Although the problems of writing fantasy and science fiction include all those pertaining to the writing of any kind of fiction, particular problems arise in stories in which unprecedented things can and do happen, as well as stories that often involve unhuman characters of various sorts, and that might require the elaborate design of entire imaginary worlds. This book provides an elementary introduction to problems of those kinds, and the ways in which they modify the general problems of writing fiction. It also suggests strategies that might enable the problems to be handled constructively and productively. The author has published more than seventy novels in the field, more than twenty short story collections, and more than twenty related works of non-fiction; he has, as the saying goes, been there, done that, and chewed his t-shirt in relevant frustration.
Robert Reginald says: "An absolutely first-rate guide to writing fantastic literature. Stableford has much to say that potential writers of ALL fiction might find valuable, interesting, and highly illuminating. His reasonable discussion and dissection of the basic issues facing authors of creative fiction--and the solutions to be found to each problem--are dollops of solid gold advice, in this editor's humble opinion. Every would-be author should read this book--and more than once!"