First hand accounts from those who travel the world. What do they see, and what can SFF authors learn from these travelogues? This session, we gathered 6 of the best travelogues ever written, and here's what they had to say about the appeal and experience of travel, and how it can inform SFF, especially fantasy and science fiction.
Travel—specifically, travel to other worlds—is one of the abiding obsessions of fantasy, from Lord Dunsany and the early pulpy scifi to the modern revival. Even today, the idea of technological space exploration and colonization is a tempting one. But what is it that draws us to such ideas of traveling to other worlds? What are the dangers that imaginary travelers face? And how do we, as readers and writers, gain new insights from such journeys, both technologically and metaphorically?
The Moving Map is a narrative map. It is like a plane, cabin and all. It's a tool that has already been in use for two centuries. When the Baltimore General Hospital ran out of beds for injured soldiers in the Civil War, they started charging them to lie on one of the beds. There were too many casualties, and a lot of them were dead.
The result was a testament to the ingenuity of nineteenth-century America, where ingenious inventors adapted existing tools to make exceedingly useful products, with astounding results. A similar treatment of the materials we all know and love about the American landscape, and of the idea of a nation constantly in motion and reinventing itself for the 21st century. Stories about this movement need to be written. d2c66b5586