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Putting the Science Back in Science Fiction

The devil's in the details, they say. And I've basically spent a good 2 hours day researching magentic confinement fusion and magnetohydrodynamic because there were a few pages about it in the book I'm reading and I thought it was a pretty neat concept.


This, of course, led to me deciding it needs a mention in the AJ 'verse, which lead to more research and a proliferation of 600 words from where there had been but 4 lines of scribbles in the back of my Comp Sci notebook while waiting for class to start. Oh, inspiration, how I love you when you strike.

This. however, dovetails nicely back into a convo I've been having on and off with popkin16 for a while - basically, that I am an absurd perfectionist, and hate contradicting myself in my writing. Everything must be planned, in general if not in detail, and if I want to mention something I must create the whole universe.

To understand just one life you have to swallow the world, and all that.

But I'm always doing this (it is the reason I eventually stopped writing ST fanfiction - if anyone reading this has ever been in the ENT fandom, you probably remember the ongoing argument about whether or not T'Pol could actually serve as First Officer, which circled like a vulture every few weeks in any forum - it contradicts itself too often). I decided that Helia had to be up to something beyond what she claimed because of the math involved in "The Return," long before even "Custodia" was written. I fraking calculated the energy likely to be created if a human being were to spontaneously go nuclear, to say nothing of my, frankly insane, timeline, which basically covers 1 billion years of history, as it relates to SG1/SGA/SGU and the AJ verse.

Which leads me to somewhere curious. I mean, I get compliments fairly regularly on "Someone To Run To," my HP fic, about the amount of detail I put into it - I'd the daily calendar as made up by The Leaky Cauldron and the Top 40 charts for each week for that time period in Britain open in my tabs the whole time I was writing it - but, then again, probably an equal amount of people don't notice it. I tried to put a good deal of science into my description of the ATLAS device, particularly in "Fradator," but, really, who notices if these things wouldn't work unless a) it's blatantly wrong or b) they happen to have a degree in the actual subject?

Though I probably would. I do things like that. I can't enjoy something unless I can nitpick it. Even my own writing.

So, if you excuse me, I have to go back to appropriating science for

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A lot of the time, in fic and in shows, I tend to accept the science as it's told to me. (Though I know it's not necessarily accurate, for the purposes of enjoying whatever media I'm engaged in, I usually just go with it). Plus, I'm terrible at science, so I'm even more unlikely to notice if it's wrong. But I think it's cool that you put so much thought into your fic! You are so, so good at world building, and your writing style seems particularly suited to science fiction.
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