My Problem with Fusion Power

One of the mainstays of science fiction is is the existence of a energy source like fusion. Most science fiction believes that fission power will be moved when we go to the stars. That may be the case, but that does not mean that there is no problem with fusion. I can see a lot of problems with fusion power as it is currently being developed.

Currently fusion power operates with small amounts of fuel. They achieve fusion measure the result and then the fusion goes out. I wonder if anyone is thinking about a sustained fusion reaction. In orders to sustain fusion reaction fuel must be introduced at regular intervals into the fusion reaction chamber. My problem is this what if by accident or design the mechanism that introduces fuel into the fusion reaction chamber were to become ungoverned. I can foresee such an incident happening. And on governed amount of fuel being introduced to the fusion reaction chamber would lead to an immense reaction that might not be contained by the chamber or even the power plant itself. This ungoverned reaction has a name called thermonuclear detonation.

At least with fission we have a controllable reaction that is self regulating. When producing more power the reactor allows more fission. When the demand for power goes down, the reactor reduces the number of fission. Fission reactors cannot be made to explode in a nuclear manner.

The scientist finally announce complete mastery of fusion I hope they come up with a way to control an uncontrolled reaction. Otherwise we will be able to see a thermonuclear explosion near us, and it will not be a bomb sent by our enemies. The accident that I’m speaking of maybe no accident or may actually be a true accident. Whatever the cause it will be a true thermonuclear bomb.

I do have an idea of how containment might be able to be achieved. I can envision a monitoring system was in the reaction chamber itself. This monitoring system when at the tax and unbridled fusion reaction could open ports to a vessel containing liquid helium. The Jets of liquid helium entering the reaction chamber would cool down the fusion heat and might dilute the hydrogen fuel to such a degree that fusion is impossible. After such an event occurs the liquid helium would have to be replenished and the fusion reaction chamber would have to brought up the temperature slowly.

I am voicing my concerns here not in the hopes of stopping development, but in the hopes of shaping development. I do believe that fusion will be the long-term solution to our energy needs. We have much more hydrogen than we do in the other fuel source. I just want it to be done in a safe fashion.

An Apology For Not Posting

I think I need to apologize to you all. I haven’t posted since November, and  it is my fault.  I  got a little busy. Maybe a little bit busy is an understatement. I changed the way I work when I write, and that has actually upped my productivity to the point where I can now make more frequent posts. I’m not going to promise to post to a three or four times a week. I simply will post when I have something to post that will seem to be at least once or maybe twice a week.

In further news I will be participating in Comicpalooza  in Houston during Memorial Day weekend. Myself and two other authors are going to take a dealer’s booth and we will be offering our books for sale as well as meeting all those who wish to see us. I will also be participating in  at least 2 panels. In one panel I will be speaking to the topic of the science in science fiction.

Those of you who are fans of the site  know that I like use technology to solve my problems and to allow me to work more efficiently. To do this I recently added a product from Nuance called Dragon Dictate. In fact this post has been dictated using that product. The reason for this is that my hands are not what they once were. When our younger I could do magic, now I have to dictate my magic. Writing with Dragon Dictate is a little different than writing by typing. I find that my flow is more seamless when I dictate in Dragon Dictate does the typing. I do have to keep in mind grammatical objects. So, I am finding that I am speaking more grammatically. In the coming weeks and months I’ll be writing more about my use of this product to do more writing.

Well I’ve caught you up, and I’ll give you more information about the booth number at which I will be. I am accepting a challenge from my writing friends  and shall be writing very short fiction and publishing them here on Fridays. They call this Flash Friday Fiction. The flash is that the limit is 500 words per post. That means I wanted type more words, then I will have to do a part one part two type of arrangement. So, I will see you all on Friday for my first Flash Friday Fiction.

Kindle Matchbook is live

Some readers want to own a physical book, and a copy of the eBook, one for reading and the other for when they meet the author, and can get a signature.  I never have any problems with someone who brings a copy of my book for me to sign whether they bought it at the convention or not.  They bought a copy and that is all that I care about.  I know that make’s me seem to be a bit cold, but this is a business.  There is art in it, but even artists have to make a living.

What matchbook does is satisfy those readers who want to buy both the eBook, and the physical copy together at a discounted price.  The discount is on the eBook, since margins are so thin on the physical book.

The Kindle Matchbook program is a a program where if you buy a physical book, the eBooks is discounted at least 50%.  In the case of Collision at Faraway I chose to make a deep cut to $1.99 from $4.99.  Why?  Sales, and also good feelings from my readers.

Villains are people too

I’ve read some fiction recently that calls into question how people see villains.  I want to correct these missed opportunities.  While I understand that some people feel that fantasy villains should be drawn with a broad brush.  Some of the best stories are about the villains.  Wicked is about one of the evil witches of the Oz stories.  Once about a time centers around the evil queen’s attempt to foil the happily ever after for Snow White.

So, how do you make realistic villains?  The first thing you need to get rid of is the idea that they think differently.  They are human, if they are human, just like anyone else.  They have perfectly believable motivations.  Darth Vader revealed a little of his motivations to Luke on Bespin when he asks Luke to join him.  His true motivations he hid front he Emperor.  He just wanted his son to join him and rule the galaxy together as father and son.

Some of my best story telling has been about the villain.  Villains define the hero, and how great the hero is.  When superman fights normal bad guys as he did most often in the TV series, he overpowered them easily.  Not very super, but throw in General Zod, and now he is really super.

Give your Villains believable backstories.  There is a reason for their villainy.  Find out what it is.  You don’t have to write it into your story, but it will influence how you write that character.