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Mundane Science Fiction

A core value of movement seeks to reinvent Sci Fi. Mundane Science Fiction seeks to abandon the wondrous, and now nearly mythical, elements of Sci Fi--ray guns, aliens, distant solar systems, myth-like faster than like travel. Mundane Sci Fi favours stories about scientific realities--biotechnology and environmental change. Mundane Sci Fi prefers topics that are closer to Earth because Earth is really all we have. These writers wish to reawaken the sense of wonder of the Earth and the dangers it faces now.

Basically, Mundane SF deals with a very plausable future -- and a very near future at that. If a SF read features any sort of technology that's far out of the ordinary (light speed, wormhole travel, time travel, etc), than it's NOT mundane science fiction.

You can also view the crowd-ranked Mundane Science Fiction books list and vote and/submit entries to it.

Other Features of Mundane Science Fiction

  • Level of Real Science

    High. Science in Mundane Sci Fi is either very close to what we have available today or a realistic advancement happening in the very near future. As such, the science and technology is very real and relatable.

  • Level of Grand Ideas/Social Implications

    High. Mundane Sci Fi is grounded in the issues the Earth faces today and these issues are at the core of any Mundane story. Indeed, this sub-genre has been defined so ides can be better developed (e.g. without the distraction of aliens or faster-than-light travel).

  • Level of Characterization

    Generally high. Mundane Sci Fi emphasizes human characteristics and issues the result of which is well developed and believable characters.

  • Level of Plot Complexity

    High. Plots in Mundane Sci Fi are not the twisty-turny, unexpected surprises around every corner kind and readers will not have to suspend disbelief to follow the plots of Mundane Sci Fi. Plot is still an important part of crafting the Mundane Sci Fi story though. Indeed, because Mundane Sci Fi is so grounded in the here and now, plots are imminently realistic.

  • Level of Violence

    Variable. Violence is not addressed in the Mundane manifesto so the level of violence will depend on the relevant ideas of each story and how the writer chooses to craft the story.

Related Science Fiction subgenres

  • Cyberpunk. Cyberpunk is very similar to Mundane in that both sub-genres are also movements within the literary world that set out specific tenets of the sub-genre.

  • Near-Future. Both sub-genres create worlds very close to our own in time and come across as inherently real.

  • Hard Science Fiction. Both Hard and Mundane Sci Fi ensure that the technology is believable, Mundane just ensures that technology is grounded in today's reality.

Popular Mundane Science Fiction Books
  • 1 Air

    By Geoff Ryman. A near-future tale about what happens when an initial testing of a new communications technology goes horribly wrong.

  • 2 Interzone

    By William S. Burroughs. A special edition of the British Science Fiction Interzone magazine that features stories that represent the Mundane Sci Fi manifesto.

  • 3 Schismatrix

    By Bruce Sterling. A novel that shows us some of the near-future effects of global capitalism.

  • 4 The Beast with Nine Billion Feet

    By Anil Menon. Set in India in a very close future filled with questions and possibilities.

  • 5 The Hacker and the Ants

    By Rudy Rucker. A book about a hacker and a vicious computer virus that is very plausible.

  • 6 Red Mars

    By Kim Stanley Robinson. In the very near-future humans will begin colonizing Mars and this novel tells that story, including the very human reactions to the red planet and all the socio-economical and scientific issues that surround the expedition.

  • 7 Timescape

    By Gregory Benford A novel about ecological issues and scientific experiments that address current events at the time of writing.

  • 8 The Speed of Dark

    By Elizabeth Moon. This novel takes place on a near-future Earth where disease is a thing of the past, but there is a lost generation that missed this cure. Moon gives us a very real story about autism and individual identity.

  • 9 The Execution Channel

    By Ken MacLeod. A story that takes place in a world very close to our own just after 9/11 and the Iraq war when the West stands on the brink of nuclear war.

  • 10 Arctic Rising

    By Tobias S. Buckell. A Mundane Sci Fi story that deals with environmental issues of global warming with a bit of espionage.