Shadow of the wind essay

This book, and the excellent essays within, were the first to take Robert E. Howard and his work seriously and to consider Robert E. Howard a major literary figure.

Shadow of the wind essay

Generally the author has to savagely pound a square peg into a round hole, with regrettable results. The classic horrible example is deep space fighter aircraft.

Most pulp falls for the old Space Is An Ocean fallacy along with the related misconceptions. Many pulp writers figured they were the first to have the bright idea of transplating the colorful legend of the dreaded Sargasso Sea into science fiction.

A deadly area of space that somehow traps spaceships who venture too close, only to join the deadly graveyard of lost ships.

Shadow of the wind essay

And not just human ships, a couple stories mention humans discovering wrecks of unknown alien spacecraft mixed in with the conventional ships. The graveyard typically contains everything from recent ships all the way back to historical ships dating to the dawn of space flight. Some stories populate the graveyard of dead ships with castaways.

Who will probably be interested in looting your ship of any supplies it contains. The original legend dates back to when line-of-sight was limited to the horizon, so a sailing vessel poking at the edge of the sargasso could not see the interior.

Not without being caught, that is. With the invention of radar and the realization that there ain't no horizon in space, writers realized they'd have to make the space sargasso sea more invisible. Usually they'd add on the legend of the Bermuda Triangle in the form of an intermittent "hole in space" leading to a pocket universe.

Some kind of wormhole or stargate that would transport the hapless spacecraft to a graveyard of lost ships safely out of sight. Obviously this is highly unlikely to happen in the real world. But it sure is romantic, in a sci-fi pulp fiction sort of way. Disabled spacecraft who drift into the point will be trapped, which is sort of true.

Shadow of the wind essay

The author does not explain why this is not true of the L4 and L5 points of every single planet in the solar system. He calls the graveyard of lost ships the "wreck-pack", and the gravitational attraction of the wrecks keep ships from drifting out. The latter is a concept that was disproved by Michelson and Morley inbut most of the readers didn't know that.

The ether-currents form sort of a one-way whirlpool which sucks hapless spacecraft into the graveyard of lost ships trapped in the eye of the storm. Captain Future escapes by cannibalizing engine and atomic fuel from the other derelict ships, an idea that apparently didn't occur to any of the prior castaways.

He has a side adventure when he stumbles over an alien spacecraft full of aliens in suspended animation. The "adventure" part comes in when Captain Future discovers the octopoid creatures are space vampires and they start to wake up.Online Library of Liberty. A collection of scholarly works about individual liberty and free markets.

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Weekly Writing Prompt: The Shadow | Writer's Digest