Interview with : 'Lightless' Author, C.A. Higgins on Fictionalizing Gmail
Updated on: 25 Nov 2015
Having fallen into Lightless, a parlor mystery set on a spaceship, we found ourselves with a lot of questions for author C.A. Higgins. So, we gave her a call and talked about what tech inspires her forthcoming sequel, Supernova.
Where do you get your ideas?
I wrote Lightless when I was studying as an undergrad, so I was completely embroiled in physics at the time. So when I made up the world, I tried to have science fiction aspects like a spaceship or a very powerful computer and give them at least a sort of theoretical plausibility — even if, in terms of actual engineering, it would be something almost certainly impossible. I wanted the spaceship in Lightless to have a black hole at the core for a variety of reasons, including that it's just cool.
Theoretically, that could exist, but practically it's a bit more involved to actually build something like that. I really wanted to focus on the idea that it could feel like it could be real, even if it necessarily couldn't be. I wanted to keep an element of the fantastic and the speculative in it.
Did you read a lot of sci-fi growing up?
I read a lot of fantasy actually. And I've read a lot of Victorian novels lately more than sci-fi, but I do read sci-fi when I come across it. I watched a lot of sci-fi TV. I loved Star Trek: Voyager when I was a kid. That was my favorite.
What do you think makes a well-crafted sci-fi story?
The characters. I feel that science and the speculative element are fascinating and amazing, but as a story, if it's not based around interesting and realistic characters, then it's going to be difficult to enjoy, ultimately.
Each time you hear about some new technological advancement, is a part of your brain sifting through it for a story?