Tyrean Martinson has a new book out! Congratulations and thanks for the Guest Post today. Take it away, Tyrean.
Sci-Fi Trope: Say What?
Language Barriers Lifted with Ease
Tropes can be symbolic and helpful for our understanding of plot and characters. We can use them, bend them, or try to avoid them. In science fiction, language barriers are often lifted with ease at the beginning of an alien-human interaction because attempting to break a language barrier could take up most of a book or film.
There are various ways science fiction films, books, and stories lift the language barrier quickly so humans and aliens can interact.
- Language barriers are lifted by the combination of an interpreter and a computer translator like in many episodes and films in the Star Trek universe.
- Language barriers are lifted by a technological “universal” translator, as in some versions of Star Trek, Men in Black, and Doctor Who.
- Language barriers are lifted via translators or droid translators, as in Star Wars.
- Language barriers are lifted by an alien life form, like the Babel Fish in The Hitch-Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.
- Language barriers are ignored and not mentioned, as in Stargate.
Arrival is an example of a film where the language barrier is lifted through an arduous process, and this process is one of the main focal points of the film.
In Liftoff, I didn’t have a great deal of time to spend on this, so I handled it in three ways: a downloaded universal language, aliens who could speak English, and dialogue about how slang can be confusing.
Liftoff: The Rayatana Series, Book 1
A spaceship in disguise,
An Earth girl searching for a sense of home,
And a Thousand Years’ War between alien races,
All collide on a summer afternoon.
An old movie theater welcomes Amaya in and wraps her up in the smell of popcorn and licorice. But one sunny afternoon during a matinee, the movie screen goes dark. The theater rumbles.
Amaya gets trapped in the middle of an ancient alien conflict. Angry and frightened, Amaya entangles herself in a life-changing cultural misunderstanding with Sol, a young alien who keeps omitting key information, even while they’re on the run from his enemies.
What will it take to survive a battle between alien races involved in an ancient war?
Liftoff is a fast-paced read for fans of Code 8, Guardians of the Galaxy, and Cobra Kai.
Release Date: November 10, 2020
Paperback ISBN: ISBN: 978-0-9889933-8-9
Ebook ISBN: ISBN: 978-0-9889933-9-6
Copyright Tyrean Martinson November 2020
Publisher: Wings of Light Publishing, Gig Harbor, WA, USA
Professionally Edited by Chrys Fey
Cover Art and Interior Design by Carrie Butler
About the Author: Tyrean Martinson is an author and teacher from Washington State. As a former fencer and kickboxer, she enjoys writing fight scenes in fast-paced novels and novellas. As a teacher and writing tutor, she loves to get students writing and reading comfortably by any means: talk-to-text, short writing assignments, short stories, novellas, and adventures. She wrote her latest novella, Liftoff, for herself during COVID, but realized it also fits a dream she’s had for a while: to create a short, fast-paced read for teen/YA readers who love popcorn movies, adventure, and sweet romance.