I’m pleased to present Alex J. Cavanaugh as my guest blogger today. He’s three days into his blog book tour for his debut sci fi novel, CassaStar. If you want to follow Alex’s tour, here’s the link to his full schedule. His next stop is on the 17th at Edi’s Book Lighthouse.
Welcome, Alex. I’m so glad you’re here.
Hopefully your readers didn’t hit the back button when they realized I’m a science fiction author. The genre scares people sometimes. They see the word ‘science fiction’ and assume it’s chock full of geek tech, three-headed aliens, and other assorted elements that appeal to the average boy. (“Boy” implying any guy between ten and fifty, of course.) However, there’s as great a variety in science fiction as in any genre. And there are plenty of women who read (and write) science fiction as well.
Science fiction is nothing more than a setting and backdrop. The story within the pages can reflect any genre – mystery, romance, horror, western, etc. For example, Robert A. Heinlein’s Starship Troopers is military in nature. Timothy Zahn’s work focuses on adventure. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams contains a wicked sense of humor. Want to read a sweeping, grand-scale drama? Try Frank Herbert’s Dune. Each of these books contains elements of other genres, and the combinations are endless. When you think about it in those terms, a science fiction story can be about anything!
What drives a good story are the characters. It doesn’t matter if the setting is alien, or if the people are alien as well. The Star Trek and Star Wars universes aren’t insanely popular just because of the setting – people love the characters, and won’t hesitate to tell you their favorite. (Jean Luc Picard and Han Solo – in case you’re interested!) If we relate to the characters, we’ll enjoy the story.
Yes, my book is science fiction. It features a race not unlike our own faced with the threat of war. Space battles ensue as the military attempts to fend off the invaders. But at the heart of CassaStar are the main characters – two men with tragic pasts who form an unlikely friendship. Despite the backdrop of war, the struggles and triumphs of my characters remains the focus.
And that is the story I want readers of all genres to discover and enjoy!
Alex J. Cavanaugh is a sci-fi writer on a journey of discovery. Books, movies, music, games, writing… he covers many pop culture topics on his blog. Alex has a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and works in web design and graphics. CassaStar, his first novel, will be released October 19 2010.
As a bonus, here’s the synopsis for CassaStar:
To pilot the fleet’s finest ship…
Few options remain for Byron. A talented but stubborn young man with a troubled past and rebellious attitude, his cockpit skills are his only hope. Slated to train as a Cosbolt fighter pilot, Byron is determined to prove his worth and begin a new life as he sets off for the moon base of Guaard.
Much to Byron’s chagrin, the toughest instructor in the fleet takes notice of the young pilot. Haunted by a past tragedy, Bassa eventually sees through Byron’s tough exterior and insolence. When a secret talent is revealed during training, Bassa feels compelled to help Byron achieve his full potential.
As war brews on the edge of space, time is running short. Byron requires a navigator of exceptional quality to survive, and Bassa must make a decision that could well decide the fate of both men. Will their skills be enough as they embark on a mission that may stretch their abilities to the limit?
And a review quote from Library Journal:
“…calls to mind the youthful focus of Robert Heinlein’s early military sf, as well as the excitement of space opera epitomized by the many Star Wars novels. Fast-paced military action and a youthful protagonist make this a good choice for both young adult and adult fans of space wars.”