But it's not just a game of finding literary references.
It's odd how violence and humor so often go together, isn't it?
I loved almost everything about being a teacher, but I was an unusual teacher.
As for the depiction of the Catholic church, it's not meant to be a prediction.
No one inspired me to write, but writer Harlan Ellison terrified me into getting published.
It started 25 years ago, when I was teaching elementary school in a small town in Missouri.
I knew that I wanted to be a writer even before I knew exactly what being a writer entailed.
The truth is, it's not a great career move to create a readership and then, in effect, abandon them.
But I think, and hope, that the novels can be understood and enjoyed as science fiction, on their own terms.
It's one of the strangest attributes of this profession that when we writers get exhausted writing one thing, we relax by writing another.