The novels of The Kestral Voyages are my most popular stories, hands down; not only my best sellers, but earning more comments, reviews and requests for more stories than any other novels I’ve written to date.
It’s not hard to guess why: When I created the series, it was originally based on the Star Trek universe, a story idea I intended to pitch to Paramount as the next Trek series after Voyager. Though I made changes to fit it into its own universe, it still has many similarities to the Trek universe that is still so popular with fans.
So, what happened? Well, it’s like this… Read more…
Science fiction fans love to debate about which beloved SF books would make good movies… or which would make bad movies. Among the books that fans usually seem to agree could not be made into good movies, two of my favorites inevitably come up, both by Arthur C. Clarke: Childhood’s End; and Rendezvous with Rama. Whenever I hear this, I have to laugh. Clarke’s 2001: A Space Odyssey was developed from a “one-gag” short story (a weird monolith found on the Moon sends a message to the stars), but look what Stanley Kubrick did with that. And no, we don’t need another Kubrick to do justice with Rama and Childhood. All we need is a bit of imagination.
So, without further ado, here are some notes on how both books could be turned into fantastic movies. Read more…
Physicist Stephen Hawking argues that Mankind must build starships and spread itself throughout the galaxy in order to survive, since Earth’s years are clearly finite. Hawking has made this case many times, being convinced that even a smallish catastrophe (like a massive meteor strike) could render Earth uninhabitable for humans, and it could do so at any time.
I wouldn’t presume to contradict Hawking; in fact, I agree with his assessment of the fragility of our ecosystem and its prospects for long-term viability. But when it comes to his opinion that we should leave Earth for our own survivability, I have another option. I don’t think we need to leave Earth; I believe we can stay longer, even through a catastrophe, if we apply proper husbandry to the Earth. And we can do that if we move the bulk of our population into orbital satellites. Read more…
There always seems to be discussion and debate about the various types of science fiction, and which is more popular, which is more serious, which is cooler, etc. I have no problem saying, right up front, that whatever kind of science fiction you like—or whatever type of any genre, for that matter—is what you like, and there’s no need to rationalize or apologize for it to others. (So, the next time the discussion comes up, I don’t want to have to separate the 2001 and Star Wars fans, okay? Groovy.)
That said, this is what I get the most out of from science fiction. Read more…
I’ve been noticeably bummed this past week: I keep reflecting on the fact that none of the promotional attempts I’ve made recently has had any success lately (and I mean as in zero success). Every so often that particular hammer taps me on the skull, and I spend a few days sulking and brooding over the ego bruise it leaves.
Eventually, the bruise goes away, and I stop sulking. But I’ve come to realize I specifically keep getting hit by that hammer because I spend way too much time around it.
It’s actually good that I’m realizing this now, because the holiday season is almost upon us, and I have good reason to stay away from that hammer and not ruin my fun this time of year. Hopefully as well, staying away from that hammer will help me find other things to occupy my time and not make it obvious that I’m dancing around with one eye cocked at the spot where that hammer always comes down.
That means cutting back on Facebook. (I needed to do that, anyway… terrible waste of time if you let it.) Less time chronicling my activities online, so I have more time for… activities. Less time thinking about redesigns of my books site (I’ve come to realize it’s not the design that’s keeping people from finding it). Less time trying to recall bits and pieces of dreams to figure out if they’d make good book material. Less time rehearsing my interview with Jon Stewart on The Daily Show.
And less time spent trying to figure out what blog subjects will attract more readers.
Overall, a backing off of the whole writing thing. I don’t want this bruise to be permanent.