A question for Martin Westlake

Q: What’s an idea you’re dying to write but haven’t, and why?

A: I am fascinated by the themes Stanislav Lem explored so intriguingly in ‘contact’ works such as The Invincible and Solaris. High intelligences that (pace Ted Chiang’s “Story of Your Life”) are unable to communicate. Ostensibly sophisticated animal life forms that turn out to be mechanical. Phenomena that cannot be understood – at least not on human terms. I have been developing an idea for a story about a gradual parasitic invasion/colonisation of Earth that humankind cannot comprehend because it is occurring on such a lengthy time scale as to be imperceptible or unremarked. By definition, that puts the story far beyond any normal literary narrative cycle (beyond the life spans of characters, for example), which is a big challenge.


Martin Westlake’s story “Going Home
in Metaphorosis Friday, 12 March 2021.
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More about Chris Cornetto

Chris Cornetto is a physics teacher by day and writer by night. In addition to physics, he has degrees in chemistry, philosophy, and psychology. He likes exploring ethical questions through fantasy settings, and enjoys long walks with small dogs.


Chris Cornetto’s story “Sanctuary
in Metaphorosis Friday, 19 March 2021.
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A question for V.G. Campen

Q: How does writing speculative fiction affect your daily life (not as a writer but as a person)?

A: Writing speculative fiction—and reading the works of others—is like calisthenics for the imagination. It opens the mind to the fantastic. What if the weather were sentient? What if whales abandoned the ocean for the skies? On a deeper level, writing speculative fiction has increased my curiosity about, and empathy for, other members of the contrary species known as Homo sapiens.


V.G. Campen’s story “Spells for Going Forth by Day
in Metaphorosis Friday, 5 March 2021.
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About Martin Westlake

Martin Westlake has followed parallel careers as a civil servant and as an academic and has lived, studied, and worked in the UK, Italy, France, and Belgium. The only thing he has ever always wanted to do is write creative fiction. Science fiction exercises a special, but not exclusive, attraction in that regard. For the past fifteen years he has been working seriously at it and he thinks maybe he is starting to get there.

martinwestlake.eu, @MartinWestlake


Martin Westlake’s story “Going Home
in Metaphorosis Friday, 12 March 2021.
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A question for C.M. Fields

Q: What is the hardest part of writing for you?

A: The hardest part of writing for me is trying to take the cold, abstract tenets of hard sci-fi and imbue them with life and vibrancy. I have always enjoyed the notions of Asimov and Bradbury, but as a queer writer, I felt alienated by their treatment of social issues. My goal is to write stories based around the old canon of science-based fiction but with lush imagery and moderns ideals and queer characters.


C.M. Fields’s story “Reach for Your Ocean Heart
in Metaphorosis Friday, 26 February 2021.
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About V.G. Campen

V.G. Campen is an introvert who has learned to act like an extrovert. She lives in North Carolina with one spouse, numerous animals, and an alter-ego who writes horror.


V.G. Campen’s story “Spells for Going Forth by Day
in Metaphorosis Friday, 5 March 2021.
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