Sunday, August 19, 2007

Q&A William Gibson

First appeared in the Boston Globe.

SCIENCE FICTION WRITER William Gibson has a reputation for forecasting the future that dates to his first novel, "Neuromancer" (1984), in which characters used computers to "jack" into a virtual world Gibson dubbed the matrix, a term that seemed ready-made for the Internet explosion soon to envelop us all. "Neuromancer" won science fiction's top prizes -- the Nebula, Philip K. Dick, and Hugo awards -- and was followed by "Count Zero" (1986) and "Mona Lisa Overdrive" (1988), to complete Gibson's cyberpunk trilogy. These books continued to explore a futuristic matrix while bringing disparate, even supernatural, elements into play. "Count Zero," for example, invokes the voodoo deity Legba -- the "master of roads and pathways, the loa [god] of communication" -- as a lord of cyberspace.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Q&A: Doris Lessing

Originally appeared in the Boston Globe.
By Harvey Blume

THE THEME OF fraught relations between men and women will hardly come as a surprise to readers of Doris Lessing, author of dozens of novels, short stories, and essays. For her devoted fan base, Lessing is unquestionably the greatest living writer never to win a Nobel Prize. Now 88, she belongs roughly to same generation as filmmakers Ingmar Bergman and Michelangelo Antonioni, both recently deceased, and like them, she has explored social, psychological, and sexual malaise.