Pet Peeves: Writing Stupid Scientists

I am going to get this out of the way first, If you want to read a science fiction book, filled with scientists who explore planets on a survey team who act like *gasp* scientists…and FYI they NEVER put their face in a new species, take off their helmets in questionable atmosphere, or any other such nonsense… then check out Other Systems which is available on AmazonBarnes&Noble and Kobo. Yes I just plugged my own book in the silliest way possible.

Last night, I watched When World’s Collide, 1951. It is an extremely good movie. The scientists are smart. Non-scientists get angry due to the fact that they speak in theories as they work to create a rocket before Zyra and Earth collide. It is fantastic to see them work out the problem. The characters are smart. They are determined and they are survivors.

However, the reason I have been thinking about it is because of the Martlet. I didn’t realize that I would be writing another book about the scientific process, because it is about a group of people making hypothesis and testing those hypothesis with a variety of experiments, in this case, assassins who want to live forever so they play with necromancy on the side. The main plot involves the team losing their liquidator, Eohan. Then Roark and Mira go to the underworld before he resurrects in order to claim his soul.

While that is still the plot of the novel, if I am honest, I found the plot line  lacking. Something was missing. When I reread it, I realized the draft wasn’t a book I wanted to read…so I set it aside and considered what might be missing. That was when I realized, it played out like a movie I would enjoy. The story was good, I enjoyed the characters, but it lacked the depth that I enjoy reading…I believe my readers want that too.

The battle is for knowledge and a friend’s soul. The problem was the lack of science. I admit it is psuedo-biology mixing with what we would consider alchemy and witchcraft. This group was supposed to be the best, they are supposed to be smart. So I am going back and filling in the gaps now. Mira is running all over the Realms in order to gather what she and Roark will need to make a trip into the Underworld. Kian and Roark are running experiments with life and death.  They are all stealing bodies. (Thank you, Knifeman by Wendy Moore for giving me detailed explanations on how that actually worked!) They screw up. I am a bit worried about the pacing because like Other Systems, I ended up adding a few early chapters for context in order to answer the “why” questions.

Why is Eohan important to these people?

More importantly, why do they just assume this trip to the Underworld will work? No, the myth of Orpheus and Eurydice is not required reading in the Assassin’s Guild.

Anyway, I realized that I hate writing stupid scientists. I also hate reading stupid scientists and seeing them in movies.

So if there is going to be scientists, I make them smart!

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