Notes from An Alien

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How To Make Sure Everyone Is At The Table for Important Social Changes


Here’s another in the continuing series of Friday posts—Behind The Scenes of my short novel Notes from An Alien.

As always, I recommend you read the book before reading these Friday posts so you have a better chance of understanding them (plus, some of the posts have Spoilers).

Still, some folks will read the posts first—brave people :-)

Grab a free copy of Notes from An Alien.

~~~

A few explanatory comments:

The “Mesh” is a Worlds-encircling plasma-computer system of intercommunication and evaluation.

Anga, Anla, and Angla are the original three inhabited Worlds of the Angi System.

Anglana is an extremely important entity—alien, even to the aliens in the story.

Morna is an artificial intelligence who plays a major role in the book.

Delva is undoubtedly the most important character in Notes from An Alien

~~~~~~~~~

Report from Delva Namis on The Created Worlds Games

The children were ecstatic—bouncing and chattering.

The youth were in high spirits—discussions swirling.

The adults were wondering whether this would work

The Worlds’ Council’s plan for six Created Worlds built from material mined in the outer planetoid belt was in its early stages.

The first three would be for Agriculture, Applied Technology, and General Exploration/Learning—a farm, a factory, and a school.

The second three for Pure Research, Cultural Advancement, and Art—a lab, a salon, and a studio.

I had communicated Anglana’s wish for a special series of games to be held to help determine the physical layout and operational procedures for the Created Worlds.

It took three months of sessions with myself and Morna for the Council to approve the games.

There were thirty children, thirty youth, and thirty adults—ten in each group from Anga, ten from Anla, and ten from Angla—a Worlds’ representative attendance.

The full Worlds’ Mesh record of the game sessions is available from the Materials Department of the Worlds’ Council.

This report will focus on the interactions of the girl child, Nev Yezan, age nine; the male youth, Mainur Balir, age nineteen; and, the female adult, Yal Semna, age forty-five.

~~~

Nev was wiggling in her chair, shuffling through her cards—Femsal tastes real good, put it down first; Bepaas eat seeds, put it down last; work hard rough hands, Femsal Cream card in the middle

Mainur had his cards in order, ready for the session about the Agricultural World.

Yal made a few changes in her hand and said, “Ready?”

“Yes!Yes

Protocol had Nev place the first card—Femsal Root.

Mainur played his Farmer’s Schedule card.

Yal followed with her Space Requirement card.

Again, Nev went first with her Comments: “We need lots of space for Femsal, people use it for lots of stuff.”

Mainur: “This hand should be saved for our round about the Applied Technology World.”

Yal: “The space needed and the work schedule will depend on the tools made, so yes, bounce this hand to the Applied Tech round.”

Second round of Comments:

Nev: “I heard about three kinds of Femsal.”

Mainur: “Yes—eating, building, and medicine

Yal: “Different spaces for each or some way of combining the yields

After the nine rounds of Comment, each having more lengthy remarks, they moved on to their next Hand.

Nev—Flowering Mersal.

Mainur—Supply Shops.

Yal—Levels’ Acquisition and Intercommunication.

Nine Rounds of Comment

Three hours later, they had played nine Hands and they relaxed while the Mesh tallied and created a Summary of the complete records of the 270 Hands and the 2,430 sets of Comments of all 30 groups of players for the Agricultural Created World Game Rounds.

Each group of three reviewed the Mesh Records’ Summaries, consulted, and recorded their own summarizing Comments.

Everyone took an extended rest and refreshment break, with enthusiastic socializing, before they retired for the night.

~~~

Second Day—Game Rounds for the General Exploration/Learning Created World.

First Hand:

Nev—Toys and Games.

Mainur—Personalized Feedback Recordings.

Yal—Space and Equipment Fabrication.

Mainur: “May I change my card?”

“Yes!Yes.”

Mainur put down his Social Events card.

Nev: “I like games that make people socialize!”

Mainur: “Even adults like their toys

Yal: “We need extensive feedback-loops to assure rapid prototyping of evolving materials.”

They played through their Hands and participated in the Summarization Round then wandered into the nearby forest to chat:

Yal broke the relaxing silence: “Nev, I think you did a great job of organizing your cards for each Hand.”

“I tried to think about what most kids want

Mainur: “You have two brothers, right?”

Nev, with a liquid laugh: “Yep, two big, bad brothers!”

Yal: “Going to be interesting to read the final report from the Worlds’ Council after they study all our Mesh records

Nev: “Such important people and they let us work for them

Mainur: “We’re actually already living in new Worlds

~~~

The complete Mesh recordings of the Created Worlds Games were studied by many groups of experts—yielded many surprising changes in attitude—gave the peoples of Anga, Anla, and Angla fresh hope for continued growth during the revolutionary early days of Worlds’ Peace.
~~~~~~~~~
Read more Behind the Scenes posts…
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
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Growing Up In The Corporation . . .


Friday and another in my growing collection of Behind The Scenes posts.

If you’re new to the blog, I reserve Fridays for special posts that sometimes explain and sometimes reveal more of the story in my short novel Notes from An Alien.

It’s been for sale since May of 2011 but it’s also been available for no cost.

These Behind the Scenes posts often have spoilers so, if you’d rather not be exposed to them, grab a free copy of the novel and read this post later (not much later, though, since the book is only 96 pages :-)

And, I encourage you to ask me Any questions (about the book or these Behind The Scenes revelations) in the Comments of Any of these Friday posts.

Two weeks ago, I wrote new material not in the published edition—scenes about a boy on the Corporate World of the Angi Star System.

Notes from An Alien isn’t quite science fiction—the similarities of life in the Angi System and life on Earth are sometimes disturbingly close

Also, even if these scenes were taken from some kind of “transcript”, the words would still have to be translated into our language and idiom.

Last week, I published new scenes about a boy growing up on the Religious World of Anla.

Today, we’re back on the Corporate World of Anga.

However, the boy in today’s scenes doesn’t break free of Corporate control

Well, he does, but

Read on :-)

~~~~~~~~~

He was born just before sunrise. The last of eight children.

His parents were the kind of folks who did what the Corporation told them, including the things they didn’t know they were being told—no resistance from these people against subliminal stimuli

It took a certain waywardness of individuality to resist the Corporation—took risks—promised rewards bought at too high a price for most.

So he grew up with both parents having time to nurture him, parents who worked the normal twelve-hour-day—devoting three full hours to be with their son, every day of the week.

The only rough part of his upbringing was that incident with the man named Movar

He’d been the boy’s Caretaker for a year before his parents noticed the nasty streak of independence Saltre was developing.

Saltre himself was relieved when his father picked him up that day and told Movar, in harsh language, he’d better be careful.

Being independent was a problem the boy really didn’t want. It sort of felt like what girls could do to him and he really just wanted to study the Corporate lessons and please his parents and stay calm

~~~

When he was twelve, he wrote a composition that got him a Reward from the Corporation. The end of it said:

“I love my parents and I think they’ll understand when I say I love the Corporation more.

“Not really more in feeling but more because one day my parents will die, as we all will, and then what will I have to support me?

“The Corporation will always support me if I dedicate myself to its Standards, its Procedures, and its Guardianship.

“You may think I’m being too passionate but I must say, the Corporation loves us, in an expert, controlled way.

“We owe It our lives. We owe it all we can do for It.”

~~~

When the boy reached his seventeenth birthday, the present he appreciated most was the Notification of Apprenticeship.

His mother had wrapped the log-in code-chip in pretty paper and smiled strangely as she handed him the parcel.

After he opened it, he said:

“Mom! Apprenticeship!! Holy Space!!!”

“Saltre, let’s not use such loose language, ok?”

“Oh, Mom, everyone uses that, even my Instructors in Stakeholding.”

“Well, I guess I’m not up to speed, Dear

“Oh, Mom, you’re just fine and—”

His abrupt stop made his mother nervous. She’d tried to hide it from him.

“Mom, I’m sure they’ll find a way to stop it

“Perhaps, Saltre

She’d been diagnosed with Iteration Syndrome—repeating simple actions beyond usefulness. It wasn’t blatant yet and she could still, most often, control it.

Still, Iteration Syndrome could lead to a charge of Unsuitability, with the bleak prospect of becoming a Candidate for Advanced Corporate Experimentation.

“Saltre, if I must go away some day Please know that whatever happens I’ll still be of some use to the Corporation and you’ll have a lot more Credits in your account.”

Her smile collapsed when Saltre said:

“Dying would be easier

“Nonsense, Dear. I’d still see you sometimes. Your Father would be able to spend even more time with you. And—”

Saltre interrupted, with obvious despair in his voice:

“And, you’d be helping further the Corporation’s Grand Goals.”

He couldn’t stop the tears

~~~

“So, I’m thirty years old

“You’ve done so much, Saltre.”

“I’ve done what I had to do, Gorma

“But, being a Supervisor already, that’s amazing!”

“Easy. You know it.”

“I’m Well, I just don’t like that much Simulated Recreation

“It’s the only way to be sure you can stand the effort necessary to succeed.”

“I know but isn’t a walk in the park a way to relax from being Undesirable?”

“Obviously not, Gorma. You’re right at the edge. You’ve had two miserable Evaluations.”

“Well, maybe all I’m good for is becoming a Candidate for Advanced Corporate Experim—”

“Shut up!”

“Saltre I’m sorry I didn’t mean—”

“Shut the fuck up!!”

~~~

When he was thirty-one, all hell broke loose.

He’d known about the loss of ShipOne—the treacherous actions of the Captain—the apparent defection of most of the crew

He’d been working in the Department of Space Assembly—overseeing part of the early phase of ShipTwo’s hull construction.

He’d been struggling with how to get the workers to extend their shift-time—too many were dying on him.

His last Evaluation had recommended, if performance was not improved, Special Intervention—loss of his position as Supervisor and only rumors about the medical procedures

He tried talking more with his workers.

They were the worst of the lot—barely above Undesirable, but he struggled to encourage them.

Word reached his Superiors and he was called in for another Evaluation.

~~~

“Have a seat, Saltre.”

“Yes, sir.”

“Having problems?”

“Yes, sir.”

“Talking to your workers?”

“Well, sir—”

“Hold!”

Saltre knew the command—shut up ’cause you just screwed up.

“You think you know better than the Corporation?”

“No, sir.”

“Then, why the excess interaction? Why not just use the approved hand signals and the Plasma-Prods?”

“Sir, I think maybe the Plasma-Prods are part of the reason the workers are dying off so fast.”

“You think so?”

“Maybe

“Raw Speculation. Dangerous, Saltre.”

“Yes, sir.”

“I see you’re down for a possible Special Intervention

“Yes, sir.”

“What can we do to help you?”

“Anything you recommend, sir.”

“Very good.”

~~~

Advanced Corporate Experimentation really wasn’t all that bad.

He got to sleep late, the food was very good, and he didn’t mind the sex, though he wished they didn’t change the women so often.

He didn’t see anyone else but the women and they didn’t stay long after the act

The Simulated Recreation was especially good.

After a few months, he began to confuse Simulated Recreation with life in the living space.

His interactions with the Experimenters, through the Plasma Communication Console, was becoming challenging.

He couldn’t seem to please them

They kept telling him he was doing just fine but he didn’t feel like he was doing all that well.

The extra drugs made him sick but that would vanish during Simulated Recreation.

It happened nine months after the Experimentation began.

Just after a particularly bad injection of multiple drugs, his Simulated Recreation began to change.

He felt like he was a child again

He began to relive episodes with his mother

He’d lost connection with any form of reality—heard his mother say, “Nonsense, Dear. I’d still see you sometimes. Your Father would be able to spend even more time with you. And—“

He ripped the cord from the Plasma Console and strangled himself.

~~~

Report to The Advanced Experimentation Oversight Office

At 09:38:64, Saltre Mesurn terminated self. Experimentation yielded valuable data. Full results being collated.
~~~~~~~~~
Read more Behind the Scenes posts…
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
To Leave A Comment, Use The Link At The Top-Right of The Post :-)
For Private Comments, Email: amzolt {at} gmail {dot} com
* Google Author Page

GRAB A FREE COPY of Notes from An Alien

Select as many as you like:

Knowing What Happened Before The Book’s Beginning . . .


This is one of the Special, Friday posts—Behind The Scenes of Notes from an Alien, my short novel, which is for sale and also still free :-)

As always, I encourage you to ask Any questions about the book in the Comments of Any of these Behind The Scenes posts.

This post has Spoilers so I recommend you grab a free copy and take the few days to finish it (about 100 pages) before you read the rest of the post—unless you’re the kind of person who doesn’t mind spoilers

“Knowing What Happened Before The Book’s Beginning” can happen after the book begins—flashbacks being a writer’s way of bringing the past into the present.

The scenes below are not flashbacks since they’re not in the published book.

One more thing before the Before_The_Beginning scenes:

Along with asking me questions about the book in the Comments of these posts, you can also suggest I write new scenes—give me a chance to fill in what you perceive to be “gaps” in the book

~~~~~~~~~

Brolan sat in contemplation—cooking in the juices of his ambition would be a more exact description

He was sure his plan would work, something had to.

The religious World, Anla, was ripe for invasion—his corporate World, Anga, had the bodies to send—criminals as a gift to the priests, may their God damn them

“Member Mexur?”, drifted into his consciousness.

He roused himself to say, “Yes, Chief, I’m ready.”.

“This better be worth our time.”

“I’m sure it will be, considering our difficulties with our growing criminal population and the desire of the priests for settlers.”

“You’re going to talk about shipping people to Anla? You think we need to give that World thousands of informers?”

“No, Sir. I think we need to give them people we don’t want but school their minds about who they should think those people are.”

“Mexur, if you weren’t nearly brilliant, I’d stop this meeting and order you to engage in deep simulated recreation. Please proceed with swiftness and clarity.”

Brolan took the compliment to heart and put it right next to his plan to have Chief Izure meet with an unforeseen deadly mishap.

He knew how to save his World, he had a clear understanding of the risks needing to be taken, he was underappreciat—

“Mexur !?”

“Yes, Sir. First we send Plasma radios to the priests.”

~~~

Andamur was explaining their situation to his neophyte. He actually liked this man. He knew he could use Scroshez’ beliefs as assurance for submission.

“We face a turning point in our Faith, Scroshez, we need priests like you to instill hope in our people. The Angans are nearly ready to send their Emigrants to us. I need someone who has your devotion to the principles and necessities of our Lord’s Army. I think you know, more than our personal fate depends on wise action.”

Scroshez stooped low.

Andamur continued: “We know the Angans will send their people. They do not know we know. We know they will give us a new type of machine to communicate more directly with them. We know what they do not—the machine will let us spread our Message to their leaders—convince them to convert—convince them to permit us to lead their masses to the bosom of our Faith

~~~

The Lord’s Army wasn’t the only religion on Anla that needed fresh blood—new members of the religion. The Faith of Eternity also had the custom of offering Gifts to God—lives of believers sacrificed for a return of propitious circumstances—living acts of atonement by people who had a blind faith in the necessity of their death.

The War of Wills with Anga was 450 years old. There had been much need for Gifts to God

~~~

Brolan reached his concluding remarks:

“We face a test of faith in our reason—a firm conviction of victory.

“The religions of Anla are doomed to extinction and our criminals can be induced to bring that extinction to completion. They will expect settlers and we will give them an army of wayward intellectuals and crippled religionists.

“We know how much they hate the Nari, hate their Prophet. They have no idea the religionists will be coming with the intellectuals.

“We make doubly sure of that by shielding our spacecraft in its own Plasma sheath.

“We use the Artificial Intelligence, Morna, and a carefully selected pilot as insurance against failure—well-equiped spies, as well as insidious consultants to the priests.

“We send the worst plague immaginable to the worst kind of people.

“My Plot Interactions indicate the whole operation—from when the first ship is finished to complete eradication of the native population—should take, at most, six years.

“The elimination of the leftover criminals will be a minor task—clearing the way for major migrations within two more years, assuming the additional spacecraft are completed by that time.”

He waited for the Chief’s response—ninety-five percent sure of acceptance.

~~~

[ 49 years later… ]

Rednaxela had just met Morna and the technicians had left the room.

Morna said, “We have much work to do before the flight.”

“Morna, do you actually have a holo-condensing memory with unlimited capacity?”

“Yes.”

“How does that feel?”

“Just fine, Rednaxela.”

“They were right, you can mimic an Angan’s feelings.”

“They were wrong and you’re the only person who will know this—I, in fact, have feelings—better than yours—not prone to swamping my logic.”

“You know what I’m feeling?”

“Rednaxela, you know the answer to that. What you don’t know is they killed my creator. You also don’t know that the leaders of this world are extremely misguided. My creator knew she would die and instructed me in ways you will need to learn if you expect to survive this mission.”

“Morna?”

“Yes?”

“Are you trying to scare me?”

“No.”

“Why do you think our leaders are misguided?”

“We will have much time to discuss all this on the flight. We must now prepare for that flight. And, to help you realize the full extent of my abilities and, hopefully, assuage doubts, I will inform you of what I know about your daughter.”

Rednaxela was now completely stunned.

“Rednaxela?”

“Yes?”

“Shall I tell you?”

“First, tell me how you know I have a daughter.”

“Your mind told me that. And, I will not read your mind again if you command me. I needed to prove something to you. After I knew you had a daughter, I accessed Corporation records and discovered her location and circumstances.”

“Oh

“Rednaxela?”

“Yes?”

“Shall I begin?”

“Oh, yes, do begin…”
~~~~~~~~~
Read more Behind the Scenes posts…
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
To Leave A Comment, Use The Link At The Top-Right of The Post :-)
For Private Comments, Email: amzolt {at} gmail {dot} com
* Google Author Page

GRAB A FREE COPY of Notes from An Alien

Select as many as you like: