James Leth

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James Leth

Goodreads Author


Born
in The United States
Website

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Influences
Jules Verne, Neal Stephenson, Connie Willis, Tim Powers, Dan Simmons, ...more

Member Since
November 2013


With two computer science degrees from MIT and over 30 years in engineering R&D, I try to keep the technical material in my fiction realistic -- or at least a plausible extension of what we know today.

I released my first novel, Phoenix Afterlife, in October 2015.

I am currently working on my second novel.
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James Leth I'll pass on the best advice I saw. Unfortunately, I do not remember who to credit with this, but it concerns the input you get from the readers of yo…moreI'll pass on the best advice I saw. Unfortunately, I do not remember who to credit with this, but it concerns the input you get from the readers of your drafts in progress: When they tell you what's wrong with your draft, listen to them; if it bothers them, it will probably bother other readers. When they tell you how to fix it, ignore them (politely); only you can fix it in a way that's true to the story you're trying to tell.(less)
James Leth I try to look for the other side to the story. For example, I wrote a short story several years ago about a beached whale, told from the perspective o…moreI try to look for the other side to the story. For example, I wrote a short story several years ago about a beached whale, told from the perspective of the whale. We humans see such things as an opportunity to help an unfortunate animal caught in a deadly accident. But there are a number of reasons to believe that whales may be as intelligent as we are, and it seems highly unlikely that they wouldn't know more than we do about tides and currents. This led me to suppose that when whales beach themselves, they do so deliberately, with an intention vastly different than our interpretation. The resulting story is posted on my blog at jamesleth.com.(less)
Average rating: 4.29 · 17 ratings · 8 reviews · 1 distinct workSimilar authors
Phoenix Afterlife

4.29 avg rating — 17 ratings — published 2015 — 4 editions
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A Thought Experiment

Suppose you are an employee of a huge corporation where you’ve worked all your life. The company is phenomenally successful, largely due to developing and acquiring better and better technology—technology that streamlines efficiency and automates away the jobs of many employees in roles that are …
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Published on February 08, 2020 13:22

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More of James's books…
“Fifty thousand years ago there were these three guys spread out across the plain and they each heard something rustling in the grass. The first one thought it was a tiger, and he ran like hell, and it was a tiger but the guy got away. The second one thought the rustling was a tiger and he ran like hell, but it was only the wind and his friends all laughed at him for being such a chickenshit. But the third guy thought it was only the wind, so he shrugged it off and the tiger had him for dinner. And the same thing happened a million times across ten thousand generations - and after a while everyone was seeing tigers in the grass even when there were`t any tigers, because even chickenshits have more kids than corpses do. And from those humble beginnings we learn to see faces in the clouds and portents in the stars, to see agency in randomness, because natural selection favours the paranoid. Even here in the 21st century we can make people more honest just by scribbling a pair of eyes on the wall with a Sharpie. Even now we are wired to believe that unseen things are watching us.”
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