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Category Archives: dystopian fiction

Is a Real World Dystopia on the Horizon?

"Whoever undertakes to set himself up as a judge of Truth and Knowledge is shipwrecked by the laughter of the gods.” ~ Albert Einstein First, let me be clear--I have Neil Gaimanstrong faith that our species can survive and thrive, even though we may go through some darker periods. But I have to say that when I began The Seeker series,

Why I describe my novels as speculative literary fiction

Someone recently asked me why I use the term "speculative literary fiction" to describe the genre of my novels. While both terms are used frequently on their own, they are not often paired together. Speculative fiction is a term coined by Margaret Atwood in an effort to avoid the hard-core sci-fi label (she said she needed a category that meant sci-fi without Martians). It has been used to describe a number of

Why do I write?

I recently did an interview where a book blogger asked the following question: “What’s the reason for your life? Have you figured out your reason for being here yet?” I’ve done a number of interviews before, both in my prior life as a technologist and in my current role as an author. Some questions are professional. What do you think of a certain technology trend? What's your

A Celebration of the Human Spirit

The Boston Marathon course ran past the front steps of the apartment building where I grew up in Brighton. We lived a bit after the twentieth mile, just over the crest of Heartbreak Hill. Since Patriot’s day was a holiday and we had no school, we’d go out every year and watch, a rite of spring, along with opening day at Fenway Park. Back then, there were a paltry two or three

Why I write speculative fiction

I’ve always been suspicious about reality. Is what we believe merely a reflection of how we’ve been raised and what we’ve been taught. Anyone who has traveled knows other cultures see the world differently. And anyone who has spent extended time in a hospital or war zone has learned the hard way that one’s sense of reality can be easily fragmented. We conveniently construct a world view that suits us—at least until something challenges it.

Why genres exist?

Did you ever stand in an art gallery, look at a painting and think,” it’s a girl squatting beside a bird’s nest.” Then the guy next to you says, “It’s a man walking a dog.” The two of you step closer to see who’s right, and the illusion dissolves into brushstrokes. Books are like that. Why should a bunch of letters crawling across a page evoke so much emotion? “I loved that

The plot thickens – how to start a story

Many writers have an image in their mind of how to begin a plot. First, you come up with one or more compelling characters who want something badly. Then you make it hard for them to get it. Over time, I’ve heard others talk about how they like to envision the situation that starts their story. One said he sends his characters up a tree and throws rocks at them until they
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