Sandy Sandfort – The Resurrections of Robert A. Heinlein: Genesis

What is your most recent book? Tell us a bit about it.

I’ve recently published three. One of them, The Resurrections of Robert A. Heinlein: Genesis, was actually written several years ago. It’s a “what if” science fiction story about the cloning of science fiction writer, Robert Heinlein. It’s the prologue to a series of follow-up stories about what happens to the various clones. They are genetically identical, but will be reared in different cultures. I will address the heredity-vs-environment debate.

Tell us something about yourself.

I’m from the “Show Me” state, but I have lived around—Arizona, California, Costa Rica, Singapore and now Panama. If you write, you can live anywhere you want. So I chose to live in a rain forest paradise, inside a extinct (I hope) volcano.

What inspired you to write this book?

I had been reading a lot about genetics and cloning. That plus wishful thinking, lead me to bring back from the dead, my favorite author, if only in fiction.

How did you choose the title?

I wanted the main title to be descriptive and provocative. Since the story is a “frame” for future stories, I will use the main title for them all, just changing the subtitle.

What obstacles did you encounter in getting this book published? How did you overcome them?

As I mentioned, I wrote it several years ago, before all of the internet self-publishing resources came along. It’s a novella, so it’s not big enough for a conventional book. As an ebook, however, its length is irrelevant.

How did you know you wanted to be a writer? How did you get started?

I wrote some stuff in high school and university, but was basically a dilettante. When I came back from Singapore, I sold some non-fiction to Mondo 2000. That lead to pieces for Wired, LA Times, Soldier of Fortune a many others. Now I’m trying my hand at fiction. Why? Well, I don’t think I am the first to say it, but I have come to think that non-fiction can only tell you facts, but fiction can tell you the truth.

Do you have any writing rituals?

I wish. I would like to have more consistent output, but I think that will come.

How do you come up with the names for your characters?

Shhh! Don’t tell anyone, but many of them are the names, or variations of the names, of people I know (with their usually enthusiastic approval). I also use internet list for baby names, to come up with foreign characters names. I don’t obsess over it, but I like to have some meaning behind character names.

Did you learn anything from writing and publishing this book? What?

Writing Resurrections helped clarify a lot of my thinking about freedom, commitment, bravery… and their opposites.

If you were doing it all over again, what would you do differently?

Not much if anything. Whatever still needs to be said, I will say in upcoming sequels.

What types of books do you like to read? Who are your favorite authors?

I read science, economics and political non-fiction. Most of my fiction reading is hard science fiction.Heinlein is my favorite, especially the “classics” However, I also like many contemporary writers such as L.Neil Smith, Cory Doctorow and others.

Are you working on your next book? What can you tell us about it?

I will let the world of Resurrections rest for a while, but I have blocked out several sequels.Right now, I am working hard on writing the next collection of short stories for Adventures in Human Space. Those short stories are also adapted for Escape From Terra, an internet science fiction, adventure graphic series. Both Adventures in Human Space and Escape From Terra are set in the asteroids and elsewhere in the solar system at the turn of the 22nd Century.

What is the best advice you could give other writers about writing or publishing?

“Just do it.” I meet many intelligent, verbal and literate people who say, “I wish I could write.” I know what is holding them back—it held me back for many years—fear. Our stories are our babies and we are afraid to have them judged by editors, publishers and readers. You just have to develop rhino skin and get on with it.

Who is the perfect reader for your book?

Resurrections is hard science fiction. So traditional SF readers will enjoy it. Also, it is sort of a “chick fic” in that my viewpoint character is a brave, young woman. I think she represents an excellent role model for young women and teens.

Where can readers learn more about you and your book?

My books contain some biographical information, but if you Google, “sandy sandfort” you will get a boat load of links. (Special note: I am NOT the “Sandy Sandfort” who is a Dutch sex researcher.)

Adventures in Human Space and Escape From Terra are available on Amazon.com

The Resurrections of Robert A. Heinlein: Genesis is available here: http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/14227