Where’s Today’s Story?

Today I was supposed to publish the tenth and final story of the year, but it’s not quite ready.  I need to take this weekend to perfect it before I can let you see it.  But trust me, it’ll be pretty awesome.  So instead, here’s a “preview.”

Cue ominous movie trailer music and prepare to read this in that movie trailer guy’s voice: In a world where time travel is possible and time travel journalism is normal, one man will see his own future and try to change it.  He will break the laws of causality, he will risk everything to save Earth from total destruction, and he make Talie Tappler cry.  On November 19th, prepare for the epic conclusion to the Tomorrow News Network series: “The Wrong Future.”  Staring Talie Tappler, Mr. Cognis, Secretary of Defense Zane Riscon, and introducing a really creepy guy named Vison Sedrin.

So on Monday, I promise the story will be here, and you guys will love it.  In the meantime, if you haven’t read “A Stranger Comes to Town” you should probably get on that.  There’s a bit of foreshadowing.

I can also tell you that next year I’ll be writing another set of ten Tomorrow News Network stories.  We’ll have more cyborgs, more dinosaurs, and more time traveling journalists.  Also, a special guest star appearance by Albert Einstein!  So follow this blog, bookmark it, or whatever it is you have to do to stay tuned.  This is going to be a lot of fun.

Update: “The Wrong Future” is now finished!  Click here to start reading it.

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Coming Soon: The Final Story

It’s been nearly a year since this project started.  I promised to write ten short stories, one every month from January to October.  Things fell a little behind schedule in September, so the final story is now coming out on November 16th November 19th (sorry for yet another delay).

Through the course of the previous nine stories, we’ve seen how the Tomorrow News Network operates.  They’re a news organization run by time travelers.  Their reporters show up at newsworthy events before they happen.  They broadcast the news one day backwards through time, censoring it for some people so they can’t change their own futures.  They’ve covered a lot of crazy stories, from assassinations to dinosaurs to the UFO crash at Roswell.

But the Tomorrow News Network isn’t the only time traveling news agency in the universe.  In this year’s final story–the season finale if this were television–we’ll meet the competition.

Why Should You Read Science Fiction?

I originally wrote this for my old blog, Planet Pailly, over a year ago.  Please enjoy.

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Someone once told me that people who read romance novels are better lovers.  Supposedly there’s a study to prove this.  Also, people who read mysteries have a stronger sense of right and wrong.  I suppose that makes sense.  We learn a lot from what we read.  So what does science fiction teach us?

Most people have a stereotype in their heads about Sci-Fi fans.  We’re supposed to be a bunch of overweight, pimply nerds living in our parents’ basements.  We have poor social skills, we can’t get girlfriends, and naturally, we all wear thick glasses.  Why would anyone read science fiction when it turns you into that?

Well, I say it’s a risk worth taking.

For one thing, science fiction gives us a sense of wonder.  The universe is huge and complicated, and really anything is possible.  Even right here on Earth there are so many things we don’t understand.  And with that wonder comes a sense of respect for nature, from the tiniest atom to the largest galactic cluster, and every organism in between.

Science fiction also teaches us to be optimistic.  Almost every story insists that, no matter how bad things are today (and sometimes things today do seem pretty bad), the human race does have a future.  Somehow or other, we’re going to make it, and we might get flying cars!

So go read a science fiction book.  Yeah, you might have to move into your parents’ basement, but at least you’ll know the universe is really interesting and the future will be awesome.

P.S. I said we can’t get girlfriends because, obviously, girls don’t like science fiction.  Click here if you believe that.

Cyborgs: Coming to a Planet Near You

Cyborgs play an important role in the Tomorrow News Network series.  Sometimes they’re funny, sometimes they’re intimidating… in the most recent edition of TNN, they get a little sexy.  But how close are cyborgs to becoming a reality?  Well… closer than you might think.

Mr. Cognis is works for the Tomorrow News Network as a cameraman. A literal cameraman.

Researchers at Harvard say they’ve developed a new cybernetic tissue that combines organic and electronic materials.  According to reports, the combination is so good it’s difficult to tell where the technology ends and the biology begins.  The advantage is that this cybernetic tissue can help monitor medical tests.  The disadvantage is, of course, the potential downfall of humanity.  For more information, click here.

If you aren’t comfortable having cybernetic tissue implanted in your heart or lungs–even for medical purposes–how about a cybernetic tattoo?  Lots of people are already comfortable getting tattoos, so having a tattoo that serves a practical purpose makes sense.  Nokia recently patented a magnetic material which tattoo artists can embed in your skin.  When you get a call, your skin vibrates.  Cool, huh?  Or creepy.  Depends on how you look at it.  For more on that, click here.

We tend to think of cyborgs as something from science fiction, but people today already have mechanical parts added to their bodies: prosthetic limbs, pace makers, artificial hearts…  We got used to that.  In time, we’ll probably get used to cybernetic tissue and cyborg tattoos.  We’ll even think it’s normal.  And then it will be too late!

To read more about the cyborgs of Tomorrow News Network, check out the short stories “The Opera of Machines” and “Mr. Cognis Goes on Vacation.”  You can also check out Mr. Cognis’s profile in the Meet the News Team section.  A profile for his cyborg co-worker/girlfriend, Ms. Macnera, is coming soon.