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Sunday, December 04, 2016

Excerpt from my near-future SF novel coming out this week

My latest novel comes out this Thursday, December 8th -- so here's a short excerpt (namely the prologue).

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The ultimate sweepstakes, or an elaborate prank? A monumental research project, or a diabolical temptation, or both at once? Opinions differed greatly; but millions of people were willing, for whatever combination of reasons, to take part.
After all, one need only choke down an unpleasant quantity of colorless viscous liquid, and then submit to a series of scans (if indeed any scanning took place) over an eight hour period, in order to receive one’s initial payment. The sum, always in the local currency, would more than cover a dinner and a show, or a bowl of hashish, or a prostitute. And supposedly the nanoparticles (if there were any) would exit the body within a day or two.
Those who believed, or did not entirely discount, the asserted goals of the research would then enter their contact information in the growing database. If they wished, they could return for new scanning sessions once a month, to keep the recorded information current, and receive another (smaller) payment each time.
After that, it was just a matter of which lucky participants would die first.
The first few to be successfully revived in virtual form would achieve both historical and digital immortality, while their conventionally surviving families would become wealthy overnight—wealthy enough to join their pioneering loved ones, whenever their own time came. For of course, once testing was complete, those who sought digital revival after death would be paying, not paid.

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And because I'm still in love with it, here's the cover again.


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