I read C.S. Lewis’s essay “On Science Fiction” today. It’s a brilliant little work. The chief premise is a by now well accepted (I think, anyways) critical standard: that work should be judged according to the standards of the genre to which it belongs. But beyond that, the essay includes a brief exploration of how certain strategies of storytelling are conventions in some genres while anathemas in others. It boils down to the idea that everything a writer does to tell his or her story needs to work in service to that telling.
I really need to start laying out some of my thoughts on writing and stories. It’s fun stuff that I really enjoy thinking about, so look for that to come…sometime. We’ll see if classes (not to mention other work) allow that to be soon or not.
Until then, go read “On Science Fiction” for yourself. It’s worth it. While you’re at it, check out Lewis’s essay “On Stories” too.