Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Why the bad rap?

Whenever I mention that I am an avid reader to someone, I’m always asked to give my favorite book.  And when you read around 250 books a year that simple question suddenly becomes almost impossible to answer.  Of course I have favorites, but it’s still too many to have to choose only one or two.  So in order to really answer that question accurately I would need to be asked a pretty specific question.
For example, what is your favorite Jane Austen book?  Easy, Sense and Sensibility.
But what’s easier to narrow down is the genre that I always seem to turn to when I’m looking for a great new book to read, which is actually pretty specific, the Young Adult Science Fiction/Fantasy Genre. 
And why is it that when I say that to someone, they instantly cringe at my response?  Like now I’m somehow less of a person or a nerd because this is the type of book I prefer to read.  I know that’s not the typical answer, it seems to me most people want to hear a classic title or something that somehow sounds educational.  It’s almost the same kind of response any woman would get when telling a male that she only reads Romance.
I believe that all books are educational, not just the well respected ones.  To me it’s more important for someone to enjoy reading, so much so that they look forward to it.  In fact it’s the person who has found a love of reading in whatever genre that interests them that would probably have the better vocabulary knowledge, not the person who has limited themselves to what they are “supposed” to read. 
 I could easily converse with someone over most of the classics, but those are not the books that I can’t put down, the books I stay up all night desperate to finish just because I have to know how the story ends before I could possibly fall asleep.
It seems to me that the science fiction and fantasy genre has an unfounded bad rap because many bestsellers are categorized in that genre.

In fact, before paranormal romance became a recognized genre the well known HBO series, True Blood, which is based on the Sookie Stackhouse books by Charlaine Harris would have been placed in the science fiction section.  Or how about Stephen King…several of his books are placed in the science fiction genre as well.
As the author of a young adult science fiction novel I challenge you to take a new look at the science fiction/fantasy genre, to put aside your preconceived ideas, and to try one out.  It’ll definitely be a book that gives you an escape from real life.  And in the end, isn’t that what a good book is all about?

1 comment:

  1. Yes! And that's what I try to sell to my students! Kim, I think this is great! So many people give Science Fiction a bad rap because they only think of space and other stuff. When I first met you, I cringed at Science Fiction in general. However, Harry Potter I loved, and for some reason never put it to science fiction. Just goes to show that people judge science fiction. And this, I apologize for. :( I'm completely in love with it!