There’s More Here — Official Trailer to The GAIAD

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Happy to announce the new film “trailer” to The GAIAD. “There’s more here. There’s more here than you know. And you are not alone …” Special thanks to Miguel Martinez for his portrayal of Garr-Eth of the Zhar-Nues. Filmed on location in the San Rafael Swell area of Southern Utah — a special, haunting place: Will Burcher is a former police officer and current author of “The GAIAD,” a story of ancient secrets not quite forgotten and the positive power of global perspective. He lives and works in Colorado, USA. SUBSCRIBE for a chance to WIN A signed edition of The GAIAD. Join the conversation. EARTH. SPACE. INSPIRATION. EVERY 10th subscriber will receive a print edition of THE GAIAD, a new science fiction novel, signed by the author. Subscribers will also receive a 20% discount on the book—our thanks for being part of a conversation that WANTS TO BE HAD.

Get Outside and Look Up

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SOMETIMES PROFUNDITY is best expressed through the shortest, simplest statements. Will Burcher is a former police officer and current author of “The GAIAD,” a story of ancient secrets not quite forgotten and the positive power of global perspective. He lives and works in Colorado, USA. SUBSCRIBE for a chance to WIN A signed edition of The GAIAD. Join the conversation. EARTH. SPACE. INSPIRATION. EVERY 10th subscriber will receive a print edition of THE GAIAD, a new science fiction novel, signed by the author. Subscribers will also receive a 20% discount on the book—our thanks for being part of a conversation that WANTS TO BE HAD.

Perspective

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For geeks: Taken on a Nikon D610, Tamron 24-70mm f/2.8, ISO 3200, 20 second exposure WHEN YOU LOOK into the Milky Way (near the southern horizon this time of year) you’re looking into a “haze” caused by your eyes’ misperception of literally billions of points of light, each a star potentially circled by worlds like our own. At the center of of that haze lies a supermassive black hole, at least 4 million times the mass of our sun, trillions of miles away. I took this photo last night in a pretty remote area west of Colorado Springs, CO, USA. I’m a fan of challenging our perspectives, personal and collective. These terms (millions, billions, trillions) are really just incomprehensible. They’re completely foreign to our daily lives. For me, pictures like this and the thought they invoke have the power to change perspective—from that standard, normal, tired, daily frontal-lobe insularity to a felt … READ MORE…

The GAIAD Preview—Chapters 14 and 15

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The GAIAD is the story of one modern woman’s attempt to heal the fundamental rift between humanity and the Earth—a separation born of an event occurring both on a physical plain and in the minds of men millennia ago. In the following two chapters she contacts a man, an innovative thought-leader she believes will understand the consequences of the secret she’s discovered: a message from an unlikely source motivating us to look beyond our insular lives, both up and out. 14 Abdul-Jabbar Sulayman It began as a recognition of the undifferentiated emotion inside her, a kind of physical feeling not yet expressed. It was a heavy thing located near her heart, a concretion of lighter stuff, stuff that should be free. She let it overtake her—which was hard, scary. In an instant it overwhelmed her like an ocean wave. It became something else, something more. First it was pain, raw … READ MORE…

“Perelandra” by C.S. Lewis—A Review

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4.5/5 stars “Perelandra” is the second book of the “Space Trilogy.” It is the best of the series. This series was my re-discovery of C.S. Lewis. Like many, I was exposed to “Narnia” as a kid. 20 years later I was admittedly biased toward the negative, thinking that his more “adult” works would be laden down with religious references or burdened by a rickety old Judeo-Christian moral scaffold. I was wrong. The references are certainly there; but his trilogy (and “Perelandra” in particular) is anything but “laden” or “burdened.” The questions posed within are primal, fundamental, universal. What would a human be like, unaffected, uncorrupted by the darkness of a modern soul or psyche? What would her nascent world be like? How would she view it? How would she view herself? The narrative orbits Lewis’ characterization of “Eve.” She is this book—at once naive and lordly, innocent and powerful, child-like and … READ MORE…

“Ringworld” by Larry Niven—A Review

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 4/5 Stars The image is as powerful as anything in science fiction: an artificial, constructed world—a spinning ring orbiting a star at an incredible speed, its dimensions measured not in the thousands of miles (as Earth and its sister planets are) but in the millions and billions of miles.  The inner surface of the ring looks similar to the surface of any other earth-like world.  Deserts and grasslands give way to forests and jungle.  Mountains rise above the plains.  Oceans, magnitudes greater than the surface area of the Earth, lap against complex, sculpted coastlines.  The world seems familiar, though the sizes of each landform, of each feature, defy human comprehension. A breathable atmosphere is held in place by rims on both of its edges, 1000 miles high.  The immensity of Niven’s creation represents a paradigm that every science fiction author would be wise to honor.  THIS is what an author’s … READ MORE…

SPACE and Environmentalism in The GAIAD

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I recently had a conversation with an environmentalist author whose mind I very much respect, concerning my assertions on space (and specifically manned spaceflight), and it got me thinking. Some, who haven’t read The GAIAD yet, might be surprised that space figures prominently in the story. This is certainly my fault—putting the rear profile of a long-haired, well-muscled shirtless man holding an obsidian-tipped spear on the cover. But really, space in The GAIAD is represented as a reflection of my own personal beliefs: we as a species must continue to move outward and explore the ultimate frontier—for the good of ourselves and for the good of our planet. My friend argued that the space program, with its massive financial and energetic expenditures (as well as the atmospheric pollution resulting from rocket launches), is a luxury that humanity cannot currently afford. I respectfully disagreed with him. The environmental effects of space-related … READ MORE…

The Future of Manned Space Exploration: Buzz Aldrin’s MISSION TO MARS, A Review

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 4/5 Stars As the Obama Administration presents its 2017 budget to Congress tomorrow for review (and an inevitable fight), I’m immediately struck by the relevance of the event to a seminal book that I just finished.  Buzz Aldrin’s “Mission to Mars:  My Vision for Space Exploration” is a powerful explication of a specific near-future strategy for NASA’s manned exploration activities, as well as a potent meditation on the importance of such a strategy for this country and indeed, for humanity. Aldrin really doesn’t need any introducing, as he is of course the second man to walk on another planetary body, the Moon in July, 1969.  His qualifications to speak on such a topic are obviously legion.  As such, I feel wholly unqualified to really “review” and pass judgment on any of the technical assertions he makes in the book.  However, I am particularly attracted to his concept of “Aldrin cyclers”—spacecraft … READ MORE…

A Case for Mars: Social Welfare vs. A New Apollo

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I wrote this editorial in response to one printed yesterday in the Philadelphia Inquirer.  I hesitate to post the link here, as they chose to reject my response because it was “too long,” presumably, and contained hyperlinks.  But it might provide a context, if needed: Original Article My Response … A Case for Mars:  Social Welfare vs. A New Apollo Typical arguments against a manned mission to Mars center around the idea that such a mission would be too expensive and would result only in vague, minimal economic benefits.  An argument focusing on expense alone misses the point.  Numbers alone don’t tell a complete story, especially with government expenditures.  The annual budget of the federal government (~$3.5 trillion) includes other massive outlay for social programs with equally “vague” and some would say, minimal, economic benefits.  On the political left, the figure of $212 billion is quoted; while on the right, … READ MORE…

The Recent SpaceX Falcon 9 Launch: Our Generation’s Apollo

43 years ago—almost to the day—the crew of Apollo 17 returned to the earth.  This was the last of the Apollo missions.  It was the last time a human being walked on the surface of another body within our solar system.  43 years ago.  Two new generations of humanity have joined the planet in this span of time—two generations comprised of people who have yet to see the technological achievements of Apollo bested. Tonight, SpaceX successfully launched its Falcon 9 rocket carrying (11) communications satellites for OrbComm.  All (11) satellites were successfully deployed—a flawless performance by anyone’s measure.  Yet what took the show was the subsequent LANDING of the Falcon 9’s primary stage.  Although attempted before (but only really by SpaceX), this was the first true success, and represents a leap forward in rocket design, ingenuity, and daring.  The economic benefits of such a feat—drastically lowered costs to put objects … READ MORE…

“The GAIAD” – an Excerpt

  Prologue Head-on it was nearly invisible—a mere point of light as bright only as the faintest and most minor background star. If viewed obliquely, however, it was something different. The inconsequential speck began to elongate and brighten with the angle and it became a distinct and very artificial, linear form. The object began to move, slowly drifting against the ubiquitous stellar backdrop. There was a brief flash, a pulse of platinum light at the object’s tapered rear and it accelerated, its magnitude expanding and it began to stir a sense of size and mass. As it approached, the surface of it became visible—a damasked metal, reflective and shimmering. The ship was bulbous at its front, though the nose appeared sharp, as a teardrop, giving it a vaguely avian form. The rest of the structure tapered long and impossibly acute—the entirety of the craft evoking a sewing needle, traveling in … READ MORE…