I just re-read this last week.
How to Write Science Fiction & Fantasy is good enough that I’ve read it three times now and I still picked up something new. In fact, I always pick up something new when I read it, or almost anything else about writing.
This book, though, is different. For one thing, it’s fairly focused on speculative fiction, which is just a euphemism science-fiction and fantasy. Also, the author, Orson Scott Card, is not only a writing teacher, but also a Hugo and Nebula Award winner, so he really does know what he’s talking about. But, beyond that, it’s a damn fine book. So, I’ve read it again, after two years, and this time, I’m doing a bit of a review.
If you’re just starting out, this is a great book to start get you started the right way. If you’ve been at this for a bit, it’s still a great book to read, because it will show you some things that you may not have noticed about writing speculative fiction. At the very least, it’ll be a good refresher course for you. I know that I use the MICE “rule of thumb” when I look at my own story ideas, such as they are these days. This book really taught me quite a bit about making realistic fantays settings and, I think, contributes to the strength of my story, The Chrome Girl.
In any case, I cannot reccomend How to Write Science Fiction & Fantasy enough. It’s well worth the price.