A “thing” happened that made me chuckle. I recently had someone tell me that my book Deuces Wild: Beginners’ Luck was not space opera. Despite the fact it was originally specifically written as a monthly serial novel for a space opera magazine called Ray Gun Revival (not currently active, but our issues are archived here: https://www.scribd.com/lists/2346954/Ray-Gun-Revival-publications).
Spoilers if you haven’t read it:
In the first scene of the book, we have the one protagonist entering the Rocket Wash Bar, encountering an alien bartender, seeing the man in the black vest disarm a man who had a needle-gun, and be told bad guys might be after him so he should try to get off planet. Subsequently in the first chapter, we see the space port of the city, discover the local bad guys have a deal with some off-planet mercenaries, our heroes steal a light-flyer called a rover, and head for the space port to hopefully steal a ship and get off the planet before it’s too late.
Later on in the book there are space pirates, space stations, evil galactic despots, travel to various planets, space battles, and more.
So nope, not space opera at all! (To quote Jubal Early: “That seem right to you?”)
If you might be interested in “Not-Space-Opera,” the book is on sale for $0.99 till the end of this month, and in a variety of formats.