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Pilgrim's Moon
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Intense cerebral futuristic tale!

Title: Pilgrims' Moon
Author: Stacey Thompson
Genre: Sciene Fiction
Paperback: 420 pages
Publisher: PublishAmerica,Inc.(May 2003)
ISBN: 1592861601
Price:   $29.95
Rating: Highly Recommended

November 30, 2003


Aboard the transporter ship Argo Scott Thorne awakens from his biostatic chamber with the assumption they have arrived at their final destination point, Terranova. Instead he discovers that not only has the Argo suffered the loss of its commanding officer, but that 500 years have elapsed!


In addition: one of the Argo's passengers, a T-Corp Commissioner -Harris, withholds information about his real intentions of travel. Two-dozen militia soldiers remain dormant in biostatics, while the Argo's computer system runs amok due to a destructive virus.


With an intriguing cast and crew, the Argo sets out to find a hospitable planet on which they can take refuge. At the same time Thorne falls head over heels for the ship's medical officer, Jessica Colby, who happens to have an on again, off again relationship with the newly appointed captain, Cal Adams.


After finding a planet, which they name Loki. A recon group boards the Jason and heads for the surface to investigate. What they find is certainly not what they expected. Still, having resolved a potentially nasty situation, and finding the planet suitable enough to live on, they re-animate the remaining of the passengers and begin colonizing Loki.


But it's not long before they find out that Loki was already colonized, as they run into an old man, Eli. He reveals devastating and eye opening news. But even scarier are the creatures of Loki that suddenly surface.


The author, Stacey Thompson has done a superb job, not just at taking the reader through space and time, but through the birth of a new civilization as well. Pilgrim's Moon is a great science fiction tale that that hooks the audience from the moment you dive into the first paragraph. This brilliantly woven tale makes you forget such a world exists.


The exciting action will grip readers, but readers will think about the messages that make this novel transcend most science fiction books attaining the golden status of powerhouse. Hard core sci-fi fans are sure to love Pilgrim's Moon and even if you are not a fan, it will certainly guarantee to entertain!





An Interview with Stacey S. Thompson




To start this off, why don't you give an idea of what the book is about?


Pilgrims' Moon is a science-fiction adventure about the passengers on the spaceship Argo who are in suspended animation heading for a colony on the planet Terranova. They expect the two-year voyage to pass uneventfully; unfortunately, the Argo encounters a space-time anomaly and emerges 500 years in the future. The re-animated passengers have no hope of reaching Earth or Terranova and need to find a new planet to colonize before their fuel and supplies are exhausted. Pilgrims' Moon describes how the passengers must pull together to confront the unknown challenges facing them when they land on the strange moon, Proxima Tauri IIIB.



Where did you grow up and was reading and writing a part of your life?


I grew up in a rural community in Logansport, Indiana. I was an avid reader and writer from a very young age. I still have Star Trek and Lost in Space episodes I wrote when I was only 12 or 13 years old, along with many other original creations.  I always enjoyed science fiction and imagining "what if" stories. Perhaps living in slow-paced farm area where nothing too exciting ever happened encouraged me to be creative and to entertain myself.


Who were your earliest influences and why?

My parents were a very strong and positive influence. My mother is also an avid reader, and she showed me by example that reading is an enjoyable pastime. She was always reading something, so I wanted to do the same.


What would a typical day be like for a writer?


My typical day as a writer is working my regular corporate job. But in my free time, especially on the weekends when I have a block of time to really escape into my imaginary worlds, I can't wait to get up, make a pot of coffee, and start writing for several hours. I don't know if it's the story or the caffeine, but sometimes it's late afternoon before I realize I haven't showered, dressed, or eaten lunch.



How long have you been writing and in what capacities?


I've written for fun since I was 12 or 13.  I wrote a novel manuscript when I was a teenager, but never pursued that idea further.  When I was 21 I won the 1983 Honeywell Futurist Award, which was a nationwide essay competition for predicting future technologies in the year 2000. The year 2000 has come and passed, and my predictions were a little off, but not too much. I didn't write anything for many years, finally starting on Pilgrims' Moon in 2000. I've been writing ever since, and I can't believe how much I enjoy it. Now, when I don't write, I feel such an incredible void in my life.



Has there ever been a time when you wanted to throw in the towel and give up? And if so, how did you defeat those instincts?


After I had completed the manuscript for Pilgrims' Moon, I tried to get a literary agent. As everyone knows, it's extremely difficult to get anyone to even read what you submit. After getting many form letter rejections, I was getting pretty discouraged. The only two agents who expressed interest were scam artists. Then I learned about PublishAmerica. I submitted to them, and they accepted me for publication. Nothing defeats defeatism as much as success. Now people are reading Pilgrims' Moon and enjoying it immensely.  I'm glad I didn't give up, because then my story would have never been enjoyed by anyone. It would have sat in a box in my closet to be thrown out with my garbage when I die.



What is the hardest part about being a writer?


It's a very inwardly focused, solitary occupation. A lot of people wonder why anyone would want to sit in a chair in front of a computer and write. I enjoy being transported into my stories as I create them. But it's hard to share those stories with others, because you never know if they will like them as much as you did.  You try your best and pour your soul into your work, and it leaves you in a very vulnerable position.



Do you have any hobbies? What are they? How do they enhance your writing?


I mindlessly lift heavy weights up and down and run around an indoor track to keep fit. I also enjoy reading a lot fiction and non-fiction of many different types.  My reading helps my writing, especially by giving me ideas for new science fiction stories. It's amazing how many interesting things are lying in newspapers and magazines waiting for a creative twist.



Articles and media alike make it sound as though the only way to rise to the top is to sacrifice. What do you find to be good sacrifices?


I don't know if I've sacrificed as much as I simply desire to find the right balance in my life. I've determined that balance is very important not only between work and personal life, but between solitary activities (like writing) and social ones (like being with friends). When I'm balanced, I'm most creative and productive with my writing. Perhaps the one thing I've sacrificed is television. Turn off that idiot box and it's amazing how much extra time you have. I watch some TV, but I figure I pay the cable company about $10 an hour for how much I watch each month.



What question do you get asked more than any other?


"How are book sales?" Everyone wants to know. I guess it's an ice breaker since they know I'm an author now. Sometimes I feel like answering, "How much is your paycheck?"




Whats the coolest thing a reader has said to you?


A woman I work with let her ten-year-old son read Pilgrims' Moon. I didn't write the book for children, but he really wanted to read it. When he finished, he told his mother that it was the "best book I've ever read, even better than Harry Potter." His simple, short review of Pilgrims' Moon is the best one I've heard yet. The fact that I entertained a ten-year-old boy means a great deal to me.



What has been your feedback from readers? What do they say to you about their interpretations of your book?


The feedback has been excellentclearly exceeding my expectations. I thought people would say, "Oh, its good" and make noncommittal comments like that. Instead, people tell me "I spent all weekend reading the book, it was so riveting," or "your book was responsible for my insomnia last night because I couldn't put it down, or "even better than Harry Potter!"


It's strange to hear people interpreting characters and scenes that existed only in my mind for so long. My assistant at work thinks Dr. Jessica Colby, a character in the book, was based on her (she wasnt).  Someone else thought I did an excellent job portraying the religious conflict in the book (I did?). Several people said they enjoyed the well-crafted characters and the plot twists, when I thought my characters were my weakest point and that every plot twist was painfully obvious.


Another common thread I hear from people is "I normally don't read sci-fi, but" and then they go on and tell me how much they enjoyed my book. I think Ive exposed a lot of people to a genre they dismissed in the past as not something they'd enjoy. I like knowing that because I think sci-fi has so many stimulating things going for it, people need to give it a chance and they might be surprised. It's not all light sabers and pointy-eared aliens.



Do you think that as a writer you are more prone to watching what goes on around you and observing behaviors than most people are?


I've been told many times, ever since I was a boy, that I "notice things." Maybe that gift can be translated into being a writer, I don't know. The world is such a wonderful place, and so many people race through it, never noticing the little joys and discoveries that await everywhere. Seeing such things brings me peace, and I think it could bring peace to others as well if they just stop and make themselves accessible to it.



Who are some of the authors you consider to be "don't miss"?


I usually read everything from Harry Turtledove, Michael Crichton, Tess Gerritsen, and Richard Preston. I just finished Dan Browns The DaVinci Code and loved it. I also like to go back and read classics, such as Jules Verne, H.G. Wells, Isaac Asimov, Frank Herbert, and Carl Sagan (Contact).



Whats the best part of being a writer?


Being able to entertain people and not even be with them. Reading a good story is such a joy, and most people are excited that someone not only has an imagination, but they can put it on paper. A lot of people find writing, especially creative writing, a daunting task and can never imagine themselves doing it for pleasure.


What's next?


Im hard at work on Endangered Species, my next science-fiction novel. I have the first draft done, and I'm in the process of rewriting it. These cold, dreary days are perfect for that. Endangered Species is not a sequel to Pilgrims' Moon. I've created new characters, a new planet, and a completely new dilemma to explore. Wish me luck. I like this one even better than the first!




Betsie's Literary Page has enjoyed their time with Mr. Thompson, and we hope this is not the last of him. We also wish him the very best with all his future works.