Some readers have wanted to know a little of the background about the science fiction short story, The Wager, how the author Greg Sushinsky came to write it, how he views the characters and what plans there are for the future with his science fiction and the characters featured in The Wager. What follows touches on the most often asked questions.
Q: Why science fiction? You’ve written a lot in sports, health and fitness, and although you’ve written other fiction, why did you decide to write The Wager?
A: I’ve always loved science fiction, and I’ve even written some before, but not for publication. This story came to me and that was how it formed in my head. So it seemed very natural.
Q: Some who’ve read it said it is a timely story. What do you make of that?
A: I suppose the current world situation is always a backdrop for however the subconscious is working out ideas, whatever that wonderfully mysterious process is, but it wasn’t written to be topical. Actually, things that were going on may have been the catalyst, but that’s all. Sometimes stuff is way in your head, deep in your imagination, and it bubbles up.
Q: Was the story easy to write? Did it come out whole?
A: Like a fur ball, do you mean? Coughed up.
Q: Did it just flow from start to finish as you first set it down?
A: Not entirely. Certain sections had to be re-worked to get it to come out right. The characters and the situation presented itself, though the story did not materialize whole.
Q: What about your usual writing methods? Does your writing normally flow easily, or do you have to work to get it out?
A: It’s always work, even if it seems easy. Easy carries joy with it. Sometimes, though, you have to grind it out. That’s a harder joy.
Q: Switching gears, what about the characters, Kasceto and Jospar? Readers mention these characters as powerful personalities. How did you arrive at them?
A: They came to me, they were not calculated or thought up, they were just there, in my mind, doing things and saying things. I just wrote them down.
Q: Will we hear more from them?
A: Yes, there are other stories which are percolating in there. Jospar and Kasceto, and others, are doing and saying things and I want to write that down.
Q: Is there a book coming? A novel?
A: Maybe. There is an idea for a novel which probably grew out of or alongside The Wager. But first there are a few stories I’d like to get down.
Q: What about your latest science-fiction story, Cobalt? Is that finished yet?
A: Yes, it just needs technical work; it hasn’t been put in the form for pdf. or uploaded or made available. It will be in time.
Q: Is Cobalt part of a series of stories, second after The Wager?
A: I wrote it after The Wager, but it is more reasonable to consider it taking place prior to The Wager chronologically.
Q: Was that originally planned that way?
A: No, it was completely organic. Meaning, I wrote The Wager, then there was this other story that seemed to grow right out of it that felt like a very natural companion, or perhaps a sidebar, if a story can be that, to The Wager. It’s just another story that came into my head that I liked and wanted to tell.
Q: Will there be more stories featuring Jospar and Kasceto?
A: I am already working on a third one, which I had partially in mind as I wrote the first two. I had a fragment, it just kind of expanded. There may be more than that.
Q: Do you work this way often?
A: I once wrote what I thought was a fourteen page short story, thought I was finished.
Q: Were you?
A: Twelve years and about 1,300 pages later.
Q: You must tell us about that sometime.
A: Do I have to? I get tired just thinking about it.