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Comment I'm surprised no one's mentioned this yet, but... (Score 1) 1021

what about reading what established authors in the field consider to be good science fiction? James Blish was famous for this, even to the point of being a critic of his own work. He wrote for a time under the pen name William Atheling Jr in several science magazines. His articles are collected in the books "The Issue at Hand" and "More Issues at Hand".

Robert Silverberg wrote "Science Fiction 101: Where to Start Reading and Writing Science Fiction" which is an awesome (and humble at times) look at what made his fiction better, what he learned in the process of writing it, and what he thinks are great stories by other authors.

Two favorites on the subject from Ursula K. Le Guin are "The Wave in the Mind" and "The language of the Night".

And finally, "Zen in the art of Writing" by Ray Bradbury.

If this were a class I was teaching, I'd have the class read some of the stories mentioned by the above authors, then go on to read what the authors thought of them. Granted, the class may not be about writing, but it does help build an appreciation of the craft to be able to follow the various styles of writing them, the processes involved, etc.

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