In the wake of big-screen success stories like The Martian and Star Wars: The Force Awakens, debates about whether one movie or another is scientific enough have been cropping up in various corners of the internet. Is a deeper, harder line being drawn in the sand about “hard” science fiction than usual? Or are we discovering that perhaps there’s a whole lot more sand available with regards to how imaginative and future-looking fiction can develop, and even entertaining the possibility that these developments could become blueprints for future-fact?

I asked ten science fiction authors [NOTE FROM MAURICE: SPOILERS ... I'M ONE OF THE TEN!] about their definitions of “hard” and “soft” science fiction, and how they see science fiction (hard, soft, and otherwise) in today’s terms. They returned with ten fascinating—and not surprisingly, entirely different—answers.

[Head over to Ten Authors on the ‘Hard’ vs. ‘Soft’ Science Fiction Debate]