like cyberpunk and hard sf. What the F is even hard sf? Hard Such F&ck? I feel like a child again.

Science Fiction

However, this wealth of new information is really interesting, especially at this period in my life where I’m writing more. For instance, I’ve come across this really interesting piece by Lewis Shiner about cyberpunk here.

As for the other genres, I’ve managed to get a list of definitions mainly the following:

  • Speculative Fiction: applies to both Science Fiction and Fantasy. Answers the question, “What if?” e.g. One Hundred Years of Solitude, Brave New World.
  • Science Fiction: a genre that extrapolates from current scientific trends.
  • Cyberpunk: explores the fusion between man and machine e.g. Neuromancer.
  • Military Science Fiction: armed forces in space e.g. Starship Troopers.
  • Hard SF: written by writers with strong science backgrounds.
  • Parallel/Alternate Universe SF: for every decision made or event that occurs, there is another place where the decision or the event went differently e.g. Einstein’s Bridge.
  • Space Opera: high adventure in space with all its campy goodness e.g. Flash Gordon.
  • Fantasy: a genre not based on reality but instead on mythical/supernatural creatures and magic.
  • Epic Fantasy: usually concerns a battle for rulership of a country, an empire, or an entire world e.g. The Dominions of Irth.
  • Court Intrigue: a popular subcategory of epic fantasy e.g. A Song of Ice and Fire.
  • Quest Fantasy: a major subcategory of epic fantasy in which the hero endures many hardships while retrieving an object of power that will defeat the enemy e.g. The Lord of the Rings.
  • Historical Fantasy: a sub-genre in which historical events are given a fantasy treatment, or myths are given an historical treatment e.g. Pendragon Cycle.
  • Contemporary Fantasy: a sub-genre of fantasy which posits that magic exists in our modern-day world, and often wrestles with contemporary issues e.g. Expiration Date.
  • Urban Fantasy: a subcategory of contemporary fantasy set in–you’ve guessed it–a contemporary city e.g. A Winter’s Tale.
  • Science Fantasy: a hybrid and subset of speculative fiction describing worlds in which either both magic and science work, science is so sophisticated it simulates magic, or characters possess psychic powers so strong they resemble magic e.g. A Game of Universe.

That’s a handful, especially science fantasy, which basically is just speculative fiction, but okay, I guess. I’ve already submitted a couple of stories to the preceding publications and am waiting for word, but I reckon this is what I’m going to do with the rest of my March. All’s fair in love and war. Cheers.