Nearly Open Source

I’ve written here before about the mind-expansion that happens when I do the research for one of my stories and I’d like to share some of my experiences with you. My current subject is a story about an Artificial Intelligence (an AI to the scientific community) so I’ve been doing the requisite reading. Current book is ‘Dreaming in Code’ by Scott Rosenberg, a co-founder of The book tells the story of Linus Torvalds and the growth of the open source model of software development.

Reading about the open source idea brought to mind the story of how the science fiction genre was kicked out by Mary Shelly; when you think about it, it was a kinda open source thing, wasn’t it? For you non-scifi literati in this blogosphere, here’s a link to the drama surrounding the creation of ‘Frankenstein’ by Mary Shelley. I’ve often imagined that one thing I’d do with the substantial fortune to come from my book sales (I can dream, can’t I?) I’d set up a retreat for writers. Great books would be written there as writers meet, collaborate and stimulate each other’s imaginations. That’s all fantasy, for now but who knows? It might happen.

For the present, I hope to use this blog as a open place for the free exchange of ideas and advice. I’m inviting all who read this to reply, comment, or even guest post, if you’d like. I’m a member of a writer’s group in Buffalo, NY that nurtured my writerly ambitions for a long time. You can find them here. I’ve been away from Buffalo for some while and I hope that this blog will do something like that for me now.

I’m encouraged by all the bloggers, my writing colleagues, who are doing good work and finding the time to share their experiences, their insecurities, their successes and their expertise.


This morning I opened a message from one of you about something called the Visionary Fiction Alliance (VFA) and discovered an intellectual home. I almost couldn’t believe it. Well, I confess it; my natural skepticism is still actively contemplating the idea. But the synchronicity of my thoughts in this blog and this project on the VFA website. Imagine, someone’s got a crowd-sourced novel in the works! Unbelievable. But there it is.

About neiladaniel

Self published writer of sci-fi, fantasy, poetry, so far.
This entry was posted in linux, open source, publishing, science, self-publishing, social media, Uncategorized, writing. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Nearly Open Source

  1. Hi Neil,

    I’m Rob Springer, the guy with the “crowd sourced” Thesis novel. I found the VFA via their Facebook page, and after posting about my novel there, one of their Admins, Margaret Duarte, said they would be willing to post on the VFA home page. I’m still working on making the leap from writer to author, that is, getting published. That’s the next step after the Thesis is done: getting that novel (and the unpublished one before it) ready to self-publish (in the hopes it makes enough sales to attract attention). But like your situation in your Mayday! Mayday! post, I’m not very good at self-promotion. For all my efforts to get people to join in the crowd, I ended up with my wife and a writer friend of hers (and one unfinished post by my son) as my crowd. Enough for the Thesis, enough for a proof of concept, but really disappointing considering how many attempts I made to make the crowd a bit larger. I’m not trolling here for a new contributor, I’m just amazed at how much effort it takes to launch something.



    • neiladaniel says:

      Hello Rob,
      Amazing. I’m very interested in your project. I read recently that drm depresses sales so the idea of a collaborative, creative project naturally interests me. Is it even possible? Only one way to find out. Must confess that I’m finding it difficult to think inside the christian paradigm but I’m reading some of the other journals. I’ll jump in as soon as I feel ready. Is there a closing date on the project? Deadlines are paradoxical but I’m used to them. I’ve learned from long experience that the deadline is when you actually write the entire novel in one marathon session.


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