Sci-fi author Jo Walton writes about the value, from her point of view, of science fiction: "SF lets you talk about the human condition more widely and from different angles by contrasting it with the alien condition and the AI condition and the android condition . . . In SF, you get books like Spin and Cyteen where new and interesting problems (aliens speeding up the rotation of the Earth, cloning and life extension tech) ask new and interesting questions about the human condition. Most of the things mainstream books have to say . . . have been said before, and even encountered before in real life. They have limited options to examine." Um, yeah. Too bad William Faulkner didn't know about cloning and life-extension tech. Maybe Quentin could have lived a little longer. More here.