Okay, panic-attack managed.
Actually, right now I am thinking about zombies. Over the past week, I've been working my way through The Living Dead, an incredible anthology of incredible zombie stories. At least three of them have made me tear up. They are *that* good. Many have filled me with awe and joy and a wonderful appreciation of the human condition. Yep, and they're zombie stories.
I just want to point out that loving spec fiction never comes back to bite you in the ass. No matter what crazy thing they think up next, fantasy/SF/horror writers are always working to stretch our collective imaginations. Occasional trash finds its way through, but even the writers who are struggling to maintain control of their story and who write paint-by-numbers characters can often give us moments of wonder. (Twilight, I'm looking at you.) Speculative fiction is good for the parts of your mind the reality sometimes bogs down. It is the literary equivalent of haute couture--sometimes impractical, sometimes unwearable, but always fascinating.
Literary snobs can stick with their Pulitzer-prize winners, but I'll be in Gold Room*. Looking for tear-jerkers.
*PDXers will know the Gold Room as the genre fiction area of Powell's Books (Burnside store & mother-ship). If you don't live in Stumptown, make that one room your number one vacation spot this year. Don't both with Voodoo Donuts; the line's too long come summer-time. ;)