Re-initiating: Phase Three

A highly contagious biochemical weapon was deployed against Phase Three last week. While eliciting similar symptoms to the influenza virus, the pathogen also compelled the infected subject to temporarily abandon his characters to literary limbo.  

A voluntary quarantine period was observed, for the protection of the wider Inkshares community, but the virus has now been subdued. All characters apparently survived their stasis, and Phase Three is back underway.

Thank you all for the amazing messages, emails, tweets and pre-orders, that continue to arrive daily. While we’re slowly slipping down the ranks of the competition, it’s great to know Phase Three has so many people who believe in it. Whatever happens between now and the 16th, the finished book will be all the better for your support.

The Science of Phase Three 

I understand several of you have been waiting for this, fingers itching over the pre-order button while you frown and re-read the description: Where’s the hard sci-fi? 

And I feel your pain. The (my) problem with pitching a draft novel is making distinctions between character knowledge and objective knowledge, especially when those distinctions are entwined with plot points. In the case of Phase Three, this isn’t a trivial concern. But - and it’s there in the title - here’s a teaser for the science of Phase Three, as extracted by an interview with Avalon Radys for the Inkshares blog

Phase Three was inspired by an ongoing conversation with my wife, an engineer with a background in robotics and machine learning. I wanted to explore the implications of automation, augmented reality and virtual reality technologies, especially for people on the outside, including those who define themselves by their connection to the land. 

Phase Three presents a holistic view of the near-future, so extrapolates from many current trends in engineering, design and emergent research. Nassim Nicholas Taleb’s statistical theories on human foresight, Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle and the field of deep learning are all key components of the science in Phase Three.

My characters each interact with distinct facets of the emergent world and its science, but they are also misfits in a literal sense; each incompatible in some way with the future in which they live. 

I can’t wait to say more, but I’m going to have to. Thank you so much to everyone who has pre-ordered and supported Phase Three. It means a lot to me, and the world to my characters.

You are amazing! Every time I step away from Scrivener and check my email, I find another follow, another message of support or a pre-order of Phase Three, and it makes the often isolated writing process feel that much more collaborative.

I’ve spent the last few days nailing down some errant plot points, but now that I’m buttressed with pages of notes and cross-references with my own draft chapters, I’m getting back to the fun part: writing the actual book. 

If you want a little more background on what brought me to Inkshares, and on Phase Three itself, Elan Samuel interviewed me for The Warbler, and you can find his post here: www.thewarblerbooks.com/featured-author-peter-ravlich/    

Thank you for your support, in whatever form you can manage: it matters, and I’m working to deliver the most compelling novel possible to my backers. 


Phase Three characters reticent, tease readers.

"The world has an addiction. Augmenting reality - augmenting ourselves - averted a looming energy crisis, but it has become something more than that. Overnight equality, says the slogan, and what’s a decade or two between advertisers?  

We redefined what it means to be human, and bought our own bullshit retail.

But the physical world still exists, however much we stare into the infinite. People yet remain, living outside the reality bubbles we create. And so do the consequences of our inattention."

Tl;dr - Working blurb (above), character introductions, science teaser and personal disclaimers added to the Phase Three page

Thank you all for your follows, shares, messages and (of course) pre-orders. There are two worlds at stake here, and your service to both will be remembered.

And, after half a day of administrative limbo, and thanks to an amazing effort from bank staff... Pre-orders are live! 

Thank you for the messages of support, I’m looking forward to getting Phase Three out into the world. :)

Thank you for the follows! I’ve added a little background on the novel, and uploaded a working cover page. 

I’m currently sorting out a possible regional issue with Inkshares, but I’m hoping to have pre-orders up and running ASAP, because I’d love this novel to participate in the Geek & Sundry contest. Crossed fingers greatly appreciated!

UPDATE: Inkshares have been awesome to deal with, and pre-orders will go live as soon as I receive my Australian bank account details, hopefully in the next hour or two.