New Year

Happy 2014! 2014 sounds like a futuristic year, doesn’t it? It has a good vibe, a nice tone, I think it will be a good year.

The year is over and it’s time to add up things, this year I submitted 33 times and sold 1 story, i read 15 novels, or 16 if you count the one I’m nearly done with, which I think I will because I read a majority of it this year. I don’t know how many stories I wrote, exactly, because I wasn’t keeping close track, but I intend to keep track this year.

I plan to continue my weekly story until I make it to October, then I’ll see what I feel like doing, but I definitely want to have 100 submissions this year and read 52 novels, or more. Oh, and sell a couple stories as well. That would be nice.

Happy new year everyone, I wish you luck and happiness in our amazing and interesting future!

Week 13 and Jumper (and Ubik)

Another week, another story. This time I wrote about someone accidentally transporting himself into a motivational poster. I took inspiration from a novel I just finished: Jumper, by Steven Gould. I got it cause I saw that the new sequel, Impulse, was on the Nebula reading list.

It’s about a guy who learns he can teleport, and all the trouble he gets into with it. There is a movie based on it which has little similarities. So if you thought the movie was painful (as I did) don’t let this deter you from the book. The character is not horrible and the plot is entirely different. The whole thing with the Paladins in the movie was apparently just entirely made up.

I enjoyed the book a lot, as I’ve always imagined how fun it would be to be able to travel anywhere I wanted with a thought. He thinks of some creative ways to use it, as well as ways to evade the NSA agents chasing him. The ebook I got also came with the sequel ‘Reflex’, so I’ll probably read that next.

I also read Ubik, by Phillip K. Dick this week. In the future there are telepath’s and precogs and other psychic abilities. These people get hired by companies to spy on other companies and so on. There are also people with the ability to block telepaths and precogs, and they get hired by companies to protect their interests. The story is about a group of ‘intertials’ the people who block abilities going on a big job.

There’s a whole bunch more weird stuff and the book is sort of unsettling and creepy, but very good and worth a read. The ending didn’t make a lot of sense to me, but was still good.

I recommend both of these books!

 

Week 12 and A Scanner Darkly

Another week down and I actually like the story I did this week… for now. I may hate it when I read it again in a couple weeks. It’s about an old man with a head injury trying to decide if the strange thing he’s seeing out his kitchen window is real or not. I sort of modeled him of some of the junkies in the book I just read, A Scanner Darkly, by Phillip K. Dick.

I haven’t read a lot of PKD, but I think I’m going to have to start reading more of him. The book is about a fictional drug called ‘Substance D’ that deteriorates the addict’s brain, leading to paranoia and memory loss and other problems. The protagonist is an undercover narcotics agent, posing as a junkie. He is so far undercover that he ends up being assigned to report on himself, his undercover  persona. This, and the fact that he is taking the drug himself, leads to him becoming increasingly confused as to who he even is.

The story is humorous at times and disturbing at others, but over all very sad. Many of the characters are based on real friends of Dick’s who died from drug use. At the end of the book is a long list of names, all with the descriptors ‘deceased, brain damaged, psychosis’ next to them. These are names of people Dick knew who succumbed to drug addiction.

I have never been into drugs or been close to anyone who was, and this book makes me feel very grateful of that fact.

Week 11 and The Demolished Man

I have survived another week, and read another Alfred Bester novel.

This week I wrote about a duel fought with time guns… yeah, probably just as dumb as it sounds.

I also read The Demolished Man, by Alfred Bester. It’s the story of a murder committed in a world full of telepaths–a world that hasn’t seen such a crime in 70 years because the telepaths can detect the intent before the crime is carried out.

The story goes over the planning of the crime and all the ways used to avoid mental detection, it’s interesting and fast paced and a lot of fun. Toward the end it gets a bit weird, but still holds together.

Not as memorable as The Stars my Destination, but still a great read (as you can tell its only been a few days since my last post) and recommended to action and mystery fans as well as sci fi fans.

 

The Stars My Destination

I just finished reading The Stars My Destination (originally published as Tiger! Tiger!) by Alfred Bester. I didn’t mean to pause from the Count of Monte Cristo. I only meant  to read the preview in the Kindle store, as someone had mentioned it as one of the best Sci Fi novels ever and I’d never heard of it. Well, after reading the preview I had to buy it, and promptly read it in one afternoon.

The novel takes place in the 25th century, after our solar system has been colonized and humans have all learned to teleport, or jaunt as they call it (after the first man to teleport, Jaunte). Except that the distance of teleporting is limited to 1000 miles each jump, and no one can teleport through empty space.

The story starts with our protagonist, Gully Foyle, an unskilled everyman crew member of the ship Nomad, stranded alone on the wreck of the ship. He is trapped alone, the only survivor, stuck in the only room of the ship that is still pressurized–a tiny locker.

After surviving alone in cramped darkness and silence for six months, a ship finally comes. He signals them for help and they stop–then pass him by. Gully swears revenge on the ship, and the novel follows his obsessive pursuit to find out who was on that ship and gave the order to leave him to die, and how he’ll make them pay.

The plot actually has a couple parallels to the Count of Monte Cristo, besides just the desire for revenge.

[spoilers!]

At one point Gully is sent to a ‘hospital’, which is really an underground prison. He meets a woman there who he speaks with through the walls of his cell. Over months of speaking she educates him to become less of a brute, more charming and knowledgeable of the world. They then escape together. This is exactly what happened to Dantes in prison when he meets the Abbe Faria, except the Abbe did not escape with him.

Secondly, after escaping Gully comes into a vast sum of money and creates a new persona for himself: an extravagant playboy, a clown, someone obsessed with notoriety who throws his money about with abandon. He uses his fame to get close to his enemies, and get the information he needs for revenge. This is another direct parallel to how Dantes turns himself into the Count.

[/spoilers]

This book is packed full of interesting ideas and fun action. Every character is memorable and vivid. I dare you to read the preview on Amazon and see if you don’t buy it. Highly recommended for anyone even remotely interested in sci fi.

  • Writing Status:

    Total submissions this year: 18

    Acceptances this year: -

    Stories currently submitted: 4

    Currently Reading: The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August, by Claire North

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