Notes from An Alien

~ Explorations In Reading, Writing & Publishing ~

Tag Archives: Sci-Fi

When Two Books Depend On Each Other . . .

If you been following this blog, you know I’m working on another novel; and, that the new book happens in the same worlds and time-frame as the one I published back in 2011 (get a free copy here…)

When Two Books Depend On Each Other

Image Courtesy of Marcel Hol ~

I’ve just finished a read-through of Notes from An Alien (the first book), while taking notes to help me mesh the new plot with the older one; and, I must admit, reading a book I wrote four years ago was an enlightening experience…

I found only two typos (though eight were found shortly after publishing…) and there are only two other small corrections I’m going to make.

I also have thousands of words in other notes that I need to read for the third time; then, on to the planning and organization of the plot for Finally, The Story Can Be Told

Once I have a clean-draft, I’ll be wanting a few Beta-readers

Once I’ve published the new book, I’ll be getting back to more regular blogging—probably, Monday, Wednesday, and Friday…

To sweeten this post, let me offer some book recommendations from my favorite fiction author, C. J. Cherryh.
Read Some Strange Fantasies
Grab A Free Novel…
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For Private Comments or Questions, Email: amzolt {at} gmail {dot} com

Author Interview ~ Nathaniel Danes

The Last Hero

Let’s get rolling…


Welcome to the blog, Nathaniel. Please tell us a little about your newly released novel.

Thank you for having me, Alex.

The Last Hero starts off a couple hundred years in the future after first contact with a race of pacifists has convinced humanity to make peace with itself and disarm.

When we first met the hero, the last Medal of Honor recipient, he’s selling insurance for his father-in-law. A natural warrior, he’s made the best of a demilitarized Earth and become a dedicated family man. He gets drafted back into active service after a third race destroys the New Earth colony, forcing a crash mobilization.

As he travels the galaxy fighting the war, he struggles with the internal conflict between his lust for battle and his father’s-heart which just wants to be with his daughter. And, the law of relativity comes into play, to complicate things.

There are big space battles and large-scale ground engagements—keeps the blood flowing; but, it’s a deeper story than just action—explosion—fire fight—explosion—the end.

I understand this is part of a series or larger universe…?

Absolutely! This is book one of a trilogy. I’m already editing book two and have the third and final installment worked out in my head.

What inspired you to write this story, Nathaniel?

I’ve always had an over-active imagination. As an adult I use it as a coping mechanism to deal with my encroaching blindness. I’m losing my sight to a genetic disorder. To escape this depressing reality I like to drift off and let my imagination go wild. I watch and read a lot of sci-fi which helps to plant seeds…

Eventually, I worked this story out in my head and had to get it out.

Do science and technology play an important role in this story (or in your work in general), or is it secondary to the story-telling and characterization?

If forced to rank them, I’d have to say they’re secondary, though technology certainly does play an important role in the story. It’s just not as important as everything else.

Do you have plans to expand the universe in this trilogy?

I’ve toyed with the idea of doing another series in this universe, but it’s way too early to commit myself either way.

Do you also write short stories, Nathaniel?

Can’t say I’ve ever written a short story. I like bigger plots and deeper history than can typically be achieved in a short story.

What advice would you give the aspiring writer?

Write and read and write some more.

For most people, myself included, it takes a lot of practice before you start to develop into a writer who people will want to read.

Also, find a friend who can read your work and give honest and educated feedback.

Lastly, don’t get discouraged. Success in anything rarely comes fast or easy.

Who’s your single, most influential author in science fiction and what impact have they had on our own work?

Hands down, Joe Haldeman.

To be honest, I’ve only ever read one of his books, The Forever War; but, that’s what got me hooked on military science fiction novels.

Reading is a challenge for me and I used to read only military history. The Forever War changed that and set me on the path that led to writing The Last Hero.

Do you have any other projects in the works not in The Last Hero‘s universe?

I’ve actually already written the first two books in another series that will come out after The Last Hero series has concluded.

Nathaniel, been a pleasure—much success to you, Sir…


And—Here’s his book, The Last Hero


And, folks, here are a few more links for Nathaniel:
Read More Author Interviews
Read Some Strange Fantasies
Grab A Free Novel…
To Leave A Comment, Use The Link At The Top-Right of The Post :-)
For Private Comments or Questions, Email: amzolt {at} gmail {dot} com

You Decide ~ Which Genre Should Sell Best?

There is a poll for you to take but I have to reveal the results of the poll about polls—“Should I have a new poll every Friday?

“Agree” and “Strongly Agree” totaled 40%.

“Disagree” and “Strongly Disagree” totaled 20%

I took the idea for this first Friday Poll from the “Other” responses…

You can definitely pick more than one :-)

And, “Other” is where you can vote for genres I didn’t happen to include…

To Leave A Comment, Use The Link At The Top-Right of The Post :-)
For Private Comments or Questions, Email: amzolt {at} gmail {dot} com
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GRAB A FREE COPY of Notes from An Alien

Is Science Fiction Always Prophetic?

While science fiction can seem to always be predicting possible futures, some of it fails miserably, some nails it, and some is written so far in the future we can’t judge

I’ll quote two famous Sci-Fi writers from an article in livescience:

Ray Bradbury—“Science fiction is any idea that occurs in the head and doesn’t exist yet, but soon will, and will change everything for everybody, and nothing will ever be the same again…It is always the art of the possible, never the impossible.”

Kim Stanley Robinson—“All sci-fi put together gives you a feel for the future that is fuzzy…taken together, they give you a kind of weather forecast…”

And, even though I put my short novel in the documentary/family history “genre”, some folks, with reason, call it Science Fiction.

I’ve tried to show what a “future” world (in some other time-stream) would be like if the current rift between the secular and the religious were widened even more than it is.

For my “predictions” about religion you can check out some of my Behind The Scenes posts

For a peek at a Corporate World, read Can Corporations Actually Take Total Control of Our World?

When I was preparing to write my book, I did massive studies of past and current trends in religious and corporate power.

I attempted, in the novel, to paint a picture (some would say an allegory) of what might be possible in our future

You might want to grab a free copy of Notes from An Alien to see if we’re headed where I think we are

As far as corporations taking over, it certainly seems they already have tremendous control over many realms of human life

To see an aspect of their interference in the governmental domain (which wreaks havoc in the lives of honest working folk), look into The New York Times article, Under My Thumb.

And, I’ll quote a bit of that post I linked to, Can Corporations Actually Take Total Control of Our World?, to give yet more information about the intentions of current corporate power structures:

I want to give you a few links that might show you what some of our World’s corporations are up to and how they seem to be trying to do away with what most of us conceive of as governments

“First, an article about who the President of the United States turned to for help with the political emergency he faced: Obama banks on big business to help end deadlock.

“Next, an article about the Trans-Pacific Partnership from the Electronic Frontier Foundation about Corporate takeover of trade.

“And, last, a video about the current governmental crisis in the U. S. A. that brings up the role of the Koch BrothersGovernment Close Down – Another Grand Betrayal in the Works?

And, since the Trans-Pacific Partnership folks are trying to keep their plans secret, you might find this video Interesting

To Leave A Comment, Use The Link At The Top-Right of The Post :-)
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Why Write A Novel To Try To Help Our World?

This is the 15th post in my Friday Special Behind The Scenes of Notes from An Alien.

While I discuss various aspects of the novel, you can ask Any questions about the book in any of these Friday posts.

Though available in print and e-book formats, the novel is free to download.

A previous Behind The Scenes post called What Made You Write That Book? began the tale of why I chose to write Notes from An Alien.

I’ll continue today

About 57 years ago, this little boy spoke aloud as he walked down a city street, “There’s too much traffic!”

I never have had a long spell in my life when I was able to adjust to the prevailing cultural conditions.

The main reason I’ve identified for this malaise is the high level of materialism.

There’s nothing wrong, per se, with the material world—I happen to believe it’s a school house to ready us for an everlasting spiritual world

What’s wrong, in my estimation, is that the balance of spiritual and material is lacking—way too much materialism.

I love my computer, I like comfortable clothes, living in a safe building suits me just fine.

However, dealing with rampant crime is unnerving, dealing with folks who have no hope and act in unstable ways is creepy, having companies care more about their bottom line than my satisfaction is disturbing.

Take a moment and jot down your three most powerful pet peeves

Odds are they, in some way, arise due to an imbalance toward materialism in our culture.

My novel certainly isn’t the first to address what’s wrong in our world.

If you see it as science fiction (which my characters don’t) it’s not the first Sci-Fi novel addressing humanity’s ills.

Mine may be unique in the “solutions” offered

People scream for Justice and justice is necessary.

However, it is my firm belief that we won’t have Universal Justice until we have a general sense of Oneness on the planet—Unity, even while maintaining ripe diversity.

Make it simple—you and another person have to get along.

If you can’t find something that unifies you, ties your motivations together, you won’t get along very well, or at all

Finding what can Unify humans is the major task facing the world.

My novel explores that theme………
Read more Behind the Scenes posts…
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