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About the author:
Martin McConnell holds a Physics degree from SIUE, and when he isn't writing speculative fiction, he's motivating other authors, stargazing, reading, or playing Kerbal Space Program. He avidly encourages everyone he meets to seize control of their dreams by driving their own plot. You can find him on twitter @spottedgeckgo, or at his website writefarmlive.com. If you would like to receive updates on his future projects, send him an email at [email protected]
What inspired you to write your book?
This story has been through a lot. It started as a short story concept for writing in present tense about a world where most people never leave the building they live in, like a city in a box. An indie startup publisher liked the premise and commissioned me for novellas, and when that deal eventually eroded I decided to rework it into a novel and put it out myself. My inspiration for keeping the story out there has really been the people kind enough to tell me they loved it. Readers can be quite inspiring at times.
The theme of the story was inspired by years of studying philosophy, physics, and computer programming, mixing esoteric ideas with hard science and hard coding. I even started working on a prototype of the "virus." Luckily, that project has not been successful 😉
Here is a short sample from the book:
I tap the little button that says THEMES, and scroll down the list. Most of the complicated ones carry a heavy price tag, but there is always some kind of special promotion happening. There it is: Shipwreck. The sample photo shows fish swimming about a deep blue backdrop with water-rippled sky lighting and steampunk accessories. But it’s still higher than what I’m willing to pay. Hard to justify on a student budget.
Freebies it is.
The menu changes, and the list fills with plain colors and design choices ranging from solids to stripes to pattern fills. The holographics can be accent plants or bits of useless furniture, like bookcases adorned with trinkets. I select Island Green, and my apartment is transformed. It’s a good day for green.
The kitchen island loses its stainless steel and granite structure, converting itself into grainy bamboo, except for the black display, which remains smooth. The other counter tops and tables in the apartment shift as well, while the wall colors itself a creamy shade of lime. Light shines from behind me, and when I turn, there’s a window above the sink overlooking an ocean scene. There’s even sand dollars lying on the beach. Overhead, a solid white skylight appears.