Category Archives: Fiction Writing

Epidemic of Control Freaks: “Nobody Here Gets Any Pussy”


/r/SpaceX has finally succumbed to inevitable fratricide…it will only end when moderators let Reddit be reddit by allowing participants to moderate comments through up/down voting. [Something positive did come from this nonsense: it precipitated creation of /r/SpaceXLounge.]

via retiringonmars: To anyone interested, here’s the timeline of events (times in BST / UTC+1):

  • Aug-Sept – Several differences of opinion happen within the mod team, tensions fluctuate.
  • 16 Sept – New internal procedure trial begins. Leads to a massive increase in workload.
  • 27 Sept, 19:30-21:00 – Elon Musk hosts the talk “Making Life Multiplanetary” at IAC 2016.
  • 27 Sept, 22:00 – Trialled procedure is disabled.
  • 28 Sept, 04:30-05:00 – Tensions on the mod team reach a peak, and the worst of the argument happens.
  • 28 Sept, 04:47 – Wetmelon leaves the mod team.
  • 28 Sept, 20:00 – Echo leaves the mod discussion group.
  • [interim period] – Things break, we realise it’s impossible to have a mod that isn’t available for discussion.
  • 29 Sept 14:42 – Echologic is removed from the mod team.
  • [interim period] – equally unworkable.
  • 30 Sept 09:30 – TheBlacktom is seemingly the first to comment on what’s happened, here.
  • 30 Sept 12:30 – interoth tries to make this topic a top-level post here.
  • [interim period] – I remove interoth’s post but continue to answer questions, while frantically trying to alert the other mods, so that we can release this as a proper meta discussion.
  • 30 Sept 15:30 – The shitstorm we’re in is officially revealed to the community.

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Initially that comment had about 5-6 points, before discussing pussy….

Live links used in the graphic above:

LOL, badge of honor…can’t help but wonder what these people are like in person:



This shameful ridiculous waste of talent goes on and on… 

Apparently this humorless moderation will continue in 2017:

Humans2Mars: “From Sci-Fi to Reality”

Moderator: Catherine Asaro (Science Fiction Author; Sigma Member); Panel: Geoffrey Landis (NASA; Science Fiction Author; Sigma Member); Charles Gannon (Science Fiction Author; Sigma Member); Bud Sparhawk (Science Fiction Author; Sigma Member); Tom Ligon (Science Fiction Author; Sigma Member) • Inspiring Support – Public Engagement – Moderator: Janet Ivey (Janet’s Planet); Panel: Susan Poulton (President, Door 44 Digital; former VP, National Geographic); Larissa Schelkin (Global STEM Initiative); Don Thomas (Astronaut STS-70; Author); Jancy McPhee (NASA, Humans in Space Arts Program & Youth Arts Competition); Stephen Pakbaz (Orbital ATK; Mars Lego Engineer).

Mars Landing Radio Drama of 2057: “Transmissions from Colony One”

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From their ‘About’ page:

The Story
Transmissions From Colony One is a radio drama set in the near-future of 2057. Twenty years prior, United States President Richard Thorpe (R-CO) announced the start of a “New Dawn,” a global attitude shift toward widespread space exploration. Technological advents such as fusion energy, worldwide high-speed railway systems, and internet speeds faster than ever envisioned laid the groundwork for an economic explosion, but it lacked a platform on which to occur. Thorpe gave the world an outlet for its immense wealth, asking people across the world to simply look up for humanity’s future.

In the twenty years since, the world has changed drastically. MECTI (Mars Exploration, Colonization and Terraformation Initiative) was established with the goal of starting a permanent human presence on Mars. This meant using fusion-propelled rocketry, the construction of a massive space elevator to make transportation from the surface of Earth to low orbit more cost and energy-efficient, and the creation of a mammoth space station that would dwarf today’s International Space Station. All of these things needed to be done in order for MECTI to work. Now, twenty years after the birth of MECTI, the first crew, MECTI-1, is about to land on the surface of Mars, in the flat expansive region of Amazonis Planitia. This will be the first manned mission to the surface of Mars, and the first of thousands of MECTI manned missions to the Red Planet.

Transmissions From Colony One chronicles the on-board recordings of MECTI-1 as the international crew of sixteen (eight men, eight women) conduct their mission…

Making Transmissions
In 2010, series creator John W. Richter read an article detailing NASA’s idea of having the first manned mission to Mars traveling on a one-way trip – meaning whomever traveled to Mars would remain. The thought of people making this conscious decision to sacrifice everything for the good of a mission intrigued John greatly, and the project was born.

Transmissions From Colony One is a project years in the making, at times in different formats. It had begun as a comic book series, then as a TV pilot. It wasn’t until 2012 when Zak White, a friend and colleague of John’s, had begun airing Murder on Skull Drive, a comedic murder mystery radio play. Upon hearing it, John realized that he could not only adapt this project as a radio drama series, but produce it for almost no budget whatsoever. It meant John would need to teach himself audio production completely from scratch, but it was a challenge he welcomed.

Pre-production for Transmissions From Colony One ran from July 2012 – February 2013. John quickly partnered with friend and colleague Dustin Weiskopf as story editor and creative consultant. Without budget limitations, John and Dustin realized they could be as ambitious as possible. The number of cast members doubled, and from locations ranging from Saint Louis to Los Angeles to Japan.

Production on season one spanned from February to May, with John directing every performance in every episode. In May 2013, the first audio teaser was broadcast on the website, along with the launch of both the official Facebook and Twitter pages. The Twitter page featured “Transit Logs,” daily Tweets from the fictional crew en route to Mars from Earth, which also follow the storyline of the series. On June 23, a video trailer was released, and on July 4, the 16th Anniversary of the landing of NASA’s Pathfinder/Sojourner Rover on Mars, Transmissions From Colony One premiered.

♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ Ray Bradbury on Space Exploration (2010 Comic-Con Interview) ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡ ♡

SW: One of the technologies you have been in favor of is space exploration. Why is space exploration so important to you?

RB: Because we are gonna live forever, if we go out in space, if we go back to the moon — we should’ve never left the moon — we should go back and build a base, we should go back and build a base on the moon and go on to Mars and we should put a civilization on Mars and then, 500 years from now, move out into the universe, and when we do that, we have a chance of living forever. That’s why I believe in space exploration.

SW: What should we be investing in for the future, to assure our future? What should we focus on for tomorrow?

RB: We’ve gotta reinvest in space travel. We should’ve never left the moon. We’ve gotta get back to the moon and build a firm base there, so that sometime in the next 40 years we can take off and go to the planet Mars. We’ve gotta become the Martians. I’m a Martian — I tell you to become Martians. And we’ve gotta go to Mars and civilize Mars and build a whole civilization on Mars and then move out, 300 years from now, into the universe. And when we do that, we have a chance of living forever. So our future is investing, right now, in space travel, and money should be given to NASA sometime next year to build the rockets to go back to the moon.

Brain Pickings: “Conducted by Bradbury’s official biographer, Sam Weller, at Comic-Con 2010 and recorded by Jeff Goldsmith, maker of the free storytelling app Backstory. At 90, Bradbury is as full of zest as ever, brimming with a love of life as he discusses space exploration, libraries, technology, and the importance of doing what you love. The full Q&A runs over an hour.”