“In space, no one can hear you scream.”

It’s an iconic tagline that can be applied to so many modern stories about space travel and exploration (except, perhaps, our beloved Star Trek). Obviously, space travel in real life can be incredibly perilous, but the perils of space in fiction have moved beyond the worry about whether the space shuttle will blow up before you’ve left the landing pad (or, at least, that worry only really comes in at the end of the book) and have become more complex. Is that alien going to kill me and harvest my organs? Is my crew mate going to kill me and harvest my organs? Is my ship going to kill me and… well, you get the idea.

It seems that once our intrepid explorers arrive on an alien planet, nothing is plain sailing and something is going to go horribly, horribly wrong. Why do we love stories like this? How do writers keep them fresh?

Joining us to discuss such questions is Stacey, known as SA Barnes, author of Ghost Station.

Texts mentioned in this episode include:

  • Alien and Aliens
  • Event Horizon
  • Star Trek
  • The Terminator
  • Star Wars
  • John Carter of Mars
  • Interstellar
  • The Jetsons
  • Demolition Man
  • Total Recall
  • Battlestar Galactica
  • Roswell
  • Jurassic Park
  • The Time Machine
  • Firefly and Serenity
  • I, Robot
  • Minority Report
  • The Fifth Element

Author photo: SA Barnes. Photo Credit: Mila Duboyski.

S.A. BARNES works in a high school library by day, recommending reads, talking with students, and removing the occasional forgotten cheese stick as bookmark. Barnes has published numerous novels across different genres under the pen name Stacey Kade. She lives in Illinois with more dogs and books than is advisable and a very patient husband.