Monday, November 15, 2010

Breakthrough author Stephen Tremp

Lucky me! Lucky you! Stephen Tremp from Breakthrough Blogs is here today. He's on a blog tour talking about his novel Breakthrough and all kinds of writerly stuff. You're going to love what he has to say today. I mean, he's even tied in Steampunk! How cool is that?? :)


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Steampunk is a recent sensation and is a sub-genre of science fiction and speculative fiction that often incorporates elements of fantasy. The setting is usually late 1800s Victorian Britain. Futuristic inventions and innovations are powered by steam and introduce conflict that help drive the stories and often lead to alternate historical paths. Steampunk generally tends to be less dystopian than its literary cousin cyberpunk.

H. G. Welles and Jules Verne were masters of using fictional machines that took their audiences on a magical mystery tour without having to leave the comforts of their home. These writers were far ahead of their time.

Today we see an emerging genre similar to Steampunk called Near Future Sci-fi. Instead of using futuristic steam powered machines in the present setting, we see potential breakthroughs in physics, technology, biochemistry, and nanotechnology leading the way. Near-future science fiction is set in the present day or in the next few years. Elements of the setting should be familiar to the reader, and the technology may be current or in development. Stories about theoretical physics, nanotechnology, genetics, and techno thrillers often fall into this category.

Example: Einstein-Rosen Bridges, or wormholes as they are commonly known. In a nutshell, wormholes are theorized and predicted portals though the space-time continuum. The term ‘wormhole’ gets its inspiration from the idea of a worm traversing from one side of an apple to the other side. The idea is that if a worm could tunnel through the apple to the other side, then a shortcut would be established. In the same sense, a wormhole through the space-time continuum could theoretically allow matter, including people, to be transported through a hole from one point to another such as Los Angeles to Boston. For now, wormholes are filed under theoretical physics as a proposed theory, something physicists believe may be true about our universe but have yet to prove it in a laboratory under rigorous conditions.

Hollywood likes to fantasize and sensationalize wormhole concepts and place the setting in the future, develop strange characters with pointy ears, and (gulp) use wormholes for time travel, which simply is not a practical or realistic use of wormholes. But they make for a good story nonetheless.

However, using a wormhole to punch through the fabric of space (length, width, and height) is far more realistic. In fact, governments, militaries, universities, large global conglomerates, and the guy working in his garage have committed larges sums of time and resources to discovering a breakthrough in practically using wormholes to travel through space, even if it’s a short distance such as from one side of the laboratory to the other side. We know space is already curved. If space can be folded like a piece of paper, then punching a hole through the two pieces can make a shortcut, or a wormhole.

Wormholes (also called Star Gates and Jump Points in fiction) are seen everyday in children’s TV programs such as Pokeman, Dragon Tales, Dinosaur Train, and Fairly Odd Parents and shows like Stargate, Sliders, and the Star Trek series among countless other shows. They’re also in popular movies such as Déjà Vu (Denzel Washington), Jumper (very cool movie), the Terminator series, and Contact (Jodie Foster). After a cursory glance of my kids DVDs I see two movies with wormholes: Princess and the Frog and Meet the Robinsons.

My book Breakthrough, the first in a trilogy, begins with a breakthrough in wormholes at M.I.T. in Cambridge, MA. It is used as a means to assassinate powerful global figures. However, wormholes are merely the key that opens Pandora’s Box. In the second and third installments titled Opening and Escalation, wormholes open the door for more unexpected discoveries and breakthroughs in theoretical physics that will threaten the world and life as we know it. This is a series of technology gone too far, discoveries and breakthroughs mankind is simply not ready to steward. Can Chase Manhattan and his friends destroy this technology before mankind destroys themselves? Stay tuned …..

Please join me tomorrow as I visit Matthew Rush at The Quintessentially Questionable Query Experiment as we ask: do you use morals, ethics, and social matters in your stories to convey lessons learned. As always, thanks for stopping by.

Stephen Tremp is author of the action thriller Breakthrough . You can visit Stephen at Breakthrough Blogs .



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Told you it would be a great post! Thanks so much for visiting, Stephen! I'm looking forward to the rest of the tour! :)

Wormholes create so many possibilities! I can think of a few occasions where I'd like to use one! How about you?

84 comments:

  1. The idea of wormholes is definitely a fascinating one.

    Great guest post!

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  2. Golden Eagle - I totally agree! Wormholes are really, really cool!

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  3. Yvonne - Me too! I love the connections Stephen made! :)

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  4. Enjoyed reading the post. My family and I have enjoyed several of the movies/TV programs mentioned in the post. The movie Contact being my favorite out of them.

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  5. Gail - I agree - Stephen's had fabulous post during this tour!

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  6. Susanne - I enjoyed a lot of them as well! Speculative fiction offers so many great choices for reading and viewing! :)

    Thanks for dropping by!

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  7. Hi Jemi, thanks for hosting me! And thanks evryone for stopping by. Its amazing how many shows today use wormholes, especially kids shows. Even Leap Frog movies use wormholes, or portols, to take characters from one place to another.

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  8. Thanks for sharing Stephen here Jemi. My daughter is reading a steampunk series currently and I was trying to explain the genre to her. Now I have a place and other books to direct her to.

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  9. The endless possibilities wormholes hold. Stephen you bring the thoughts of impossible to the possible. Best of luck on your tour.

    Jemi, thanks for hosting Stephen and giving us a look at wormholes.

    Mason
    Thoughts in Progress

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  10. So cool!! I really want to read more Steampunk. BTW, don't forget I decide your true nature today on my blog. He he he.

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  11. HEy Jemi- over from LIsa's blog! Also, very nice post Stephen and I will be visting your blog to read more : )

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  12. Don't forget the movie Event Horizon, a truly horrific experiement in wormhole travel.

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  13. Interesting post. And now those wormholes really have my thinking. Hmm... :)
    Lisa ~ YA Literature Lover

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  14. Lynn, the pleasure is mine. I'm meeting lots of new and interesting people here. Jemi is a terrific hostess!

    Mason, the possibilities for wormholes is indeed endless. Hollywood and the entertainment industry has certainly capitalized on this and made some very successful movies and kids shows using this concept.

    Bekah, very nce to meet you. Thanks for stopping by and saying hi!

    Lisa, I think I'll drop by because inquiring minds like mine want to know Jemis's true nature!

    Alex, Event Horizon is excellent fodder for a Mystery Theatre 3000 movie.

    Lisa, its amazing how often they appear in shows, especially kids shows, yet they are not mentioned by name. They simply appear and people step through them as if this were reality and needs no explanation.

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  15. Oh, I'd so love to have my own personal wormhole. Can you imagine?

    Great post!

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  16. I wonder how'd you classify "between" which is what the dragons fly through teleporting from one place (and time) to another in Anne McCaffrey's Dragonrider series?

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  17. Love this stuff, Stephen! I wish I could use wormhole technology for my travels at Christmas. Sure would save a lot of time and hassle.

    Jemi, thanks for hosting Stephen today.

    Lee
    Tossing It Out

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  18. Steampunk is AWESOME. Great information, very interesting.

    Thanks to both of you.

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  19. I never ever knew that was why wormholes were called wormholes - it really was named after the humble worm!!! Oh and an apple!!

    Amazing!! Thanks for hosting Jemi Fraser! Stephen Tremp's really done his research! Blimey is all I can say! take care
    x

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  20. Fun post. Wormholes are a pretty cool topic.

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  21. I think I could use a wormhole to just get through the day or into a future day or back to yesterday to finish what I started and didn't finish.

    I enjoyed reading this post.

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  22. Thanks for the quick lesson in wormholes. You've started some new sci fi story ideas percolating in the back of my mind.

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  23. Wow! I step out to run some errands and there are all these cool comments. Wormholes are a cool concept. ANd like many of you, I could use one to make my day easier too. Just think of the possibilities. In the garage, instead of cars, you could have a portal that can take you places with no traffic jams. Pretty cool!

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  24. Great discussion on wormholes. They can lead to so many possibilites!

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  25. Stephen - I'm not surprised LeapFrog uses them - it's such a cool concept! Who wouldn't like to jump to another place - or time!

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  26. Lynn - awesome!! A lot of kids (grade 5+ if they're strong readers) like the Philip Pullman series starting with Golden Compass. It's a good one!

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  27. Mason - what a great way of stating it - making the impossible possible - I love that! (And may steal it for future use :))

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  28. Lisa Gail - I just came from your place! You're are an absolute sweetheart! Thanks for making my whole day - heck who am I kidding? Thanks for making my whole week!

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  29. Bekah - Hi!! Nice to meet you :) Lisa Gail's the best :)

    Thanks so much for dropping by! :) I'll pop over to your place in a bit!

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  30. Alex - that's the fun part of the wormholes - potential disasters abound! Definitely good for fiction! :)

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  31. Lisa G - I know! Wormholes have so many possibilities. You can go in pretty much any direction with them!

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  32. Talli - wouldn't that be great? Imagine popping in and out of our reality! There are days that would be REALLY beneficial!

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  33. Diane - Ooooo! That's a really good question! I love McCaffrey's series - one of my all time faves. Between does act similarly to wormholes, doesn't it?

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  34. Lee - That would be absolutely fabulous! All that time and trouble saved. Amazing!! :)

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  35. Teresa - I love steampunk! It's so much fun. Love the combination of the time frame and the technology :)

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  36. Old Kitty - Blimey indeed! LOL :)

    I didn't know about the worm and the worm hole name either - so very cool!

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  37. Holly - I agree - wormholes are so very cool!! :)

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  38. Lee - that's an awesome idea! I might actually get caught up on my to-do list!! :)

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  39. Linda - wormholes are so interesting! So glad you've got some new ideas going - they're always fun.

    Thanks so much for dropping by!

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  40. Kelly - I agree - wormholes are so interesting!! :)

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  41. I just heard about this book from Clarissa Draper's blog. It sounds so cool! And I appreciate the description of Steampunk. I was a bit clueless.

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  42. Julie - The whole concept of Breakthrough is awesome!!

    Lots of folks are clueless about Steampunk so don't feel bad - it's such a fun genre though :)

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  43. I've been following some of Stephen's tour. Awesome!

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  44. Terry - His tour has been lots of fun! I'm glad to be the first (earthly) stop outside the US :)

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  45. Very interesting stuff, Stephen! Thanks for a great discussion.

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  46. Susan - it sure has been interesting! Wormholes are totally fascinating :)

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  47. Stephen, you are one busy guy but all your posts have been so interesting. I'm enjoying following you around.

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  48. Susan - Stephen's tour has sure been a lot of fun! Glad you stopped by this portion Susan! :)

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  49. Hi Jemi & Stephen -

    Great article! The last part gets into the whole good versus evil thing - the stuff of great stories.

    Thanks. Wormholes are no longer a mystery to me.

    Blessings,
    Susan :)

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  50. Susan - great point! I definitely understand wormholes better now too. Thanks for dropping by!

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  51. I do believe that the archway in my high fantasy must be a wormhole. I never thought of it that way. Great post.
    Nancy
    N. R. Williams, fantasy author

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  52. Nancy - sounds like it is a wormhole! I need to write a fantasy novel soon so I can have a wormhole too! :)

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  53. Yes, a wormhole would definitely beat getting X-rayed or frisked at an airport. LOL

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  54. Kelly, this is a topic I never get tired of discussing. Regardless of the side people are on. Theoretically, wormholes do not need to be proven as they cannot be disproven. How's that for food for thought.

    Julie, I admit I was not up to speed with Steampunk until I researched it to write this post. Then I said, "I've read many Steampunk books as a kid and never realized it."

    Terri, glad you've been checking in. Always good to see you. Is that a turtle you're holding?

    Susan, this is interesting stuff, and if I can open up this field of theoretical physics to people then I feel I've contributed something to society.

    Susan, glad you're enjoying the tour. I have to admit I've been pretty darn busy with this tour and everything else happening in life.

    Susan, you haven't seen anything regarding the Good vs. Evil concept. Stay tuned.

    NR, wormholes are in Fantasy books, but they go by different names or are opened and closed by a magical rather than scientific explanation.

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  55. Coming from a scientific background, I think this is very cool!

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  56. Pat - a truly excellent point!! I'd take the wormhole any day!! :)

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  57. Rachel - I agree - it really is very cool stuff! :)

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  58. Hey Jemi!! New follower here :) Congrats to Stephen for his book Breakthrough! Wormholes are too cool with all their endless possibilities!!!

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  59. I like the idea of near-future as its own genre. Thanks, Stephen and Jemi!

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  60. I've been fascinated by wormholes since I was kid and in fact still am. Great post Stephen. Congrats and best of luck with BREAKTHROUGH! Looking forward to the rest of your tour.

    Thanks for hosting, Jemi!

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  61. Hi Jemi and Steve .. fascinating about a genre that I know little about .. I suppose it's obvious that all those mysteries of the 1800s and early 1900s were throwing up scientific ideas that had yet to come to fruition ... or be rejected. I liked the explanation of the concertinaed sheet of paper & punching a hole through it .. can visualise that space breakthrough .. through the "wave theory of light" - very interesting ..

    Thanks Jemi for hosting Steve and for yet another fascinating interview/review .. Hilary

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  62. I really like the concept of wormholes & would like to read more about them.

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  63. Rachel, glad to hear whenever someone has a scientific background. Its always interesting to hear their take on thoretical physics and if they think they will see a breakthrough in these areas during their lifetime.

    Slushpile, thanks for the Congrats! Wormholes are indeed very very cool. And they could exist, at least on much smaller level (too small to see), right underneath our very noses.

    Laura, this is a great genre. I'm compiling a list of movies using htis genre, both realistic and unrealistic scifi.

    VR, thanks for visiting the hosts along the way. Wormholes are fascinating. This is a common thread I see among commenters.

    Hilary, its amazing the vision some of the Steampunk authors had. Same for Near Future Scifi. I love this stuff!

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  64. I have to say I love Steampunk. I'm currently writing a YA novel in that genre. And of course Breakthrough sounds great :)

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  65. Slushpile Slut - welcome!! :)

    I agree - the possibilities with wormholes are endless and exciting!

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  66. Laura - me too! Near future is great for giving you those 'what if' chills!

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  67. VR - I agree - wormholes are so very cool and Stephen's got a great take on them!!

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  68. Hilary - thanks so much for dropping by!

    I agree - Stephen's explanations are awesome - easy to visualize for me! :)

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  69. Nadir - me too! It's such a fascinating concept! :)

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  70. Lynda - I love Steampunk too. It's becoming much more popular with writers. I'm not surprised - there are so many fascinating possibilites!

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  71. Jemi - I'm a newcomer to your blog. What a cool post to join in on. Loved Stephen's illumination of the nuances in the genre.

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  72. Hi Leslie and welcome!! I agree - Stephen post is easy to read and clarifies some rather tough concepts for those of us who aren't scientists!! :)

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  73. I would love a wormhole for a myriad of things, mostly for pushing people in that are annoying me. Ha ha!

    And great cover!!

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  74. It's funny that in some of those shows I've never even paid attention to the fact they were using wormholes. Thanks for sharing, Stephen and Jemi! Breakthrough sounds like a great book!

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  75. Elana - Love it! Don't know why I didn't think of that use for wormholes!! Perfect :)

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  76. Jackee - you're right - we just take it for granted - don't think of them as actual wormholes. :)

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  77. Lynda, thanks for the encouraging words regarding Breakthrough!

    Leslie, I have to admit I learned a lot about the nuances of these two genres too. I have a much deeper appreciation for them.

    Elana, LOL! Me too. I can think of a number of people I'd like to send on a one-wat trip through a wormhole.

    Jackee, I still find shows using wormholes every week. Its like the writers do not feel the need to explain wormhole concepts any more. They just put them in and assume the viewers are comfortable enough with the portals.

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  78. Stephen - I started reading Breakthrough this morning and I'm really enjoying it! Chase is a terrific character :)

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  79. Nice definition of steampunk.

    And I'll read anything even remotely connected to wormholes.

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  80. What a fascinating post! Great explanations (and really helpful), but more importantly, that sounds like a fascinating book.

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  81. Anne - he did do a great job of explaining it! Wormholes are so much fun - I like them too :)

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  82. Amie - It really is! I found Stephen's explanations so clear too. And I just started Breakthrough - and I'm loving it!

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