Exaggeration, the mother of fiction – an example

Well, I’m back (No, not Terminator style) from a lovely holiday in Switzerland. Here was the view from my hotel window!


Yes, that is the Reichenbach Falls you see in the distance – the place where Sherlock Holmes fell to his supposed death. Below is a closer look at the same falls!


And yes I did climb all 380 steps from the funicular to the cafe at the top!

The interesting thing about Switzerland is that it can inspire a lot of science fiction and fantasy. Rivendell, Elrond’s home in Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings was inspired by Lauterbrunnental, not all that far away – the train journey there is full of scenic views.

Of course, there is the James Bond film On Her Majesty’s Secret Service, which was partly filmed further up the valley at Jungfraujoch.

Bottom line seems to be, if you want scenic valleys somewhere in your science fiction story, there is no better place to get inspiration from than Switzerland.

Why? Well, the best I can describe it as, the valleys exaggerate the valley aspects – the valley sides are steeper, the meadows greener, the variation of scenery with height clearly visible, the shadows more clearly defined etc.

After all exaggeration is the mother of fiction, the just taking the step further than reality allows makes it both believable and fantastic.

… and yes, I’ve come away with a lot of ideas bubbling away… next stop may be Mars!



3 thoughts on “Exaggeration, the mother of fiction – an example

  1. A lovely notion, Rosie. And what a beautiful spot… it does seem a shame that it will be forever linked to one of the most famous deaths in fiction.

    1. The hotel I stayed in was the same hotel Conan Doyle stayed in – built in 1880, it had the beautiful architecture of that time. Next door was the English church. Beneath it, they had put a small Sherlock Holmes museum, complete with a replica of his living room in Baker Street. The people of Meiringen are definitely making the best of it… but they are also famous for their meringues, including a world record big one! And the ice cream in that cafe is wonderful!

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