There's always a rush to try and get to the bottom of where science fiction comes from. I think it's a bit of a losing proposition, because of how murky everything gets. You can, however, pull out a lot of authors and point to them as forerunners. Case in point, Margaret Cavendish, who wrote a novel called The Blazing World, which accompanies some of her own scientific commentary.
- Trillion Year Spree, Brian W. Aldiss. Aldiss touches on Cavendish's book and a bit of her career.
- The History of Science Fiction, Adam Roberts. Roberts likewise covers Cavendish and her early career as an author and a bit of her life.
- Mad Madge: The Exraordinary Life of Margaret Cavendish, Duchess of Newcastle, the first woman to live by her pen, Katie Whitaker. This is a fantastic biography of Cavendish and her life and works.
- Cavendish, Margaret. This entry provides a good amount of information on The Blazing World and its place as a forerunner work of the genre.