The Spider and the Wire Wool Madness: what’s that all about then?

There are at least two stories on any one page: the one the reader generates in the reading of it and the one in the writer generates  in the writing. This is the writer’s version. Hive insects have queens whose only function is to produce the next generation. Humans have formalised this process for many animals in zoos, on farms, and in our own homes, and so we have brood mares, stud cats – or dogs or goats or horses or bulls – and ‘breeding stock’ of all kinds. We also breed our royalty so that both our kings and … Continue reading The Spider and the Wire Wool Madness: what’s that all about then?

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‘Time Like the Present’

Time like the present Arthur inspected himself: shirt, pullover, trousers (with belt), and sock. Just the one sock. The other was stranded on the end of his foot like a piece of flotsam at high tide, a pixie hat of ruched wool with a holly pattern woven into it. Bugger! Arthur took a deep breath, coughed rousingly, and geared up for another assault. Rocking himself forwards in his seat, he rode the impetus towards his target, now illuminated by a sliver of sunlight angling in between the still closed bedroom curtains. Aha – a bomber’s moon! In my sights now, … Continue reading ‘Time Like the Present’

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‘No Arrests in 2039’: you might prefer to walk home …

Out on Every Day Fiction today. Suddenly, I want to know where my council tax goes! There is actually some science behind this piece of fiction. The Google research car has travelled thousands of miles without incident (see TED talk by Sebastian Thrun), and other vehicles have been driven remotely, including one by Gadget Show presenter Jason Bradbury in a race against an F1 driver. Both cars were live on the track. This set the scene, in my fevered mind at any rate, for a virtual cab company whose ‘drivers’ operate passenger pods from call centres. Then came the idea about what … Continue reading ‘No Arrests in 2039’: you might prefer to walk home …

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Some fact with your fiction

I used to think creativity and imagination had nothing to do with science until I heard that a significant number of NASA scientists had developed their interests through reading and watching science fiction. While Gene Roddenberry was boldly going, courtesy of fantastic warp drive technology, these chaps were figuring out how to build it. So now we have scanners Dr McCoy would find handy, information tablets that outclass the gizmos a red shirt would offer to the Captain for signature, and communication devices that can access the world, not just one contact point. There’s probably an app in development for … Continue reading Some fact with your fiction

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