Q1/ What is science fiction (media)? Isn’t it just “knowledge explored” or is it something more?
A1/ I like your definition of SciFi as “knowledge explored” but I would go one step further and say that SciFi is “imagination explored” or perhaps “ideas explored”. Even Einstein said, “Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited, whereas imagination embraces the entire world, stimulating progress, giving birth to evolution.” I would say that before you can inspire knowledge you have to imagine what might be possible. What better way to create new ideas than to start with the question: “What if?”
Most radical changes in concept (that now are considered mainstream) started with what must have seemed, at the time, ‘kooky’ assertions.
J. Harlen Bretz proposed that a huge cataclysmic flood scoured thousands of square miles of the Washington/Oregon scab-lands and created enormous ‘dry’ waterfall and other colossal water-movement features. He was shunned by his contemporaries. What? A waterfall twice the height and four times the length of Niagara? In the desert? Where did the water come from? Now we know that the huge ancient glacial lake Missoula repeatedly burst its ice dam sending up to 9.46 cubic miles of water per hour rushing toward the Pacific over a period of 2000 years at the end of the last ice-age.
Reminds me of the Schopenhauer quote: “Talent hits a target no one else can hit; genius hits a target no one else can see.”
Q2/ How did you get started in science fiction media? In Mensa?
A2/ My mother bought me a collection of SciFi short stories when I was 10. This initially peaked my interest and I’ve been hooked since then. I recently contributed a chapter to the book The Cyberpunk Nexus: Exploring the Blade Runner Universe (available on Amazon). I have an affection (some would say an affectation) for the Blade Runner milieu. I’m attracted to big ideas disguised as art.
I took the proctored test when I was in college. I thought it would be a cool addendum to my (then unsubstantial) resume and it actually was mentioned as something that caught the eye of the manager who eventually hired me. Looking back, that reaction was probably the exception rather than the rule and I haven’t included it on my resume for quite some time.
Q3/ In moving from the past to the future, what are your expectations, interests, and needs for (re)starting a SciFi SIG?
A3/ I’m looking to start a friendly, welcoming SIG where folks can relax, have a good time, and enjoy some pleasant, civil conversational exploration of the SciFi topic. I hope that the participants will feel welcome and unencumbered to express their thoughts and desires about the direction they would like to see the SIG move in the future.
Q4/ If I was to meet you face-to-face, what additional thoughts would you want me to remember about you & the new Full Moon SciFi SIG?
A4/ I look forward to learning from and being influenced by the folks who have an interest in this SIG. When I hosted the casual meet-ups (nearly 20 years ago), I always enjoyed the banter and humor that the members brought to the group. I’m hoping to re-establish something similar and hope you will join me to help launch and sustain this SIG.