The idea of Human Wave is the idea of human achievement in sci-fi fiction. I think that this type of fiction is the answer to the gray goo that has been creeping through traditional publishing for a long time.
In the early 1980s I was a fresh faced girl, turning into a woman, who had already read several novels by Heinlein, Asimov, E.E. “Doc” Smith, Bradbury, and many other giants of the sci-fi and speculative fiction genre. I would buy four books every two weeks, I had less money then than I do now, from my favorite private bookseller in the small town where I worked. Douglas Adams was one of the authors that the owner set aside for me to read.
So when I finally scraped enough money to go to a semester or two to a real college, and see a bigger bookstore, I was excited about checking out the bigger sci-fi/fantasy section. My little bookstore had two shelves for those kinds of books. Most of the store sold Romance. I bought one book and tried to read it– I bought another (this was my lunch money so it was about one book a month then). I won’t mention authors here– but after a couple of months of being unsatisfied with the genre– please realize that I read every sci-fi book I could find from the 1950s to the present and loved the genre– and quit reading it. Just quit cold turkey except for writers that I knew would give me a good story like Heinlein.
We are so fortunate that so many good writers are trying to revitalize the genre by writing stories, instead of message fiction.
If you’d like to understand what Human Wave is all about, a good post about it is here.
So getting back to my reading habits, a year or so ago, I met a group of writers who are writing sci-fi and fantasy that is pro-human and pro-story, which is what gave me the need to write a short story of my own (first published sci-fi by my own hand) called The Green Knight Terraforming Company. It is my way to test the waters and see if I have the chops to write sci-fi.
There has been mixed results. Anyway, read the human wave authors and love sci-fi again.