Volume 15, Number 03, Summer, 1997

Prometheus Project

Libertarian sf fans might want to check out some of the novels of Steven Burgauer. Since 1993 he has written and published four libertarian sf novels, and a fifth is due out soon.

Fornax (Northwest Publishing 1-56901-374-8, 1994 [Jul ‘94], $12.95, 410pp, tp) SF novel set in the 25th century concerning the discovery of FTL travel. A first novel. Available from 6906 South 300 West, Salt Lake City UT 84047. The Brazen Rule (Northwest Publishing 0-7610-0088-7, May ‘95 [Apr ‘95], $8.95, 271pp, tp, cover by D. Cude) SF novel, sequel to Fornax. A general fights government corruption in 2342. Available from Northwest Publishing, 6906 South 300 West, Salt Lake City UT 84047.

The Last American (Northwest Publishing 0-7610-0438-6, Apr ‘96 Mar ‘96], $12.95, 407pp, tp, cover by D. Lancaster) SF novel, third in The Matthews Chronicles that began with Fornax. In 2398, political intrigue and Native American demands for a homeland threaten to tear the US apart. Available from Northwest Publishing, 6906 South 300 West, Salt Lake City UT 84047.

In the Shadow of Omen (zero-g press 0-7610-0775-X, Mar ‘97 [Nov 1996], $14.95, 364pp, tp, cover by Victoria Claudin) SF novel. A rebellious woman upsets the Martian colonies of 2433. Fourth in the series beginning with The Brazen Rule. Order from zero-g press, 6605 N. Rustic Oak Ct, Peoria IL 61614; 800-643-1327.

Watch your newsstands for the September issue of Analog Science Fiction and Fact, due in bookstores July 15. “Second Chance” is a libertarian short story written by Fran Van Cleave. Readers of Prometheus may remember Van Cleave’s Christmas sf story, “For Goodness Sake,” which appeared in the Winter, 1997 issue of Prometheus.

Ken MacLeod’s third novel, The Cassini Division, set in the same universe as The Star Fraction and The Stone Canal, is due out in November. Published in hardcover by Legend in the UK, there are unfortunately no plans for a US edition.

According to MacLeod it may seem less libertarian than the previous two novels. It’s set around the socialist anarchy to which Jonathan Wilde returns at the end of The Stone Canal, and deals with the conflict between it and the Jovian AIs, who are descended from people like the more anti-humanist of today's extropians. However, MacLeod continues, the fact that it deals with a socialist community doesn't indicate any change in his view.

In the August, 1996 edition official newsletter published by Legend, the Prometheus Award is mentioned prominently on the front page. In promoting The Star Fraction paperback edition, they write:

“Earlier this year Ken MacLeod's Star Fraction was runner up in the Arthur C. Clarke Award. Now it is the winner of the Prometheus Award for best Libertarian SF Novel.” Elsewhere, Legend editor John Jarrold writes about receiving the Prometheus Award for Star Fraction. And he gets the non-left/right meaning of libertarianism correct. He also writes that "it is unusual for a British novel to win a major prize in the USA." Anyone who has read this novel would understand why it deserved this Award, and also why it ought to be published in the US.

Legend produced an attractive flyer advertising The Stone Canal, which was distributed in the Libertarian Alliance’s latest mailing. LA is a British libertarian group. The Prometheus Award is also mentioned on the blurb for The Cassini Division.

The July issue of The Freeman has an essay on Robert Heinlein, by Jim Powell, “Spirit of Liberty.” The essay includes libertarian quotes, brief synopses of several stories, a brief biography of Heinlein, and anecdotes of how his work has influenced others. It is available for $3.00 from The Foundation for Economic Education (FEE), Irvington-on-Hudson, NY 10533.

Some Brad Linaweaver news not covered in this issue's interview:

“And to the Republic for Which it Stands,” will appear in the soon to be published anthology, Alternate Generals, edited by Harry Turtledove. Linaweaver writes about Julius Caesar, whom many have forgotten was a general, and turns in a libertarian tale of this self-made emperor.

Victor Koman’s Kings of the High Frontier made it on to the Nebula preliminary ballot. This is the first time an electronically published novel has made the ballot, and there was a brief discussion of this in The Forum, which is the internal newsletter of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA).

The cover of Kings also was appeared on the New York Times web page, along with a write-up of the novel.

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