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Novelist Ray Palla talks about his next book. “Whew, what...

Novelist Ray Palla talks about his next book.

“Whew, what a year! I’m building a new perspective. I’ll need it myself,” Ray starts. The working title for his next thriller is “Murder on the Moon.” It’s about life and environmental struggles among a group of people who permanently live on the lunar surface in the year 2054.

“I’ve spent a lot of time researching and imagineering tools and conjuring up situations that might be encountered by earthlings when we go mine the surface of the moon. Here’s an example… They talk to their shared computer like a friend. And the computer is seemingly omniscient, it’s everywhere.” “AIRI” (Artificial Intelligence Response Interface), the moon-global communications system sometimes needs to get private input from people, like a password for secure data.

Rather than speaking his password into the open room, Lt. Anderson Cronauer (Crony) just holds up his hands, wiggles his fingers, and says, “AIRI, give me control over here.” Then Crony air-types his response. Like air-guitar, he uses an imaginary typewriter in the air or on a table. Tiny tattoos with magnetic ink on his finger-tips give him the advantage.

“I personally want to watch televised Moonball games.” Ray has invented basketball in a gravitationally limited world. With only 6% of earth’s gravity, on the moon, the ball trajectory like other things is mostly a straight line. Surrealistically the players seem to fly around the court.

It’s not all fun and games, though. Limited gravity or something similar seems to work deviously on the human psyche. One’s usually stable mindset is often vertically challenged by both unexpected situations and other moon-bound people.

“I hope everyone holds this season as a valued gift. It really is magical and fleeting.” —r

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