Realms of Light: Progress Report Zero

Well, folks, I’m starting to set up for my next serial.

It won’t be an Ethshar story — I do plan to write more of those, but not yet. Instead I want to tackle a science fiction story, a sequel to Nightside City.

The working title is Realms of Light, I’ve written four and a half chapters so far, and I’m hoping to launch it either late in 2008 or early in 2009.

So I’m getting this blog ready — why wait until the last minute? Better to take my time and get everything set up well in advance.

I welcome comments and questions.

19 thoughts on “Realms of Light: Progress Report Zero

  1. Would you like to be notified of phrases that make a professional programmer wince? Example: “like a baby do-loop” from chapter 8 of Nightside City.

  2. Oh, I’m sure there are others. I noticed myself when rereading that some of the terminology in Nightside City is a little… quaint, now. Very ’80s. And a lot probably wasn’t accurate to begin with.

    I’ll try to do better in the sequel.

  3. But to answer your question — yes, I would like to be notified of any such things in Realms of Light.

  4. I own a copy and I remember reading it, but I can only remember some of it.

    I remember something about a mind interface computer setup.

    And I remember something about it at the time where I said, no, never set up that way, too easy to send code across the interface and kill someone. Have to look it up and figure out what I was remembering.
    Have to fix that glitch, or the device would never get into common use.

  5. Yeah, there’s a brain/computer interface — Nightside City is from the cyberpunk era, and deliberately used a lot of the trappings of that subgenre.

  6. Any ideas about the mechanics of this serial (how much each chapter will cost, frequency of posting should everything go optimally well, etc.) at this point? Or is it too soon to disclose such? I’m also curious if you would be willing to let the audience know the target length before launch, in case that would help the contributions flow. Or do you think it might have the opposite effect?

  7. It’ll aim at weekly. The price per chapter will be either $250 or $300, depending — I should have that settled in a couple of weeks.

    I really don’t know what the target length is. My outline isn’t detailed enough to make a meaningful guess at this point.

    I’m going to be largely offline for the next couple of weeks, traveling, so I may not see or reply to stuff here right away; sorry about that.

    If you’re someone who hasn’t commented before, that may mean your comment will be stuck in moderation for awhile, but I will get to them all eventually.

  8. Oh — donors in the U.S. who contribute $25 or more will get a copy of the finished book; I won’t be changing that. Canadian and overseas will depend on what the postage rates are like when I start. FoxAcre says they’ll publish it in trade paperback if and when it’s finished.

  9. I don’t know whether there will be any puns or not, really. We’ll see.

    (Sorry it took so long to moderate the last few comments; I was at Worldcon.)

  10. I went thru the Nightside City book (I have it on my LWE shelf, along with all the other books you’ve written, except for the two parts of the trilogy waiting for the third part to be published, in my to read pile).

    I guess my problem was with the whole cyber punk idea. Sticking a wire into the head sounds like “fun”, but nobody goes into enough detail about the safeguards.

    1. Some sort of cut out that the human can wield instantly, or almost instantly.
    2. Some sort of virus defense.
    3. Some sort of gap to jump that keeps direct current from frying the brain.
    4. Some sort of covering to allow the human to get wet / or even to sweat!
    5. Why not Wi-fi or equivalent, why must it be a wire? For that matter, why not a helmet that does not require surgery?
    6. What about the unused 90% of the brain – offline storage? Some other use?

    Check out some of the “wire head” stuff by Larry Niven for some of the downside I’m thinking of.

  11. 1, 2: Presumably there are defenses, but they’re not always sufficient.

    3, 4: Those are there; they just aren’t mentioned. I certainly assumed them.

    5. Wi-fi hadn’t been invented in 1988, and I was insufficiently prescient to think of it.

    6. That unused 90% of the brain is a myth dating back to the 1950s; we do use the whole thing, they just didn’t have the technology to determine that half a century back.

  12. 1, 2 – true, but nobody ever mentions them. Maybe someone reading the phamplet when getting the work done?

    3, 4 – good, again the phamplet?

    5. Yup, me neither, but now…..

    6. OK, is there some of the brain not used, and if so, can it be used for some other storage? How much storage to store the entire contents of a brain?

    7. I’m thinking back to a teacher that I once had, we refered to her as a Random Access Memory with no directory. This would make a really cool “virus” or “defect” or something. Everything is stored, but you have the person jumping from topic to topic in the middle of things.

  13. Naah, the term has been around since at least the 1950s, when they thought Mercury always kept the same side to the sun.

  14. I have not seen any new info on the serial in a bit, and well, it’s late 2008 now. I take it things are looking more like early 2009?

  15. No, actually, I’ve been planning my next post here for the last week or so. I’m almost ready to go, and was preparing to say so.

    I have five chapters complete, and the basic design I want to use for the web pages is ready. I won’t be launching this month as I have a speaking engagement in Kansas next week, but any time after that is possible. I’m debating whether before or after Thanksgiving would work better.

    One possible hitch is that I’m also waiting to hear back from my new editor at Tor about A Young Man Without Magic. If he wants extensive revisions, those would take priority over the serial and might delay it.

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