To Infinity and Beyond

Apparently the All Blacks won the World Cup because they were “able to find their flow.” And all these months I thought it was because they scored more points in the last game of the tournament!

Years ago I had an idea for a science-fiction kind of novel, but I never wrote it because it isn’t my genre and I don’t think I’d write it very well. Besides, I’m not really sure it is a premise worthy of a novel.

In my sci-fi idea, the world was about to come to a sudden end, probably a meteorite that appeared out of nowhere and we had about three days to live. The US had been secretly funding a project and had a massive spaceship ready to go and find other planets. For reasons I hadn’t worked out I (the narrator) was allowed to go and take 10 people with me. They were not people I knew, they were people I chose. And the powers-that-were-at-the-time would ‘kidnap’ them from their lives and take them to Washington DC where they’d be told that the earth had three days left, BUT because I (the narrator) had chosen them, they were allowed to live for as long as the spaceship managed to stay aloft and start afresh on a new planet…since watching Terra Nova, maybe it would be more realistic to go through a worm-hole to another time on earth, but if earth was going to be destroyed that doesn’t really work. No, these people were going to find a planet with gravity and water and food and animals but no humans.

The interesting part of the idea was who I chose. Did I choose sensible people who knew how to build things, kill things, cook on wood fires, people like Bear Grylls? Did I heck as like. I chose opera singers, actors, writers, some of my handsome friends who’ve probably never held a hammer in their lives…and THAT is what makes the idea appealing. A narrator who has no survival skills and lives a 21st century life but would like to start life again and makes 21st century choices.

I could see all the chapters where they were ‘kidnapped’ and then the truth was revealed and they had to choose to accept or decline. If they declined they couldn’t be allowed to go home to family, because once the truth was out, the population would panic. What would your natural instinct be, to have a chance of life or face certain death? So who would you choose? It can’t be family and you have to justify your choices to the powers-that-were-at-the-time. I bet you think you’d make sensible choices…Personally I think Placido Domingo, Ramin Karimloo, Michael Ball, Bradley Whitford, George Clooney etc. are perfectly reasonable choices. We’d be in that spaceship for a very long time and they’d keep us entertained.


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