The 10 Characteristics of the Science Fiction Story

Charles McCarthy

Some of the characteristics of the science fiction tale are the development of the story in the future or in fiction and the existence of technologies related to science but not scientifically proven or not yet existing today..

Science fiction is a genre that arises from fictional narrative, and that had its main origin in literature. Today science fiction is present in other forms of expression where it has found a higher level of popularity, such as film and television. However, it was in literature, through the short story and the novel, that this genre set more than one precedent during the 20th century.

Science fiction encompasses the creation and representation of imaginary universes whose foundational values ‚Äč‚Äčemerge from the sciences: physics, biology, technology, etc. You can take elements of the reality known so far and develop completely new ones.

The position of the human being in the face of the advancement of technology; the existence of other universes and beings; the intervention of natural elements to guarantee human superiority, are some of the issues that science fiction has addressed throughout history.

At first science fiction fascinated the audience by presenting, with some foundation, exciting themes that adhered to the illusion of the future.

The development of a science fiction narrative has generated different aspects and approaches to these stories, some focusing more on the amazing, and others on the scientific nature of hypothetical situations.

Main characteristics of a science fiction story

1- Existence of fictitious technologies or yet to be developed

In science fiction stories, there are usually technologies - such as the time machine - that are fictitious or that have not yet been invented.

2- Greater impact on fewer pages

Due to the limitation that it has in front of the novel, the science fiction story cannot be extended in the description or explanation of the environment in which it develops.

It should focus on a fundamental action that the character must perform (if any), providing all the necessary elements of setting and atmosphere.

3- A pattern of likelihood

The science fiction story clarifies in its first paragraphs, if it will create a narrative totally remote from the known reality or if the plot focuses on some scientific, biological or physical element with greater relevance in the story raised than in reality.

4- Presence of fictional characters or not yet existing

The presence of a character facilitates, in almost any narrative genre, the continuity of a story, and science fiction is no exception.

This has the particularity that, although at first importance was given to the human being in the face of astonishing situations and environments, the character of a story can be anyone who adapts to the guidelines of science fiction (an extraterrestrial being, a robot or computer, an animal with interaction skills, etc.)

5- Future, spatial or fictitious environments

Science fiction has played with galaxies, planets, and dimensions. However, the construction and significance of these elements for the reader can be very complex for the length of a story..

The science fiction short story may be more focused on exploring the whys of a particular established society.

It is common for science fiction to be a genre that uses the elements presented by dystopian or utopian scenarios, which give the character, and the reader, a new look at something that could resemble a latent reality.

6- Minimum scientific support

Even if it were a narrative that occurs outside of our planet or in another temporal plane, there are certain laws that must be applied and sustained to provide a higher level of verisimilitude in the narrative, providing greater emotions to the reader..

Any science fiction story that wants to expose a novel universe, whose characteristics are not yet found in other stories of the genre, must be able to carry out previous investigations, which allow it to add certain phenomena to its narration.

It is up to the author to give you the name and the way you want, but at least part of a principle, even if it is not known, it may be possible.

7- Continuity capacity

The most popular stories in science fiction have transcended their unique status. From the stories and novels there are chapters that are later transformed into sagas and other installments, both in literature and in film and television.

The literary and narrative richness that the creation of a science fiction universe offers proposes multiple elements and edges that can be exploited.

The narrative line and the character do not have to be the same, but you can continue creating stories from elements mentioned or handled in the first.

8- Geographic versatility

Narrative texts are influenced by the social experiences and environment of their authors.

Science fiction does not escape these elements; the handling of the genre and the stories that are born from it, are not the same in the United States, as in Russia, for example.

Some regions provide more entertaining stories, while others seek introspection or psychological deepening in futuristic settings..

9- Didactic and reflective capacity

The science fiction stories of the twentieth century have been considered premonitory regarding the treatment of the future that they did at that time.

Elements were visualized that would facilitate life in society and how technological advances would have a great weight in the day to day.

Today much of this is perceived with the greatest normality; something that at its time of creation could be considered unthinkable outside the story.

Science fiction then allows us to look at the past, at the historical context in which the story was created, at the future that it conceives within its stories, and at the reality that is currently being lived..

It allows to weigh the influences of fiction through spatial, technological and physical elements with those of current reality.

10- They can help innovate

Likewise, science fiction lays the foundation for continuous innovation in real society..

If something that expresses a story sounds usable enough to be applied in real life, with a certain scientific basis, it is very likely that you are already working on new innovations of various kinds.

Like everything else, the intentions behind the characters in a science fiction story, like those of the participants in today's societies, can be both positive and negative for the future..

Themes of interest

Made up science fiction tales.


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