Due to space craze 1970 NASA was running full-tilt, each new discovery opened up even more opportunities for the future of humanity. Could this be the reason why the late 70s showed that advance the sci fi genre? Let me recommend a very good book to help you to see for yourself;
“Years Best Science Fiction – Second Edition” by David G. Hartwell (1977)
The mid and late seventies were great years for science fiction, and some of the short stories that came out of this period ended on screen, as the brand was the key trends and changed the way society thought of science fiction forever. This compilation of the best sci fi short stories, was one of the best in personal my library, with so much work
“After Lean Winter” by Dave Wolverton, “Zoemers” by Gregory Benford, “Break Away Breakdown” by James Patrick, “Invasion” by Joanne Russ (later made into a blockbuster Hollywood movie), “Life Edit” by Damon Knight (also made into a movie), “First Tuesday” by Robert Reed, “Spear of the Sun” by David Langford, and “Bicycle Repairman” by Bruce Sterling (you will love this story, it really makes you think).
This entire collection can be read in about 4-5 nights, but I would recommend taking the time to read only one or two at night, and then allowing the whole story to enter the “what if” part of your mind. Especially following work also included; “Doubles is Lecture” by Allen Steele, “The Bridge Elvis” by Kathleen Ann Goonman, “Forest Luck” by Kate Williams, “nonstop Portals” by Connie Wills and “Columbiad” by Stephen Baxter.
Why was 1970 such a great year for science fiction? Well, there are many theories and indeed editor David Harwell tries to explain the phenomenon in his introduction. If you are a true fan of this genre, you will have this collection of personal library.