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A Guide to First Contact
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Terence Park (Archie_TP) | 3 comments Hi.

I live in Rossendale and consider myself a UK writer (hell, I attend Writing Groups there... you can also find me on the blogging platform of the Daily Telegraph at: http://my.telegraph.co.uk/archietp/

First things first; A Guide to First Contact is free to download between between October 21st and the 25th, 2014.

A Guide to First Contact by Terence Park

US link
UK link

It is EPIC so if you want pokey little tales about Mrs Mogg's mouse mess, you'll need a different book. In this one I'm dealing with God, the Rapture, evolution, the collapse of the West and all those other things that might happen at apocalypse time.

The title is an ironic play on words – however there actually is a guide, which does deal with alien first contact.

Okay, enough explanation; time for blurb.

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Brent has a problem. He doesn’t fit. The woman he fancies heads up a research team. They’re busy looking into genetics; the history of man. But the story doesn’t start there; it begins long, long ago; in the Late Pleistocene; just when aliens were planning the next phase in Earth’s development.
Back in the present day, Brent’s long-time buddy, Watcher, bails him out again. Brent’s got a degree in haplessness – from the College of Life. The thing is, Watcher’s into stuff like conspiracies. Be careful Brent or you’ll be sucked in and when you’re spat out, you’ll be hung up to dry.
Forty years later, the West has collapsed and the apocalypse is in full swing. What happened? Earth was contacted by aliens, triggering a rapture effect. No one has worked out what to do with the undying flesh of the undead. Xenogens – genetic plagues in all but name – are currently raging out of control. Catch one and you degenerate into a dangerous, sub-human brute. Most cities are abandoned as unsafe; they’re known as former urban areas. The problem with dangerous, sub-human brutes is they’re xenogen carriers. Former Urban Area One (former New York) is crawling of them. Triste prowls its streets. There’s always work for a mercenary
Watch out Triste; something wicked is coming.
The thing is, heroes never listen. Triste meets Shoe. Shoe’s on the run. They stumble upon an abandoned research lab. They find old records – of life before the apocalypse; but will they work out what went wrong? Do they want to? Shoe has got dark secrets; she knows more about xenogens than she lets on. There are other things she can’t tell Triste.
Hot alien women, philosophical musing and a universe with Lovecraftian themes are added for ballast. This is my first novel.

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This book is the beginning of a cycle that looks at the history of our species in the context of a vast and incredibly old universe.
Fiction doesn't answer questions but it can shake up the facts to derive answers that, at least on the face of it, stack up.
Science Fiction is anything: space wars, cross-time manipulation, terraforming, conflicting realities...
Aliens see things differently. Their motivations are a cipher. At the end, as readers we should see the pattern - cause and effect. Or should we?
How deep do we go?
Heinlein, Norton and others wrote of futures which man would come to dominate. It's a comforting notion but one that somehow, I don't think will be borne out by reality. Should the genre keep to its escapist roots, or does it work best when it's authentic and plausible?
How realistic should we be?

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What else?

Resources to give a different spin on what the book's about:

We are the pinnacle of evolution and civilisation, aren’t we?
Ussher deduced the age of the Earth from the Bible. His Earth, a young Earth, begins 1300 years after urban societies appeared in Mesopotamia; 1500 years after the waters of the Mediterranean finally breached the Bosphorus to flood the coastal communities of the Black Sea; 70,000 years after the Toba event.
Ussher’s conclusions weren’t supported by advances in geology. The uniformitarians, an inspiration for Darwin, hypothesized a longer chronology. But as gradualists, they rejected continental drift and the later plate tectonics. Until the 1960’s some answers couldn’t be right, despite the evidence. But opinions change.
Assume an Old Earth. Old Sun. Old Universe. What are the chances that evolution and circumstance produce life? And if life, intelligence. And if here, elsewhere. And if elsewhere what? More advanced? A neat, civilised, benign arrangement? More belligerent? Can it be that we are alone?

Are we alone?
If there are intelligences out there, can they be as advanced as us? Surely human history is the measure of all things? Making us far in advance of any star creatures. Alien beings who, compared to us are less than ants – perhaps they might look on us as Gods. And our society, our religions and grand economic structures – doubtless robust enough to fare well. So no perils to contact – we are still the centre of the universe.
Consider a bubble of radio and TV transmissions 200 light years in diameter. Our broadcasts. Hear the racket as we wreck our nest. Shout it out:
“We’re here! Come and see us soil this small planet.”
100,000 stars have heard us and know our location.

Are we monitored?
Humanity’s position in the scheme of things must surely be assured. Creatures from the stars must be fascinated in us and our planet – a race of beings. Us. Ready to climb from our planetary cradle. And the consequences of contact with such beings would be… good?


Landing page: http://aguidetofirstcontact.wordpress...
Web interview: http://www.louiseharnbyproofreader.co...


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