In the society today, it is very common for one to spend his or her time reading. In those types of readings, science fiction stories are one of the most common readings among many people. Science fiction, unlike any other literature, has very unique characteristics. The definition of science fiction is "fiction dealing principally with the impact of actual or imagined science on society or individuals having a science factor as an essential orienting component." (Webster’s Pg 1045) This means science fiction stories are based on dreams, hopes and fears of people in the society. Science fiction stories are characterized by the styles and methods. One of the most common methods of science fiction is prophetic extrapolation. Prophetic extrapolation is passages that science fiction writers focus on the " development of science"(Science fiction III, Pg X) instead of "science of today,"(Science fiction III, Pg X) such as sociology, biology, psychology or any kind of science. Prophetic extrapolation is the most important element of science fiction stories. It is what makes science fiction.

The story of The War Of The World, by H. G. Wells, is a classical example of a science fiction story. Wells uses his imagination and the creativity to create the conflict between Earth and Mars. In the story, he introduces unknown creatures and the machines by using prophetic extrapolation. For examples, first, in the passage from chapter two he explains Martian’s star ship. He writes, " The uncovered part had the appearance of a huge cylinder, caked over and its out-line softened thick scaly dun-colored incrustation." (The War Of The World, Pg 11) Wells create the star ship from his imagination and able to give readers a good image that it is something round object by the word choices. Second example is from chapter three, where Wells explain the appearance of Martians. In the passage he explains, "Two large dark-colored eyes were reading me steadfastly. The mass that framed them, the head of the thing was round, and had, one might say, face. There was a mouth under the eyes, the lipless brim of which quivered and panted, and dropped saliva. The whole creature heaved and pulsated convulsively." (The War Of The World, Pg 21) From this passage, because his well explanation, readers could receive unpleasant image of how Martian looks like. Last example is from the passage about heat ray in chapter five. It said, "Suddenly there was a flash of light, and a quantity of luminous greenish smoke came out of the pit in three distinct puffs, which drove up, one after the other, straight into the still air." (The War Of The World, Pg25) Wells vividly explains what took main character by surprised as if it really happened. As a reader, one is aware that these things do not exist. However, as a interesting point, although none of these things exist in the real world, it seems as if these creations exist for readers. It is because Wells’ well use of prophetic extrapolation. When Wells explains about his creations from imagination, he gives examples based on the facts of society or science. It makes easer for readers to relate to the story. Because of Wells’ examples, imaginations of the story become live and vivid and realistic. In the story of The War Of The World, by H. G. Wells, prophetic extrapolation was used well, and that is what made this story wonderful and exciting.

There are many different types of science fiction writers today. They all have different styles or methods in each story. However, all the science fiction writers have one thing in common. . It is called prophetic extrapolation. Many science fiction writers use their imaginations, creativities and use "number of different sources and apply in a number of fields" (Hand Out. Pg X) to make dreams, hopes, and fears come true in the stories. It is truly the unique characteristics of science fiction.

Bibliography

Work cited

1. James Gun. Science Fiction Volume 3. eds

White Wolf Publishing. Clarkson, GA:

2. Webster, Merriam. Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary Tenth Edition. Springfield MA:1996.

3. Wells H. G. The War Of The World Tom Doherty Associates, Inc. 175 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10010: 1988.