Sixth Novel

Started my sixth novel in earnest this week.  I want to try for a chapter a week.

This one will use some of the thoughts, ideas, and Gnostic themes I’ve discussed recently on this blog.  It jumps between England and America in an alternate 1939, an off-world colony circa 2305, Laon, France circa 1153, and England in a slightly-less-alternate 1946.  Rather than reincarnation, I have something infinitely more bizarre in mind that I think will go over well!

I’m really excited about this one.  If I can finish this by the end of the year, then I’ll still have a chance to get my 7th novel out by 2016 which at my current rate would give me one a year starting in 2013.  I want to keep that rate up as long as I can.

I’m starting to come around to one singular, very wonderful fact about my life: right now, I have a publisher who wants my work and will print actual paper editions of it uncensored.  There are millions of writers who don’t have that.  I may be reaching a very limited audience for now, but that’s all the more reason to start writing more and better books.  

I may be a long way from snagging a Hugo, but I’m starting to mature into something more than a dabbler.


A Thought- On The Next Great Religion

I just had a thought: the next global religion will be the one to reconcile and offer some form of transcendence not only to biological beings, but artificial ones.  Religion is a cultural institution and cultural institutions, by necessity, must be adaptive.  Therefore, by necessity, if religion is to survive, the faithful will, by necessity, have to accept a religious view that is adaptive to their predicament.

In order to be adaptive to a transhuman world, a heaven or an enlightenment merely for humans will not do; when the line between human and machine is blurred, those who seek transcendence will only find conflict and cognitive dissonance with faiths that preclude sentient machines, because the presence of sentient machines will be unavoidable.

Furthermore, this new religion will also offer a package of morals more suited to an age of advanced technology than older religions.  It must be new, in the moment, free enough to allow people their happiness but thoughtful enough to curtail the worst of human suffering.

Other religions will adapt by and by if they intend to survive, but not before they are dominated by a religious view that incorporates this important feature from its inception as a response to the changing reality and not merely in anticipation of it.  There must first be a crisis of consciousness before the new belief can arise of its own necessity, and when it does arrive, all other faiths will follow its lead.

If it is a sect of an existing religion that takes the lead, it must be a sect that differs substantially from any extant sect specifically in its widely relevant interpretation of transcendence, humanity, and morality.

I believe that the first prototypes of the ideas of this religion have already been laid down, and continue to be laid down even at the present time by many people around the world.  There will be many false starts, loads of self-destructive cults, perhaps even a reckoning with determined irreligion.  Many would-be prophets will come close but won’t quite have it.  Then it will come along, and it will galvanize the world.