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All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

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  • It is not critical that you get the orbital mechanics right for most stories - even stories where they are significant.

    Consider Anne McCaffrey's Pern books which have crazy orbital mechanics, but an interesting culture and people that you are happy to revisit.

    Or, even if you try really hard to get it right, you can still make a mistake. For example, Larry Niven got the orbital mechanics wrong for Ringworld and had to handwave around that in the first sequel. I've still continued to buy every book he's w

    • Larry Niven, and others, have the benefit of having friends in the know. Larry Niven in particular has made extensive credits to people who have helped him get the mechanics, physics, biology and even entomology right.

      Good Sci-Fi, while being very based in science, also has a good story. Get the story right and you can do the reasearch and fill in the gaps later. Some Sci-Fi can go into too much scientific detail and lose the plot completely.

      I always think back to an interview with Robert Smith of The Cure [thecure.com], who said that when he writes lyrics he just writes a stream of consciousness and quite often misses out lines that would otherwise stop his flow. Once he's got the general idea, he then fleshes out the missing details afterwards.