Somewhere New

idklfxzuud9crufwmrcvNOTE: I don’t own this photo. It comes from an i09 series on concept art writing prompts.  The link to their story is here. It artist is Steven Messing and his Facebook is here.

 

“Do you think this place will be different?”

EkOOM-13 slowly panned its optical sensors over the city. Lenses whirred, adjusting to the shafts of sunlight piercing through the gray cloud cover. Domes and curved, pill-shaped buildings glittered in the distance. Lights from assorted ground traffic flowed through the arterial streets surrounding the curved skyscrapers. The bay just past the cityscape was alive with bulk carriers trolling through the water and grav lifters thrumming toward orbit.

The android’s sensor suite scanned the area, overlaying information onto the images. Sensors were already identifying traffic patterns, analyzing air quality, and identifying potential point of recharge. Location beacons confirmed the name of the city and several landmarks – it was clearly a different location than the city the two androids had fled. EkOOM-13’s language heuristic filters flagged this interpretation of the questions with potential errors.

EkOOM-13 proceeded with its response.

“It is a different location with numerous different environmental variables,” 13’s vocalizer warbled. “Atmospheric pressure is 6 millibar lower. Relative humidity is 25 percent higher…”

“That’s not what I meant,” iOdk9 interrupted. “Are the people different? Are they accepting? Will it be different living here?”

EkOOM-13 turned its optics onto 9. Linguistic parsing algorithms tried to detect more information in the questions. There were too many errors to process.

“I cannot answer those questions,” the android said. ” I cannot evaluation questions regarding quality of life because I am not alive.”

“I know,” iOdk9 replied, turning to face 13, “but I am.”

1st Web Serial: Recovery Services

Real work is intruding on my writing time, but I wanted to start on my first serial project. It’s still very raw and I have no idea where it will go, or how often I’ll be able to keep up the pub schedule. That’s supposed to be the idea, though, try something new, make a commitment and work. Right now the title is “Recovery Services” only because I need to name it something and it’s the most fitting at the moment. The first post will be up in a moment, and hopefully I be able to set up a link so that you can narrow the posts to just this title.

We’ll see. Pray for me.

I Must Have Been Mad: About I, Marine

I’ve been trying to update the text of my e-books and set up links for them under the My Work Menu. I was reading through the About I, Marine text, and I decide that I must have been angry when I wrote it.

About I, Marine

I hate this title, but I couldn’t think of anything better at the time. I’m not really a big fan of the cover art either, because I had a much grander idea in mind… but I’m not very good at drawing. I wasn’t even hot of have my band of Marines being prisoners with guns, but it was one of those leftovers that worked in the story.

Despite all that, there are elements to this story I really, really like (as evidenced by the fact they will pop up in some of my other work).
I started working on this story in March of 2009 as a short story contest entry for a company with a military sci-fi universe. I missed the first announcement of the contest, so I had to hustle to get the story completed by deadline. Worse, I wasn’t terribly familiar with the property and the contest rules were specific about needing to demonstrate depth of in-universe detail.

The skeleton of the story is probably a tad cliché…- cause no one’s ever done space marines fighting a swarm of bugs in a trench before! I tried to balance that out by taking a deep look at some of the emotional turmoil that would be going on. I thought the idea of harsh resociliaztion training opened up a couple of cool possibilities, like the training litanies echoing on Aggar’s head.

Other than those little details, this story is basically a straight-forward sprint through the action.

Probably not the best way to open an about segment, griping about all the stuff you don’t like. In retrospect, I was almost certainly mad, because I had to crank this story out with some pretty tight contest restrictions (word count, content, source material…). I remember reading some of the winning entries and didn’t think they were much superior, of course.  That text will probably (almost definitely) be redone in the near future.

Restarting my Blog

After toiling away at real work, without spending time on my writing, I’m restarting my blog and self-publishing efforts. There’s no telling how this new effort will turn out, since last time I couldn’t even recoup the price of the domain registration last time. But hey, it was fun.

I hope to try out some new things, like writing some short fiction based on writing prompts, a serialized story, and even a fan-vote-directed story(assuming there’s actually “fans” that read this page).