Stephen D Covey
Ramblings on the
Future of Humanity
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Going to writer's conferences and pitching your book? I recommend custom business cards with your pitch on the back!
My name is Stephen Covey.
I am a futurist.
I write Science Fiction
Once upon a time, I was a software and web consultant. Now I pay
the bills as a Realtor,
hound, while writing about the future in my blog (http://RamblingsOnTheFutureOfHumanity.com)
and writing techno-thrillers and Science Fiction (SF). If
you got to this page seeking books on Rocks, Gems, and Minerals, see
my Recommended Mineral Books. If
you got here seeking books by self-help author Stephen R. Covey (no
relation), see my page on
Reader's Resources for my
recommendations of his works.
I've been reading
SF since I was 8 years old (and fascinated by dinosaurs). I love SF
because I love to learn, and great SF expands the mind by
exploring visions of what might be. I've always favored
"hard" SF, stories about technologies and exotic places that
just might be possible, someday, somewhere, somehow. As soon as
practical, I plan to write full time ("retirement" is simply a
synonym for "career change"). In a very real sense, I am a
full time Realtor, a full time webmaster, and a full time writer.
Sleep isn't all that important, anyway, unless you are dreaming up a
new scene or a new story.
Note that the genre of near-future, hard-science fiction overlaps
that of techno-thrillers (and/or SF-thrillers). The difference is
largely in the plot and pacing - but the story lines are equivalent.
Michael Crichton wrote techno-thrillers that I thought were SF:
The Andromeda Strain, Jurassic Park, The Lost World,
Next, Sphere, The Terminal Man, Prey,
and State of Fear. I will write using similar themes, as
often mentioned in my blog posts,
The Future Of Humanity. One difference is that I'm an
optimist - I believe in our future.
A little about me:
I started to read when I was very young (before kindergarden), inspired by my father
Darrell who daily would read every article in the newspaper,
plus on average one novel. Besides, the comic section of the
paper is pretty boring if you can't read. When I was 7, my
parents purchased a children's encyclopedia (The Book of Knowledge),
and I decided to read the entire 20-volume set. It took me a
year to read Volume I (slowed drastically by the need to frequently ask, "Mom,
what's this word?") I finished the set during the summer two years after
that. I liked science and technology, and I admit that I
largely just skimmed the articles on history, biographies, politics
and the like (except for the interesting people like Newton and
Like many kids, I was fascinated by dinosaurs.
In the 3rd grade, my class took a field trip to the nearby library
(which happened to be on the same block as the elementary school),
and I discovered dozens of books on dinosaurs. I often went to
the library on my own to read those books. After nearly daily
visits for 6 months, a very helpful librarian said, "You can take
these books home, you know." No, I didn't know, and the very
next day my mother co-signed a library card for me. A few months
later I had finished reading the last of that library's books on
dinosaurs, and the same librarian showed me the only other books
with "dinosaur" in the title - in the science fiction section.
I was hooked.
I was lucky enough to attend a high school with
excellent chemistry, physics, and biology teachers. I attended
a wonderful small college (Wabash College, Crawfordsville, Indiana),
and graduated with a degree in physics.
A small liberal arts college offers many unique opportunities.
For one, I was able to satisfy my literature requirement with an
Independent Study course I created on "The Science Fiction of Isaac
Asimov". I also wrote my first SF piece (essentially a
space opera similar to some of the works of E. E. "Doc" Smith) while a student there,
but I was embarrassed by my poor writing and gave up after writing
about 60k words of first draft. Largely, I just needed more
experience writing, and a lot more reading. Skip ahead 30+
I write what I like - SF that explores the implications
of new technologies, or possible worlds, or plausible events that
would disrupt our lives should they ever come to pass. I have
completed two techno-thrillers, The Last Tomorrow
and RIPPED, written detailed outlines for a half-dozen novels (and up to 40,000 words of
first draft in each), plus outlines for several collections of
related short stories. I am polishing & expect to publish many
of the dozen short stories I've completed. I have discovered that I enjoy writing
SF every bit as much as I enjoy reading it.
I also discovered that
my new home in St. Augustine, Florida, is a great place to be a
developing writer. The Jacksonville area is home to at least 4
writer's groups (one of which has several local chapters), and I
joined a critique group of 8 Jacksonville area science fiction
and fantasy writers.
Check out my
list of stories, both completed and works-in-process.
might also enjoy the (futurist) presentation I gave at the 2010
International Space Development Conference in Chicago,
Asteroid Capture Into Earth Orbit.
It seems I had an idea that was
apparently unique. Everyone knows that we can (in principle) use
gravitational slingshots around the Moon to capture satellites
(and asteroids) into Earth orbit, if we can move them around at
will. Unfortunately, asteroids are far too massive for our
technologies to manhandle. And everyone knows that there is a
smallish asteroid, 99942 Apophis, that will swoop by the Earth
(closer than our geosynchronous satellites) on Friday the 13th
in April of 2029, and which MIGHT return and actually collide
with the Earth 7 years later. We don't know for sure, because
tiny uncertainties in the 13-APR-2029 slingshot can have a huge
difference in its subsequent orbit. My idea was that we can tune
those uncertainties (by applying small delta-Vs) to control the resulting orbit
(large delta-Vs) using rockets
we can build with today's technologies.
At the 2011 International Space Development Conference in Huntsville, I gave presentations about (1)
the technologies for capturing an asteroid into Earth orbit, and (2) using the
asteroid's resources to
solve the Earth's energy and global warming problems.
One (so far) of the
presentations is posted on
along with supporting information, and the other (an
updated version of an earlier post) will be posted soon.
I was also
interviewed by Alvin Remmers of Moonandback.com.
Here are links to the three videos of my
At ISDC 2011, Author Stephen D. Covey talks with MM about
capturing asteroid #99942 into Earth orbit 19 years from now
and mining it for resources.
July 6th, 2011
At ISDC, Stephen D. Covey continues to talk about capturing
Apophis, giving the specifics of a plan to do so.
July 7th, 2011
Stephen D Covey calls for NASA to manage the slingshot
necessary to capture Apophis or another asteroid.
July 8th, 2011