Time Travel from This Author’s POV

Time Travel from this Author’s POV

by P.J. Hultstrand

It is quite clear that we humans have been interested in the possibility of time-travel for quite some time. Why? I would like to believe it is our need to believe in something beyond ourselves and a hope of the future. For me it is my fascination of the physics theories and my desire to know that my son and his sons have a future.

Time travel books

Whatever your reasons are, there are many time-travel elements in books now available to read. The top 8 time-travel books, according to About.com:

Washington Irving – Rip Van Winkle

G. Wells – The Time Machine

Mark Twain – A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court

Charles Dickens – A Christmas Carol

Lewis Carroll – Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland

Madeleine L’Engle – Time-travel collection features A Wrinkle in Time, A Wind in the Door, A Swiftly Tilting Planet, and Many Waters.

C.S. Lewis – The Complete Chronicles of Narnia

Edwin Abbott and Ian Steward – The Annotated Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions

Now I have to admit that there are several on this list I have not read, and there are a few I wouldn’t even have put in this category of time-travel. Alice really didn’t fall into a rabbit hole into another time; rather, she fell into an altered space. Of course, there is always the question of whether she was simply dreaming the whole fanciful thing or whether she was pulled into that space through the looking glass.

On the list is also C.S. Lewis’ “Chronicles of Narnia” in which again, the characters walk through a wardrobe into an altered space, but not necessarily another time. The only real time altering here is when they come back through the wardrobe and are suddenly children again. Had they really just lived many years in that altered space, or had it been a very long vision in that space and time, but they had not really been anywhere but in the wardrobe?

As I Googled time-travel books, here are some of the names I came across:

Michael D’Ambrosio – The Fractured Time series (Published now thru Az Publishing Services)
Philip E. Baruth – The X President
Darryl Brock – If I Never Get Back
Octavia Butler – Kindred
Charles Dickinson – A Shortcut in Time
Daphne du Maurier – The House on the Strand
Jack Finney – Time and Again
Diana Gabaldon – Outlander Series (another Arizona author)
Ken Grimwood – Replay
Robert A. Heinlein – Time for the Stars, The Door into Summer, and By His Bootstraps
Richard Matheson – Somewhere in Time
Audrey Niffenegger – The Time Traveler’s Wife
Marge Piercy – Woman on the Edge of Time
John Varley – Millennium
Connie Willis – Doomsday Book and To Say Nothing of the Dog
Robert Charles Wilson – The Chronoliths
Neal Asher’s Cowl and Richard Garfinkle – All of an Instant
Tim Powers – The Anubis Gates
Jasper Fford – The Eyre Affair and the rest of the series
Tom Holt – The Portable Hole
Michael Moorcock – Dancers at the End of Time trilogy
Edward Page Mitchell – The Clock that Went Backward
David Gerrold – The Man Who Folded Himself
Harlen Ellison – The City of the Edge of Forever
Robert J. Sawyer – Flash Forward
Isaac Asimov – The End of Eternity
Poul Anderson – Time Patrol
Lester Del Rey – Tunnel Through Time
H.G. Wells – The Chronic Argonauts
Ray Bradbury – A Sound of Thunder

I think you get the point. There are literally hundreds of books and short stories about time-travel and parallel universes.

The origins of the time-travel story dates back into Hindu mythology in 700s BCE to 300s CE with “Mahabharata” and the Japanese tales in the 200s to 400s CE with “Talmud” and in 720 CE with “Urashima Tarō” After that, the time jumps to the year 1733 with Samuel Madden’s, Memoirs of the Twentieth Century, which I think we would find very interesting now that we can see if Samuel might have been correct. But then that might have be hard, considering that Samuel used an angel to bring documents from the future.

In the genre of romance, time-travel found a diverse new home with the following possible story arcs, among others not listed here:

  • Timeless trysts
  • Anthology
  • The High Seas
  • Middle Ages – 18th Century
  • England
  • Scotland
  • 19th Century
  • America
  • American West
  • 20th Century
  • The Hero or Heroine comes to
    present day
  • Half in the present / Half in the past

I guess my time-travel romance series would be slotted under “OTHER” because the books in the Time Conquers All series are based in the late 1500s India region of the world. But the story starts with a vision of the far future for the main character who is not only from the 1500s, but a warrior princess in the fictitious country of Laie. Some bookstores would try to put this into the historical section, while others would say that the time-travel elements would make them science-fiction/fantasy.

One of the questions I hear most often since I write time-travel is: Where or when would you go in time and why? One of my answers is that I would go hundreds of years into the future to be certain we all have one.

Other questions people ask me regarding time is, If you had the chance to change something that went wrong for humankind, would you do it? Now, that is a harder question, because if you fix something, how do you know it will really be fixed? And even more importantly, how would you know that what you supposedly fixed wouldn’t lead our civilization into an even deeper hole, or the lack of a future at all?

These questions are, I think, the true reason readers are interested in time-travel: We are interested in the possibilities.

Patti J. Hultstrand has assisted in bringing 78 books to market since 2009 through her PJ Hulstrandcompany, AZ PublishingServices, LLC. She has been a graphic designer for 24 years, fourteen of those years in a print shop. PJ is an author of four books, three fiction and one nonfiction. She is also the Managing Editor for the pop culture newspaper, The WOD, and is a media host on KWOD Radio. You can find her speaking or running her media team at many local Arizona conventions throughout the year. Follow her on Facebook.

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