Greatest Game underway

Ggame cropIt has been some time since adding to my writing blog. I have been abnormally busy over the last quarter, but that does not mean I completely neglected working on my next novel. It will be called The Greatest Game, and it’s the continuation of the prelude novella Playing the Greatest Game.

Over the last few months a lot of story building has gone into GGame. Story building – by my definition – involves detailed settings and character studies, and extensive world building via contextual outlines. Such outlines, which I consider important in constructing a quality science fiction narrative, include the technology context, the social context, the economic context, the environmental context, and the geopolitical context. Altogether they influence the construction of a timeline that branches off somewhere from actual history. In Greatest Game’s case, the fictional universe diverges in 2008 with the election of President Bill Richardson.

Colorado Startram

Startram concept (©

The biggest piece in all the preliminary work is arguably the plot outline. I do think my stories benefit from having a plot outline, yet with some caveats: the outline is an evolving entity, constantly altered by all the aforementioned studies, and subject to change during the drafting and revisions processes. The biggest challenge I expect to encounter when drafting the manuscript is to effectively balance the hard and soft science aspects. Doing so was important for Waves of Reprisal, and in many ways I did and did not succeed.

For the Greatest Game, there are certain hard-science concepts at all scales that I will be including: bottom-up Artificial Intelligence, quantum computing, augmented reality devices, laser-based satellites, micro machines, tokamak reactors, an O’Neill cylinder, and a Startram.

The soft science aspects will include: economic regionalism, automation’s relationship with unemployment, population control versus carrying capacity, state control, and genetic engineering.


Not everything added in the preliminary studies will even make it to the final product. Sometimes the elements get nothing more than a passing mention. But they color a science fiction universe, and are there for potential sequels to develop into something exciting and new.


About Malcolm Little

A native of British Columbia, my interests are diverse: Working with information technologies, pursuing a second degree in applied geography, and delving into character-driven stories. My multifaceted life experiences are evident in the stories Iwrite, where balancing the hard and the soft sides of the genre are of utmost importance. My first published novel, "Waves of Reprisal", is hopefully the first of many to come. Indeed, ideas for both stand-alone and series science fiction have gestated inside my consciousness for many years. It's time to let fingers crystallize those ideas into prose and dialogue. Recently my writing skills have extended into the realm of peer-reviewed scholarly articles, with published works appearing in Nature and Canadian Geographic. From time to time I might share interesting tidbits from my ongoing research.
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