Tuesday, February 20, 2024

Science Fiction Writers - Ben Bova

Ben Bova in an April, 1979 interview with Charles Platt in the book Dream Makers Volume 1 had this to say about the future of book publishing: “I think electronic publishing is going to be the alternative that allows people to write books and have them published even though they are not mass-market books. What we'll be seeing in the next decade or two is the growth of electronic publishing and the elimination of paper,

Sunday, February 18, 2024

Science Fiction Writers - Isaac Asimov

In the book Dream Makers Volume 1 by Charles Platt published in 1980, some of the writers interviewed offer their thoughts about what was then in humanity's future. Isaac Asimov had this to say about the explosion in population:

My feeling is that the chance of our surviving into the twenty-first century as a working civilization is less than fifty percent but greater than zero. There are several items, each one of which is sufficient to do us in. Number one is the population problem. If we multiply sufficiently, then, even if everything else goes right, we're still going to ruin ourselves. Unfortunately it's difficult to make people see this, but I imagine that the time will come very shortly in which a third child will be outlawed, by prohibitive taxation, or forcible sterilization after the second child. Only two things will prevent this. One: if nonviolent means of reducing the birthrate prevail; in other words, if human beings choose not to have too many children. Two: if the population problem overtakes us so that the world is reduced to chaos and anarchy before we can even try drastic means.”

Saturday, January 27, 2024

Moon Hab: A Short Story

This is the first short story in my new Lunar Series which is set in the same universe, Remembered Earth, as the Cislunar Series. It will be available for reading until the end of February.

“Is the surface of a planet the right place for an expanding technological civilization?”

 - Gerard K. O'Neill


In this story (and most of my stories) I know I am using the antiquated dating system, A.D. I blame this on the book Daybreak – 2250 A.D. by Andre Norton, which I read some time in elementary school (and of which I recently bought an old paperback copy). So, I was imprinted early with that dating system and think it sounds cooler than C.E. No social, political or any other kind of statement is meant.

Chapter 1

2035 A.D.

Men had returned to the Moon only nine years before and now the first commercial settlement was starting, though it would be a pretty modest start, actually it would be just a single structure (and inflatable at that) but it would be home to several of the company's employees over the two week day of a lunar month.

Just south of Timaeus crater in Mare Frigoris the company had sited the settlement, Tima, named after the crater. Water in the permanent shadows of the crater's south wall would eventually support the new settlement. Luna Limited was one of a handful of companies that were racing to establish mining rights, manufacturing facilities, tourist destinations, and anything else that might bring in a dollar on the Moon. No one really knew what would be profitable but everyone felt that it was time to make a move.

I was above all the action, circling the Moon in the company's space station, part of the support network for those on the surface. I would be here for three months, that was a common rotation schedule, any more and the exposure to the normal radiation of space was considered too risky to one's health. Three months should be enough time to get the habitat setup and then someone else would take over the station.

Friday, November 24, 2023

Four Minute Read - Vigilance

In the following excerpt from the Future Chron Universe novella "Vigilance," a rocket
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jockey has been hired by a mysterious contact to place an equally mysterious black box on the Mars moon Phobos. Rex, the rocket pilot, doesn't much care who, what or why, but he does care about getting paid.


Rex Stamford had worked around the clock to supervise the hopper modification. He had enlisted the help of his network of acquaintances he had worked with on both Mars and Earth. The main change to the hopper rocket was the additional fuel tanks strapped like a belt around its main rocket. The extra fuel would allow the rocket engine to burn long enough to achieve a rendezvous with the Mars moon and then provide the needed retro-burn to bring the rocket back down.

Rex had borrowed the results and necessary calculations from public documents filed by other expeditions. He had enough fuel to duplicate the orbital elements of those other expeditions and rendezvous with Phobos at some nine-thousand four-hundred kilometers altitude. He had chosen a small ridge on the trailing side of the moon as his target for placing the relay station.

Rex had contracted for an expensive, made to fit EVA suit for himself, something he could keep afterwards. Even so, at no time did Roscians balk at paying the bills and he never even requested an explanation for an expense. Because Rex was able to pay a premium for all services the hopper rocket was ready on time.

Sunday, October 29, 2023

Seven Minute Read - War Through The Pines

The following excerpt is from my story War Through The Pines. It is a story of the
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first war in space. Donner is the young boy whose life is impacted by the war. Though at first he follows the news rabidly, by this time in the story he has become skeptical of what it would accomplish.

The geopolitics of the story are not mine but were taken from the book The Next 100 Years by George Friedman.


September 6, 2054

Three weeks after negotiations had begun the US used its remaining space-based assets and secret ground-based weapons to launch an attack on the Japanese-Turkish coalition in space. Within two hours the coalition's space assets were essentially destroyed. The coalition was now blind. Then the US launched its remaining hypersonic airplanes and delivered almost total destruction to the remaining military assets of Japan and Turkey. The peace talks were suspended.


Wednesday, October 18, 2023

Five-Minute Read - Whatsoever You Do

Here is a sample of the first novella, "Whatsoever You Do," in the Future Chron
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Here's the blurb:

A pandemic had long been predicted.

Now it was happening and a former graduate student, Jack Jackson, may have the key to its containment, synthetic biology. 

But because in the court of public opinion synthetic biology is feared, it has been forbidden in the money conscious halls of medical research. 

How many will have to die before they change their minds?

In this sample a CDC researcher has been sent to a hospital clinic in South Sudan. He finds there a viral infection that kills quickly but is not too contagious, yet. At the clinic he talks with the doctors and gathers a sample and does preliminary analysis but will do more complete analysis back at the CDC, if he can get back.

This is from Chapter 5 (Wesley is the researcher, Kamal is his guide). Written August 2016 and published in November:

Sunday, July 30, 2023

Rocket Season #1

I find that people who want to “change the world” really want to change the way others think, to make others think the same as they do. But people that want to improve the world want to make it better, like improving agriculture to support another billion souls, or improving medical knowledge to save another billion lives. So improve the world, don't change it. 

 -  The Great Gramps

Wednesday, July 19, 2023

Story Sample - The Lattice Of Space

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A sample of my novel The Lattice Of Space has been posted on the Story Samples page. 

This is the last of my "Robot Novels" which I particularly enjoyed because of the banter that developed among the robots. Some of my favorite characters.

Thursday, June 1, 2023

The Realm?

In cleaning up this website and trying to make a more uniform presentation I have taken out any references to my in progress story, The Realm, I hope to add back a sample of this story once I start working on it again.

Robot Planet Sample

This is one of my favorites because of the interplay among the robots. It is the second story in the Spin-Two Trilogy. Look under the Story Samples tab and scroll down.

Friday, April 7, 2023

Frozen Time Sample

I have posted a sample of my novel, Frozen Time, on the Story Samples page. This is the third novel in the Time Series Trilogy.

Friday, March 3, 2023

Time Wars Sample

A new sample has been included in the Story Samples tab for my novel, Time Wars. The first novel in the Time Series Trilogy.

Saturday, February 11, 2023

Time's End Sample

A sample of the novel, Time's End, is now posted under the Story Samples tab. It is the second novel in the Time Series Trilogy.