Aphelion Editorial 023
Where the Senior Editor gets to ramble on about... What?
by Dan L. Hollifield
Its funny what we can get accustomed to - humans adapt so
well - something grows so familiar that it becomes normal...
even if its something that you had been complaining about. Something
that was at first frightening becomes familiar - even comforting - and
then becomes so normal that it fades into the background. You even miss
it when its gone.
For the last few months, my offline life has been a real
roller-coaster. As the ride shows no signs of stopping, I may as well
get used to it. One good thing has been that I've been able to ramble
through my memories as I sorted the flotsam and jetsam of forty years
of being a sci-fi fan. I was amazed at some of the crap that I've
saved. Even to list it would double the size of the magazine, so don't
expect me to start. Lots of it finally got tossed, but the memories
that each item provoked will remain. And the new viewpoint that those
memories also provoked will remain with me.
Would you believe that at one time I was afraid
of the internet? Ask Rob, he was the one who finally got me online. I
had been taking a computer class at a local school as well as doing
some data entry sort of stuff at work - and both networks just happened
to be full of viruses at the time. I brought a half dozen different
computer viruses home to my computer on each floppy I was using. When
they had been purged from my computer I found myself afraid of getting
more viruses from the internet. Once I did bite the
bullet however, I got used to the net, then later I practically lived
online. Now I just kind of commute back and forth. The very thing that
I once feared has become familiar, useful, and I can't imagine doing
without it. Its become equal to the telephone, TV, running water,
electricity, indoor toilets... (Parenthetically; I've lived without
some or all of those things at one time or another, but then I've led a
busy life. Perhaps that'd be the subject of some future editorial?) How
long do you think it will be before a permanent internet connection
simply comes with the house? Soon it'll be just another utility, like
the phone or electric bill. In less than a decade, the internet has
grown tremendously - What'll it be like in twenty years? What will we
be like in twenty years?
Yeah, yeah, yeah- "deep questions from such a shallow mind"
- I can hear you thinking. And you're right, who designated me to
philosophise? But you see, I'm a writer - I dream up sci-fi stories.
That requires me to ask those "what would this be
like?" questions. So I do, and the results are sometimes put online for
all to see. This was a hobby, but has now become an
addiction. I can't quit writing. Neither, I expect,
can you. But questions are part of the craft. Their answers make a
I'm glad to see some more commentary in the Lettercol about
the stories. The Lettercol can be a powerful tool for Aphelion's
readers. I do wish more of you would read the serials and comment on
I'd like to take this time to say farewell to Martin, and
remind him that we are only an e-mail away - so he shouldn't become a
total stranger. Also, let's welcome Jeff Williams to the Serials Editor
job... He should be pretty good at it, if I'm any judge. Jeff has been
wanting to get us on a more regular footing as the Production Editor,
so now is his chance to add to his talents. Hopefully, the 1st
barrier shall soon be broken.
Well, I should shut up about now and let you get to reading
this month's selections. Enjoy!
© 1999 Dan L. Hollifield
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