Thursday, May 27, 2010

When I don't blog for a while... may assume that I am writing. Most recently, I have been deeply immersed in a SF/time travel trilogy with a back story so freaking complicated that I sometimes fear I’m about to pop a vessel. I should have known better—the last time travel book I wrote (Mr. Was) just about did me in. I swore I would never mess with time travel again. But then I got this idea, and I found myself thinking, Okay, just a leetle beet, just a taste, just a peek…

Next thing I know I’m at 100,000 words and counting, and the strangeness of the book is spilling into my “real” life, like, for example, I find myself at Costco hanging onto a shopping cart full of pineapples, and I can’t remember why I am there, and where did all the pineapples come from?. So I say, channeling Dr. McCoy, “What planet is this?”

I hadn’t meant to say it out loud, but this woman turns her head and looked at me.

“You have my cart,” she says.

I take my hands off her cart.

“Oh, good,” I say. “I was afraid it was mine. I don’t even really like pineapples.” I look around confusedly. “I wonder where my cart went.”

“Probably where you left it,” she says, quoting my mother.

She starts pushing her cart full of pineapples away, then turns back to me and says, “By the way, this is Earth.”

“Thank you,” I say, thinking that if she had one eye sewn shut, a metal leg, and futuristic marital arts skills, I could use her on the Cydonian Pyramid of the Lah Sept. And that if this were Costco in the year 2162, I could maybe buy a flying car. And how odd it seems that until recently cigarette smoking was permitted in nearly every compartment of a nuclear submarine, and how you can get a really good deal on athletic socks at Costco if you want to own twenty-four pair, and what did I come here for, anyway?

I never did find my cart, or remember why I had gone to Costco, but I bought a giant package of toilet paper because I knew it was something we would use eventually, then I drove home and traveled to the year 2560, when the Boggsians will develop a non-digital technology that permits post-corporeal consciousness, and the Lah Sept dynasty will finally collapse under the insupportable weight of its own tenets.

The working title of the trilogy is The Klathu Diskos. The first volume will be published by Candlewick in 2012. If you had a time machine you could read it right now.