Kip Thorne

Sometimes I see movies or tv shows and curse because they're using some really cool idea I came up with years ago all on my own. It's not plagiarism, of course, just parallel evolution. That unfinished fantasy novel sitting on my hard drive since the mid-Nineties about a Chinese warrior trying to recover an ancient and powerful Chinese artefact in mid-19th Century America in the company of an American Indian? Shanghai Noon, more or less, or certainly close enough. It was Steampunk before there was really that much in the way of Steampunk bar a few James Blaylock and KW Jeter novels.

Or there's the pattern gun in another unfinished novel, Wonderland, all about psychedelics, CIA experiments in mind control, abstract art (seriously) and non-Euclidean dimensions. Once, years later, while watching an episode of Fringe, I shouted loud enough to frighten the neighbours when I saw a weapon I thought only I had invented for that selfsame novel used on one of the show's characters - a handheld device that projects patterns of flashing light that cause the viewer to have a seizure or become unconscious. In my book, it was called a Pattern Gun.

I just read an article about Kip Thorne in the Guardian that makes me happy, because Christopher Nolan's next big movie project is based around the same exact physics developed by Thorne that I used in Final Days. It's nice to be first, just for once. 


Andy Ritchie said...

Strangely enough, I had the same experience when reading Stealing Lighta couple of months ago - the lightning gloves used by Moss bore a worrying resemblence to the Bodaslod Duelling Glove with which Jethro Postlethwaite, the main character of my first novel, is tortured. Perhaps you sensed your ears burning as I let slip a whispered curse or two...

Gary Gibson, science fiction writer said...

See, Bodaslod Duelling Glove sounds way cooler than Lightning Glove. There are no new ideas under the sun. And when I thought about it recently, I realised I might have got the idea for the gloves from an old Marvel comic, possibly 'Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD'.