So, I assume you’ve just finished reading Fall From the Sky.

Wow, I didn’t really think anyone was going to make it this far. I mean, I was kind of hoping, but still... Good job!

As you’ve no doubt gathered, it has some problems. The narrative assumes we’ll be living on planets and using fossil fuels in the future. It assumes that all nuclear power is “dangerous” nuclear power and must be strictly controlled. It assumes that we’ll keep using rigid space-craft and that robots and artificial intelligence are Very Hard problems. It assumes people could survive unshielded on a non-terraformed planet. There are probably hundreds more assumptions which, all told, make this not a very good piece of forward-looking science fiction. Plus, like Shamus said, there’s FTL, which basically breaks everything. Oh, and even though I had a copy of Shamus’ room layout plan for the Armstrong (which he kindly dug up for me), I pretty much ignored it and described the rooms in a mostly arbitrary relation to each other.

Sacrifices were made by me in the passive voice. I’m not making any excuses. All I can say at this point is that I felt like the story of Rin and Buck and David Reed was worth telling. If you thought so too, feel free to participate in the forum thread here (which has since become defunct, so try contacting me on Twitter instead). I’d love to hear from you, if only to know that someone made it all the way through... and lived. Negative feedback is great too. I’m happy to spar if that’s what you like.

I'd also like to say thanks to everyone who helped out. Foremost, thanks to Shamus Young for writing the first third of the story, in which so many of the characters were developed and the stage was set for the rest of the narrative. My good friend Andy Wilkinson was the first one to read the story, working through the whole thing twice by the time it was done, and contributing immensely to the development of the story. My father Ron Spooner also read the whole thing and provided feedback on the first draft. I also got extensive feedback (which, sadly, has yet to be incorporated into the manuscript) from Matt and Christina Strawbridge. Even my wife Anna allowed me to read to her, and encouraged me along the way. Thanks again all!

Thank you, dear reader, for taking the time to read all of this.

Your author and servant,
Paul Spooner