SciFi Q of the Day: Sparkly Rainbow Unicorns

Rainbow mist unicornSciFi Question of the Day: Your publisher insists on using this image as a cover photo, yet they have specified SciFi not Fantasy.
What do you write a story about?

(Credit to 35millipead on Flickr with a Creative Commons license.)

Facebook Answers:

Cameron Garriepy A young girl with the power to manipulate water…. who just happens to like rainbows and unicorns?

Cameron Garriepy I should clarify that she lives in our world, with all of its rules, and that the story is about the potential scientific and technological possibilities she represents.

Bernard Hildebrand The Sink Hole

Cameron Garriepy Not that I’m thinking about it, or anything….

Daren R. Dochterman On a dangerous mission to a rogue comet, astronauts begging seeing strange hallucinations.

Geri Bressler Any publisher looking to put sparkly unicorns on the cover of a sci-fi story should be beaten soundly and sent to bed with weak tea and no sugar.

AmyBeth Fredricksen No! Not… WEAK TEA!

Geri Bressler It’s harsh, I know, but there must be consequences when sparkly unicorns are involved!

Perry Willis A story about the aftermath of a global war with the unicorn being part of the remains of an amusement park carousel, or aftermath of alien invasion?

Oblio Leitch Wait, seriously? “Here’s a picture I want for the cover of a book. I don’t care what the story’s about.”

Stephonie K Williams The unicorn would by symbolic. IE: in MoL there’s a lot of unicorn symbolism. A family crest, a tapestry depicting one thing but actually telling a completely different story.

Glenn E. Smith A publishing company filled with editors and executives who have all been replaced by malfunctioning androids.


AmyBeth Fredricksen Oblio: not seriously. But I’m getting some really fun answers lol!

Google Plus Answers, Public Post:

  •   Charles Moore

    Unicorns are intelligent aliens sent to Earth in the 1100s or thereabouts to Destroy mankind before we invent gunpowder and start on the long road to self-destruction at the hands of nuclear mutual destruction.

    It would camp so damn hard.

      Brittany Constable

    Malfuncitoning holodeck.

      John Hauxwell

    Don’t have the problem. Imagine I’d be a bit miffed though.

    Good luck sorting!

      Brian Rush

    Exploring a cave on another planet and finding a number of human-cultural artifacts like that wonderful lifelike sculpture of a unicorn. Where did that come from? Who left it there? (And will they want to add the explorers to the collection in preserved form?)

      Mince Walsh

    In the future with “cut and splice” DNA pets, some people prefer Unicorns as pets, to ride etc. Some were created as ‘workhorses’ in harsh environments since DNA splicing is ever so much cheaper than using scarce metallic resources for building robots.

      Rich Garner

    A dream machine that allows a sleeper to actively merge thoughts and memories into a custom experience. But a long term side effect of using it is the eventual erasure of the line between conscience thought and imaginative thinking. A pair of dream doctors must track down all users of the prototype device in order to find a cure before they also succumb to their past usage.

      Samuel Falvo II

    The unicorn could be a statue sculpted from a very rare, and highly precious, metal alloy.  Recently, it was stolen from its museum, and all you know from sensor logs and ship manifests is that the perp retreated into an asteroid field, and is either hiding, or apparently settled into one of the asteroids.  This field is known to contain several Genesis Project-like terra-reformations of asteroids (as many asteroids are, in fact, dwarf planets), which narrows your search for the perp considerably, but there are still so manyasteroids to search through!  And the reduced gravity of a drawf planet makes moving such an otherwise heavy item very easy and very fast.

    Will you find the statue before it’s sold to the highest bidder on the black market, never to be seen again?  Or will you become the next target for a terra-former?

      Lason Strike

    Aliens on Earth seeking a new publisher.

      Joanna Staebler-Kimmel

    discovering an alien whose species is the origin of the unicorn myth, while mining on another planet.

    Google Plus Answers, Science Fiction Community:

    This unicorn is trying to beam back up to his ship but the powerful rainbow ray is preventing this.  Whoever put the green stuff on the rocks is responsible.  But why?

      Kevin Murray

    A quirky multi-millionaire hires genetic engineers to ‘assemble’ living replicas of his favorite mythological creatures.

    What was unexpected was the results of said tampering; perhaps the pure, innocent looking unicorns, through quirk of expressed genes, are violently aggressive, territorial, and breed like rats.

    A cross between science fiction and fantasy:  Researchers attempting to create teleportation technology instead create a rift into another Earth where their laws of science have little hold, but magic and such creatures are commonplace.  Enter evil corporation, which attempts to make money (lots of money) off this new world, strangling it and its ecology, which is much more fragile than it seems.

      Ergodic Mage

    Hunting Unicorns

    Google Plus Answers, Sci-Fi Community:

    A vr world which is so immersive that children lose the ability to interact. A race against time to break the programming which as you dig deeper seems to come from alien sources and finally reprogramming the ai into a dystopic vision where children have to cooperate to survive, all against the back drop of falling populations

    an invasion of shapeshifters from planet unicorn.

    Looks like a crazy event horizon scene to me. I’ve been wondering what’s in that black hole.

    So you get cover, genre and you’re supposed to write a book? That’s how is it going?

    Galactic zoo.  Saving soon-to-be extinct animals from their own planets.

    Ummm…  I write the story, they provide the art.  *NOT* the other way around..  Because I swear to god if I have to write about unicorns…  I will pan it on this theme.  (smirking evilly)

    Howzabout a future hallucinogenic drug/pollen/contaminant affecting general populace/ship’s crew/domed city? Pick the combination of your choosing!

    Cyborg horses networked together in a fashion requiring a rather prominent antenna protruding from their foreheads.

    …I’m not a writer, but isn’t this is where one starts looking for a new publisher?

    xploring an alien planet, and this is what they find when an explorer beaks through ground.

      Dan Thompson

    I write a first contact novel where the undersea aliens misinterpret us as gods.

    I don’t know but the unicorn is robotic.

      Dan Martin  +Dan Thompson 

    Nice plot! When you say undersea aliens, do you mean alien to the surface world, or extra-terrestrial?


    the quick death of a Publisher?

      Javier Chiappa

    Captured by security cameras,the last picture of a live unicorn, hiding in the water chamber of the launch pad. Milliseconds later a G class Centaurus Rocket ignited it’s 5 engines and nobody saw it again.

    I meant extra-terrestrial, as in we settle down to start colonizing a world and discover a sentient stone-age society beneath the waves.  My reason for it (from the cover) was that the colors were so muddy and soft, and the light from above so volumetric and flickery, that I saw it as an underwater scene, with the light coming down from the surface.  I did not really recognize the unicorn at first.  It seemed to be a trick of the light more than any physical object.However, I will say that I’m currently editing an urban fantasy novel which is set in the near future (so a touch of SF), in which there are ready-made gateways to other worlds, including one with unicorns.  It turns that unicorn blood has magical healing properties, so after the initial capture of breeding stock, we’ve been breeding/raising them on the Earth-side where they are sentient but without magical powers.  Then, when sufficiently grown, they are transported back, and slaughtered for their blood.  It’s a very modern, technological exploitation of magic, but kept in the background where people don’t talk about it at polite parties.  They just share the good news that Maria’s cancer was cured by the “unicorn treatment”.  So, while this particular cover wouldn’t work for my novel, I could probably do something with that unicorn thread as more central.

      Steve Hardt

    The horn-like space parasite that infects its host (the horse) by rocketing down from its spaceship (offscreen above, emitting a visible engine glow downwards) and spearing its way through the forehead (horse is rearing from being speared in the forehead).

    Looks like Blade Runner 2.
    Far in the future, a exploratory vessel arrives on Europa to push past its icy crust and explore the now-confirmed ocean beneath it. Sonar reveals massive underground mountain ranges and networks of caves; an ancient race of horned (the horn serves as a second “mouth” by which to filter nutrients) amphibious creatures – vaguely equine like, but scaly – lives, undisturbed, deep within a raised landscape within those caves.  Having lived without the presence of another species for the whole of their existence, the appearance of humans leads to unexpected consequences.
    That’s a fascinating and very original concept! There’s a thousand directions you can go with it!My book is titled Beyond Centaurus. If you’re interested, you can read about it at

That is the + page I set up for it.

  Levent Taskan

Genetically engineered unicorns.

Google Plus Answers, Speculative Fiction Writers Community:

The story is about an equine race on another planet. Aliens make it scifi. 😉

It’s about a dying race of corporate book publishers that can only exist in a virtual world of fantastical marketplaces, where they rule with a iron fist, and dole out subsistence level wages to authors, even as their influence in the real world declines dramatically.

Two alien races have an epic battle on the surface of one of Jupiter’s moon’s. Both armies pull out leaving behind their dead armies and a lone surviving unicorn mount, who discovers a a grand underground civilization.

hen in doubt, add robots.

SciFi Q of the Day plus comment

About AmyBeth Inverness

A writer by birth, a redhead by choice.
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