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Tag Archives: Sci Fi

I can’t believe it!  Sometimes the stars do align.  I mean, just two days ago I read a Reuters news piece indicating that there are plenty of folks – public and private sector alike – that believe we will some day in the not-too-distant future be snapping up asteroids and harvesting their riches (from precious minerals to water).  And yesterday the audiobook version of popular Sci Fi author David Gerrold’s double paperback Digging in Gehenna/Riding Janis was released at Audible, Amazon and iTunes.

What’s the connection?  Well, the second story in this Sci Fi double-header written by Mr. Gerrold and published by Digital Fabulists is all about a family of asteroid miners and comet tossers.  You should check it out!

If you don’t know David Gerrold by name, you probably know his work.  His novelette Martian Child won Hugo and Nebula awards and was made into a movie of the same name starring John Cusak.  He has also authored two popular series of books — The War Against Chtorr and Star Wolf.  In addition, Mr. Gerrold has worked extensively in television, penning the iconic The Trouble With Tribbles episode from the original Star Trek series.  Aside from continued involvement in the world of Star Trek, Gerrold has also written scripts for a number of other series, including Babylon 5, Land of the Lost, Sliders, and Twilight Zone.

Here is the publisher’s synopsis of this entertaining two-fer:

A Digital Fabulists double paperback by renowned science fiction author David Gerrold! Two electrifying stories in one book: “DIGGING IN GEHENNA” Daddy was arguing with Dr. Blom again, so Mom told me to stay away from the dig for awhile, at least until tempers cooled off. That was the only thing likely to cool off anytime soon. Spring was rising, and so were the daytime temperatures. We would be heading back south to the more comfortable polar zones as soon as the last trucks were loaded and the skywhale arrived tomorrow morning. Twenty-four months would pass before the sand would be cool enough to stand on again, but nobody knew if we would be coming back. “RIDING JANIS” Out in the asteroid belt, the mountains fly. They tumble and roll silently. Distant sparkles break the darkness. Someday we‘ll get out there, we‘ll catch the mountains, we‘ll break them into kibble to get at the good parts. We‘ll find out if the centers are nougat or truffle. And some of us—some of us will even become comet-tossers, throwing the mountains around like gods.

Are you familiar with Eric Flint?  Have you read his best-selling alternative history novel, 1632?

That seminal novel launched an entire movement and a collaborative writing effort that involves myriad authors and contributors which has, in turn, grown into what could be described as the 1632 Universe.  Among the writers published via the resulting Ring of Fire Press and the Grantville Gazette is Rick Boatright who authored this highly entertaining story, The Society of St. Philip of the Screwdriver.  Better yet, this fun short story is NOW AVAILABLE as an audiobook at Audible, Amazon and iTunes.


Take a town full of West Virginia coal miners, 17th century nobility, one of the longest and bloodiest wars in history, d’Artagnan (without the three musketeers), Blaise Pascal, Rene Decartes, Galileo, Oliver Cromwell and Gustav II Adolph. Shake well and simmer for thirteen years.

Eric Flint’s world of 1632 is an amazing and complex alternate history universe that split off from ours one spring day in 2000 and 1631.

The Grantville Singles provide readers with the opportunity to sample some of our favorite stories from the semi-monthly magazine devoted to the series, The Grantville Gazette. We hope you enjoy them.

In this story, Rick Boatright’s popular character Father Nick Smithson returns. While part of the action of the story is set, as usual for Fr. Nick, in the Library, there is rather more ‘action’ than librarians are used to.

Father Nick and his associates continue their work to keep Murphy’s Imp directly in front of them lest a moment of inattention result in disaster.

Yes, I did the voice acting on this project.  It was a blast!!  I even got to use just a touch of my German (having lived there for 5 years, I still have a touch in me).   So … grab a copy using the links below, take a listen [46 mins. running time], and enjoy.

via Audible

I have to admit that I watch Science Fiction shows.  After all, I grew up on Lost In Space and Star Trek.  How could I not enjoy the genre?

Thus, I’ve been sampling the Sci Fi Channel’s latest offering titled Defiance (which also has a game tie-in).  The story synopsis from the series’ own website is below.  I won’t spend time here on that.  Instead, I want to talk about something I heard/saw in a recent episode that prompted this post.

I love clever writers.  Folks who can pull from many areas of knowledge and influence to bring to their stories more than just the superficial.  And that is precisely what the people working on Defiance have done/are doing.  In one of the scenes from a recent episode, a bus is pulling into Defiance.  This is a bus that doubles as a supply truck as well as transportation between settlements.  As the bus is pulling in, there is a radio/broadcast jockey announcing it’s arrival (reminding me of Radar in MASH).  Just before he leaves his mic to greet the bus in person, he says “I hope I get my raisins from Fresno.”  I heard that line and started LMAO.

See, I was in a production of The Music Man at Arena Stage in DC last year.  (It was a great show, a great cast, an awesome director, and a super place to work.)  But here’s the dealeo.  In the play, there is a big musical number that precedes the arrival of “The Wells Fargo Wagon” on which the new musical instruments for all the kids are due to arrive.  But as the townspeople sing about their excitement over the wagon’s arrival, they mention lots of other things they have gotten and hope to get via the Wells Fargo Wagon.  And, yes, one of the lines sung is “I hope I get my raisins from Fresno.”  LOL

How awesome is that!  Thank you, Sci Fi Channel, for melding together two facets of my own life seamlessly.

Defiance: A Synopsis

In the year 2046, it’s a new Earth – with new rules. Over thirty years after various alien races arrived on Earth, the landscape is completely altered, terraformed nearly beyond recognition. To the town of Defiance, on what used to be St. Louis, comes the mysterious Nolan (Grant Bowler) and his charge, Irisa (Stephanie Leonidas). As they settle into town – overseen by the mayor, Amanda Rosewater (Julie Benz) and filled with residents like the powerful Rafe McCawley (Graham Greene), enterprising lounge owner Kenya (Mia Kirshner) and the ambitious, alien Tarrs (Tony Curran and Jaime Murray) – events begin to unfold that threaten the fragile peace this border town has fought for.


As the events of Defiance unfold weekly on your TV screen, you can see how the residents’ struggles impact the game of Defiance, a high-octane, multi-platform experience from Trion Worlds! For the first time in history, a TV show and a game will exist concurrently in a shared universe, influencing and impacting the other!

Here I am narrating yet another story for young readers.  This one, however, is for grades 5-8.  It’s The Roar by Emma Clayton.

Here is how the author herself summarizes the story –
In an overpopulated world where all signs of nature have been obliterated and a wall has been erected to keep out plague-ridden animals, twelve-year-old Mika refuses to believe that his twin sister was killed after being abducted, and continues to search for her in spite of the dangers he faces in doing so.

And I have to say that I am enjoying the story.  I’m a sci-fi fan anyway, so I’m an easy audience.  I will admit that there are many elements in this story I’ve seen elsewhere previously – such as borgs (albeit used in a different way than in the Star Trek franchise).  But, as they say, there’s nothing new under the sun.  So the trick is to put it all together in an interesting way.  In this case: so far, so good.  I’m only half way through right now.  Still, I think if you know someone in the recommended ages who is interested in sci-fi but isn’t completely jaded by all the video games and futuristic cartoons, this could be a good book for them.

This is Emma Clayton’s first book.  Nice work, Ms. Clayton!  I’m sure we’ll be seeing other works from you in the future.