Frabjous Times


Scifaiku Best Practices manifesto

Here's my personal list of Best Practices for writing scifaiku (originally posted to the SciFaiku-Ten-Forward list at Yahoo):
  • Stay close to pure sense inpressions and you won't go far wrong.
  • If you can guess line three from line one, you haven't finished the poem yet.
  • It is character building to write two non-space-related ku for every space-related ku.
  • It's cheating to have a descriptive title. This is a welcome cheat, however.
  • A good followup on the list deserves another. It should try to be shorter than the original, since the first author has already done a lot of the work setting the theme and scene.
  • A successful brick (4-3-3-2 syllables in any order) makes you feel as if you just passed one.
  • The fraction of insufferably sentimental poems is less than that on some venues I can think of. Keep it that way.
  • Triteness comes from the Evil One. The best way to vanquish cliché is to turn it back on itself.
  • Don't forget that fantasy and horror can sometimes be accommodated under the scifaiku form.
  • Keep your slush pile well stirred. The juxtaposition of two unrelated entries can lead to a decent ku.
Originally published: 2003/09/26 21:09:35