Fishing the Styx – Coming Soon From Argo Navis Publishing (Update: Published!)

FISHING THE STYX by Kenneth Mark Hoover Copyright 2011 by Kenneth Mark Hoover Argo Navis Publishing “Hell is truth seen too late.”  —Thomas Hobbes 1. The Leviathan    Keep going, Sayeth the demon. Past the iron shore where pale arms whip the water into black foam. Through the blast furnace radiating from the crying walls …

SWOTR: Imperial Agent Snipes Her Way to Success

Another class I was thinking of playing when SWOTR comes out is the Imperial Agent. This class kind of interests me because it doesn't depend on the glowstick for combat. Like all the other classes Imperial Agent bifurcates into two progression channels, the Operative and the Sniper. I was thinking I might like to play …

SWTOR: Consular Sage Kicks Butt in Spiffy Science Fiction Baroque Style

As many of you know I am looking for a new game to play. I quit WOW a while back and stopped playing Eve Online when they took away ship spinning. *Mark has sad face* I've dabbled in a few other MMO's like Age of Conan and Lord of the Rings Online, and while the …

This novel is a tough challenge, but that’s why I want to write it

One of the things I have to keep reminding myself is writing a novel is a marathon. Another thing I have to keep in mind while working on this new project is "Don't hold back." As I write this I keep coming up against a mental block that makes me stop, and I have to …

I remember when every SF book I read the story was new. And now….

I've read a lot of science fiction in my lifetime.  Maybe I've read too much. It seems I've reached a point of diminishing returns.  The science fiction field isn't that large. You can pretty much exhaust it if you read voraciously.  Then you move on to the magazines, but after a while you realize you're …

Flapper Talk and the Reflection of Language on Human Culture

As a writer I am fascinated by processes which shape and form human thoughts and ideas in a social context. This interests me because as a writer I feel it is my duty to present human beings in their full and unadulterated light. Therefore, as we study different cultures and ideas, we see patterns and …

Woot! My Sample Story Page on WordPress: “Portraits of Madame Skalla”

Mark here. I have included a new Sample Story Page for my WordPress blog for those who may be interested in that kind of thing. You can click the link below or find the appropriate link on the right side of my blog under "Pages." I mean, you guys know how to do this, right? …

Great article in Centauri Dreams: explains fallibility of Fermi’s Paradox, human impatience

“Lost in Space and Lost in Time: The Consequences of Temporal Dispersion for Exosolar Technological Civilizations" by Dave Moore, Centauri Dreams. Mark here. This is an excellent article. I have always believed the problem lies more with our human-centralized impatience to "find idealized Star Trek aliens" rather than the simple fact we A.) are alone, …

Suspension of Disbelief: Not the Rubicon You Thought It Was

The more I study opera the more I learn about suspension of disbelief at least as far as writing goes, and the human propensity for engaging in it. Suspension of disbelief is a big thing in opera.  It's a natural given you are to suspend a lot of disbelief so the opera can move on.  …

Audiobooks, Futurism, and the Mythical Power of Storytelling

It's difficult bringing me into the modern age. I admit that. And those who are committed to bringing me up to speed with technology have their work cut out for them. The fools. I have a cell phone. I rarely turn it on (as people in my personal life can attest) because when I do it often …

Metropolis (1927) as SF Atavism and Cautionary Tale – A Review

I suppose if you push me I will admit I prefer silent films to any other format. I mean, if that's the choice you give me. There are a lot of reasons for this. Mostly, I think, because so many silent films were incredibly groundbreaking in so many areas including writing, direction, artistic quality, and …

The Importance of History to the Western Genre

I'm still trying to sort this out. I am wondering if certain genres rely more heavily on history and historical interpretations than others. I mean, I guess that's true to a degree for any genre, right? I've read lots of science fiction stories that either A.) took their ideas from history, or B.) were set …

Method of Story and Process for “At the Center of the World”

When I was working on my hard SF story "At the Center of the World" about Russian ballerinas, high-energy physics, and the ameliorating power of love, I did a lot of research. One of the things I researched was ballerinas, and this was a topic I had wanted to write about ever since I took …

The Ballet Giselle — Inspiration for “At the Center of the World”

It was this clip from the ballet Giselle (ostensibly about a dead woman dancing with her lover) that was the inspiration for my hard science fiction story "At the Center of the World" which was published by New Myths Magazine in their #16 issue. As you might expect, one of the main characters in my …

Science Fiction Used To Be Fun. It Can Be Again.

Now that I've moved from LJ to WordPress I will, from time to time, reprint old essays of mine that appeared earlier so new readers can sample them. This was posted in my old LJ on July 28, 2010. I think it's still relevant today. Then again, as far as I am concerned, anything that …

Destination Future Interview: “Rubber Monkeys”

Mary-Grace Ellington interviewed me about my story "Rubber Monkeys" in the anthology Destination: Future published by Hadley Rille Press. Here's the link and I hope you give it a peek. I had a lot of fun doing it, and it gave me an opportunity to think about the story in a deeper way, which is always a good …

“At the Center of the World” Published at New Myths Magazine!

My new hard science fiction story about Russian ballerinas, high-energy physics, and universal love has been published by New Myths Magazine! I've always liked this story. I like all my stories but I've felt especially close to this one for a variety of reasons. I hope you like it, too. Just click the link, then …