Thinking about the gap in my science fictional reading, I realize that a lot of it has to do with the place where I grew up and what was available right there. While we had a lot of other books, science fiction ones were few and far between.
The Philippines by itself doesn’t yet have a strong tradition of science fiction literature. I’d really like to see this addressed as it seems to me Filipinos are just as capable and just as equal to the task of creating science fictional worlds and science fictional literature that would be as interesting as their western counterparts.
I’m not discounting Western SF here. I enjoy reading a lot of SF writers and a lot of them are white, but honestly, there is no SF novel or no one distinctive SF story written yet by a Filipino writer that's been published outside of the Philippines.
I think that we have to go beyond the usual tropes of SF, to extend ourselves beyond the patterns and the themes used by our western counterparts in order to produce SF with an original and authentic Filipino voice.
How do we do this then?
In large, I would say that it’s essential for us to mine realism and use that as a launching point towards writing our SF. Looking at good SF stories, a lot of them are based on a solid reality of place. Culture plays a great part in good SF stories as well as Character. It’s not just technicalities and techno-babble, it’s not just knowing the language of SF, but it’s owning it and making it part of the culture. In a sense, subordinating that SF language to the culture of the story.
I’m just thinking off of the top of my head here, so if anyone has their own points or thoughts on this, feel free to chime in.
**editted because I hate absolutes**