Lunar Reality and Lunar Fiction
I began writing stories about the moon back in 2013 when the Liftport Group decided to put out a monthly magazine about their endeavors to build a space elevator, first on the Moon, and later on Earth. Although I could not contribute to my friends’ efforts either scientifically or financially, I could write stories about a thriving society on the Moon in the near future.
The magazine lasted less than a year, but my stories about Luna were well-received. They sat on a shelf until 2014, when they were picked up by Distinguished Press. A new story now comes out with every full moon.
The research I do for these stories is never-ending. I often become immersed in a thread of some fascinating detail I find, such as my hometown hero Vance Brand being in the back-up crew for Apollo 15. While researching an article about stuff the astronauts threw around on the Moon I discovered this list of man-made objects that are on the moon. Most of it is what one would expect; crashed satellites, jettisoned equipment, and mementos. Then there are the one hundred two-dollar-bills that Apollo 15 left behind. I have no idea why.
Anyone who has seen the Tom Hanks movie about Apollo 13 knows about Gene Kranz and his vests. The astronauts from several missions also played pranks on each other, such as inserting pictures of scantily-clad women in with the official documents for their peers to find. I was also interested to learn that, at the time the memorials to fallen astronauts and cosmonauts were placed, there were several cosmonauts whose deaths were still being kept secret by the Soviet Union.
Sunday, December 14, 2014 is the 42nd birthday of the day we left the moon. Eugene A. Cernan and Harrison H. Schmitt lifted off the lunar surface at 10:54:37 p.m.
We haven’t been back since.
All of these pieces of information, both trivial and historical, feed my imagination when I’m writing my stories. Although I leave the exact details of humanity’s return to the Moon purposely vague, I always strive to ensure that any real history is honored. I keep a bottle of little blue pills on my desk just to make sure the SciFi stays hard enough.
In The Cities of Luna, the Apollo sites are all world heritage sites. Locals and tourists alike visit the museums and tour the locations, which are carefully preserved. When I discover details such as the presence of water or other resources in a particular place, or the seismic activity on the Moon, it goes into a story.
Yet the stories are about the people. I’m not telling you about the moonquakes, I’m telling you what the people do when there’s a moonquake. I’m not describing how the orbital elevator works, I’m telling you how the people use it and how it affects their lives. I’m not lecturing about the two weeks of sunlight and two weeks of darkness, but the length of the lunar day definitely impacts the Loonie’s lives.
The next few decades will be interesting ones. Although I may not ever be able to travel to the Moon, that is a distinct possibility for my children and grandchildren. I can write the stories. My progeny will live them.
A writer by birth, a redhead by choice, and an outcast of Colorado by temporary necessity, AmyBeth Inverness is a creator of Speculative Fiction and Romance. She can usually be found tapping away at her laptop, writing the next novel or procrastinating by posting a SciFi Question of the Day on Facebook and Google Plus. When she’s not writing, she’s kept very busy making aluminum foil hats and raising two energetic kids and many pets with her husband in their New England home.
You can find AmyBeth on Facebook, Google Plus, Ello @USNessie, and Twitter @USNessie or check out her Amazon Author Page.
Her latest story, One Does Not Simply Walk Into Mordor, is now available at Amazon.
Varen knows better than to trust his big sister, Usra, who has gotten him in trouble more times than he can count. But of all the shenanigans she’s perpetrated, getting them stuck outside their city of Mordor, in surface suits on the lunar regolith, takes the cake.