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Old 02-03-2013, 03:18 AM   #1
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Is this Speculative Fiction?

My story is about a young girl hooked on a fictional drug that causes her to see a young guy that doesn't exist. There's tripped out scenes when she takes the drug, like the sky changing colors and your senses super high and hearing voices from real far away. Would this be considered speculative?
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Old 02-03-2013, 03:58 AM   #2
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Yes, that would be speculative fiction. It is also science fiction, because the drug would be a product of advanced technology.
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Old 02-03-2013, 04:20 AM   #3
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Thank you so much King! I was hoping it would since that would open up some places to submit to.
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Old 02-03-2013, 05:03 AM   #4
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It may be spec (I'd need more info to know), but right now, to me, it doesn't sound like SF. It's just a fictional hallucinogenic drug, and that doesn't necessarily need future technology. It only needs a new combo of chemicals, which folks do all the time. A tweak or two on the recipe for LSD could make something like that.

But....If I remember the ghost boy and query right, you were kind of vague about whether he was real or not. So you might have a more general spec fit (or even supernatural). Check out this list of genre fiction and see if any of them work.
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Old 02-03-2013, 05:20 AM   #5
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Do you mind me piggybacking on this thread, because I have been wondering if my story idea was spec too?

The premise is scientists have created a real version of the Tengu, a Japanese mythological creature who was originally considered the bringers war but were eventually thought of as a symbol of protection. In the story the scientist created them as the latest form of home protection, but they start gaining more intelligence and judging for themselves who is a danger. They eventually mark most humans as a danger against humanity and set out to destroy everyone they do not see as pure.
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Old 02-03-2013, 05:32 AM   #6
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Thanks, Amy. I will check out the link too.

TM, that definitely sounds like spec-fiction to me. But then again I didn't know mine either. I would consider that a genre for yours though.

And anyone that wants to ask about theirs, feel free to use this thread here. I'm glad I'm not the only one that's not sure.
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Old 02-03-2013, 05:46 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Undercover View Post
My story is about a young girl hooked on a fictional drug that causes her to see a young guy that doesn't exist. There's tripped out scenes when she takes the drug, like the sky changing colors and your senses super high and hearing voices from real far away. Would this be considered speculative?
An invented drug is a speculative element. The issue here is more whether it has the sort of vibe that means it'll be placed in the science fiction section or the general fiction section, which isn't something that's easy to nail down without reading the book. But I don't think you need to be sure. If you want to try agents who list speculative as an interest, go for it, and let them decide if it's what they want.

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The premise is scientists have created a real version of the Tengu, a Japanese mythological creature who was originally considered the bringers war but were eventually thought of as a symbol of protection. In the story the scientist created them as the latest form of home protection, but they start gaining more intelligence and judging for themselves who is a danger. They eventually mark most humans as a danger against humanity and set out to destroy everyone they do not see as pure.
It's speculative, but like the answer above, that doesn't always tell you where it'd be placed on the shelves. Depending on the angle you've chosen, it might also appeal to horror agents or thriller agents.
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Old 02-03-2013, 06:02 AM   #8
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So the movie "Fatal Beauty" would have been spec? That had a made-up drug as well (along with bad acting and horrible chemistry between the MCs, but that's a whole other issue, lol). Now if the drug did more than hallucinations, a la "Limitless" where it made the user super-intelligent, I'd be on board. But I'm not sure that simply having a fictional drug per se classifies something as speculative.

Maybe I'm wrong, but I'm basing it of my understanding of the spec label: an umbrella term for fantasy, sci-fi, horror, etc. From the (admittedly) few editors I've talked to about it, that's their take on it, too.

I think Lisa does have an arguement for spec with the boy who does/doesn't exist. But I'd personally hesitate to go to agents specializing in sci-fi and fantasy if I made up a new hallucinogen, but absolutely everything else was "real" world in the story.

And yeah, TMCan, I'd definitely classify that as speculative. But as Polenth said, where it's shelved would be another matter. Technically Crichton wrote spec/sci-fi, but I've rarely found his books shelved there.
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Old 02-03-2013, 06:02 AM   #9
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Thanks for the help. I am writing it specifically for a spec magazine, so I hope they accept it.
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Old 02-03-2013, 06:13 AM   #10
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Thanks again, Amy. I wasn't sure either. I don't think it's sci-fi and I can't really consider it fantasy either. Under the wiki definition for spec fiction it can also be supernatural, which I think it might lean more towards.

I was thinking of submitting to PYR and they do sci-fi, fantasy and speculative fiction. And there is this other world thing happening when she's high. There's also "fixed circles" where everyone gets high in this circle and holds hands (for a connection) to go into this alternate world.

I thought to try it anyway and just see. Worse thing happens, I'll get rejected. Been there and done that so it wouldn't be surprising.
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Old 02-03-2013, 06:29 AM   #11
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Pry is very particular about what they accept...
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Old 02-03-2013, 06:46 AM   #12
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I wanted to say thank you to you too Polenth. I appreciate that.

Yeah, I see that they are pretty particular. I'm gonna still give it a shot. Ya never know, maybe.
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