Mike Harrison rants against "world-building" here
and Patrick St-Denis responds here
and flowing as an undercurrent throughout the reaction and overreaction is the bugaboo: escapism. I. Am. Sick. Of. This. Word. So sick, in fact that I banish it. Yep, henceforth, that word shall be known only as 'that word'.
That's a good question. The answer? Simple, 'that word' represents the self-loathing, inferiority complex that has dogged specfic ever since, well, ever since rationalism and realism conquered the literati. Screw them, if what we love to write and to read seems 'that word'-ist to them. Screw them. I do not care what they think. I do not write in a ghetto. The exercise of imagination is the genesis of creation, not something of which I should be ashamed.
Edit: and here are the linkages where further discussions may be had . . .
The Lotus Lyceum thread: http://lyceum.kapo.ws/?p=78#comments
Johnathan Wood's take: http://thexmedic.blogspot.com/2007/02/worlddestroying-so-theres-been-lot-of.html
Gabe Chouinard's blog: http://deadcities-icon.livejournal.com/139469.html
James Enge's blog: http://jamesenge.livejournal.com/11302.html
Paul Jessup weighs in (or will): http://kapo.ws/wordpress/?p=754
Anybody I missed?