Strange New Black Hole at the Galaxy’s Core

From the Daily Telegraph

Scientists discover strange form of black hole at the heart of Milky Way

Supermassive black holes lie at the heart of many – probably all –  galaxies. There’s one in the core of the Milky Way. Continue reading

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Process Mapping and Things

A long awaited piece of work – process mapping for a high street name – is close. While I’ve been plotting that into my diary, my middle daughter has finally, at the age of 20, cut the apron strings to home… again. Continue reading

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The New SF – New Wave Science Fiction

The New SF – Langdon Jones (ed)

Arrow Books 1971 paperback, 224pp, ISBN 0 09 003890 8

The New SF front cover

front cover

This collection is a fingers up to both the literary establishment and the normal reading public. There’s so little SF, that the back cover blurb:

From the world of Science Fiction writing there has come a totally new literature, a Space Age fiction…

is nonsense. Continue reading

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Billion Year Spree – further thoughts

Just finished The Neried. About myths, legends and homelessness; set in Blackpool.
My next piece is proper SF Core. Set in the core of the Milky Way, in the Galactic Bar. Explores the issues of lots of aliens living together —gender, sexuality, politics, alien civilisation. ETA: unknown – it’s set 30 Galactic Years in the past I should be, maybe, using something different than ETA as that implies future 🙂 🙂 – length: unknown —I’ll see how things hang after a few trial chapters.

Back to Billion Year Spree

From a world of ignorance and savagery to light
From a universe in which no one knows anything to one in which Godly awareness and foreknowledge is just the first step. Check your bearings.

The development of SF maps the growth in understanding of Western Man, suggesting future paths
e.g. step into knowledge – add what’s watching, add constraints…

The first step.
└─> Outside your field of view a gift
– to bring us into their power
– or to make us something stunted / locked / harmless Continue reading

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Billion Year Spree – a retrospective

When I start a new piece my first consideration is theme. If it’s not SF, it’ll be short and I generally launch straight into it, knowing it’ll be out of the way in a day or two.

SF poses additional considerations, for example what, exactly, is it going to be about? Have I read anything similar or, if not, Continue reading

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Back Catalogue

It’s time to go through stuff. I’ve shedloads, literally: comics, SF paperbacks, & Fantasy, Penguin Classics, PC Games (in their boxes) etc.

This time it’s my back catalogue. Continue reading

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I Hope the EU Fixes Itself

Don’t rejoice in Brexit failings. We remoaners must shape the future

(says Zoe Williams in the Guardian)

Juncker is the compromise candidate propelled to to prominence. There is plenty unremarkable about him as well as some murky areas that his supporters would rather remained murky. Continue reading

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The Last Library

Finally coming to the end of this. Back in December 2016 I expected it to max out at about 6k words; it’s now over 20k. Phew.

It concerns a wannabe librarian, fallen angels, civilisation forced to live by the rules of art, a Supreme Being (just don’t call him God), WelteMenn (men of the world)  and odd bits of dystopia.

Am still writing.

Nearly at draft.

Genre: Fantasy / Dystopia / SpecFic

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How real books have trumped ebooks

Has the Guardian identified a publishing revival?

The Guardian | Books | 2017 | May | 14: How real books trumped ebooks

Atmospheric: the Daunt Books branch in Marylebone, London.

This article has plenty of anecdote but is short on hard data.

What do I expect?

Units shifted, sales + margins, the author’s cut. Strip out the JK Rowlings — do a little market segmentation, show where e-books sit. While you’re on with that say something about how, by gaming Amazon’s book metrics, the traditional publishing model is hollowed out.

Is it equilibrium or just a brief respite?

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China’s Xi lays out $900bn Silk Road vision amid claims of empire-building

China lays claim to the world’s biggest project

The Guardian | world | 2017 | may | 14 | China’s Xi lays out $900bn Silk Road vision amid claims of empire-building

A Chinese flag flies over Tashkurgan, a tranquil frontier town on China’s border with Pakistan, which is bracing for change as President Xi Jinping kicks off what some call the most ambitious development plan in history, the ‘Belt and Road initiative.

This could  fundamentally change the pattern of  world trade. There are big challenges but, other things bring equal, this could mark a high-water mark of containerised ocean going freight. A significant side effect will be the impact on Central Asian economies which could be very significant.

An intriguing idea. I used this as part of the backdrop in Erisse of the Illyany.

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