In The Guardian, William Gibson describes his experience writing his first novel, Neuromancer.
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I was 34, a first-time parent, married, a recent university graduate with a BA in English literature. I had published a few (very few) short stories in Omni, a glossy magazine from the publisher of Penthouse. Omni paid around $(removed),000 for a short story, a princely sum (particularly when compared with science fiction magazines – digest-sized, the traditional pulps – which paid perhaps a 10th, if that). Omni left me no choice but to write more.
Their first cheque cashed, I’d purchased the cheapest possible ticket to New York, intent on meeting the mysterious human whose editorial decision had resulted in such a windfall. The late Robert Sheckley, a droll and affable man, and a writer whose fiction I admired, took me out to lunch on the Omni tab and gave me two pieces of sage advice: I should never, under any circumstances, sign a multi-book contract, and neither should I “buy that big old house”. I have managed to follow the first to the letter.
Rudy Rucker writes, "Rudy Rucker & Bruce Sterling's collection of nine jointly written stories is out in ebook and paperback: Transreal Cyberpunk!" Read the rest
Rudy Rucker sends us, "videos by Rudy Rucker and Bruce Sterling discussing their new anthology TRANSREAL CYBERPUNK: it's a thirty-year mind-warped ping-pong in which the authors are the characters themselves. As scholar Rob Latham puts it in his introduction, This book is unlike any other collaboration I know of in the field, ... the whole is not only greater than the sum of its parts, but wilder, and weirder, and more wondrous. Science fiction is the richer for it." Read the rest
I was ready to love Murder from the moment the game opened on a female police lieutenant waking from a rain-soaked cyberpunk nightmare about murderous robots, and walking out on her balcony to smoke a cigarette over the light-spattered skyscrapers of Future Tokyo. "Yes," I thought, "I'm in." Sadly, I spoke a little too soon.
Developed by Peter Moorhead, the creator behind the abandoned astronaut game Stranded, Murder is another brief, point-and-click adventure illustrated with beautiful pixel art. This time around, Moorehead promises players a "short story" that delves into some pretty lofty ideas: "the intersection of morality and sentience, in a future where both are commodities."
The moral crux of the story revolves around the sentient service robots of Murder's near-future world, and whether humans can ethically use them for unpaid labor. If that sounds familiar, it should. It's an idea that has been explored rather extensively by some very talented science fiction writers, and even trickled far enough into the mainstream to inspire a Will Smith movie. That doesn't meant there isn't anything left to say about it, only that the notion of robot sentience and the civil rights implications around it aren't exactly fresh ideas, and the mere mention of them is not enough to carry a story, even a short one.
Ostensibly, the game is a murder mystery; as Lieutenant Motomeru Minori, you're tasked with investigating a brutal killing, the latest in a string of mysterious deaths. But "investigate" might be a strong word—you visit one crime scene, exchange a few one-liners with some other cops, and that's about it. Read the rest
In this 12-frame animated gif, pixel artist Kirokaze imagines a small sliver of a rainy day in a world of "thought vigilance" and random ID checks, where a mysterious woman sips coffee and watches the world rush by, twirling a knife idly in her hand. Check out more of Kirokaze's work on Deviantart, or follow them on Twitter. Read the rest
When I saw my first issue of "Reality Hackers" -- at a bookstore I was working at in high-school -- I knew I wanted to keep reading this magazine, and made my boss place a big order for the next issue, which was called "Mondo 2000." Read the rest
Brian "DMZ" Wood's new comic from IMAGE is Starve, and issue one, which just hit shelves at your local comic shop is the strongest start since Warren Ellis's Transmetropolitan. Read the rest
How roleplaying games and fantasy fiction confounded the FBI, confronted the law, and led to a more open web
Hapheads, the incredible crowdfunded science fiction drama (previous) is about to get its NYC premiere at Games of Change, and to celebrate, the creators have put all 75 minutes of season one online as a single video, without interruptions. Read the rest
Before The Matrix, there was this, starring Beat Takeshi and Keanu Reeves. Cyberpunk's truest vision lurks not in gnostic fantasy but in the cheap mediocrity of corporate power.
Thousands of carp, iridescent sharks, catfish and tilapia have been netted from the flooded remains of the New World Mall in Bangkok, which has been collapsing in legal limbo since 1997, when judges ordered it demolished after finding that the 11-storey mall had been built on the basis of planning permission that only allowed for four storeys. Read the rest
In one week, Toronto's Postopian Pictures -- the people who brought us Ghosts With Shit Jobs and many other delights -- will premiere their crowdfunded cyberpunk series Haphead (previously): Read the rest
Jim Munroe sez, "In our webseries set 10 years from now, teenagers have learned that shaving their hair at the haptic cable's point of contact allows them to overclock their game's tactile feedback. As well as boosting the signal and muscle memory retention, the shaved stripes become a subcultural indicator of sorts." Read the rest
Before there was Sandman Slim, there was Richard Kadrey's classic, groundbreaking cyberpunk debut novel Metrophage, a Terry Carr Ace Special (the same line that gave us Neuromancer) -- now it's back in print. Read the rest
It's from the original audio edition of his seminal 1984 novel, which is sadly no longer available, though it's easy enough to find bootlegs online. Read the rest
Twenty years ago, William Barker's Schwa artwork revealed a world of alien abductions, stick figure insanity, conspiratorial crazy, and a hyper-branded surveillance state. It's now more relevant than ever.
In 2013, a group of Lego masters unveiled Cyberpocalypse, a spectacularly detailed, moody, neon-lit cyberpunk city. It's a triumph of EL wire and science fiction aesthetics, a kind of bricky Burning Man theme-camp in miniature. Read the rest