SF vs. Fantasy, which is witch?

Jon_Lincicum at stream.com Jon_Lincicum at stream.com
Thu Jan 12 13:33:04 PST 2006

Davdi Silverrock <davdisil at gmail.com> 
Sent by: dragaera-bounces at dragaera.info
01/12/06 01:07 PM

Dragaera List <dragaera at dragaera.info>

Re: Not a witch?

>Actually, I could handwave a vague explanation: Regular psychic
>communication is more like telephony or radio; there are formal 
>magical connections made between individuals.  Vlad has essentially
>put himself in a Faraday cage by donning the Phoenix stones.  Whereas
>the witch-familiar bond is more like quantum entanglement ("spooky
>action at a distance"), and thus cannot be defeated by the same

Interesting idea. I think I like an analogy that involves Vlad being 
"entangled" with Loiosh. Seems very appropriate.

>Now watch Philip Hart smack me down for abusing the word "quantum".

Quantum Abuse: Would that be spooky abuse at a distance?

>> However, this is one example of where the books cross out of Science
>> Fiction (which generally offers explanations for things) into true 
>> (which does not).
>I am not sure if this is necessarily the best definition of the
>difference between science fiction and fantasy.  But I don't think the
>Dragaera stories could ever be described as being science fiction,
>despite the addition of genetic engineering and such.

I find that an interesting observation, especially in light of your 
previous point which you used Quantam Entanglement as an example... ;-)

Certainly, this is not the *only* distinction between Fantasy and SF, but 
it's one of my personal litmus tests.

I think my assertion wasn't that the Dragaera books are Science Fiction, 
but rather, that they float between Fantasy and SF (as many Fantasy 
authors like to do, these days... See Piers Anthony, Orson Scott Card, 
Neil Gaiman, etc, etc)

Really, I think the only real category you could call the Dragaera books 
is the "other" SF, "Speculative Fiction". This nicely avoids calling it 
science, but still allows for magical things and science things to appear.

Either that, or else just "Fiction". 

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