Progress Report

In my youth, I used to wonder why authors could not write books as fast as I read them. After all (so I thought at age ten) it surely does not take that long to make things up?

I write one day on the weekend and two nights during the work week, since I have a day job. This gives me, on a good week, up to sixteen hours of writing time, which is far short of the fifty hours a week a full-time writer would enjoy. (By way of comparison, Mr Charles Stross, whom I believe entered the field at roughly the same time I did, and writes in the same subgenres, has published 25 or so books to my 10 or so.)

Yesterday was the feast of St. Angela Merici of the Third Order of St. Francis (the day the muggles call 28 of January). I stared at a blank computer screen from about 1900 hours (the hour the civilians call 7:00 in the evening) until eight bells of the first watch (the hour landsmen call midnight).

I was working on my manuscript tentatively titled THE VINDICATION OF MAN, the next book in my six-book trilogy, Count to the Eschaton. In all that time, I changed one date in my notes on my make-believe calendar, so that certain events which I had noted as happening in one year will now happen in another.

So, on the one hand, I did not accomplish much for my faithful readers yesternight. On the other hand, the calendar year of the events in Chapter One is now A.D. 71200, which is the Seventieth Millennium, the second Millennium of the Vindication of Man.

By way of comparison, Robert Heinlein’s famed Future History timeline only goes up to 2100; the most future event in the Jerry Pournelle┬áCoDominium future history is AD 3047 (‘The Gripping Hand’); so I am more futureward than they.

On the other hand, the most future event in Larry Nivens’ Known Space future history is AD 120,000 Loeffler’s ship comes close enough to Hooker’s ship to destroy its life system (“The Ethics of Madness”); this is after the arrival in Known Space of the wavefront of the galactic core explosion which sent the Puppeteers fleeing in the fleet of worlds in AD 22500; and the Time Traveler of HG Wells landed in 802701; Ptath is reincarnated in Two Hundred Million A.D. in a book of the same name. So by that scale, I still have far to go.

 

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