Book Jacket

 

rank 1288
word count 53350
date submitted 01.04.2012
date updated 05.09.2012
genres: Fiction, Science Fiction, Fantasy, ...
classification: adult
complete

Crater*

Katy Capet

Life on board a space crater is tough but for the crew of The GYBE it is about to become a race for survival.

 

In 2297, eighty-two years after Earth Abandonment to Mars, the Company is sending back a salvage team to retrieve the ISELP (International Space Exploration Launch Platform). The mission for the five company crew members (Addie, Irvin, Noona, Harvey and Dougal) on board the Company ship ‘The Gybe’ is straightforward, return to Earth, refit the one hundred and twenty year old ISELP and sail her back to Mars. But space laboratories sealed up on board the ISELP hold something the Company wants, whatever the cost, making the crew of the Gybe expendable. The Company controls the resources loop on Mars for sustaining life in the biohedron cities and those resources are fast running out. The plan for deep space colonisation, particularly the building of the DSELP (Deep Space Exploration Launch Platform) is a cover for something far more sinister.

 
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tags

death, dreams, earth, fantasy, fear, futuristic, life, love, mars, poetry, science, science fiction, space travel, spaceship

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A G Chaudhuri wrote 215 days ago


I had placed CRATER on my shelf purely on the basis of a first chapter read. It stayed on for a few months but I couldn't find the time to read more until now. And I must agree with Jim. For those on the lookout for some realistically written (read least jingoistic with excellent characterisation and dialogue) space-opera / hard science fiction in the veins of Phillip K Dick, this will be quite a treat. Being really hard pressed for time and yet unable to stay away, I basically skimmed through after the first three chapters, only stopping intermittently to relish the juicier bits about Earth Abandonment, Mars Biohedrons, Atacama Biome, the conflict between the Company and the Unions, the labyrinth under Megalopolis, the chosen lineage and of course, Variant A. There is hardly much to improve upon here. My only two suggestions are these. Firstly, this story is too rich to be confined to 50K words. There are more than a few sections that can be expanded to make for a more complete reading experience. And secondly, as Mark had pointed out earlier, the reason for the decommissioning of Earth is not very clear. Certain things were obvious like population pressure (12 billion!), dwindling resources, etc. But why did people feel compelled to leave? Was it because of the viral outbreak or something else? I think I caught something about the Moon having fallen apart (because of excessive drilling perhaps?). Whatever be the cause, it needs to be dealt with in greater details. That's about it. Finally, I loved the Katy Capet lyrics.
I wonder, has she uploaded on YouTube yet?




Jim Waurzyniak wrote 223 days ago

"Crater" is one of those rare gems of science fiction. Opening in space springboards into character development. Technology itself does not bring forth a crisis, humans being human are quite capable of constructing and resolving problems on their own. This is the type of speculative fiction that has science on its proper footing as tools. For better or worse people make the cultural they inhabit.

The Earth has been abandoned after mankind's short sighted effort to manage its own affairs. There is hope for the civilizations to survive on Mars. The technology and plans that drive its development are artfully described. The long range view towards survival and management of resources seem to address many of the crises that made the Earth inhabitable. Oh but, humans are humans no matter where they live. Power and greed can thrive after the death of a planet.

The story is a well balanced telling of inner conflicts and outer experiences. The multiple threads of plot and themes weave a living world of actions, plans, deception and mystery.

A very enjoyable and uniquely written story,

Jim

stearn37 wrote 406 days ago

Hi
I enjoyed this very much and have put it on my watch list and it will go onto my shelf soon.
A full six stars.
From
John Stearn
Author of Derilium

Lasha wrote 524 days ago

You're very welcome. It's a mesmerizing story and I enjoy every word.

toscribble wrote 530 days ago

Nice read. Could you take the time to review my book A christmas tale. Thanks.

Daniel6394 wrote 545 days ago

Katy:
Great read. Wonderful story. Very well written. I enjoyed it very much. Six stars and a place on my WL.
I'd appreciate a return read, with comment and stars. If you think it deserves it, a place on your WL or even better a place on your shelf.
Best Wishes
Daniel
The Makers

Di Manzara wrote 568 days ago

Hi Katy,

Thank you for reading my book, Leo & Rover: The Purple Marble Adventures! It's an honor to be reviewed by someone as talented as you. Here is my review for Crater. I hope it helps.

Short & long pitch: Both are well-written and promise a very good story. The futuristic idea is something to watch out for. Reading the long pitch makes me wonder about so many things. How will the setting be different from the other futuristic books? Will the author deliver and amaze us? What else is different here that we haven't seen before? It intrigues me. I like the choice of names. My favorite is Noona. It means sister in Korean language.

Story: You'd think it's nothing different from the other books about space, or movies, but you're wrong. There is something about it that lures you to read more - and more - as you go along. I like the idea that there is tension between the crew members and it's being an obstacle to their mission. The story flows very well. It is intense in a way that it makes you imagine whether such things can possibly happen. At some point, I was kind of frightened. And that is a good sign. It means you are a good writer.

Writing style: You are a smart writer and it shows. You do your research and you clearly know what you're talking about. The events are appropriate and well thought out. It's not easy to come up with a story like this and write this beautifully. There were some minor errors here and there, but there's nothing to worry about. There are always helpful people here on Authonomy who can spot those for you. :)

Rating: 5 stars!

Things to consider: There are some parts where in I felt the information is being given all at the same time. This is an easy fix so there is nothing to worry about. You have a good story going on here.

I enjoyed reading your creative work. Keep on believing. We will get published! Again, thank you for swapping reads with me. I'm always willing to help.

D - Leo & Rover: The Purple Marble Adventures

Robert M. Carter wrote 589 days ago

Katy,

I've read your first chapter. An intriguing story and what a wealth of original ideas and detail! For me the present tense writing is a little awkward to get used to but it sets Crater apart from the field and that can't be a bad thing. In combination with your well thought out sci-fi world it could find you a well deserved nieche in the market!
I've given you high stars and will find a slot on my bookshelf for you at some point (long list of commitments just now but you will get a slot, I promise!)

Best regards,

Robert

mdws77 wrote 699 days ago

SF42
I just finished reading your entire book and like it very much. Highly rated your book. Here are some comments that could make it even better:
Your first chapter is a little bit too much like a tech manual. You start out great, but get into too many definitions too early in the story. You have an excellent Addendix at the end of your book, maybe you should just refer people to that rather than give the definitions in both places.
Earth Abandonment: When I started reading your book, I assumed that Earth was no longer habitable and would soon be destroyed. But that didn't seem to be the case in later chapters when Addie and Irv crash land on Earth. We find out there is people there and they can breath the atmosphere. That makes me question why humanity would abandon Earth when they could just build biohedrons on Earth instead. That way the planet recovers without human intervention also. Your Health care as a right reason didn't seem to work for why to abandon Earth. If there was something like Earth was going to be destroyed. Or living on Earth, even in Biohedrons, would cause humanity to die out. Then I could see a reason to go to Mars. You might need to work on that.
Also, watch out for the run-on sentences. If you wouldn't talk that way you shouldn't write that way. You have several sentences throughout the book that are very long. Some I couldn't even say in one breath. Please look at shortening them.

Here are some grammar/spelling issues:
Chapter 1: "Harvey presses his head to the small porthole camera and on the screen in the central communications hub his face looms large, distorted through the space helmet’s thick curve of gold particle shielding. ". -- seems a little long. Look at breaking up the sentence.
"repeat of Earth Abandonment* happen on Mars". -- should Abandonment have the "*"?
Chapter 3: "He starts momentarily at the sight of Cal.". -- do you mean, "He is startled momentarily at the sight of Cal"?
Chapter 4: "somewhere you can get to easily but without arousing suspicion". -- think you mean, "get to it easily"
A few issues here: 1. Marnie gives Emerald the code to enact the new identity, but not the response if there is problems. 2. Marnie gives her the antique, but doesn't take any payments. If Perrin is monitoring her, then that would stand out I would think.
Chapter 5: "The Company are really throwing" -- Do you mean, "Company is really"?
Chapter 7: "to monitor the planet and to see if could regenerate" -- I think you are missing an "it" after the "if".

Was the reason of earth's abandonment because of plague?

Chapter 8: "This was signal was picked up by the radio transmitters" -- Should this be, "This signal was"?
Chapter 9: "The baldness of the statement somehow shocks" -- I think you mean "boldness" instead of "baldness".
"way through thre living quarters of the ISELP" -- I think you mean "the" instead of "thre".
"We are dead already, Noona and we need allies" -- I think you mean, "We are dead already, Noona, and we need allies".
Chapter 10: "stops worlking on the bank of wires" -- Should be "working", not "worlking".
"trip, then this is for my fellow crew members (Noona, Dougal, Addie and Irv), to remind them of me. ". - if Dougal is the one sending the present, then his name shouldn't be here.

Very good story overall. Work on smoothing out Chapter 1 and the reason for Earth abandonment a little better. Remember, people will not leave Earth unless there is a very compelling reason to do so, especially to Mars.

Your book still has great potential and I wish the very best for you.
By the way: I like what you did with your name in the book as a Twenty-first century group.

Mark Scull
Solian Chronicles: Pluto Genesis

brerandall wrote 717 days ago

SF42
Hello Katy,
Unfortunately there’s not much I can say that hasn’t already been said. (: I’m not too qualified here, but below are the notes I took whilst reading.
A couple of tense switches and a few missing commas here and there. These are easily smoothed out in a first edit. I started writing in third person and then decided to do first, had to go back and switch everything. I still do it!
First chapter is a mite too long, might be better if it were broken up to make it easier to digest.
The names fit the characters exceptionally well. You have a talent for matching traits to names and creating characters that have an element of the known about them. So we as the reader feel like we can place ourselves in the story and identify with what’s going on to a certain extent.
The description is exceptional; the world you’ve created is unique and interesting. I like how you explain things like the meld-all. I always appreciate footnotes. (:
Your pitches, in my mind, were spot on. Just enough intrigue to want to look into it further.
All in all, you have a wonderfully promising book here. I feel like this is something that will rise in the ranks very fast. If I picked it up in a bookstore I would definitely buy it. Six stars, and I’m sorry I couldn’t be more helpful!

Bre
Memoria

Prozakville wrote 721 days ago

SF42

Hi Katy,

I like stuff about Mars so I thought I'd give your story a go. The scenario onboard the Gybe reminded me of the Nostromo from Alien (or even early Red Dwarf!). I'd have liked some descriptions of crew (though the different characters came out well through dialogue and actions); also of the ship, especially as 'sail trim' gets an intriguing mention in chapter two.

ShadowOfOsiris has written a fairly comprehensive review and there's little I can add. The change in tense is disconcerting at times (it's one of my bad habits too), but I didn't notice anything wrong with the point-of-view changes; this is also something I do myself and I don't personally think it's a problem. I don't like the use of footnotes - I can only think of George McDonald Fraser or Terry Pratchett who have made good use of them in fiction (plus footnotes don't work in ebooks) - and I think much of what you use them for can be worked into the narrative, as you did with explaining ISLEP for example. The description of the Mars cities are good, though precious little was said about what day-to-day life was like for the inhabitants. The cyclotubes sound fun!

Other bits of note: I like the use of song lyrics and the idea of a deliberate 'glitch' is interesting. I also had to smile at the author self-reference in a later section. The 'Dreamer' passage was good and I really liked Christophe's reaction to meeting Marnie's brother. One criticism is that the first real hint of what the story is really about doesn't come until chapter four and the mention of the laboratories on the ISELP.

All in all, there's a lot of good ideas here. All the best with it!

Steph (Hollow Moon)

ShadowOfOsiris wrote 739 days ago

SF42

Hi Katy

First of all, before I forget to mention it, I noticed that you have two of your own books on your shelf. That doesn't actually help their rank, as it is only other people's backing that make a difference. As well as that, a lot of people on here get a bit annoyed at people who do that, and so doing so may actually lose you some reads. Another thing is, when you want to thank people who have commented, you need to click on 'send message' rather than 'reply', because 'reply' posts your thanks here in the comments section, which they have no reason to look at, so they'll never see. Anyhoo, on with the book itself :)

I don't know if the explanation of the term 'crater' is there just for authonomy, or if you intend that to be in the final version. If the latter, I'd recommend you think of another way. I use, as J said (rather good to see my name mentioned in someone else's comment!), footnotes. I like them in Terry Pratchett books, so I adopted it for my own, for things that I feel need to be explained but don't fit in the main body. You could also have a glossary of terms in the back, where you put an asterisk next to the word and just have a whole page dedicated to explaining the terms.

'...out here!..' - redundant full stops

'Sometimes Harvey stretched her patience to the very limit.' This is one reason present tense is tricky - its so easy to slip into past tense by accident.

'Urghh..' - one redundant full stop

'Harvey stops banging [...] it was starting to make him...' - slip of tense again

'To be honest(,) and brutal honesty...'

I'm not sure about the mismatch of 'rise' and then 'lie back'.

'This (is) your in-flight DJ...'

One thing I was on the lookout for in my last edit was switching POV too often and between too many characters. In just the first half of chapter one, you've switched from Harvey, to Noona, to Harvey, to Noona, to Harvey, to Irv. This is one of the things the editor I sent my work to was very against.

'and soft fruits' appears to be on its own line for some reason. Maybe just authonomy's fault.

'ship's doctor's footsteps' is a bit awkward. 'the doctor's footsteps' would suffice. They are aboard a ship, after all, so it's clear she's the ship's doctor.

'(H)mm, I think the proverbial...'

'taken when a Chip was still a baby'

'...marketing by (the) Company for the general public.'

You say 'Company' a few times without 'the', so I'm guessing it's intentional, in which case there's one or two places nearer the start where you say 'the Company'.

'...that it was either or used as...'

Ok, now you're back to 'the Company'.

I like the glitch idea; very clever.

I can't really find much else to comment on. It is well written and well thought out. My main concern is the swtiching tenses. You do it a lot, slipping into past tense. I don't really get the need for it to be present tense anyway. It doesn't work every time, and some people hate it. Since it doesn't really add anything, I'd recommend changing it to past tense. The punctuation also needs some looking at. Some places there's too much (eg, '!..'), and in some places there's none, and in some places there's a comma where it needs something stronger. Oh, and the chapters are very long for Authonomy. The shorter the chapters, the more people will read.

So the main things to look out for in the next edit are POV switching and tenses. To be honest, I want to back it, but these things are making me hesitate. But I think I will.

Good luck with it :)

J. Owen wrote 739 days ago

SF42

Katy,

Great start with the drunk guy outside sobering up! And nice camaraderie going on between the crew, which sets up the characters quickly in the readers head. You’ve made the ship environment feel very real and believable. And I like the building plot.

I would consider putting the explanatory notes at the bottom of each Autho chapter so they don’t break up the actual story (Ross Harrison does this, so check out his first chapter of SOTW for an example).

I am very impressed. Well thought out, and frankly awesome, ideas throughout. I’ve WL’d for more reading later.

Best wishes for the ED,
J.

liberscriptus wrote 741 days ago

SF42

I read the first four chapters, and the first thing that jumped out at me was the fact that you've chosen to write in third person present tense, which is quite unusual. I found it somewhat disconcerting, as I usually associate that particular tense with synopses summarizing the events of a story, not the story itself. That being said, otherwise your narrative is well written and the universe you create is well-explained. The only typo I noticed is that you get "it's" and "its" mixed up (the former is a contraction of "it is", the latter designates possession).

I like that your story focuses on the character interactions of the crew. Their individual voices really come through in the dialogue, and it's interesting to see the dynamics of the people on board this ship. I have a hard time picturing what they look like, though, and I think a couple of physical descriptions here and there would be helpful.

This is just my opinion, but I'm not a fan of the songs in chapter 2. I'm all for incorporating songs into the story (I do it all the time), but the length of your songs seems like a bit much. If I were you, I would pick and choose a handful of choice verses that have particular meaning or significance to either the character or the story and include only those, and definitely avoid repeating verses.

Other than that, I think you have a great premise and a fascinating speculative idea. It's great how you manage to transport the reader into this universe of yours while really focusing on the characters. I think you handle the descriptions of the technology in a wonderfully offhand way, treating them as familiar items, which makes sense given the perspectives in your story. Best of luck with this!

Cheers,
M.
Astral Sea: The Pandora Project

James Hardy wrote 745 days ago

This is a SF42 review;

I've read the first 3 chapter’s and these are my initial feelings and feedback  I make no attempt to comment on typos and sentence structure as I’d be a liability.

First of all, I really liked the setting, someone else has hinted at the comparisons with alien, but had hints of Event Horizon in it too. The Crater felt gritty and real and I had a good sense of being there. I liked the science reference but found myself getting confused at times with the footnotes and *s, I just wondered if there was a better way to bring these points and facts into the story. I especially liked the idea behind the meld all, seemed a nice solution to some of the issues of space travel that space operas have to overcome (inertial dampeners!)
I also liked the ideas about the habitats on Mars, lots of potential for subplots.

The dialogue flowed well and the characters are clearly defined although I found Noona a touch clichéd, I found myself predicting what she would say throughout sections of speech and being right almost all of the time. I found Irv the opposite of this and found him a refreshing character, a touch of humour always works for me.
I’m undecided about the songs in chapter 2, I liked the idea and they are well constructed I found myself skimming them to get back to the story, but that’s probably because I’m bloke with no soul!

The plot seems very promising, I’m genuinely interested about what the secret of the ISELP is and feel that my time spent finding out will not be wasted.

Best of luck,

James

scargirl wrote 748 days ago

you've made this credible and created this environment well. it is a good read for this type of genre.
j
what every woman should know

Katy Capet wrote 749 days ago

Thank you for kind comments!

Hi Katy,

This is really well written and shows a lot of promise. The pitch was good and made me want to dive in. It reminded me of the situation in the film Alien, when a routine mission turns into a fight for survival.

The narration and description is good. Dialogue seems very appropriate.The characters and the environment you've created are fantastic!

The explanations are useful, in-depth, creative and intelligently plausible. But I do think there may be a way to implement them into the narration rather that have them as a footnote. It sort of breaks up the pace.
In the case of the Meld-all, maybe you could say something like, "Harvey knew the science behind it was complicated, involving the manipulation of ions.. etc etc, and that it is normally used to deflect solar winds.. etc, etc.. but he could trust it to keep him safely attached to the hull."

Highly starred! Will keep it on my watchlist to finish the third chapter - I hope you upload more soon!

Cheers,
Adam

Katy Capet wrote 749 days ago

Hi, many thanks for your generous comments. Thank you!

CRATER
Katy Capet

I read all three chapters you have here. I found most of it to be well paced and it moved along with exceptional characterization. I enjoyed the dialogue and found that to be what I liked the most.

There is a wealth of technology in this story that appears to be authentic. I am not educated in those areas, but it felt right. I would like to see it fed to the reader in a more subtle way. It was rather overwhelming to get long paragraphs of it all at once. The notes might serve better if they were at least located at the bottom of the page. As a fan of Fantasy and Science Fiction, I recognize that the mechanics of it are handled differently than mainstream fiction. I write in that genre myself. Please accept my congratulations for having begun such an ambitious project.

I am one who holds the story to be most important. I can see you are going somewhere by reading these first three samples of your writing so I'll put you on my watchlist until you post more.

Sincerely,
Mary Enck

Sharahzade wrote 749 days ago

CRATER
Katy Capet

I read all three chapters you have here. I found most of it to be well paced and it moved along with exceptional characterization. I enjoyed the dialogue and found that to be what I liked the most.

There is a wealth of technology in this story that appears to be authentic. I am not educated in those areas, but it felt right. I would like to see it fed to the reader in a more subtle way. It was rather overwhelming to get long paragraphs of it all at once. The notes might serve better if they were at least located at the bottom of the page. As a fan of Fantasy and Science Fiction, I recognize that the mechanics of it are handled differently than mainstream fiction. I write in that genre myself. Please accept my congratulations for having begun such an ambitious project.

I am one who holds the story to be most important. I can see you are going somewhere by reading these first three samples of your writing so I'll put you on my watchlist until you post more.

Sincerely,
Mary Enck

Numbers wrote 749 days ago

Hi Katy,

This is really well written and shows a lot of promise. The pitch was good and made me want to dive in. It reminded me of the situation in the film Alien, when a routine mission turns into a fight for survival.

The narration and description is good. Dialogue seems very appropriate.The characters and the environment you've created are fantastic!

The explanations are useful, in-depth, creative and intelligently plausible. But I do think there may be a way to implement them into the narration rather that have them as a footnote. It sort of breaks up the pace.
In the case of the Meld-all, maybe you could say something like, "Harvey knew the science behind it was complicated, involving the manipulation of ions.. etc etc, and that it is normally used to deflect solar winds.. etc, etc.. but he could trust it to keep him safely attached to the hull."

Highly starred! Will keep it on my watchlist to finish the third chapter - I hope you upload more soon!

Cheers,
Adam

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