This week, we wish a happy 134th birthday to feminist innovative author, Virginia Woolf. We know her for Mrs. Dalloway. For A Room of One’s Own–the home of her famous quote: “A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction.”) We know her for her suicide by drowning in 1941.
Maybe, some of us know her genderqueer feminist work Orlando: A Biography, where nobleman Orlando becomes a woman halfway through life and lives as a woman for the next 300 years. What other speculative fiction works did Virginia Woolf publish? Let’s find out!
- The Houyhnhnm (1917): a novella length fanfiction based on the characters from Gulliver’s Travels
- The Puppeteer God (1919): a serial about a creature who lives off dream energy and unintentionally enslaves its victims in a perpetual dream. The twist? The dream is our reality. (If this sounds like The Matrix, that’s because it is. The Wachowski brothers were influenced by Woolf’s little known piece).
- The Clockwork Man (1923): a novel about cyborgs
- An Unwanted Guest (1925): the inspiration for the 1950s movie Attack of the 50 Foot Woman
For more information on these works, check out The Influential Science Fiction of Virginia Woolf.
Thank you, Virginia Woolf for queering your characters, reminding us that fanfiction is always a good option, and above all questioning reality. Happy Birthday.