"I don't write fantasy novels. I write stories with important human themes."
— Terry Goodkind
"It is not interesting enough for the general reader, and not thorough enough for the scientific reader."
— Publisher rejecting H.G. Wells' book The Time Machine
"SF's no good", they bellow 'til we're deaf,
"But this looks good."
"Well, then, it's not SF."
— Robert Conquest
"But you've also got to read in the genre, because we all know what science fiction written by someone who doesn't know about science fiction is like. They've got these 'really great ideas' like Margaret Atwood had — bioengineered organisms, that's a new one! And the reviewers fall for it because they don't know any different, assuring us that if it's by Atwood or Crichton it's not really horrid science fiction. That infuriates me beyond measure. Oryx and Crake has got the science fiction sticker on it all the way through (though it's not particularly original), and yet because she wrote it, it's 'not science fiction.'"
"[The Handmaid's Tale] is certainly not science fiction. Science fiction has Martians and space travel to other planets and things like that."
— Margaret Atwood
"Here is a woman so terrified of sf-cooties that she'll happily redefine the entire genre for no other reason than to exclude herself from it."
— Peter Watts, on Margaret Atwood, "Margaret Atwood and the Hierarchy of Contempt"
"The name Sci Fi has been associated with geeks and dysfunctional, antisocial boys in their basements with video games and stuff like that, as opposed to the general public and the female audience in particular."
— Tim Brooks, an executive at the channel now known as SyFy.
"If no cultural barrier prevents a public that clearly loves its superheroes from picking up a new "Avengers" comic, why don't more people do so? The main reasons are obvious: It is for sale not in a real bookstore but in a specialty shop, and it is clumsily drawn, poorly written and incomprehensible to anyone not steeped in years of arcane mythology."
—Wall Street Journal's Tim Marchman on why superhero comics are such a niche property
"The whole association of fairy tale and fantasy with children is local and accidental. I hope everyone has read Tolkiens essay on Fairy Tales which is perhaps the most important contribution to this subject that anyone has yet made. If so, you will know already that, in most places and times, the fairy tale has not been specifically made for, nor exclusively enjoyed by children. It has gravitated to the nursery when it became unfashionable in literary circles, just as unfashionable furniture gravitated to the nursery in Victorian homes."
— C. S. Lewis, On Three Ways of Writing For Children
I have been a soreheaded occupant of a file drawer labeled 'science fiction' ever since [publishing Player Piano], and I would like out, particularly since so many serious critics regularly mistake the drawer for a urinal.
"[My agent] said "You have a murder mystery up there, you have a horror book up there, you have all kinds of genres on the bestseller shelf, why not Terry Pratchett's book? And the response was 'we don't let them out of the science fiction section'"
"James was right. Try taking a lot of stuff considered the best literature, put some dragons, magic, psychic powers, zombies, werewolves, vampires, elves, or dwarves in those and see how many awards they get."
From an IRC chat after The Angry Video Game Nerd[']s Monster mania vid.
"Pssh. I still can't believe that there were aliens in what was clearly supposed to be the next Once Upon a Time in the West. I'm sorry, but the stick up my ass prohibits me from enjoying a movie called Cowboys and Aliens."
—The Cinema Snob, mocking pretentious film critics
"Horror is the only genre of film that produces unapologetically terrible movies that people willingly go to see. As long as the body count is high and entertaining, we will happily shell out ten bucks to sit through films whose reviews are rated on a scale of varying degrees of personal tragedy as opposed to the traditional one to five stars.
"I'm not saying anything new here, but mainstream fantasy tends to be a socially conservative genre. Go grab any of the obvious Moorcock or Mieville essays, and I'll basically agree with them. And frankly? Science Fiction writers are just much cooler. I tended to think of myself as a speculative fiction writer until a particularly wise ex called me on my bullshit. If your speculations are basically "what if music were magic?" you're a bloody fantasy writer, dick."