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Customer Discussions > Space Opera forum

Kindle Saves the Space Opera?

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Showing 1-11 of 11 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jun 23, 2011 3:03:40 PM PDT
I think in general the Kindle has been great for all sorts of pulp genres like romance and space opera, but I really think the kindest thing ereaders did for space operas was removing the need to lug around enormous books. The epic scale of this lovable sub-genre tends to necessitate epic page counts. Most space operas won't fit in khaki pockets, or it looks like you're doing a lousy job of smuggling cocaine if they do, but a smart phone with the Kindle app will fit just fine.

Growing up in the Star Wars generation, the originals, not the prequels, I don't think I ever had a chance; I was destined to love space operas. The first book I ever wrote was a space opera, and after floating around for awhile with limited attention, it finally died without fanfare as one of those space operas that was too big and too shelf-space intensive for bookstores to view as financially viable. The Kindle changes all that. My monstrous epic can now be as small as a Blackberry if need be without losing any of the grand scope or scale.

So, thank you, Kindle. And thank you to for recognizing that space operas are worth the time and effort in the digital age.

The Harbinger and the Shepherd (Prophecy of the Third Age Trilogy) wouldn't have found a second life were it not for the ereader revival of so many genres and sub-genres.

Feel free to list your own favorite space opera revived by the Kindle.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 28, 2011 12:50:17 PM PDT
Steve Miller says:
I'm a little concerned that you thunk all space operas are huge books. True,they may be series. But Liaden Universe novels only become *large* books when bundled into two and three novel collections (like Korval's Game (Liaden Universe), and The Agent Gambit (Liaden) )else they come out just over 100,000 words -- a reasonable size. Ebooks do make it possible to carry all 15 plus Liaden novels and 17 chapbooks at once... but Space Opera books per se needn't be tree-killing in paper or byte-eaters in digital.

Posted on Jul 8, 2011 12:51:37 PM PDT
The vast majority are large books. You've come up with a single series that by your own admission is often collected into three book chunks. I've got to wonder, are you just posting to post something?

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 8, 2011 1:45:57 PM PDT
Steve Miller says:
I dunno -- perhaps you've counted more pages than I have. I've only been a working writer in the field since 1975 or 1976. The hardcover of one of our latest novels (Saltation: Saltation (Liaden Universe Novel)was just named one of the top 20 novels in the field for 2010, so forgive me if I think I have some idea of what size books are, I'm most likely wrong.

Posted on Jul 18, 2011 12:17:34 PM PDT
A love of Space Opera was one reason why I began the Space Viking sequel, Prince of Tanith (, and will be releasing the second book within the next few weeks. Space Viking was a beloved classic on my shelf, and there are even stirrings that Lucas was familiar with Piper's work before he started writing Star Wars. Finding a link between them shouldn't be too hard for most people.

I take your point about big thick books. The fact is, most classic Space Opera is episodic in nature, and whether you're reading it one episode at a time or reading a collection of many, it is the long-range character development and plot that make the genre compelling for most readers. Kindle, in my opinion, has helped that significantly by making episodic fiction publishable again without needing a major magazine to do it. Prince of Tanith: A Space Viking Novel

Posted on Sep 8, 2011 6:42:16 AM PDT
I agree that Kindle gives more opportunities for space opera to shine in all its melodramatic glory. This is definitely the case for my own book, Star Chosen, and I see many other titles growing in interest.

Posted on Sep 29, 2011 10:38:36 PM PDT
John says:
I just finished writing The Untold Tomorrow, its not too big but will divided into a series. Starts out like a typical invasion/space scenario, but then takes a big twist early into the novel. Its available on Kimble atm, will be on paper back in a week or two.
The Untold Tomorrow

Posted on Oct 1, 2011 6:45:36 AM PDT
im not sure if this is really the place to plug my own book
but i have to completely agree that the kindle is giving science fiction a brand new lease of life
and especially the space opera - indie authors are the way to go - as publishers aren't very interested in new authors at the moment - maybe they will be again, but for now its a more direct market
i agree with L Mancour that its space opera's nature to be episodic and many of the best - such as asimov's foundation series for example are only larger books as they are episodes collected into novels
kindle is fantastic for episodic novels as the costs are minimal and there is such ease of accessibility

my novel Drifters is a golden age style SF adventure - Mankind is Adrift. In 2185 orbital wars have left humanity stranded in space. A crew of drifters, following their rivals to Old Earth, happen across a capsule, fired from the surface, which when opened, reveals a green-haired mutant woman. Could Eden hold the key back to the planet? The crew must go beyond the Lunatic Fringe to find out...

Posted on Oct 1, 2011 7:57:40 PM PDT
Jerry Wright says:
Forties and Fifties style space opera and noir can be great fun. I just bought Mansour's Space Viking sequel, and so far am loving it. And although the initial post has a valid point that modern space opera has a tendency to produce massive boat anchors cum doorstops, and the Kindle can keep you from hurting your back, there are many books that carry the flavor of space opera that aren't huge. For example, our good buddy Steve Miller and his wife Sharon Lee and their Liaden books. I love them. I buy them. I actually have both print and Kindle versions of several of them. Print versions can be easily loaned. Kindle books, not so much.

And I have a book to push as well. I didn't write it, but I did publish it. In A Pig's Eye (The Captain Blunt Adventures) It is a lot of fun to read the adventures of Captain James Blunt.

Posted on Oct 10, 2011 12:38:24 PM PDT
Mary Pax says:
What's your favorite space opera?

Posted on Dec 26, 2012 10:39:20 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 26, 2012 10:39:42 AM PST
W.T. Keeton says:
Kindle does make it cheap to get access to the classic space opera stories of Edmond Hamilton, Leigh Brackett, Henry Kuttner and others without breaking the bank on those very, very nice, but very pricey Haffner Press editions, which is the only place most of it is in print right now.
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Discussion in:  Space Opera forum
Participants:  9
Total posts:  11
Initial post:  Jun 23, 2011
Latest post:  Dec 26, 2012

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