Blog Post by Ian Miller
I write two types of books: scientific and science fiction. My four scientific ebooks reflect my unusual background. As a chemistry undergraduate, I found an analytical solution that was surprisingly accurate for hydrogen, but had trending errors for other molecules. I found further analytical solutions that required functions that contradicted standard theory, but worked very well, and the results of this are now in my ebook, Guidance Waves. I also designed my own PhD project, and entered a hotly debated topic as to whether a certain system displayed an unusual quantum effect. My approach was to employ an equation the department had spent a decade firming up the parameters to test for this effect, and my supervisor’s major contribution was to show me a means of amplifying the effects in my system. However, when the results were against the emerging “conclusion” he was not prepared to publish my unambiguous results, despite several other published results suggesting the emerging conclusion was wrong. This firmed my sceptical approach. A more orthodox scientific ebook is Biofuels An Overview, in which, based on my practical experience, I show how biofuels could be made. My two futuristic novels, Puppeteer and Troubles are based on futures where we do not bother.
My science fiction began as an undergraduate, with an assertion from a then girlfriend that I could not write a novel. I did, it was rejected, and I gave up. Another influence involved my entering Czechoslovakia from Poland on August 23, 1968. In 1986 I set up my own chemical research company and have since been involved with both major projects and small company start-ups, and when the 1980s financial crash struck, I returned to writing. I have since self-published nine scifi/futuristic/thriller novels in which besides entertaining, I try to show the scientific method and also include issue of military intervention, governance, and economics, thus drawing on my rather unusual background. I brought almost all of these to bear in my First Contact trilogy, and added in my interest in Roman history in the Gaius Claudius Scaevola trilogy.
<p.Red Gold is an example of where this unusual background led to something that I suspect approaches being unique in science fiction. In order to use my experience regarding business start-ups, the story involved fraud during the colonization of Mars. To expose the fraud, I had to provide an unexpected discovery. What I provided started out as seemingly plausible, but the more I thought about it, the more plausible it became, as it also explained the unexpected river systems on a planet too cold for water to melt. After a lot of further research, I wrote the results up as Planetary Formation and Biogenesis. This may be the first time a SciFi novel has led to a plausible scientific theory, at least plausible to the extent that nobody has found anything to falsify it.
Ian Miller http://www.ianmiller.co.nz