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grahamsleight points out an article by Margaret Atwood on why we need science fiction that's too good not to relay:
If you're writing about the future and you aren't doing forecast journalism, you'll probably be writing something people will call either science fiction or speculative fiction. I like to make a distinction between science fiction proper and speculative fiction. For me, the science fiction label belongs on books with things in them that we can't yet do, such as going through a wormhole in space to another universe; and speculative fiction means a work that employs the means already to hand, such as DNA identification and credit cards, and that takes place on Planet Earth. But the terms are fluid. Some use speculative fiction as an umbrella covering science fiction and all its hyphenated forms - science fiction fantasy, and so forth - and others choose the reverse.

I have written two works of science fiction or, if you prefer, speculative fiction: The Handmaid's Tale and Oryx and Crake.
If she keeps this up we're going to have to stop mocking her for not getting it, aren't we?

ninebelow has a roundup of her previous statements on the relationship of her work to sf here.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Good to hear.
And how does she classify fiction that only employs what is currently known, but is not set on the Earth, e.g. Dan Simmons's historical novel Phases of Gravity, part of which is set on the Moon?
That'd be _mundane_ semi-speculative fiction.

:->
Ha! :)
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I think the "mundane" and the "science" kind of cancel each other out so you're just left with the "fiction".
Bobbins. It is Bobbins.
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And if, halfway through, the characters all get run over by a Vauxhall Nova, it's mundane infernokrusher.

-- tom
I'm not even sure what we call that one ... ;-)
I hope someone has had the nous to pass this on to Langford.
Nice to see what is effectively a recanting of her original refusal to classify O&C as SF.

However, to be a bit cynical, I wonder if this has come now, after O&C has been a critical and commercial success, because the reclassification isn't going to hit sales?
I am shocked by that suggestion. Shocked, I say.
She wrote pretty much the same thing ("I myself have written two works of "science fiction" or, if you prefer, "speculative fiction," The Handmaid's Tale and Oryx and Crake.") back in January 2004, several months before the paperback release of O&C.
Damn! There goes half of my best material!
...with TEH MUNDANE SF. ;-)