by Travis Simmons
At the end of 2012 I was browsing news headlines when I came across one that said NASA believes we would find life on other planets in 2013. There are some topics I can breeze past, and then there are those topics that make me sit back and say “WOW!” Immediately my brain started thinking. There are so many planets in our galaxy that could support life and daily more and more are added to that list. Some of these planets aren’t that far away. And you have to think, we are only categorizing planets that could support life as we know it. That means if there are life forms out there that live a way we don’t know about, there could be even more.
Lets look at a number really fast. 54 is the number of planets found between 2009 and 2011 believed to have liquid water, an essential building block to life as we know it. That is just two years. And that is just planets they know about, planets they have found. Our galaxy could contain more than 50 billion planets. People far smarter than I have already done the math, and it rings in at about 500 million planets that could be in the “Goldilocks” zone, the perfect distance from their host star to support life (as we know it).
This is astounding! Do you know what that means? Nothing is confirmed yet (more on that in a minute) but there is no way we are alone in the universe. These planets are in our cosmic back yard! Even more exhilarating there is mention that Venus could have water on the surface, and there is evidence that Mars had water on it at one time. Personally I think Mars had life on it. Personally I think we were implanted from Mars to Earth via a meteor shower that brought parts of Mars to Earth and bacteria with it (in a panspermia display of implanting life).
But the headline definitely said we would find life in 2013. You know what that translates to for me? We have already found life; we just need to confirm our findings before we release the news. Where would this life be? The red planet in my opinion. We are already there with Curiosity, analyzing minerals. They even found carbon at the landing site, and carbon IS the building block of life. But they largely suspect the carbon went into the Martian atmosphere with Curiosity.
But what will this life be? Most likely we will find some form of bacteria when we find actual life, but that is still alien life. The possibilities are endless though. Cosmically speaking, humans are a pretty young species, which means there could certainly be (in all probability there is) older forms of civilization out there.
This is the type of stuff fantasy and science fiction authors live for. These discoveries drive us and we start imagining all of these strange worlds, some of them similar to our own, but many of them aren’t. If you pick up any science fiction book, it is completely possible a world similar to the one written of could be out there somewhere, undiscovered.
Every day there are amazing discoveries in science. Some of the stuff in science fiction of times past is already coming into play. It is only a matter of time before real life space exploration catches up to science fiction. At that point, will it even be called science fiction any longer? Will it, instead, be called science? Probably not because, by then, the science fiction authors will have more evidence and information to build off of, and more theories to create that might eventually be supported by scientific discovery. It is an amazing time to live in, and an amazing time to write in. I am just so glad I am alive to see it.
About The Mirror of the Moon: With the death of one of the companions, Grace must answer for the secrets she’s kept. The path before them is ever lengthening in their quest for Amber. There are changes they all must face, and when Joya enters her trials of sorcery, danger lurks around every corner. The power within Angelica and Jovian is strengthening and with it comes confusion. What are they? It is painfully obvious nothing like them has ever existed before. Why is it at times they seem more one person than two separate people? With all the mystery surrounding their latent power, Angelica stumbles upon a passage in a book of sorcery indicating she is evil. Could she be the Mask prophecy speaks of? Is she destined to turn against her own flesh? To make matters worse, the Well of Wyrding (a giant well that controls all sorcery) has been breached and wyrd itself is spiraling into chaos.
About Travis Simmons: "I have been writing since I was 14. I began writing a book called "The Calling of the Two" and while writing that on and off I started uncovering another idea.
"Yes, this is all well and good, but what about before? What happened in the world before these characters came into it?" I always knew there was a "before" and as I started wondering about it I got ideas. At first they were little ideas but as I discovered the names for my characters a whole story about them emerged.
I started working on The Revenant Wyrd Saga several years back and I am very happy I did because hearing and documenting Jovian and Angelica's story has been one wild ride.
I live in a remote part of upstate New York and honestly just hoofing around my neck of the woods gives me a ton of inspiration for my novels. I love research, and I love speculating on different ideas and theories."
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