[LMB] Focus and goals, was 9 Women Who Shaped Science Fiction

Judy R. Johnson jrj at fidalgo.net
Fri Sep 20 09:45:36 BST 2013

-----Original Message-----
From: lois-bujold-bounces at lists.herald.co.uk
[mailto:lois-bujold-bounces at lists.herald.co.uk] On Behalf Of Gwynne Powell
Sent: Friday, September 20, 2013 2:06 AM

> From: "Judy R. Johnson" jrj at fidalgo.net

> Old classic SF where the conflict was of the nature of protagonist 
> trying to accomplish something--build spaceship, colonize new planet, 
> make successful first contact,  find a mate... did NOT necessarily 
> require dystopic elements.

> Yay!  I agree.  Accomplishment is just as heroic as  smiting the evil

And there's another reason I like so many of Lois's characters - they're
very task oriented. They think, plan, set goals, and ohhhh wow they remake
planets, if necessary, to achieve those goals.
I've been known to yell at characters - in books, tv or movies - to stop
whittering on and DO SOMETHING. Stop wasting time, and being so empty, and
get out and achieve something worthwhile. 
Yes, after the whole thing is over, I'll ask, "But wait a minute, did they
ever... catch the goat - get the car out of the lake - get that job - find
the missing thingummy - or whatever..."  I like things to be tidied up and
finished properly. 

Gwynne (who often wants to slap the protagonist in a novel or movie and tell
him to get his act together.)
JRJ at Friday, September 20, 2013

The first para is not mine, but that of Paula Lieberman, responding to a
comment about SF being seen to be too much dystopia.  My response begins
with "Yay!"  Then Gwynne chimes in.

The thing is, dystopia-wallowing is like an excuse for opting out, not
making any attempt at all to improve the human condition.  It's not helpful,

I find it hopeful that many who go along with this literary mindset
nevertheless do not carry through into real life with undue consistency.
That is, they still manage to hold jobs and raise families; they even vote,
while professing to not follow the news "because it's all so hopeless."  But
since most vote the way I do, however different their opinion-formation
process may be, I live in hope that someday all will be revealed as to how
it is that existentialists, even hedonists and anarchists, can have so much
in common with earnest types like me.  Something here I still don't

Entwife Judy
Who believes the status quo is seldom well enough to be let alone

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