Adventure/speculative fiction writers who have Lived.
February 25, 2011 6:02 AM Subscribe
I would like to read speculative and adventure fiction by authors with lots of life experience related to the stories they tell. Oh, they also have to write well. For bonus points: the experience shouldn't be in technology or military.
posted by jetsetlag to Media & Arts (18 answers total) 17 users marked this as a favorite
As I get old and crotchety, it bothers me more and more to read books where the author lacks life experience pertinent to the story. For instance, I've travelled a bit, and when I can tell from the description the writer has never visited the place in question, it kills my enjoyment. Likewise verisimilitude in professions, economics and business, human relationships...
Obviously this is extra problematic for a fan of fantasy, science fiction, and adventure stories. I am not necessarily looking for writers who have become royalty in alternate universes, disabled doomsday devices, or escaped from Turkish prisons... but it would certainly help if they are older, with some experience of what they write.
For example, I enjoyed John Burdett's mysteries set in Thailand, the author is familiar with Thailand and Asia expat life, but adds fantastic elements to make it extra cool. William Gibson's writing shines when he clearly understands subcultures, poverty, and fashion, but not when he just as clearly doesn't understand technology.
So please recommend some writers who have led interesting lives and become wise and can write well. I may be old and jaded, but still want the same thrills and awe I got from immersing myself in fiction as a teenager!
(For an extra challenge, military doesn't count, because while lots of writers have experienced it, I'm just not that into those kinds of stories.)