Why I Love Prehistoric Fiction, Part 2: The New Playground

26 Dec

Many people enjoy writing Science Fiction and Fantasy because they get to create their own worlds; play by their own rules.  This is great in theory, but as most writers quickly discover, a lot of research is required to make a believable SF universe.  Fant!
asy is even harder, because the author is responsible for creating an internally consistent universe, with an answer for every question a nit-picky reader might throw her way.

 

Prehistoric fiction, on the other hand, gives us a level playing field, without the baggage that nearly every other era in historical fiction carries.

 

While research is still a must (you have to know what the world looked like in your time period, what animals were hunted in your location, what technology existed, etc.) it’s lighter on the science than with sf, and more fun for people like me who wanted to major in history and anthropology.  Once you know the basics, you get to focus on the good part: having fun with your universe.

 

In prehistoric fiction, the writer gets to make up whatever culture(s) she wants.  The characters never have to go far to encounter something alien, frightening or exciting.  Just down the river or across the plains there could be people planning an invasion, domesticating animals, experimenting with new technology or viewing the world and its creation in a completely different way.  If two tribes meet and things aren’t going well, there nothin!
g like a stampeding mammoth or hungry saber tooth cat to bring warring factions together.

 

Whether you want to act out your favorite adventure fantasy, explore any kind of culture clash or design your own utopia, prehistoric fiction is the place to go.

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