Friday, July 2, 2010

The great read spot

Nope, not a typo.  An atrocious pun, I'll grant you.  It all has to do with my recent silence -- due, in turn to a lot of reading.

Possibly the most overused cliche of recent years, (the Mother of All Cliches, if you will), is "the perfect storm." And the mother of all storms, in our solar system, at least, is the way-larger-than-Earth-itself Great Red Spot on Jupiter.

There's no way I can write four books in a year.  Two is pushing it.  But not all books make it through the publisher's pipeline on the same time line. And so, in 2010, I'll have four books come out:

InterstellarNet: Origins
Countdown to Armageddon / A Stranger in Paradise
InterstellarNet: New Order -- due out later this summer
Betrayer of Worlds (with Larry Niven) -- due out in October

Every new book entails proofreading editorial markups and typeset versions -- sometimes more than one round.

And my 2009 titles both reissue soon in paperback  (Small Miracles [in August] and, again with Larry,  Destroyer of Worlds [in November]).  Mass market paperback reissues are re-typeset from the hardback edition.

So: I've been proofreading.  And proofreading.  And (wait for it) proofreading.  All that proofreading really cuts into my time to choose what to read (and, perchance, to comment upon in a post). 

And even writing new stuff involves a lot of rereading/editing. But that has been exciting.

I've made passing mention on the blog of a new novel in progress, Energized.  As of yesterday, I have only one major section and an epilogue left to complete. That's well enough along that I'm ready to say some more about it. Like most of my solo novels, it's a near-future technothriller.  Unlike most of my solos, parts of it are off-Earth.

In the past couple years, I went to a conference about asteroid deflection. I attended a 10-day, NASA-funded astronomy workshop for authors. I toured the National Radio Astronomy Observatory in Green Bank, WV. I watched a shuttle launch at the Kennedy Space Center. It all goes into Energized.

The new book's premise is an energy-related disaster. My disaster (no hints) is to this year's Gulf of Mexico oil-well blowout as the Great Red Spot (see above) is to a spring breeze. After the disaster, any form of power generation is on the table. The method which most drives the novel is solar power satellites. They're a *really* cool form of energy generation: for a satellite in a well-chosen orbit, 24/7 sunlight.  Only all that captured energy must be delivered to the ground ...

So bear with me if I'm a bit less blogcentric for the summer. I'm really psyched to wrap up Energized.  (And -- shudder -- I have typeset page proofs for Destroyer of Worlds in paperback to go read.)


Robert said...

I cannot wait to see what your method for beaming the energy to earth is, microwaves have been considered for a long time but their inherent danger is often overplayed. Other possibilities range from a pipeline version of a space elevator to carry the electricity in supercooled cables, to induction similar to what Faraday tried.
This has really got me thinking; now I will have to consider other options.
I really enjoy your writing (blog and book) and hope to see more of your techno thrillers in the near future.

Edward M. Lerner said...

Thanks for the kind words, Robert.

I expect to finish and turn in the manuscript this summer, but (alas) you'll still have a bit of a wait. From delivery to publication of a novel is often 12-18 months.

- Ed