Literary novels

By | April 27, 2014

I’ve read a lot of literary novels, and I’ve read a lot of sf, and rather less fantasy.

I no longer read literary novels for the most part as they are so incredibly boring and all of the characters in them are implausibly similar, which is the same complaint that this blogger seem to have about sf and fantasy.

The academics who prefer these novels are not nearly so clever as they imagine themselves to be, and neither are the novelists themselves. Most – just as do many sf novels – recycle the same tropes over and over again, thus if you’ve read one you’ve read them all. (Unfortunately I read about 300-500 of them before I figured this out.)

I tend to stick to sf these days since at least it has some new ideas, rather than some oft-rehashed tale of a 45-year-old man faffing about in Manhattan while having a mid-life crisis (95% of literary novels), or some oppressed person striking out against oppression (the other 5%) upliftingly and unrealistically.

Ok, I am being unfair. Theodore Sturgeon had it wrong, though. Ninety percent of everything is crap. However, about 95% of sf is crap, and about 99% of literary novels are crap, but there are gems in every field, even in the rather barren field of literary novels.

There, that’s more fair.

By the way, I am not anti-academia. I have a wonderful friend who is all up in academia; what I am is completely and violently against the idea that academics have anything to tell me personally about how should I live my life and what I should like, and whether it is good or not.

Also, I am smarter than the vast majority of them.

And I’m very humble.