Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Open Thread

I haven't done one of these for a while. Here's your open thread where you can ramble or rant on about anything you like in the comments. If this gets much in the way of a response I'll be sure to do it more often.

Don't get too abusive ... well, make sure you understand what you're abusing first.


Mike Fitzgerald said...

I love this book. The world in it is so vast, so detailed...there are just endless possibilities, and the characters in it are really cool.
Love it love it love it.

Neal Asher said...

What book, Mike?

Oh, and regarding posts here. Promote yourselves if you want as well.

Craig said...

Hey, just want to let you know how much I enjoy your work, thanks! /Craig

Russell said...

Just a couple of simple questions:

Any idea when the 3rd Owner book due to be released in the UK? I've spent the last few months rattling my way through all your books and now I'm at a loss.

On that note, any other authors you recommend? I've read a lot of the well know, so perhaps some more obscure sci fi authors that you know of? I really enjoy the AI aspects of scifi.


robann said...

When oh when oh when will I be able to get "The Engineer Reconditioned" on kindle (legally).

Bob Lock said...

Hey Neal,
What's your opinion on the recent discussion there's been by various SF writers and readers (tweets mostly) about the way too many writers use old naval idioms for space travel? Most opinions have been that it is a rather silly and crass way to explain inter-stellar travel but I don't think it is.
Jack Campbell (John G Henry) uses it in abundance in his Lost Fleet series and I think it works well.
For example, you arrive in a solar system through a runcible/stargate/warp drive to meet up with a flotilla of other ships. How do you orientate yourself? How do you know your ship is the right way up or if your neighbour is and you are upside down? In a fleet battle how could it be possible to navigate unless you have a point of reference? Then if you have that point of reference established wouldn't the next step be to use, starboard/port/up and down?
Discuss? :-)

vaudeviewgalor raandisisraisins said...

here's our huge set in Osaka:

we had 7 students & a carpenter working with us. read Soothsayer by Resnick over there, it's a stinker. Firefly vs Deep Space Nine with some John Wayne thrown in.

only the witches will drown. the innocently incarcerated working for a ha' penny an hr will float:

Paul said...

Hi Neil,

Not exactly a rant but can I just say that I love your books. I recently started reading your work, started with Gridlinked and read through the rest of the cormac series and then went back to read Prador Moon and I'm just finishing Shaddow of the scorpion (and absolutely intend of reading round the Polity universe, as I absolutely love them...not one I don't love to bits). I found your blog here actually fairly recently as I was looking for the timeline and where your other novels fit in with the cormac timeline, and was really excited to find quite a few others I can start reading. However, and I'm not sure if you have addressed this in here, somewhere (still working my way through) but do you ever intend on going back to the Cormac series? Just with the end of Line war, I felt like you could revisit :) sometime. In any event, will be reading the rest of the Polity and making a start on your other series.

Oh, and just curious to know what you are reading at the moment?

Chrish said...

Mr. Asher,

I spend some time lately on various blogs about the present political situation in Greece, these Golden dawn freaks scare the hell out of me, did you during your stay in Crete this season notice anything at all of people advocating their ideas in the way they dress, behave or speak, any of the locals openly supporting these nazis? I did not but I know for a fact that the manager of a Ierapetra day care center was threatened because he refused to give them the names of the non Greek children in his center. Some GB people living in the Chania area one evening walked into their local taverna to find out that all of a sudden all the waiters were dressed in black Xrysi Avgi t-shirts. And don't know if this is true but I read somewhere: "So dangerous are the streets for foreigners that the U.S. State Department has sent out a warning to dark-skinned American visitors that they must be careful of their safety when they leave their hotels." This being in Athens ofcourse....

Mike Fitzgerald said...

Sorry, my post was in regard to Skinner.

Neal Asher said...

Thank you, Craig.

Russell, I think Jupiter War will be appearing next August or September. I'll have to check to see if Macmillan have a precise date. Regarding books I like ... if you google 'Neal Asher Top 10' you should find some stuff. As for obscure, how about Half-Past Human by T. J. Bass, or World Enough, and Time by James Kahn.

robann, that's a question I'll have to direct to John Betancourt at Wildside books.

Bob, I think it has its uses simply by familiarity - no point in changing the title of a ship's commander from captain, for example - but I think Lost Fleet goes a bit far with stuff like grapeshot. But then again Campbell is pretty good with the orientation thing.

'our huge set in Osaka' I think you need to elaborate, Vaude. A lot of your comments here are quite cryptic and I have little idea of what you do beyond some strange artwork.

Glad you're enjoying my stuff, Paul. As for Cormac - never say never. If the fancy takes me I may return to him. The problem I have with him now is that he's a superman without any kryptonite available. I may also return to Orlandine's story. There is, after all, a large Jain infestation that needs dealing with.

Chris, I've seen nothing like that really, other than, on occasion, the kind of racism you'll find in any parochial community. Generally the Cretans are accepting of the kind of foreigners who bring in the cash. Perhaps as things get worse it will rear its ugly head even more but, as in Britain, it's a city thing. Athens is not Greece just as London is not Britain.

Thanks Mike, I sometimes forget the title I gave this blog!

Sliver said...

Jamws Kahn's Worls Enouhh & Time...I tjouhht that I was rhe only ro have evee reas it...loved it. The sequel mot so much...

xwifflebottom said...

Hi Neal,

Just wanted to say I'm a big fan and have read all the Polity books. I'm holding off on the Owner series until the last one is published so I can read them all in one go.

I have a few questions. I've had a look through your blog but couldn't find a publishing date for the Penny Royal book. Do you know roughly when it might be released? I really enjoyed Penny Royal as a character and salivate at the thought of another book centered around it.

Have you ever thought about a pre-Polity book concentrating on the Quiet War? It would be awesome to see early iterations of well-known AIs like Earth Central as they slowly manipulate the politicians and CEOs and take control for themselves.

vaudeviewgalor raandisisraisins said...

check out the video i posted the link to, you can see a huge stage set of mostly parallel black lines that took forever to work on. it's high speed electronic cardboard!! there are 3 denizens on the stage, Utah Kawasaki (electronics, composer, tech, Tokyo fella), the large Cimevox entertainment computer (processor, electronics, spinning wheels), & Genetic Rackflub playing a javelin bass guitar (towards the end). that's what you are looking at. hope that clarifies the video.


Paul said...

Hmmm yes, with Cormac's new abilities and his, shall we say, complex synthetic companions he does appear to be unstoppable, naughty AI's beware. Well, the end of the Line war introduces so many possibilities with respect to that universe and it would be interesting to see how Dragon and Orlandine tackle the Jain technology menace.

I have The Gabble and The technician to read :) which by the way I was excited to read especially when I discovered Cormacs old Scorpion friend would make an appearance in.

beak said...

I wouldnt be adverse to seeing some more Prador war stories!

Neal Asher said...

Silver, I got the sequels, read them then dumped them.

xwifflebottom (love the name) Generally with my books you can expect the next book out one year after the last, give or take a month. Yeah, I might do the quiet war, but someone knicked the title.

Checking out after I've finished writing these replies, Vaude.

Amistad appears in Penny Royal 1, Paul, if but briefly.

Beak, as do scenes from the prador/human war - Penny Royal was made then in Room 101 after all.

Neal Asher said...

I have only one word, Vaude: weird.

vaudeviewgalor raandisisraisins said...

THIS is weird:

ol' bubble maw:

Chrish said...

Makes sense, on the other hand, a village outside Chania is a long way from Athens and Ierapetra is very close to Mak ;)

Jezcentral said...

I actually bought The Quiet War, because I thought it would be an AI human cold war. Nope. :( So I'm writing my own. (Fatherhood has slowed it down, though).

Neal, have you ever canned an idea mid-write, after seeing someone else have it? I should think the chances are low, since you crank out the books at such a rate, you don't have time to read any other author in the meantime.

KrisH said...

Hi, firstly, I'd like to thank you for what you've done so far. My 13 year old introduced me to the Skinner a couple of years ago and we've both been hooked ever since.

One weird thing though. I recently bought the Engineer Reconditioned. Is the Engineer supposed to end so abruptly? The Cosmos imprint seems to merge the Engineer with the Snairls... They've lost the title and your waffle (and possibly some of the story). :(

+1 for the idea of more of your books in digital form (though I do prefer the legal DRM-free providers).

Neal Asher said...

True enough, Chris, but I suspect that racism has less chance of taking hold on Crete where foreigners are usually seen as a source of income and illegal immigrants as a source of cheap labour. Most of the hatred I have seen there is for their corrupt government.

Jecentral, no, I've never canned an idea like that because by the time I find out it's usually too late. For example, I'd written and published The Line of Polity before I read the Alastair Reynolds book in which a space ship had been taken over by a form of nanotech growing like vines throughout.

Kris H, is the copy of The Engineer Reconditioned you have an old one? I ask because Cosmos Books went to the wall a while ago and it is now published by Wildside Press. As for DRM - Macmillan is now publishing my stuff DRM-free.

GSE team from district 9520 said...

Hi there. I'm sorry but I got nothing to rant about... So I will just leave this link here which seems very popular on some forums at the moment:


Looking forward to your next book. I read that you think Cormac is Superman... I wonder what that makes Saul :-/.

Neal Asher said...

GSE, yeah, but Saul cannot transmit himself through U-space.

This might interest you Chris: http://m.apnews.com/ap/db_289563/contentdetail.htm?contentguid=svfPK6jq

beak said...

Sounds good! Of all your books it's certain passages from Prador Moon that still haunt me, those bits written from the Prador perspective .

packrat54 said...

Vaude - agree on Soothsayer, feel the same on Widowmaker, got a couple of unread Resnicks but they've lost their appeal. Ivory is a favorite.

Bob/Neal, Lost Fleet - read the first two (enjoyed both) I think the second one had the orientation explanation.

Presently reading Blue Remembered Earth, liking it more the deeper into it I get.

Neal Asher said...

Beak, I'm certainly doing a lot of that in the books I'm writing now.

packrat54, I've been enjoying Lost Fleet, but they're certainly not books I want to read consecutively.

Phil M said...

As I'm presently reading Peter F Hamilton's Great North Road, I was wondering what you thought of his books/writing.
I've read all his books and thoroughly enjoyed most of them, especially The Nights Dawn trilogy, if you excuse the convenient "we've found the technology and solved the problem" ending.
My only criticism would be he tends to be a bit long winded.

vaudeviewgalor raandisisraisins said...

was Omni a UK thing also? it's all here anywart:


Gary Mcfarlane said...

Hi Neal,

A few months back I seem to remember you mentioning something about piping up if you find any errors in any of your novels. I found one a few months ago but only just got around to posting - sorry!

Page 403 (hardback) near the start of Chapter 19. I've also found the same error in my paperback version though I don't have that to hand right now.

"Oberon focuses his attention on the king..."

I assume this is meant to be Sadurian?

Neal Asher said...

Phil M, I don't read Hamilton now for precisely the reason you mentioned.

Used to much enjoy that magazine, Vaude - it's where I discovered Geiger.

I'll pass that on Gary as soon as I can find out who I was sending such mistakes to.