Sex versus Death

Only a short post today, cause I’m tired.

Yesterday evening, I was at the monthly translators’ meet-up, had some crawfish pasta and red wine and a nice chat with some colleagues. Unsurprisingly, there was much griping about zu Guttenberg.

Talking of zu Guttenberg, he has also managed to mess up the carnival celebrations in the Rhine area, because political theme floats have to be modified and satirical speeches have to be changed at short notice.

The big epic fantasy discussion is also still going on and branching out. Here, Mark Charan Newton wonders why speculative fiction in general is still such a straight white men’s club. Though I’m not sure if the Arthur C. Clarke Awards longlist is the best possible data set. For starters, the Nebula Awards shortlist is much more diverse and much more promising.

Talking of the Clarke Awards, a blog called Everything Nice has compiled a statistic evaluation of the 2011 Arthur C. Clarke award shortlist. Depressing bits include the fact that a full quarter of the shortlisted novels have no female viewpoint characters and only a little over half pass the Bechdel test. Protagonists are also more likely to kill someone than have sex, they are more likely to have sex than be in a relationship and a protagonist is more likely to die than to experience an explicitly described sex scene.

That’s probably why I have gradually moved away from “pure” speculative fiction and into the various romance hybrid genres (urban fantasy, paranormal romance, futuristic romance, SF romance, time travel romance, etc…). Because I generally prefer sex to death.

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4 Responses to Sex versus Death

  1. Pingback: Clarke Award 2011 Eligible Submissions Data « Torque Control

  2. Estara says:

    I prefer sex to death, too. You might enjoy Katherine Eliska Kimbriel’s Nuala books for sf, you get death but you also get sex combined with fun (also with manipulation, however, though not in the same characters).

  3. Cora says:

    Thanks for the recommendation. I recognize her name from the Book View Cafe, but I have never read anything by her. I’ll check her out.

    • Estara says:

      She’s great with women characters and men, and just general relationships. The action part is good, too, though never the focus.

      I liked her alternate history fantasy books (I own the second one: Kindred Rites) and never knew she had written female-centered science fiction in the late 80s! She’s been re-releasing them via BVC.

      I basically re-discovered her due to her anime reviews when BVC started out myself. Two of the three Nuala books are out again already, I gave the first five stars and the second four (because I hated the villain ^^) on GoodReads. They have the same protagonists.

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