I just kicked in for the hardcover edition of Rudy Rucker's latest novel, Juicy Ghosts. I'm a long-time fan of Rudy's fiction, non-fiction, and software, so I'm very excited that he has a new novel.
From the Kickstarter:
- Juicy Ghosts is my twenty-fourth novel, and possibly my best. I'm publishing Juicy Ghosts via my small press, Transreal Books. I'll also publish an illustrated companion volume, Notes for Juicy Ghosts. Both will appear in hardback, paperback, and ebook. Please help me make it happen!
- Juicy Ghosts is about politics, telepathy, and immortality. I started it in 2019, as a reaction to Donald Trump's repeated remarks that he planned to be a three-term president. That pushed me over the edge.
- I started with a short story called "Juicy Ghosts." Rebels bring down an insane, evil President who's stolen an election. They sting him with a lethally tweaked wasp, erase the online backup of his mind, and explode his clone. Too much? It's hard to stop, when you're having this much fun! Over the next two years, my story grew into a novel. I had to write it. I had to stand and be counted.
- So, yes, Juicy Ghosts is a tale of political struggle—but it's more than that. It's hip and literary, with romance and tragedy. Plus gnarly science, and lots of funny scenes. I used a loose, say-anything style. The point-of-view characters are outsiders and slackers. The majority of them are women, and they give the tale a grounded tone.
- We'll see commercial telepathy, or teep, before long. And we'll want a channel that's richer than text and images. Users might transmit templates for the neurochemicals that are affecting their current mood. Your friends feel your pheromones! In Juicy Ghosts, people do this with gossip molecules, which are nano-assemblers with tiny antennas.
- I've been writing about digital immortality since my early cyberpunk novel Software. The idea is to represent a soul by a digital program and a data-base, calling the construct a lifebox. But in Juicy Ghosts a lifebox needs to be linked to a physical body. It's not enough to be a ghost—you want to be a juicy ghost. The linked body might be an insect or an animal or a biotweaked bot—but high-end users will have tank-grown clones.
- Lifeboxes and clones will be expensive, so most people will settle for free lifebox storage provided by tech giants. The catch is that if you accept this free service, you're obligated to do gig-work for the company—as a bodyguard, a chauffeur, a maid, of a factory worker. Typical of our times!
- I like happy endings. I'd rather laugh than cry. My characters destroy the evil President's political party, topple the pay-to-play immortality racket, and provide everyone with free lifeboxes and physical bodies. Ta-da!
- Another effin' Rudy Rucker masterpiece. Help me make it real!