Ever wanted to write a sci-fi novel? Well, join a few thousand other folks and throw some ideas into the ether that is Human Capital.
The basic concept is this: CNET writer Eric Mack is “crowdsourcing” a complete sci-fi novel, Human Capital, with several contributors all adding passages and ideas as part of an open collaboration. Instead of worrying about too many cooks in the kitchen, they’re slinging open the doors to everyone with a spatula (or, in this case, keyboard).
It’s a fascinating idea, and though the jury is still out on how good the final product might look, you can’t beat the ambition. The book is being written as part of the National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo) project, which challenges authors to write an entire novel in the month of November.
Here’s the working synopsis for the novel:
Well, it takes place a few decades in the future, just after the so-called "technological singularity" that futurists like Ray Kurzweil talk about. In this moment, people are beginning to live much longer thanks to advances in science and technology and it's starting to seem like immortality might be possible. At the same time, humans are beginning to understand that not only are we not alone in the universe, we're not alone in the multiverse, either. The real possibility of human immortality turns out to have a direct impact on another very distant civilization, which sends a hero of sorts to Earth to resolve the complications, but how will he be received?
Mack has called the book a Massively Multiwriter Online Science Fiction Novel (MMOSFN), which is, if nothing else, an awesome moniker. Anyone pitching in will be credited via their Google account, or if you prefer, you can contribute anonymously. Once complete, an editor will take a pass at the manuscript, then CNET plans to publish it in chapters.
We can’t wait to read along.