Monday, October 15, 2018

Why I Wrote Europa, First Book in Taxyon Space #SciFi



Background to my new Series, Taxyon Space.

Early in 2017, I decided to start a new series of science fiction stories. This series was intended to be “purer” science fiction than the Science Fantasy and Superhero books in the Grand Masters’ Galaxy and Secret Supers series. I planned to begin the stories in the near future of our solar system, and gradually advance outward into the galaxy. The overarching theme is how humans acquired the technology for space travel and their interactions with aliens from other worlds. The stories would star ordinary people, not superheroes or psychics, and their adventures with various aliens becoming allies or enemies.
          I invented the name, Taxyon Space, for the series to suggest faster than light space travel. My initial idea was to set each story on a different celestial object, a planet or moon.

Book 1, Europa.
Jupiter’s moon, Europa, was an attractive prospect for the setting of the first story with its well-known potential for life in the ocean under the surface ice. At this near future date, humans have established a small colony of scientists on Europa to study Jupiter and the life in the oceans. The colonists constructed Galileo Station on two levels, one within the ice crust with access to space, and the other on a plateau on the seabed. The location enabled me to start with a bang – a dramatic first chapter where the heroine, marine biologist Dr. Nikki Bell, escapes from a damaged spaceship only to crash on the icy surface of Europa.
I enjoy imagining new worlds and their exotic inhabitants. Some of the creatures I envisioned come almost straight from the NASA space tourism poster (https://www.jpl.nasa.gov/visions-of-the-future/) with a few twists. My creations are polymorphic invertebrate animals switching from a disk-shaped floater form to a squid-like shape. It is dark in the waters under the ice crust, and the heroine must use artificial lenses with infrared vision and low light intensifiers when she explores the submarine world. 

The story really crystallized in my mind after I saw the hero’s face under the ice. The heroine has fallen into a deep crack in the ice and lands on a thin transparent sheet of ice on the surface of the ocean. Nikki is desperate, knowing she will die without help, when she sees a man’s face in the water. He smiles. She believes he will rescue her, if he is real and not an illusion. This scene is a pivotal moment in the plot. The hero and heroine find each other attractive and want to meet again despite the barriers separating their people. The human colonists are unaware of the aliens watching from their secret submarine base. However, Nikki persists in searching for her mysterious rescuer and the alien hero, Kiron, wishes to warn her of the dangers, so their meeting is inevitable. Their interactions with other characters amid the hazards of the moon lead inexorably to tragedy and exposure of the secret alien base.  
The story is told from the perspective of the two main characters, Nikki and Kiron. Their personalities evolved, or became clearer to me, as I wrote the story. The alien hero, Kiron, was undoubtedly the most difficult to create. He resembles a human in many ways, but is capable of living underwater as well as on land. I had to describe his unusual physical features, and the distinct society of his people, the Warrish. He is not alone on Europa, and his companions are supporting characters with their own different personalities. I slipped in parts of his backstory to illuminate his character and the alien culture. Kiron is by no means an “alpha” hero. He is abused and has suffered misfortunes. He has a fine sense of honor and believes in saving lives rather than killing. He is also sweet and compassionate, a romantic in a society where romance has no place.
Nikki is a true scientist, dedicated to the study of Europa’s marine lifeforms. She is also persistent in her search for her mysterious savior. During the story, she discovers intelligent native animals and learns how to communicate with them.

Book 2, Rishalt, is named for the home planet of the alien Warrish.
In creating Kiron’s backstory for Europa, I realized his people must have come from a distant planet. Nikki, the heroine, is a marine biologist, and she understands immediately that his people did not evolve on Jupiter’s moon. The Warrish do not resemble any of the native lifeforms. The sequel continues the adventures of Nikki and Kiron and the setting switches to his home planet, Rishalt. Nikki learns more about his alien society, and the surprising truth about the leaders of this hierarchical culture.

Book 3, Jupiter
Nikki and Kiron are sent back to Europa to unblock the hyperspace route.


Near Future SciFi adventure & alien romance. Daredevil scientist and abused alien find perilous alliance  
Europa, Book 1  Amazon  iBooks  Kobo  B&N  GooglePlay  PRINT
Jupiter, Book 3   Coming soon
Taxyon Space Duad, Box set of Book 1 & 2  Amazon  iBooks  B&N  Kobo  GPlay


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