Posts Tagged ‘extraterrestrial life’

Hubble1This piece originally appeared in the quarterly newsletter for the Garden State Speculative Fiction Writers, which I edit. I thought it would be of benefit to the science fiction writers in our group. But I think horror writers could find plenty of material here. Bottom line — the existence of alien lifeforms in the universe is pretty much a statistical certainty. And they’re probably a lot more like something out of H.P. Lovecraft’s imagination that Gene Roddenberry’s. *Shudder* By the way, the eye-popping photos that accompany this are from the Hubble Telescope.

 

Unfathomable Distances, Unfriendly Locals

By Tom Joyce

Editor’s note: Ray Villard is news director for the Space Telescope Science Institute in Maryland, which operates the Hubble Space Telescope. He’s also the former associate editor of “Astronomy” magazine, an editorial contributor to Discovery Channel, and the author of numerous articles for magazines, encyclopedias and Internet blogs, and scripts for several syndicated science programs on public radio.

Ray Villard is a science fiction fan himself, so he understands why writers for page and screen sometimes do

what they do. Maybe they just need to tell an entertaining story. And it’s not like 1960s-era Star Trek had a multimillion dollar CGI budget at its disposal for rendering alien lifeforms.

Still, he can’t help but get irritated sometimes at science fiction in which the writers seem to have no familiarity whatsoever with the scientific phenomenon they’re ostensibly writing about. (more…)

Advertisements