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I’ve been asked by a few people why I chose to write a science fiction novel. The simple answer to that question is, I didn’t.
I have been working on a psychological thriller for almost a decade. Back in 2006 I woke up with the words, “The last thing I heard was her scream.” banging around in my head. I couldn’t shake it, so I wrote those words down. I wrote a short story based on those words and forgot about it.
A few years later I was talking to a friend and he asked if I ever did any writing. I told him I had had a few articles published years earlier, but other than that I wrote just for my own enjoyment. He asked me to send him something, so I sent him the short story I had written, which I had named Her. He calls me after he read it and told me the story was good, it needed work, and that it needed to be expanded.
I did. I expanded it and then my computer crashed. Not to worry, your intrepid blogger sat back down and started writing it over. Months later, after getting it up to around 20,000 words, my computer crashed again. I basically said to hell with it and didn’t write much of anything for a while.
The bug bit again. I changed the way the story was going and really liked it. I added some things. I subtracted somethings. It was getting really good. It was going good until it happened. No, not another crash. This was much worse. Writers block. Not really though. The main character of the book is deeply disturbed. His psychosis is scary. He isn’t dangerous, just disturbed. As far as I know, I don’t have a deep seated psychosis and I just couldn’t wrap my brain around him. I was stuck.
I did what most writers do when faced with this situation. I complained. I whined. I cried and yelled. I called my friend.
“Steve, give me an idea for a short story.”
“I don’t care.”
“Two guys are doing a planetary survey.”
“Okay.” I said
“Their mother ship explodes. GO!”
I love science fiction. I read it. I watch it. I never thought about writing it. I did though. I took those two sentences from Steve and started writing. It was going to be a short story between 5000 and 10000 words. I turned into a 65000 word novel. I took me seven weeks to write it. I had never written that much in that short of a period of time.
While writing it I thought of at least three other companion stories to write. I had fun. It was the best writing experience I had ever had. The characters spoke to me in a way that none had before. On October 27, 2014 I published it on Amazon. The sales are slow in coming, I am a new author, but I’m happy with the product I produced.
Not long after publishing I found out that Amazon had an on demand publishing company. I thought to my self, what the heck, and did the formatting for a paperback edition. I ordered one. Let me tell you, there is no feeling like holding a book that you wrote in your hands. It really is indescribable.
So, to the title of this post, why sci-fi?
When I think of science fiction I think of it as one of the only genres where you can explore anything, Interpersonal relationships. Racism. Sex. Exploding space ships. It’s all there in one genre that so many denigrate. If you’ve never given it a try, you should. Start with the classics and move forward from there.
You can also find the first three chapters of The Forgotten Edge and the shorts, titles A Hopeful Journey at my Wattpad page.
Just to show my friend Steve some love, here is the link to his Amazon author page, please check him out.