Monday, 6 October 2014

The Infinity Program: A Guest Post by Richard H. Hardy

We're pleased to participate in a Tribute Books mini blog tour for The Infinity Program by Richard H. Hardy.

We asked Mr. Hardy what challenges he faced in writing a novel that blends elements of the supernatural, romance, and the high-tech world.

Guest Post

The Infinity Program blends the Techno-Thriller and the Science Fiction genres. It also features a romance as well as a mainstream approach to both character and setting. My goal was to create an interesting mix that readers would find fresh and unique.

The unfolding romance of Jon Graeme and Lettie Olsen wasn’t planned from the beginning— it just happened as I wrote the book. It provides a subplot, a backdrop to the main action and opens windows into the inner lives of the characters. Their evolving relationship also serves as an interesting contrast to Harry Sale, the brilliant but isolated programming genius.

The blend of High-Tech with a fantastic alien technology presented its own unique challenges. In order to be true to the high-tech setting, I had to use some computer terminology. I used it sparingly and focused on building a narrative where the technicalities disappeared behind the story. With the alien technology, I used a different approach, emphasizing the fantastic and minimizing the explanations. More than anything, I wanted the reader to have fun.

My 26 years in the IT field gave me lots of raw material for office life in a high tech-company. I saw firsthand how stressful and demanding it can be. The Infinity Program gives the reader an inside view of this intense, quirky, and sometimes Dilbertesque environment. The IT setting provides the base for the reader to leap into the high-tech world of the future.

Our lives are such a mix of different elements. One day we do difficult things with ease, the next we trip up over the simple things; a day of joy is followed by a day of sadness; an act of kindness is followed by an act of selfishness; thoughtfulness is followed by a lack of attention. We never know quite what to expect. Mixing genres in fiction is a natural way to capture something of this heady blend. When it’s done well, it transcends genre and the book stands on its own.

Book Summary and Buy Links

Jon Graeme and Harry Sale are unlikely friends. Harry is a world-class programmer, but his abrasive personality alienates co-workers. In contrast, Jon is a handsome and easy-going technical writer, the low man on the IT totem pole.

Sharing a love of nature, the men set out together, planning to go their separate ways--Jon on a hike and Harry, fly fishing. Three days later, Jon arrives at the rendezvous point, but his friend is nowhere in sight. When Jon finds Harry unconscious on the floor of a cave, Harry claims to have been lying there the entire time. But he is neither cold nor hungry. What Jon doesn't know is that Harry fell into an underground cavern, where he came into contact with an alien quantum computer.

Back at work, Harry jettisons his regular tasks and concentrates exclusively on inventing new operating language to access the alien system. In the process he crashes his office's Super Computer and is fired. Jon convinces the company to give Harry a second chance, arguing that the system he has invented will make them millions.

Jon has no idea what havoc Harry is about to unleash.

Formats/Prices: $5.95 ebook, $13.95 paperback
Genre: Science Fiction, Romance
Pages: 250
Release: April 1, 2014
Publisher: Camel Press
ISBN: 9781603819336

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Author's Biography

Richard H. Hardy was born in Glasgow, Scotland, during a week of relentless bombing raids just before the close of World War II. The day he was born an incendiary bomb fell on the church across the street from where he lived, so he is fond of saying that he entered the world with a big adrenaline rush.

His family later moved to England and then on to America.

After college Richard bounced through a series of temporary jobs as he traveled around the country, wanting nothing more than to write fiction. A job driving a library van allowed him free time to write several short stories and work on a novel.

He and his wife moved to New Hampshire, where he took an entry level job at a software company. He was soon promoted to the technical writing department and ended up producing over 500,000 words of online documentation. After a few years he was promoted to the programming department and ended up as the Senior EDI Programmer, creating EDI maps and writing UNIX scripts and troubleshooting on AIX systems throughout the U.S. and Canada.

After he retired, he started writing fiction again. The Infinity Program is his first published novel.

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  1. Thanks Mike and Lynn for inviting Richard to stop by and share his thoughts about mixing genres! :)

  2. Our pleasure, Nicole. It sounds like a very interesting book.