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Going to be out of town next week, traveling low to the ground, so there won’t be a blog post. Just saying.

Have been planning the trip for a while, and excited to be traveling some, after staying home a little too long. Got some adventures planned this year, which is part of why I’m writing less, starting today. Basically, this is the only thing I’m writing today, and won’t start up again until March (need recovery time). Plus working with my niece on her issues, which is most of March and April, but shouldn’t stop me from the word mines.

Have been working my way into Ollie 3. Crossed over 50k words, but hit one of those major inflection points and had to put it to one side, because I was kinda already traveling in my head, and wasn’t going to finish it before I left. Instead, I pivoted some to the new project (Ivette Salinas) and got a few thousand words done there. Mostly the opening, as I start winding shit up kinda silly.

Epicly huge stuff, and I need to spend some time this week working out mythologies and histories of two other cultures. Functionally, two generations of gods, if you will, like you might get from Uranus to Cronus to Zeus. And about that scale of crazy. Maybe bigger.

Fabulous Publisher Babe™ joined me for breakfast to help with a lot of leading questions, so I could work things out.

I normally write about people. That’s why I don’t write much in the true scale of Epic Fantasy, because those are stories about kings and emperors and gods. Even Jessica was merely a warlord/demigod by comparison.

Stories about people let me keep things tighter in focus. Here, though, I need to remember to push the boundaries. I have Ivette and her (sororal) twin sister Kemena. At the same time, I need to make sure that I have gods floating around.

Been researching Cthulhu and HP Lovecraft. His gods were really just extremely powerful aliens. And there was no Good and Evil involved. (Derleth did that later by introducing “Good Gods” to protect us from “Evil Gods” but Lovecraft would have punched him in the mouth had he still been alive, I suspect.) Cosmicism, is the opposite of meaning. They aren’t evil. They just don’t care. And can’t understand us because we come across to them as insects. A bug to be squished because it is annoying them.

So, I’ve been thinking about gods. And rereading some Daniel Keys Moran, because he likes to get REALLY BIG (start with Emerald Eyes, then The Long Run, and The Last Dancer. Most recently, he’s back after a long hiatus, and telling some of the future stories of The Continuing Time).

Not doing time travel here. And limiting my gods somewhat, at least in the planning stages, to keep them from overwhelming things. Mostly, a clash of cultures. So I need to work out cultures.

And think about what a civilization might be like once you have mastered genetic engineering. I think it was Dan who made the observation that a congress of gorillas, assembled to design the perfect gorilla, wouldn’t have come up with humans.

But what would you introduce? We’re a visual species, so better eyes would be useful (deeper into IR and higher into UV, but not that far. Better range, etc.). An immune system that worked better and was less likely to be hijacked. Aging is more and more being seen as a disease that can be treated and presumably defeated, so living FAR longer lifespans. (At the same time, if you achieve true immortality, I think your culture plateaus and eventually collapses in on itself).

Faster, stronger, smarter. Etc.

Eventually, you create a new species. That’s when the trouble starts. Dan addresses it quite well in Emerald Eyes. Star Trek: TOS did it with Khan.

At what point does a new species become either competition, threat, or see itself as your natural rulers and decide to subjugate the “lessers?” (Dan calls them the Leftbehind for a reason.)

Humans being Humans, I would presume that any significant advances generate a war. Haves versus Have-Nots. If you can do it slowly, and widely, you could advance an entire species enough to not create those pressures.

How many of you think that’s likely to happen?

And, being SF, I get to ask “What if…?” on these topics, then figure out how they would shape things in the future. And what the implications are. Especially if you have technology so advanced that it is indistinguishable from magic. At least to us primitive screw heads on Earth.

Quick poll, mostly to see if any of you are actually awake and reading this: What single modification to basestock Human would you prioritize first, if you were making a “perfect being?”

I’ll catch up with you in a few weeks and see your thoughts.

shade and sweet water,


West of the Mountains, WA


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