A science fiction writer's blog.
Good Q&A Neal :)I'll go get my marathon running shorts then! Thank you.
There's plenty more to say on the subject, Hitch, but the running analogy is the best way to put it briefly. Another one is: don't make it easy for your characters to get from A to B. If you can see the plot progression easily in your mind then maybe it's time to throw a spanner in the works. If you're getting bored with detailing how Jack Flash is repairing the space drive its maybe time for the alien to come in and rip his face off.
I think I often over complicate things then fail to find a way out. the end result is I either give up and go back to it 3 years later or end it a lot quicker.And lol at ripping his face off. I shall try this :DI guess I do write... smoothly? i.e. I don't tend to throw anything in that hasn't been led to in the frist place(mainly because i HATE editing). I will try adding random elements in like ripping his face off and see where it goes.
really liked how the development of Mr. Crane came along, each of his random 'toys' becoming plot devices. random leading to "!wow!".gotta say, the oddness of the alien thought in Herbert's Whipping Star was really an interesting mindshred. i think it might have held up without the human elements in it. -opinion-.you bypassed my question which was 'besides Shiva 3000 and Bass's Half Past Human, was there any other super obscure stuff you could recommend?'paraphrasing from memory.
Oh, I vaguely recollect answering that one, Vaude. Or maybe it was someone else I answered! I tell you what. I'll nip up into my loft and note down whatever fits the bill. Back in tick.
Keep forgetting. I don't have to go up into the loft now I've photographed and catalogued it all. Okay, here's a few, though you have almost certainly read some of them:Of Man and Manta - Piers AnthonyTalon - James CoultraneThe Continuous Katherine Mortenhoe - D G ComptonShadow of the Ship - Robert Wilfred FransonTime & Timothy Grenville - Terry GreenhoughWaiting for the Galactic Bus - Parke GodwinWorld Enough & Time - James Kahn
As far as non-human books go I have to say I quite enjoyed Twisted Metal by Tony Ballantyne. As you say it's hard to get an attachment with a character if it isn't human but it sort of worked in this case, mainly due to the circumstances which mirrored our own human history I guess.
didnt catch the author you said after Zelazny after 2 listens. will try for 3 and will probably read that series too.dunno any of those recommendations, i have to beat people over the head with those other 2, Half Past..and Shiva 3000. such gems in piles of crap out there. Half Past Human is really impossible to find in stores/libraries.will get on these new ones.-fantasy wise i gotta say Cugel and some of the more insane mages in Rhialto the Marvelous in the Vance Dying Earth have been my faves. god powers and infinitely petty and ridiculous.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_The_Dying_Earth_characters
Thanks for answering my questions Neal, didn't mean to paint you as a mad scientist by describing Orbus as an 'experiment';-)Next one: your work has been translated into several languages; do you work with the translators to make sure the end result turns out well?I'm a translator myself with foolish notions of one day translating SF, so I'd be quite interested in hearing your answer to this one.
Gemmell, got it.
ok i have a fun question for you:Polity Ageing treatmens, or Spatterjay infection? I can definately see the attraction of being an old hooper. merry christmas!
I was talking to a friend at the Christmas party last night and I mentioned chips in the brain/augmentation. But he brought up the interesting point that we so quickly adapt to new tech that there fails to be anything special about it. The phone used to be something you had at home and you were there to answer or you weren't. Now everyone has access to the internet in their pockets and it fails to be special or even useful. He also suggested everyone using rocks for a year so we'll remember what a luxury toilet paper is...
Yes, I too enjoyed Twisted Metal, Friso, probably because the characters were so human!Yes, Vaude, David Gemmell. Particular favourites that I didn't mention are characters like Druss the Legend and Waylander. Frankly, I haven't read a Gemmell book I didn't like. Regarding that list. At the top of it I would put World Enough & Time, followed by Time & Timothy Grenville.
just got a bead on Gemmell's Wolf in Waders (sp) the first in that series.can you recommend an E.C. Tubb to start with if you get a chance? i realized i don't have anything by him so i probably havent touched a book by him (ever?).
Thanks very much for your latest video, I always enjoy watching these.I do have a question for you. Is there any chance The Parasite, Runcible Tales, and Mason's Rats will be re-printed, perhaps as a single collection?The Parasite for instance currently goes for $76.30 U.S. on Abebooks and only 1 copy is up for sale.
The only one I can recollect raedin outside of the Dumarest saga is 'Moonbase', and I don't remember it well enough to recommend or otherwise, Vaude.
The Conquerors trilogy by Timothy Zahn is another nice read where the second volume is told entirely from the perspective of the aliens.
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