Sunday, August 19, 2007

You Take What You Can Get

Snagged from some online promotional pdf from Tor; looks like the trade paper is officially set for March '08. The lurid red border seems to be absent this time around, and the title font actually looks quite cool; one can only hope they gave it a different colour than the split-pea soup tint of the hardback. Unfortunately the Buck Rogers spaceship is still in evidence, but I'll take what I can get.

XFire has posted last week's official chat transcript here; you don't even need to be a member to check it out. I apologise for the various misspellings. My fingers were going a mile a minute and haste made me sloppy. (It's supposed to be "trouser eel", for example, not "trouser ell".)

Here's a few more questions that didn't make it on there:
  1. MÖטζєя: Peter Watts, in your book Blindsight, you wrote I really liked that opening sentence, were you inspired by someone to write this ? I was, actually. Someone I was involved with for a few months during the copyedit stage: a very smart, possibly-borderline sociopath pharmawhore (I mean, let's face it, you pretty much have to have sociopathic tendencies to thrive in the biotech industry these days) who happened to be a masochist. It was one of those things you know are doomed going in — you know you're going to destroy the friendship you had for the sake of a few electric moments — but you do it anyway because those moments are worth it. (They were, too. Ah well.)
  2. Vanderdecken: Peter Watts, what provoked you to describe yourself as a 'reformed' marine biologist? "Reformed" sounded better than "failed".
  3. LightSol: Do you get high or drunk to get ideas?
  4. LightSol: Do you get blanks while writing a book and feel a need for marijuana or any other mind affecting drug?
  5. Xfire Moderator: Lightsol, please refrain from asking those questions. No, no, that's okay, really. Being drunk or high has never given me ideas — or at least, they never gave me any ideas that proved worth putting in a story after the hangover had cleared. However, it's given me lots of experiences, so that I can write about being drunk or high with a certain amount of authority if the story calls for it. (For similar reasons, when reading certain unnamed sf writers, I sometimes wish they had had more sex.)

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15 Comments:

Blogger Jeff said...

Thanks for posting the link to the chatlog, and your efforts in answering the questions you didn't get to.
I didn't know that you were as knowledgeable about gaming as you are. I'm curious if you've heard of a game called Bioshock that's being released on August 21st. I'd say it's similar to Half Life, in that it's an FPS with a strong narrative. It's set during the 1960s, in an underwater city created as a utopia and now having gone severely awry. The setting seems like something that might interest you, and already it's being championed by numerous sites as the next step in complex, moving interactive stories. Perhaps you should check it out.

August 20, 2007 at 10:42 AM  
Blogger Raja said...

"I'm curious if you've heard of a game called Bioshock that's being released on August 21st." -- Jeff

Heh, I just came here in part to post about exactly that myself. I've been following BioShock for a while, and last week's demo was astonishing.

*

"That said, I rather suspect I *will* be going into more detail scrambler-wise, in the future." -- Peter Watts

Awesome. Plus Vinge writing a sequel to A Fire Upon The Deep? And BioShock released tomorrow? And my girlfriend loafing about on my futon reading Snow Crash? Today is a good day. :)

August 20, 2007 at 11:57 AM  
Blogger Addiction-Rehab said...

Here's a website you may find useful. http://www.addicted.com is a site for friends, families, and those who suffer from various addictions.

August 20, 2007 at 3:12 PM  
Blogger Peter Watts said...

Jeff said

Thanks for posting the link to the chatlog, and your efforts in answering the questions you didn't get to.

No problem. There were a lot of 'em. Some guy even wanted to know my girlfriend's phone number.

I'll get to all of 'em eventually.

I didn't know that you were as knowledgeable about gaming as you are.

I don't know if "knowledgeable" is the word. One six-month gig a few years back does not make me an expert. Although I did drop in on Valve last year, at the invitation of Marc Laidlaw (who apparently is quite fond of Starfish). Man, what a life. I'd kill to break into that profession. I even have a premise for what I think would be an absolutely kick-ass video game, although I have no idea of how to go about pitching such things.

I'm curious if you've heard of a game called Bioshock that's being released on August 21st

I have. Seen the trailer, anyway. It looks — immersive. A buddy of mine introduced me to Bioshock, Army of Two, and Gears of War one afternoon not too long ago.

Did I mention I'd kill to break into that business?

August 20, 2007 at 5:39 PM  
Blogger AR said...

Uh oh, looks like your blog has its first spammer!

Deus Ex, what a great game. It did have some problems though, mainly with the AI. That's something I wouldn't mind a remake of.

August 20, 2007 at 6:30 PM  
Anonymous Dave said...

If you think Bioshock looks interesting, you should take a look at some of Ken Levine's previous works. The 2 System Shock games and the 3 Thief games are among the finest ever made IMO.

I was just totally floored by the art design in Thief, I'd never seen so much raw style in a video game before. As for the two System Shocks, they had so much influence it might be hard to notice all of the features that made their first appearance in them (Doom 3 ripped off the log file mechanism for moving the plot forward from the System Shocks, and Bioshock looks to be using it as well). Looking Glass was a great game studio and I was sorry to see them go.

Deux Ex was designed by Warren Spector, another Looking Glass alum.

August 21, 2007 at 3:38 AM  
Blogger AR said...

Oh, and something random you might be interested in: Dead Star Discovered Near Earth. Not "Oort Cloud" close, but pretty close on a galactic scale.

August 21, 2007 at 9:45 AM  
Anonymous Brian Prince said...

I will never, ever understand what Tor's art director was thinking when they abandoned those great, moody digital paintings in favor of that dismal piece of 3D shit.

And the lazy typography on the hardcover version was just icing on the crap cake.

I remember when I got the book in the mail from Amazon, my first thought was "uh, is this self-published?"

I really hope your next release gets dressed in a Martiniere, or better yet, a Mullins. Craig did some amazing wrap-around paintings for the new editions of G. Alec Effinger's stuff. Hands down the best digital painter on Earth, and a big influence on my work.

August 21, 2007 at 12:02 PM  
Blogger Redag said...

If we're peddling PC games, I'm always going to advocate Independence War/I-War, the best space combat game there ever was, and the still excellent but disappointing sequel Independence War 2: Edge of Chaos.

August 21, 2007 at 12:52 PM  
Blogger Nicholas said...

Hah, I read Ar's link as "Death Star discovered near Earth" and I got all excited. But cool article anyway

August 23, 2007 at 5:32 PM  
Blogger Peter Watts said...

Brian Prince said...

I will never, ever understand what Tor's art director was thinking when they abandoned those great, moody digital paintings in favor of that dismal piece of 3D shit.

Perhaps they were thinking, Hey, this book's gonna tank anyway, why spend any more time on the cover than we have to?

I really hope your next release gets dressed in a Martiniere, or better yet, a Mullins.

I really hope I get a next release.

Martiniere did the covers for Karl's Virga books, didn't he? Those are absolutely gorgeous. Never heard of this Mullins character, but that's a beautiful illo you linked to (albeit no one that makes me immediately think of deep space or deep sea...)

August 23, 2007 at 9:56 PM  
Anonymous Brian Prince said...

Yep, Matiniere did those covers. He's good.

Craig doesn't do as much SF as he used to, but he's done some fun stuff .

August 24, 2007 at 11:56 AM  
Blogger Rhinocrates said...

Digging myself out from under my pile of books and notes that have been Piled Higher and Deeper, I have dragged forth a bibliographic reference... Olaf Stapledon wrote a wicked novella called "The Flames" on... flames as life forms, or perhaps a deeply delusional obsessive character. Could be right up your alley interesting with a 21st century makeover...

It's in a collection, Worlds of Wonder, which may be available via Abebooks or ebay or whatever.

--Brett D

August 31, 2007 at 3:57 AM  
Blogger Rhinocrates said...

Bah, meant to put that one on Stapledon under "We Don'e Need No Steenkin' Carbon". And I used a silly name (like Hippocrates, but nosier, I guess) Drunk in charge of a keyboard again...

August 31, 2007 at 9:07 PM  
Anonymous OnlinePharmacy said...

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October 26, 2007 at 4:37 AM  

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