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Sci-Fi prequel to a Fantasy series ?

Discussion in 'Writing Discussions' started by Nagash, Oct 5, 2015.

  1. Nagash

    Nagash Sage

    Hey lads !

    So I've been working excessively hard on my fantasy universe for over four years now, and even though I have made good progress both in writing and worldbuilding, I figured I needed a break, just to get my creativity working on something else than the usual things I've been toying around with almost exclusively. One could say I'm having a - temporary - fantasy overdose, which is long overdue, seeing how much time and ink I've spent on this "magnus opus" of mine. In order to "shake the system" a bit, I've decided to report my attention on two other projects: a play and a Sci-Fi series.

    I've always been a die-hard fan of fantasy, and Sci-Fi - while greatly enjoyable - just never really came to mind as a possible field of work. Yet, after countless hours of Battlestar Galactica rerun, I've started to get completely excited about starting fresh, not solely plot-wise, also but genre-wise. After all, who hasn't dreamed of forging his very own space-operaesque "mass-effecty" Sci-Fi series ?

    After some time of plot-writing and character design, I've been trying to imagine what this series would represent, in the grand scheme of things ? If it were to be accomplished at some point, what link do I want it to have with the rest of my work (if any !) ? Somehow, I wanted to give it some additional meaning than the usual "just another Sci-Fi series for y'all". After some days of furious drafting and the usual daydreaming, I got somewhat of an epiphany while in class, studying the sentiment of nostalgia in countries of ex-Yougoslavia. I'll spare you the additional details, but basically, I came up with the idea of creating a Sci-Fi universe where technology and resource management has become such an important part of society, that it rules the way of life, and some people start imagining a simpler world, where gods haven't been destroyed and heroism hasn't fallen under the bullets of modern weaponry. Basically, I wanted to make this Sci-Fi series a prequel to my upcoming Fantasy work. Before any commenting or criticism, I'd like to share the rough draft of the plot I've planned for this Sci-Fi universe.

    In a completely fictional galaxy, two political entities share the universe: the first is a federation of multiple planets and species, born after eons of warmongering; the other is an ancient civilization which has survived the test of time and do not care for the federation, for they consider themselves immensely superior. At some point in this universe's story, a very grave resource crisis smashes the balance which allowed these many people to live in peace and harmony, and several conflicts break out, compromising the legitimacy of the federation and pushing the ancient civilization to roam across the stars to find the chimeric "black planet" the oracles have dreamed of, and that will provide limitless resources for the people of the galaxy to use.

    The story would mostly focus on a group of people who get caught in the outbreaks of violence, chaos and anarchy, with, as a background, this recurring fantasy that a better world awaits the worthy, and that through common effort, these people might find "the black planet". After some unsuccessful attempts to channel the species rebelling against the federation by colonizing their neighbors to drain them of their last resources, order would eventually collapse and degenerate in a full-scale war, as the aforementioned ancient civilization would move in to rester the balance between the lesser races for "the greater good". Still, the fires of war are consuming the galaxy, and everything that is hangs in the balance, hoping for the discovery of the black planet, that would restore a hope for the future of all races. At this point in the story, the protagonists have to explore the galaxy to find the planet, lest their people turn on each other and die out.

    There is some hope at some point that the black planet has been found, but it turns out to be a false alarm; most abandon their search. The ancient - and way superior - civilization realizes that if they are unable to discover the planet, they will have to decide between their own survival and that of the other races, and therefore chose between their extinction or committing a great sin by exterminating the rest of the galaxy. Eventually, it turns out the myth of the black planet was a scam invented by the theocracy to give people hope, and that explorers will never find it. Before leaving his planet to declare a genocidal war on other races just to safeguard the survival of his own people, the leader of the ancient civilization makes the wish before the ancient gods, that somewhere in the universe, a world preserved from the corruption of modern times and technology would exist, just so some sense of innocence would survive in the universe, even after the atrocities he is about to commit. The series ends before the readers gets to know what his final decision was.

    In the epilogue, the sole protagonist that continued his search for the Black planet, ends up in a completely isolated place of the universe where his radio is shut off. He is out of supplies and fuel for his ship, and grimly accepts his fate. As he looks one last time to the stars, he sees a lone planet which seems amazingly preserved from the scarring of modern times. Unable to get there by ship, he ejects himself from the cockpit, and vainly tries to reach the distant planet, before dying with a smile

    This planet, as it would turn out, is Zael, the world where my fantasy universe takes place.

    Basically, there wouldn't be any ties between these two difference series, besides from the fact that they are located in the same wide, wide universe, and that they are both a reflection of the other : people in the fantasy series keep looking at the skies hoping they will find some guidance, while those in the sci-fi series look vainly for a new planet that would provide fresh water, resources, and in a broader way, a simpler way of life.

    The thematic of technology and nostalgia of older times has always been extremely to me, and it is the reason i wrote fantasy in the first place. I feel that writing a sci-fi series would help me insist on that note. But, somehow, it seems like a "goofy exercise" that might just fit video-game companies (Blizzard and their twin franchises Warcraft and Starcraft) but not actual writing. Then again, I might be over thinking this, and it could be a cool idea ! I know I am motivated by this, even though I do not know many cross-genre authors who actually managed to pull off two different universes which shared some kind of link.

    What do you guys think about this ? Does this "prequel" idea seem solid to you ? Any feedback on the plot ? Can one actually write Sci-Fi for the sole purpose of forging a before to a fantasy series ? Any thing you would like to point out ?

    I've for a craving for some feedback ! ;)

    (sorry for the long post - I appreciate the effort for reading this far ! In a world where shipment fees wouldn't be an issue, I would send potatoes to all of you guys)
    Last edited: Oct 5, 2015
    S.T. Ockenner likes this.
  2. Caconym

    Caconym Acolyte

    I think there are many interesting ways to mix sci-fi and fantasy. Essentially though, this doesn't really seem like mixing sci-fi and fantasy since it' more like a person from a more technologically advanced culture is stranded in a different culture - and in that sense it could most likely be pulled of like historically based stories like Shogun maybe. So I think it's quite interesting, but I also think this requires the audience to be very interested in the character and his story rather than the Universe from the first story itself. Otherwise I can easily see the readers who liked the universe from the prequel be alienated from suddenly losing everything they liked from the story in the first book.

    Personally I really like the idea of a fantasy world built on the ruins of a sci-fi one, such as the Thundercats universe, where the peoples and races who live in the world are the descendants of slaves that rebelled against their master and then consequentially were stranded there. They treat the old technological artefacts as 'magic items'.So in that sense it would be more interesting of the shipwrecked character was from the past, eg frozen down etc and wakes up in a world that is more fantasy than technology at this point =]
    S.T. Ockenner and Nagash like this.
  3. S.T. Ockenner

    S.T. Ockenner Auror

    Not everyone here is male.

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