2014-02-02

Humans - will we ever become civilized?

Peacekeeper 2 now stands at 20,611 words. If you're keeping track, that's not much more than last Sunday. Working 12-hr days leaves little time to write. Even when I do have a few minutes here and there I can't take the time to jog down any words. People are usually talking to me, I'm reading ahead on the next job we are about to do, or I simply can't get my train of thought back to where it needs to be.

I've been reading Chicken Soup for the Soul: Inspiration for Writers and there are stories in this collection of people who have managed to write an entire book in 15 minute segments. I've tried and the result is that much of it gets trashed and rewritten when I have time to put it into the computer. I need silence and time to think about what I'm writing. For those parents out there who can write while the kids are running around the house screaming and your spouse is watching a show on TV--my hat is off to you!

In the news
Yesterday while playing Scrabble with my wife, I sat flabbergasted at an article that appeared in my Twitter feed. Scientists create an artificial magnetic monopole! I ignored my poor wife while I read through the article. What a fantastic discovery! We are on the brink of incredible discoveries in physics. Warp drive anyone?

I would also like to send out a congratulations to a friend of mine; Linda Nagata's self-published novel The Red: First Light is on the Locus magazine's recommended reading list. You should read this book. She is currently putting the finishing touches on the sequel.

The Launch Pad Workshop is now accepting applications! I attended this event for the first time in 2012 and had such a wonderful experience and met such a fantastic group of people that I practically begged the founder, Professor Mike Brotherton, to let me come back. Last year's event was no less enjoyable. I already have my tickets for this year and I'm helping out as a driver. If you're interested in science and want to meet a group of people you will stay in touch with for many years to come then please apply. Space is limited.

Headline
My headline is a little off my norm but it's a topic that deserves discussion. I am not a habitual watcher of the news (no time) but I don't live my life in the dark either. I listen to NPR in the car and I check out the CNN headlines at least once a day. The stories I see say a lot about humanity as a whole. We are a very diverse race with people from all extremes coexisting together. We have the ultra-generous and kind bumping elbows with the cruel and foul with every other shade of behavior smashed between them. A person leaves her kids in the car to freeze to death while having sex. Men shooting people in malls. Home invasions where the elderly are beaten or simply shot. Corporate greed running rampant and people trusted with the life savings of others becoming rich and giving nothing in return.

If you were a member of an advanced alien culture and in charge of surveying our planet for possible contact--would you recommend turning humans loose on the galaxy? My vote would be NO.

We are a technologically advanced culture with the collective mind of a six-year-old. Greed drives most of us to stab our fellow human in the back when they least expect it. Imagine, for just a moment, what we could accomplish if every last one of us learned how to behave like adults. No more murders, everyone helping those in need, tolerance of others beliefs, sharing our good fortune with those who are less fortunate. Yes I know it's a pipe dream--I'm a writer--I dream a lot. If our collective mind had matured along with our technology we would have conquered our solar system by now and may even be on our way to the stars. If there are alien civilizations out there, we would have been welcomed into their community. Poverty would be abolished and our world would be an incredibly wonderful place to live.

We are all human. That's how I think of us. Men, women, children, rich, poor, smart, mentally challenged, black, red, or white--no matter what label you slap on people we are all human. Alien races have probably turned the name of our race into an insult: "Stop acting human!" The big question is why are we like this? I do not have the answers. But at least I can try my best not to be part of the problem. A famous man once said, "I have a dream." So do I. As a writer, it's a bit more global.