View Full Version : Book Report- "Worlds of Wonder" by David Gerrold

3 July 2003, 03:38 PM
Hey all,

Just finished a book that some of you writers may want to check out. It’s “Worlds of Wonder, How to Write Science Fiction and Fantasy” by David Gerrold. If that name sounds familiar it’s because he is an established sci-fi writers who has written books such as “A Matter for Men” which introduced the disturbing Chtorr creatures to fiction. In addition he has written countless scripts for television and the movies, including the “Trouble with Tribbles” episode of Star Trek.

Anyway, I can’t recommend the book enough. Gerrold has a biting wit and really lays it on the line involving how to approach the difficult task of writing sci-fi (or fantasy). The chapters are easy to breeze through, but you can certainly see his experience and knowledge in every line. Speaking of every line, no sentences are waste with Gerrold. While some writers who create books on how to write fiction love to get lost in their own eloquent verbiage, Gerrold tells you exactly what you need to know without any bells and whistles.

“When you try to become beautiful, you forget who you are. You lose perspective….You get pretentious. You produce sentences that are labored, overwrought and unsuitable for reading aloud without someone in the back tittering in embarrassment.” He warns in one chapter; Sound advice, especially when dealing with writing Space Opera.

Overall I couldn’t find anything negative to say about this book. You will probably burn through the 200+ pages in a day, but I encourage you not to. Take your time with this one, really READ it and absorb what he says. Granted, he uses his own fiction for many of the examples, but I don’t have a problem with that, better to do that then “guess” at what other writers were trying to convey.

Oh, and a few chapters in he makes a crack about Banthas and “what do they graze on if everything is a desert?” Don’t worry, your knee jerk reaction to send him a snippy letter will pass when you realize he has a fondness for Star Wars and was just trying to illustrate a point.

I got the book from Amazon and it took maybe about a week to get. Retail price is around $15 but of course they dropped it down a few bucks. Overall, a great purchase for any of you aspiring Star Wars writers out there.

If you wind up getting it, let me know what you think!

Reverend Strone
3 July 2003, 05:28 PM
Thanks for the headsup on that one BR! I will most certainly check it out. It sounds most informative and insightful.:)

And of course, everyone knows banthas subsist on the algal mats that grow just under the sands of Tatooine. ;)

9 July 2003, 10:58 AM
Sounds like a good one, Bob. I'll keep an eye out for it next time I'm in the book store. :)

9 July 2003, 12:57 PM
Sounds great! I think this could be an especialy big help for me (I'm taking a creative writing class next year, and I have begun dabbling in some fan fiction of my own). Thanks for the book report. A+ :)

17 July 2003, 11:25 AM


Glad I could be of help. I'm currently making my way through two other books right now, I'll post some reports when I'm done.