Looking on unemployment’s bright side

Sci fi has always been my chief fascination/obsession. It must’ve all started with Star Wars, but The Transformers and Voltron definitely did their part when I was still but a wee lad, as did Spaceballs and Flash Gordon. By the time I was reading chapter books it was, naturally, Frank Herbert and Arthur C. Clarke. Those two carried me through college (with a little help from David Lynch and Stanley Kubrik, of course). Orwell was a titan in my universe as well (I prefer Terry Gilliam’s take on 1984 to Michael Radford’s, but was enraptured by both).

I started off as a computer science major at UT-Austin but eventually decided that studying English was a better way to qualify myself for a career writing for video games, which was how I had decided to sustain myself while scribing my own SF masterpieces. I worked on my first manuscript in Austin for a couple years after college while writing business information for a website by day. I moved out to the Bay Area about five years ago, where I finished my first novel.

I also got my Masters degree in English from San Jose State University, where I had the privilege of being the teaching assistant for an undergraduate course on sci-fi literature. I taught a whole new generation of sci-fi geeks both Orwell and Clarke! (Herbert didn’t make the cut, though the professor had thought long and hard about that decision, he assured me.)

My novel has yet to see the light of day – it’s really just the first of a four-part series, naturally – but I did manage to finally land a job writing for video games. For the past year and a half I’ve been working at Perpetual Entertainment, and among other duties I had the honor of writing various feature articles and press announcements for Star Trek Online, an MMO being developed by Perpetual that is set entirely in the Trek universe. I really was pretty much in heaven, until another game the company was developing got axed and they laid off half the workforce, me included.

I have plenty of free time now that I’m unemployed, which is pretty cool because I’ve been wanting to finally finish Peter F. Hamilton’s Night’s Dawn series for a while now, and I’ve been re-watching all of the Firefly DVDs ever since I heard the latest rumors that a Serenity sequel might actually get made. Now I can do both.

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