The first for me was John Carter. My dad had a yuge collection of novels with faded covers. I started with chessmen of Mars and proceeded to soak up the rest of the collection. From there I traveled to meet the Heechee and Octospiders and many other fun folk. Amazing realms full of fantastic locations. What stories led you along your travels?
The first Sci-Fi novel I was exposed to was “Voyage to the Mushroom Planet” which my dad read to me when I was a kid.
I have a dog eared copy of an abridged version of the War of the Worlds somewhere… One of my favorite stories, in no small part because of its radio drama history From there, well I’ve tried to read Dune a few times now and usually get about a quarter of the way through before bailing out. I’ve been meaning to finish Ready Player One, but I don’t actually know where my copy has gotten off to… My bookshelves are a MESS!
I am honestly not much of a reader, but I do love Sci-Fi. The Multiverse website immediately reminded me of ‘Star Maker’ by Olaf Stapledon:
My first novel was either Caves of Steel (Isaac Asimov), or a novel titled something like “Stars, here I come!”, author unsure… they were translated Chinese versions, including the titles, so i am not sure what was the original title. I read them when I was no more than 10 years old. Despite unable to understand or appreciate half of the ideas/ concepts of Caves of Steal, the idea of an android fascinated me ever since. From there i moved on to the Galactic Empire Trilogy, and could even understand even less of the politics/concepts at that age.
Happy to say I have read the English version years later, and found them enjoyable despite the age gap.
My uncle showed me Logans Run when I was 5 or 6 maybe? Alien was the next I believe. My first big sci fi novel series was Enders Game when I was 8 or so. Lets just say every book after the first was a tricky read for a 9 year old and most of the philosophy etc went over my head, but that was it. I was hooked from there. Re-read in my teens to fully grasp what was truly happening.
It’s a shame, considering how open minded that book series comes across in it’s views on gender roles, sexual persuasions and religions and cultures from all walks of life as well as a multitude of philosophies and social commentary, to find out Orson Scott Card is an ignorant morman bigot opposed to gay marriage etc. I’m sure it was mostly political/church shenanigans on his end, keeping up appearances, but it’s such a stark departure from what he preached in the Ender saga that i’ve no respect left for the man. And lest said about that, ugh, Film, the better.
I suppose an earlier introduction to Sci Fi was Calvin and Hobbes, when calvin pretends he’s spaceman spiff. I’m getting a matching spaceman spiff tattoo to go with my no mans sky tattoo because, honestly, when I first seen NMS on its initial reveal I thought out loud “Finally, the spaceman spiff game we’ve always wanted is here, time to escape the shackles of reality and delve deep into my childhood fantasy world”.
Eventually I graduated into asimov and arthur c. clarke and a bitta douglas adams etc.
Harlan Ellisons I have no mouth and I must scream is a great short story I highly reccomend, it’s in the public domain now, or at least I was told it was last time a link was shared but that link is no longer in operation, you can find it here on Reddit anywho i have no mouth and I must scream (1967)
Lets just say this AI makes Hal 9000 look like Barney the Dinosaur
@Emily I feel your pain with Dune… It’s just. I dunno, it’s a hard read. Lately I just stick on Jodorowsky’s Dune (A great documentary about a movie that was never made but its DNA is in every sci fi movie that followed) and dream about what could have been, damn you Hollywood!
Fun NMS connection, Chris Foss was hired to design the spaceships and some other things in Jodorowskys Dune, and HG were heavily influenced by his style when creating the look of ships, not to mention the vistas, in NMS
Oh YES! Isaac Asimov was what I really cut my sci-fi teeth on once I learned to read. I loved his Norbert series for young adults. Norbert was a plucky little robot with the power to transcend time and space at will, transporting his two boy owners to other planets or back in time instantly. It was totally far-fetched, but so fun to read when I was young.
Hmm… My introduction to space-faring sci-fi came from Star Wars and Halo, but I believe my first written adventures in the genre were probably the Ender’s Game and The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy series.
More recently, my imagination was captured by Peter Watts’s, “Blindsight.” Exploring the idea of trying to engage with a truly alien intelligence is fascinating.
Wow. I can pretty much echo your entire post! Minus the dune bit as I read them all, and absolutely love everything ever done connected to it. Movies, series, all of it.
Calvin and Hobbes are among my early memories, and spiff comes to mind every time I land. Get the tat and share with us lol
Some other authors you may have read but I will suggest anyway: Roger Zelazny and Tad Williams, little old little new. If you like Scalzi, you may like the BOLO series. And I have a guilty pleasure: Harry Harrison…
I wish I read more. A lot of my time goes into Art-related activities and filmmaking.
My sci-fi kick really started with Star Wars. I saw it was I was 7 and was baited! Even though it’s closer to the fantasy genre, it sparked my interest and I wanted all the sci-fi from then on.
If it’s a sci-fi show/movie I probably have seen or want desperately to see it! The only stuff I can’t stand is usually on SyFy. lol
As far as books, I gravitated to Star Wars because of the movies. I read the Thrawn trilogy, Children of the Jedi, and a bunch of Jedi Apprentice books. Read Enders Game and was blown away at how details and clear it was! My sentiments closely resemble yours @toddumptious, except for the film. I really enjoyed it. There are only so many sci-fi films that come out so often that really capture a vision or feeling, and that did it for me!
I started reading the Honor Harrington series. Just finished up book 2. Very political, but really engaging. The story of Honor (actual name of protagonist) just feels so good! That feeling when you know you’re right and prove everyone else wrong. She’s got so many people wanting her to fail, but shows them up with tactics and smarts and outwits everyone. It’s written very well, too. After the first few chapters I could see and feel the world that was built. And all the other world-building aspects like other aliens and worlds. Ugh. Just a satisfying read.
Anyone catch the short story for the “Adventures In No Man’s Sky” comic, written by James Swallow, “Iron & Ashes”?
Here is a google doc of the story.
Taken from someone on reddit who put it all together.
Short, but a nice read.
Some shows that resonate with me hardcore are:
Stargate franchise (SG-1, Atlantis, Universe)
Battlestar Galactica (yes the recent one)
Star Trek The Next Generation
Star Trek Voyager
and most recently The Expanse (which by some miracle is a SyFy original.)
I just really love space exploration and discovery. Naturally, I’m all about NMS.
I gotta say, one of my many favorite Sci-Fi movies from when I was a kid had to be a little movie called Krull:
I cant believe i forgott this one.
Ive a soft spot for Dennis Quaid.
Seems we’re among good like minded folk going off everyones history
I have three VCRs stored away just so my old tapes can be watched until I go back to the stars. Krull is among them.
Ender’s Game was one of my earliest sci-fi reads too! Hence my username. I actually really love a lot of Orson Scott Card’s work (his political/social stances, not so much, but with authors sometimes you’ve gotta separate the person from the bibliography). For a long time it was my favorite book ever, though it has since been surpassed. I adore the rest of the Ender series, and like the Bean series too. Can’t wait for them to rejoin in Shadows Alive.
The Worthing Saga (despite its name, this is a standalone book, though it has several connected but separate stories within) has since taken the spot of Ender’s Game as my favorite Card novel. Other Card favorites are Treason and The Homecoming Saga (this one is a series like the name suggests, of 5 books).
I’m in the same boat as you with OSC. Not the coolest guy on his street, for sure. But his works are great reads. I missed the others but have read homecoming. Enders game of course. I went and got a new copy of enders the month NMS released and have probably read it five times since.
When I was a kid I bought a copy of the original War of the Worlds broadcast on cassette tape. Even though I knew it was not real, it was quite an eerie production, and surprisingly so for something done in 1938.
I had a cassette copy of the broadcast too! I should try audiobooks again, I remember really enjoying listening to it rather than reading it.
Of the 650 paperback books (and some hard covers) in my boxes (in storage…I don’t have the shelve space in this apartment), 40% are SciFi based. Being “older”, I cut my teeth on all the old 40s-50s-60s SciFi. But since I never “grew up”, I still enjoy all the newer stuff (70s through 2010s). Recently I’ve been looking up (on the InterTubes) movies produced by countries other than the US. Luckily most are English subtitled. I enjoy seeing how other cultures address the space genre! -)
Have you seen FAQ about time travel? Its a fun lil british sci fi comedy with Chris O Dowd (IT Crowd, Moone Boy). Not exactly foreign sci fi but its not American XD