Random Epiphanies

“Why do you write speculative fiction?”

Well, since it’s been a year to the day I finished my first-ever (fantasy) novella, I might as well celebrate it with a writing post.

I just got back from coverage of the Panagbenga festival in Baguio. The reporters were billeted at The Forest Lodge, though we usually ate our meals at The Manor, both of them in Camp John Hay.

The view from the veranda of Le Chef, The Manor’s premier restaurant. That’s only a small part of its humongous garden.

One lunch time, Forest Lodge’s General Manager Heiner Maulbecker sat with us and gave us a history of Baguio. Maulbecker had been living in the area for about 30 years. Then all of a sudden, he asked me to tell him about myself: how did I get my job, what did I write, all that jazz.

“Fiction,” I said. And then he asked me what sort of fiction I wrote, and I said fantasy and science fiction, though I wrote more of the former. He zoned in on  the science fiction bit.

“But you still have human feelings, a human component?” he asked me. I nodded. He recommended me Frank Schatzinger’s The Swan and said he didn’t really like science fiction all that much but that particular book is interesting.

And then, question of all questions, he asked me why I wrote that sort of thing.

I no longer remember what I answered. But I nibbled on that question even as I took a bathroom break. Why do I write fantasy/speculative fiction? It was just like my thesis days.

Except I came up with an answer that I wish I’d thought of a year ago, though I guess I wouldn’t have been able to think of it due to my lack of life experience at the time. I think answering this question is going to take a good few years yet, but I think the building blocks for my (I believe weighty) answer sprung to being as I was washing my hands in one of The Manor’s cozy bathrooms.

I like to show what’s possible through the impossible.

I’ve been making too many puns on certain words lately, but hey, if they birth thoughts like that, so be it.

What do you think?

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