VBT – NEUROGARDEN
Posted by authorcamilson
by Bryon Vaughn
GENRE: Science Fiction, Techno-thriller
Where can you run when there is no place to hide?
Brenna Patrick is a brilliant technologist specializing in neural-cognitive functions and AI. She has cracked the code to solve one of the most troublesome problems in the field, and turned that into the multi-billion dollar NeuralTech Corporation.
Working quietly with the U.S. Department of Defense, NeuralTech is poised to leapfrog the competition with a revolutionary system for tracking people, starting with the world’s most wanted terrorists. But there are only so many terrorists in the world, so who’s next?
When a pair of Columbia graduate students, Jenny and Leo, stumble on the dark secret of NeuralTech’s success, it kicks off a tense game of cat and mouse. As they fight to defeat the powerful forces arrayed against them, nothing less than the fate of humanity hangs in the balance…
NEUROGARDEN is a roller-coaster ride of a thriller, one that will have readers pondering the nature of memory, and of reality, long after they’ve read the last page.
Every morning for Brenna Patrick began with a hot shower and a hotter cup of Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee in the same oversized mug she had stolen from a cabinet while studying at Oxford. Some poor British sod probably spent days looking for his ever so clever black-and-white yin and yang mug, and now, here, it played a part in the daily rituals of the world’s most renowned expert on artificial intelligence.
Halfway through her coffee, Brenna’s usual routine of morning news about the weather or the latest political storm was interrupted by a story on the previous day’s event at NeuralTech.
“According to sources, yesterday, in an impressive display of technical wizardry, the notorious Ethiopian strongman, Azim Dibaba, was eliminated by the U.S. military in partnership with NeuralTech. Stay tuned for exclusive video footage from the NeuralTech facility coming up after the break.”
With a dismissive wave of her hand, the television powered off, and she downed the last of her coffee. Explicit rules about keeping cameras from the Observation Deck were put in place to stop this kind of leaked footage, not so much to keep it a secret, but to control how the message was released. There was no way NeuralTech would have built such an elaborate display of lights and gadgetry if the world was never going to see what they were doing. The fanfare was all a show, a carnival for the masses to distract from the visceral heart of what they were witnessing. Hell, they used to run the ops from a small conference room in the basement of NeuralTech HQ with two laptops and an iPad. The spectacle was created for virality, but she wanted the first glimpses to be better than some shaky cell phone video from a reporter behind glass.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Ever since reading Douglas Adams back in my formative years, I have had an interesting relationship with humor, science fiction, and technology. My first computer was a TI-99/4A, so yeah, I’m old, but only until scientists have cracked the code on transplanting our brains into shiny new vessels.
My body may be showing signs of wear, but I’m keeping my brain tight.
When I am not dreaming of far off worlds and writing, I am living a semi-normal life working in New York City, and watching movies with my wife and her spastic cat, Moss.
Web site: https://www.bryonvaughn.com
GIVEAWAY INFORMATION and RAFFLECOPTER CODE
The author will award a $50 Amazon/BN GC to one randomly drawn commenter via rafflecopter.
Do you listen to music when you’re writing?
Always. Life can be distracting, especially in these times where many people are working and living in their homes hiding out from the ‘Rona. When I sit down to write, I put in my Air Pods and play something that drowns out the world around me. One note, though, I find it almost impossible to write if I am listening to something new. It has to be something that I can listen to on auto-pilot so it is not distracting.
Is your life anything like it was two years ago?
I am a creature of habit, so it is in my nature to try and find some routine and stick to that until it stops working or some outside force mixes things up. About a year ago, I was hit with an idea that dredged up that old fire to write and that changed my life greatly. I still had my work routine, but everything else was upended. I spent every spare moment writing, working to turn that idea into something more than my thoughts, and now with that fire stoked, my life is definitely different from what it was a year ago.
How long have you been writing?
When people ask me this I say I have been writing all my life, but aside from a few short stories published in the 90’s, this novel is my first professional writing experience. I think everybody that decides to put their work out there for the world to see is a lifelong writer, so it is splitting hairs when you separate profession from spilling your mind out onto the page. Writers are always writing, even if it is only for themselves.
What advice would you give a new writer just starting out?
That is easy. Read as much as you can, live your life and fill it with experiences, and then just write. Write about everything and anything. Write about the subway ride to work or school. Write about the trash that was thrown out by your neighbors. Write about your first kiss, or the color of the hair of that boy that sits in front of you in biology. Just write and you will find your voice, and then start writing stories that you think people will want to read.
Tell us something about your newest release that is NOT in the blurb.
I don’t call it out in the blurb, but the main character, Jenny Mercado is Puerto Rican. It is not a critical plot point, but I wanted my characters to be representative of the diversity that is a big part of living in New York City. As the story unfolds, we also discover that she is bi-curious, which is tied more to the plot as the female antagonist has a growing obsession with Jenny.
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