Larry Kilham is an inventor, entrepreneur, author and consultant. He has received numerous patents and awards and has published two books about inventing and high tech business development and two novels involving AI and robots 40 years hence.
Larry has returned to his native Santa Fe, New Mexico and is now focused on writing about future society, ecology and artificial intelligence. He currently is writing his third novel about living with the help of computers as we approach the apocalypse. Larry is trained in engineering and management with a BS from the University of Colorado and a MS from MIT. He belongs to several professional societies and has published widely in the technical and business media.
What inspires you to write?
Because I want to tell a story which I think is important to many other people. I write about near-future topics, such as AI and robotics, because I am a scientist and engineer who is familiar with these fields.
Tell us about your writing process.
I research other books in my genre, usually reading a few pages of each. Then I do a short outline, maybe two pages, review that with a few critics including my wife and several authors, rewrite the outline, and then start writing.
I usually find that I have to go back and rewrite the first chapter or two to get everything going in the right direction. I may rewrite and polish the first few paragraphs many times. Once I get beyond this process, I write fairly continuously at the rate of about a page per day.
I read my chapters in a writers workshop and polish with an editor and one or more readers.
I find it helpful to have my manuscript read to me by the computer. I use a freeware called Free NaturalReader.
I’m not very organized or good at character development.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
No, but my wife does.
What advice would you give other writers?
Read the very best writers, usually classical, that tell similar stories. For story telling, I like the Aeniad and the Illiad, written centuries ago. Most modern stuff is trash.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
Several major publishers have been very interested in doing my non-fiction books, written earlier than my novels so they are better-known. I just can’t excited about all the road shows and so forth that they want done.
Now I just do ebooks because they are simple, fast, and reach a wide audience. If you want to do a revision, after you change the manuscript, you submit it to, say, Kindle, and the revised version is almost instantly published.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
It will always be strong but will be heavily influenced by other media ranging from video games to Tumblr.
What do you use?
Professional Editor, Beta Readers
What genres do you write?
Non-fiction science, AI, creativity and invention; and fiction thrillers and near-future science fiction.
What formats are your books in?