Page the Second


A fronte praecipitium a tergo lupi. (In front of you, a precipice. Behind you, wolves.)

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Mash-ups I Can Love

I was reading an article on Storyfix by Art Holcomb about Mash-ups and it tickled my imagination. A whole host of new book ideas popped into my fertile brain-bed. Previously I didn't mess with them a whole lot because people are always telling me bookstores don't know where to put such books.

But then I see books like Pride and Prejudice and Zombies and I think to myself, "Self, they who say genres don't mix are blowing smoke." Since I'm a cram-that-square-peg-in-there-willy-nilly type of girl, mash-ups appeal to me.

So here are a few ideas:

How about a doctor for aliens? He could bring his family with him. Why can't there be families in space? (Lost in Space did it for years.) I mean it makes not a lick of sense to marry someone and then leave them home while you go off gallivanting all over the universe. Because you know darn well your whole family will be generations gone by the time you make it back to Earth. I think it's Elizabeth Moon who deals with this "lost family" scenario.

How about a self-help book for aliens? You know they can't have everything about life figured out (just look what happened to the poor sods in Area 51).

I think fairy soap operas have been done to death by the Disney Fairy books. But what about fairy horror?

How about alternative histories? One series which did well with this was Orson Scott Card's Alvin Maker series. I loved that one. He pulled it off quite well. There's still scope for What Ifs out there. What if Queen Elizabeth 1 had gotten married to her Robin? What if Napoleon hadn't lost at Waterloo? What if the Hundred Years War had taken three hundred years to end and France had won it? The book, Da Vinci Code explores the idea: What if Christ had a family line which survived to modern times?

Endless book fodder!

I'm adding a couple of these to the huge queue of my book backlog list.


  1. A lot of fun ideas here. I've wondered about doing something like this myself. I'm just not that creative to make it work.

  2. Orson Scott Card pulled it off so well in his Alvin Maker books. I loved the idea of 'knacks'. And to have the United States all awry from losing the Revolutionary war is pretty kookie. Card has an amazing imagination and he works unbelievably hard on his craft. Great respect for him.

  3. You definitely have to know the history before you can tweak it. And you have to know the key people involved so that you can posit what they would have done in a given situation.
    Take Elizabeth 1 for example. It would have taken quite a bit of persuasion for her to marry Dudley. He was an ambitious person and she was paranoid (understandable given her father's example) about yielding any power to anyone else.
    However, some people contend that at one point it might have been possible that she had an illegitimate baby...likely Dudley's. This would be one way Dudley could have possibly gotten a toehold. If he'd had perhaps a little more support from some other entity, he could have possibly pulled it off. THAT would have made for an interesting story. Hmmmm..

  4. Go for it! I love alternate history! Why not put odd things together!