Glossary of Speculative Fiction Terms

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Fantasy (Fiction): Speculative fiction set in a fictional universe, often inspired by folklore or myth.

Horror (Fiction): Speculative fiction that evokes intense fear, dread, or dismay. It’s intention is frighten, scare, or disgust the reader.

Magic Realism: Magic realism weaves magical elements into real elements as if they were ordinary occurrences.

Science Fantasy: Stories that use science more as a guideline than a foundation. If the science in the fiction is not in alignment with currently accepted scientific thought and theory, the work is automatically considered science fantasy.

Science Fiction: A genre of speculative fiction that extrapolates on current scientific thought and theory to tell a story, usually in the future, often on another planet. Read more…

Speculative Fiction: According to Nalo Hopkinson, speculative fiction is “fiction in which impossible things happen” and “includes magic realism, fantasy, science fiction and horror.” I would add one caveat to that, because in science fiction those “impossible things” are, to some degree possible, and, some would argue, probable.