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Submitted on
August 23, 2012
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Ch.1 Experiments
Year: 2284

I'm writing this, in a time that the reader might call the future. For centuries, progress had been based, and imagined, to create a fully utopian future. Well, let me just say that one cannot progress without failure. I am living proof of that failure, and have to deal with the perfection that emerged in result. The society that I call my home is not perfect; but far from it. There are the broken social classes, the corrupt governments, the misleaded predictions. Looking back on history, I understand why a lot of the predictions were made; it's because they only saw what was there, not what was coming. The past generations got a few things right though; orbital space stations shaped like massive floating wheels housing millions, smaller more personal aircraft, subsea residences, cyborg replacements for lost limbs, etc.. But what they didn't see among all of those amazing dreams was a continuously dissolving social order, and the emergence of new crimes, and new ways to "keep the peace".
I'm sitting in my home, in an eco-apartment nestled within the capital of a nation, whose government leaders I used to protect with my life. Instead, I ended up almost sacrificing myself to destroy most of them. It's funny, how a worldview and a large amount of Government goons, can brainwash you into thinking that what you're doing is right. I thought for the longest time, that all the lives I had ruined, or ended, were worth it in the big picture. I felt this way, until the nation that I lived for, took everything from me.
I live on Earth, as most humans and transhumans do nowadays. I used to call myself human, but after a few days in the Earth army- you start thinking otherwise. Humans need an intake of liquid, vitamins, and proteins to survive. Not to mention human contact and social/ cultural influence. Earth soldiers, or keepers, as the citizenry call them based on their reputation, live on a diet of Protein enhanced super foods and energy fluids. Briefing, and patrolling an ancient civilisations fair, is as much culture as most Keepers get. The Keepers are also some of the only beings not deeply rooted within the massive grid of the AI cyberminds, known as the Artilects. Most Earth soldiers start very young, and were either volunteers, poverty stricken, or orphaned at a young age. I, was none of these, rather I was caught in a rebellious mob on the Martian colony of Eden Prime, when I was age ten. I was hurt badly, and both of my Parents were killed in the Chaos, so the earthborn doctors took me back to be reconstructed. That, is when my life was turned from that of a peaceful Martian child, to a government experiment.
Intro to the sci fi story im writing, and Im really exited about this project. Please tell me what you think, and I would really appreciate criticism, THANKS
markusglanzer Aug 23, 2012  Professional General Artist
Overall a pretty nice idea. Not that new, but nicely thought. I have one or two concerns though.

I personally don't like first-person-narratives, since I think they are a crude mechanic, and tend either always to be broken (narrator knowing things, he can not know) or super-sized (narrator knows everything, but somehow needs to think/talk about everything in detail - tension goes to zero) ... but that's matter of personal taste, and therefore is not a valid argument.

I also have a problem regarding your choice of character - I would not be able to identify with dehumanized super solder X, nor would he with common people, or me. Combined with the first-person-narrative it will be tough to come up with a reasonable, believable story, someone actually would want to read. The problem is, that the narrator can only tell from his point of view, which would not be possible to understand (and feel) for people that should read it (without explaining a lot. now we have a thought chain, the protagonist could not possibly have, because he does not know the other standpoint - this leads to the super-protagonist, that knows everything, is ultimately empathic, and never makes a wrong assumption, since this is needed to tell the reader what's going on.).

Sure, it's hard to build a setting like this, and having the protagonist be on all the right places, doing the cool things to show off super sci-fi warfare, and still be a reasonable person, and understandable protagonist.

Also the concept looks like there will be a lot of flashbacks. If i have learned anything, then that flashbacks should be avoided, if possible, since it mostly breaks the dynamic and the flow of the story.

If you want some examples, how this kind of setting could work really good, I'd suggest (besides Gibson's Neuromancer trilogy) The forever war and the forever peace by Joe Haldeman.
The world that's portrayed shares some similarities with your creation, and got some interesting solutions for solving the above mentioned problem(s).

I hope this was helpful.
Thecelticfish Aug 30, 2012  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
This was extremely helpful, and I will take all of your feedback into account. I never thought about it that way, and Im just starting out so i greatly appreciate this. Thank you very much. :D
markusglanzer Aug 30, 2012  Professional General Artist
You're welcome. But i fear, i forgot some advantages of the third person narrative.

> You can switch character, and therefore show different points of view (you can do this in first person too, but i doubt, people will like it, although a found-footage style Novel would be interesting).
> You are the Narrator, and therefore can put a lot of 'word of god', explanations and anecdotes between the lines, without desperately needing to explain it. (but you're always free to do so)
> You still can add or switch to first-person narrative, using a 'Captain's Log' mechanic, any sort of monologue, or even dialogue.

Well, now it should be complete.
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