Let’s talk about sex, baby. And SF.


Think about your favorite SF novels. Now consider how much sex takes place in them.

Think of your favorite SF films & TV shows. Is there more sex or less than the books?

I’m curious about this proscription, to be honest. Most of the SF I’ve read (with the exception of Heinlein) seems to operate on the assumption that human beings are divorced from their sex drives in the future. But at the same time, they don’t include it in the worldbuilding. Frex: The year is 2304. Natural reproduction has been eliminated. They all use robot nannies and live in bubbles. (Wow, that sounds like a really terrible dystopian actually.) No, the writers just don’t look at it, like it’s a creepy person singing and touching himself on the subway. I don’t want to read SF like that. I want to know how my heroes and heroines feel, what they’re looking for. I think this is a critical part of diversity in the genre, to be honest. If there’s no sex in SF, there can be no questions about sexual orientation. There should be gay men and lesbians in SF, and if you don’t at least nod at their sex lives, then you’re basically omitting them from the genre. I say balls to that. Action and plot are necessary, but for me it rings hollow without emotional development.

I’ve taken a lot of heat over the years for all kinds of things, but it especially seems to rile some readers up when they realize I’ve included sex scenes in my SF aka smut & filth. Let me state for the record: I don’t consider sex to be smut or filth, and it kind of aggravates me when it’s referred to that way. I’m really puzzled by certain aspects of American society, where casual violence is fine, but let loving, consensual sex enter the picture and suddenly it’s something we need to protest. That’s a different post, however, so back to SF. Why can’t there be sex and relationships and SF? Why does that suddenly make it something else, something other?

I’m opening the floor to talk about this now; I’d love to hear your thoughts. I’ll give a random commenter a copy of Perdition.

+1 bonus entry: tell me who is the sexiest SF character ever & why.