As previously mentioned, I quite like science fiction.
So as well as Herd, I have a few more science fiction ideas hanging around. Unlike Herd, I'm judggling the idea of having them in some sort of shared universe.
Kind of like the works of Stephen King, only hopefully less convoluted.
These would be alien heavy.
I like aliens.
I grew up watching Star Trek, so it's hardly much of a surprise that I like aliens.
I like coming up with all sorts of ideas for aliens, mostly they're inspired by terrestrial life forms, but sometimes I stretch myself.
I'm not one of those butthurt people who complain when aliens are mostly humanoid looking. I think those people severely overestimate how different aliens would be if they were capable of living on Earth.
Let's face it, aliens would likely be very different to humans, or remarkably similar.
For terrestrial animals (which aliens we could deal with would most likely be, definitionally, if not technically), an excess of limbs is not helpful. It's energy that they need for other things. Not to mention that symmetry is an easy thing to replicate, which would make it advantagous.
It's also worth bringing up that bipedalism allows for a pair of limbs to make tools or be used for some other function. It's also handy for spotting predators.
I don't see how it's so unreasonable for aliens to be created which are bipedal tetrapods.
Do these people really not understand that?
Also, they're generally complaining about Star Trek.
Buddy, they have to build the aliens around the actors. CGI is great, but suits are more consistent and cheaper.
Wanting more fantastical aliens means either CGI, or unlucky suit actors.
Why do you hate suit actors so much?!
There's another reason why aliens are usually designed to look human, and that's to make them relatable. It's not complicated.
You want people to relate to something? Give it human characteristics.
You want people to find it hard to relate to someone? Make them act less human.
It's not like there aren't good reasons for this convention.
Sorry, got a bit ranty.
Anyway, one of the stories I've got planned is a romance between a girl and an alien boy. It's not going to be one of those 'these two people are star-crossed' or whatever the hell was going on in Twilight. The conflict here is based around the fact that they have difficulty understanding each other.
Not in terms of language, this isn't an allegory, in terms of facial expression.
No, this still isn't an allegory.
It may be applicable, but it isn't allegorical.
Human expressions are largely hard wired. To use a popular example, even people blind from birth smile.
It's not unreasonable that an alien who looks largely human would have different hard wired facial expressions. It's also something that rarely seems covered in science fiction, and I'd be keen to give it a go.
I've started on the first draft already, but since I've been working on Herd so much lately, I've had to leave it. Which has left me with a problem.
I didn't note down what facial expression meant what for the boy, so now I have to try and work it out from contextual clues.
Why didn't I write this doooown?!
Learn from my mistake, guys.