Ancestor rocks like a (creepy) rocking thing
The Ancestor podcast, like its predecessor EarthCore, is a fairly formulaic sci-fi slasher tale. But, it sure as hell beats anything on the SciFi Channel's Saturday nights. And, as I've started to get sucked into NBC's Surface, I keep finding myself comparing it to Scott Sigler's work. So far, he's better by a hair in my opinion—but that might as well be better by a mile, since NBC's the one with all the money and presumed talent at their disposal.
Fairly formulaic sci-fi slasher? Is that what you think of Ancestor? Well, you're dead-nuts right. I love the formula, and I love SciFi Channel's Saturday Nights (sure, some of those films are stinkers, but I don't have the money sitting around to pay someone to create a monstrous version of 'Snakehead Terror' so I'll take what I can get).
Thanks for the compliments! I'm glad you liked the story. I consider my work "Popcorn Fiction," named for the summer blockbuster popcorn movies that pack the theaters every weekend while some higher-brow work plays on a dozen isolated screens across the country.
But, trust me, Ancestor is not completely formulaic. The primary focus of Ancestor is to let you see the monster grow from a single cell to man-eating proportions. That's a really tough thing to do as a writer -- and through this experiment, I've learned why almost every monster story begins with a hapless victim being eaten, but the reader can't quite see what did the eating. You have to bait the hook to get the reader intersted, and without a full-grown monster that's a challenge. Hopefully, I pulled it off, and you're hooked.
Well, hey, look! It's the author himself! :)
Yeah, though I guess calling your stuff "formulaic" sounds like a slight, it's not necessarily bad if the formula's a good one done right. (I mean, there's a reason there's a formula in the first place.) "Popcorn fiction" sounds about just about right.
I'm certainly liking your stuff better than SciFi's typical "giant snake versus giant snake III", "pterodactyls in the jungle", "chupacabra on a boat", or "vampires on a spaceship" crap. Now that's a formula that feels a lot more like someone filling out a Mad Libs sheet for a plot.
The other thing I appreciate is that your scenarios are not totally dumbed down, and actually have some thought & research behind the more technical parts. It all comes off to me as a much more solid story and even with the creative license taken, it still tickles my nerd brain.
Thanks for dropping, man! Oh, and I have to say that I dug the mentions of Detroit in EarthCore—since I used to work in the Renaissance Center and was working a block or two away in Comerica Tower when I was in the thick of listening to EarthCore. Hello from Michigan! :)