Thursday, November 08, 2012

The Cutting Room Floor 1

While in the process of writing a book I occasionally reach a point where, having just written a large block of text, I decide, on reflection, I've been heading in the wrong direction. Sometimes this text is amenable to some heavy editing, and sometimes it just has to be cut out like a growing tumour. Thing is, I’m a bit of a hoarder, and am reluctant to throw something away I’ve spent work on. So, what I do is drop said block of text into a file called ‘BitsSF’. Sometimes I’ll go back to that file when I want to start something new, maybe a short story, another book, but not often.

Anyway, I just tweeted ‘Okay, so what shall I blog about now? Any bright ideas?’ whereupon a guy called Robert Annett replied, ‘What about some extracts from the cutting room floor?’ I do believe I’ve done this before, but it’s still a good idea. Here’s a small piece from BitsSF for you, warts an’ all:

The NEJ’s weapons carousel was much more complicated than the name implied. It spanned the nose of the ship between nacelles and not only offered up selected weapons to the various launchers within those nacelles, but was also an autofactory in itself. From this complex of packed moving machinery and shifting linked belts carrying the ship’s armament, Jack could select a variety of missiles and also customize them to specific purposes. Here there were also facilities to make entirely new weapons to the AI’s specifications. It was all either automated or utterly under Jack’s control. There was no room in there for human beings – they would have been minced by the machinery.
Standing in a corridor that ran beside the bulkhead to the rear of the carousels, Cormac glanced at Blegg and smiled.

More later.


vaudeviewgalor raandisisraisins said...

Obummer's got a boner now. you filthy fuck..

this would make an awesome start for ANY novel, (as long as the thing malfunctions at some point and starts cranking out sulphur dioxide ferric shell socks). endless possibilities.

KJ Mulder said...

That scene seems very familiar. Did something similar end up being used in one of the Cormac novels?

Bob Lock said...

We need bloopers next :)

robann said...

Thanks Neal - My full identity is robert annett whereas robann is a login name for blogger... :-)

I also like the idea of bloopers (not sure how this would work for the written word though). Maybe you should do an Aunties Bloomers style xmas special. You know, with Ice-Skating Prador, Cormac singing limericks and an AI getting the 108th decimal place for a Hawking radiation calculation wrong. Ho ho ho.

Neal Asher said...

Vaude, I could see the ship AI using it as a man-mincer, or perhaps packaging people in shell cases and firing them off into vacuum.

KJ, something similar probably was - obviously this came from one of them.

Bloopers ... generally they don't get saved but deleted or rewritten.