Over at BookRiot, I've shared a list of lesser-known "punks"--subgenres of science fiction in the tradition of steampunk--that you will definitely want to check out for yourself.
(Except splatterpunk, which, whoa, is not for the faint of heart.)
Along the way of drafting this post, I ended up making up a subgenre of my own, because there is a serious trend emerging in science fiction that I could not find a name for.
As I describe in the post:
Metapunk is a rising trend in speculative fiction where the narrative follows two stories, one inner story, and a secondary outer one that analyzes and dissects the inner story. Think Westworld or Cabin in the Woods.
It's been a favorite of mine ever since my first encounter with it through Charles Yu's amazingly meta-minded How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe.
Yu is one of my favorite authors, and this is his only full-length novel. While dissecting genre tropes with humor and heart, the author himself slips in and out of the story's narrative in a way that lends distance and perspective, while also blurring the lines between art and life.
As we become ever more sophisticated viewers, I think this trend will continue to expand on the screen and on the page. Which thrills me, because metapunk offers a brainy, twisty layer to my favorite genre that pulls the strings of its tropes in new directions and stretches the imagination to think in new, analytical directions.
What do you think about my new genre? Where have you seen it in action?
Check out the full list of punk subgenres (and add your own!):