It’s a question I get all the time: will you ever write an IGC story? A sort of autobiographical account of your time as an agent of the Intergalactic Coalition, with special emphasis on your last six thousand years or so of service here on Earth?
Full disclosure: I don’t actually receive that question often. Actually, I have yet to receive any questions through the site about my writing, and the main question I get from those I speak with in person about my writing is “when will the rough draft of the second Fo’Fonas novel be done?” However, it is something I have thought about, and a question that seems like it would spring from how I’ve set this site up. With the idea being that this is a sort of “publishing house,” and my rather unusual “About the Author,” it wouldn’t be a stretch to think that IGC Publishing might one day publish an IGC story.
On multiple occasions I have set out to write an IGC story like this, in various forms. None of them have gotten more than a few pages in before I lost the momentum and was dissatisfied with the attempt. There is a reason that the vast majority of my writing is alternative world; even most of my science fiction is set in alternate universes where I don’t have to worry about figuring out how Earth and humanity will have evolved over the course of some number of centuries or millennia in space. This is partially laziness, I suppose, but mostly it’s because it leaves the story less burdened by thousands of years of shared history between the reader and the author.
There are a couple of exceptions, but they are some of the harder stories I am seeking to write. One is Computer Consciousness, which aside from needing a slightly less banal title is a near-future hard science fiction about a conscious computer (I know, you weren’t expecting that at all from the title). The core concepts of the story – a conscious computer system exists within the internet and interacts with the main character in some way – I have been trying to write since I was in middle school. In college I was able to get a start on this story, and although the draft was imperfect, it was a good start. Unfortunately, I only got through about the first 1/3rd of the novel draft. It has since sat on my computer, and I haven’t been quite sure how to carry it forward yet. I hope that eventually I will have the authorial skill to finish it.
The other exception would be Gods and Men, which we’ve posted about before. This one is a post-apocalypse novel of sorts, which provides a little more flexibility even within the “real world,” but even so it is proving more challenging than other stories to write. When Allon is going to events in real buildings, I have to make sure that I describe those buildings accurately, or people will know if I’ve never been there. Discrepancies in tiny details that in an alternative world I could simply make up as I go have to be carefully researched and resolved when dealing with the real world. Distancing and travel times have to be accurate, and numerous other facts must be researched and implemented to make this story work – all while also explaining the differences resulting from the arrival of the immortals.
All of this is quite off-topic from the idea of an IGC story. The short answer to the question is no. There is no master plan to make all of my writing fit into a single IGC framework, or to write my “autobiography.” So if and when someone actually were to ask me that question, here is the answer.