This is going to be a brief post. Not much to say about it, except this is one of those “you don’t know what you don’t know” posts.
I’ve been reading science fiction and fantasy since first or second grade. Probably mostly fantasy, but I definitely have a nice chunk of science fiction on the bookshelf. I’ve always kind of done so in a vacuum. I have some friends who read the same and we’ll occasionally exchange recommendations, but I was never part of any reader forums or a gamer or any of that. I just liked to read those books.
And I’ve always referred to science fiction as “sci-fi.” I have no idea why and where it came from, it just made sense. (And I did so long before exposure to a certain school where taking the first half of words is a rampant practice applied to everything from food to majors.)
Well, turns out this is one of those “big issues” for people. And you’re supposed to refer to science fiction as SF not sci-fi. I’m not versed on the arguments and don’t really care enough to learn them well enough to discuss them here, but wanted to pass on this tidbit of knowledge for others who may not have been aware of this. (You can do an Internet search if you want the nitty-gritty details.)
I first came across this here in a post by James D. Macdonald on Absolute Write. According to him, if you use sci-fi instead of SF it marks you as a “tourist.” So, for anyone else who wasn’t aware this was an actual issue, there you have it.