Wednesday, April 16, 2014

STARTUP by Glenn Ogura: BOOK SPOTLIGHT




Title: STARTUP  
Author: Glenn Ogura  
Publisher: iUniverse  
Pages: 486  
Genre: Mystery/Thriller  
Format: Hardcover, Paperback, Kindle
Purchase at AMAZON


Set in California’s Silicon Valley, STARTUP follows a young idealist/entrepreneur, Zack Penny, as he strives to achieve his dream of creating a new company that will launch an international revolution in technology through the creation of wallpaper-thin displays that will completely surround a viewer. Zack works for a highly successful company called Display Technik, run by CEO Allen Henley, whose vision is based on a success-at-all-costs philosophy.  Zack sees Henley as a mentor, but Zack’s philosophy favors high morals and values over Henley’s ruthless, end-justifies-the-means model of doing business.

Zack’s dream takes root one morning when he discovers an important paper has been taken from his office. Someone has exposed Zack’s secret plan to break away from Display Technik and start his own company. Henley gives Zack another chance to pledge his loyalty to the firm, but Zack resigns instead, more determined than ever to realize his vision. Soon, the optimistic if naive Zack steps into his new facility with high hopes for success. Henley, however, has already launched a plan to destroy Zack, his company, and Zack’s relationship with Henley’s daughter, Mary Anne.



Glenn Ogura earned a degree in electrical engineering from Queen’s University in Canada. He is currently the executive vice-president for a New Hampshire-based laser micromachining company. Glenn lives with his wife in California.  In addition to his love of writing and talking technology and the study of business ethics, he plays tennis. Startup is his first novel.



Visit his website at www.glennogura.com.

 

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Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Ghost Of The Gods by Kevin Bohacz: GUEST POST


The Story Behind Ghost of the Gods
by
Kevin Bohacz
 
The last 5 years of my life have been filled with strange inexplicable synchronicities. My wife, Mazelle and I noticed these events and found them impossible to explain in any scientific way. I’m a scientist and for much of my life I’ve approached mysteries guided by the scientific left side of my brain. If I could not perceive something with my five senses then extraordinary evidence was required. I’ve always been spiritual but not the least religious and find those two realms are often in bitter conflict with each other. My spiritual side is guided by intuition and not rules. When I was younger, I was a seeker weaned on the philosophies of Gurdjieff and Ouspensky with a solid helping of Castaneda’s dream-work, but as a scientist I always remained optimistically agnostic about things spiritual such as near death experiences or the soul. This all changed for me, everything in the universe change for me when Mazelle, my life, my best friend of 17 years died in my arms with us looking into each other’s eyes. They say life wrenching crisis can transform us or break us. First I was broken by grief and emotionally dismembered then I was transformed and reassembled but not completely.

In the time that followed after Mazelle’s body had died, when I was in the deepest reaches of grief, I could hear my wife whispering to me, “Write my love… Write.” So I wrote. I wrote so hard that my arms grew sore. I wrote so hard that I gave myself tendonitis but the pain in my arms did not slow me. When I was writing my heartache dimmed. My writing saved me from grief that was dark enough to crush the life from anyone. I completed Ghost of the Gods in a short period of time while also simultaneously working on two new novels.

Something else came out of this dark time of transformation. At some point in the middle of it, I looked back over our lives together focusing on the odd pattern of events. Two years before Mazelle was diagnosed she began telling me that the world was spinning out of control and we were not going to live to an old age. She did not tell me this with any kind of fear but more a matter of fact kind of observation. I told her that was not going to happen. Science was going to help us live for a very long time. Yet I too was plague with what I considered “irrational” fears. When at rest stops on our frequent road trips from the Southwest to Laguna Beach, if Mazelle went inside to get some coffee or whatever, I would suddenly be gripped by gut wrenching illogical fears that she was not coming out, that she had vanished from the face of the Earth never to be seen again.

One night while we were in a Walgreens drugstore, her 15 year old very expensive custom solitaire engagement ring literally exploded off her finger. The gold band shattered in two places and parts of the ring went flying across the store in all directions. In wordless panic we scrambled across the floor retrieving diamonds and shards of gold. By the next day we were at the jeweler getting the ring remade and adding a few more diamonds. The jeweler was baffled and could not explain the simultaneous fractures or how the pieces could have been literally launched from her finger flying in different directions for dozens of feet. Once the ring was back and better than new, we were soon joking about the entire event. I would tease her that she secretly broke the ring so that she could get an upgrade. Two years later to the day and almost the exact hour that the ring exploded is when she died in my arms. I now have a very long list of big “coincidences” which occurred in the three years leading up to her leaving this world. In our last ten months together, after Mazelle had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer these inexplicable synchronicities grew in intensity and frequency. Mazelle and I discussed them and noted their otherworldly nature. What were these events? The scientist inside my left brain has given up trying to explain them while my right brain simply calls them premonitions.

So it was with this cauldron of grief bubbling up in my heart, inexplicable mysteries dizzying my mind and finding their way onto the pages of my novel, and with my lost wife whispering, “Write my love… Write…” that I wrote the hope filled sequel to Immortality, titled Ghost of the Gods.

The epic tale of Immortality and Ghost of the Gods was intended from the beginning to be a two part story about many things: physical immortality as well as nonphysical immortality, love, the end of an old world, lucid dreams, and inexplicable mysteries answered while exposing the darker sides of human nature to antiseptic of bright sunlight.

The tale of Immortality was first and foremost created to be a wild and twisting road that will keep you guessing until you reach the very last word of the very last page. Yet at the same time it was intended to be highly thought-provoking. Woven through the tale are deep philosophical ideas, but these ideas are an integral part of the mosaic and so they serve to reinforce the action and suspense. The professional reviews of both my novels confirm this... Publisher’s Weekly STARRED review of Ghost of the Gods: “Bohacz provides mind-bending portrayals of factions vying for power and reflections on the essence and fragility of humanity. But philosophical concerns never obtrude on the fast-paced plot…”

After completing the last page of the story it did not escape me that leading up to my wife’s diagnosis of cancer I had written a novel about physical immortality through transhumanism nor did it escape me that after her death is when I completed the epic tale by writing the second half which was about nonphysical immortality, the opposite of transhumanism. I have learned the world is a much stranger place than we can possibly imagine.


 Ghost of the Gods
by
Kevin Bohacz  
Techno-Thriller  
Mazel & Sechel, 437 pages  
Paperback/Kindle
Purchase at AMAZON


Was it the accumulated wounds to the environment that had finally triggered the nano-tech plague or was it simply one more step in a shrewdly crafted plan to replace us with humans 2.0? As I write this at least one pair of these trans-humans breathe the same air as us, and there are likely many more. They may look like us, they may even be almost human, but they are also cybernetic and will live for an extraordinary length of time. Trust me, their goals are not the same as ours. It was not a natural plague that almost drove humankind to extinction but an attack from within, turning our own biology against us. Scientists discovered all too late an artificial entity, a sentient machine foolishly created in the image of god, had been studying us and genetically altering us for longer than we can imagine. Perhaps it is because of this god-machine that we evolved into creatures who can think and speak and know our own mortality? This silicon god is so different from us that we may never truly understand it, but what we do know is that it is terrifyingly intelligent and it hates us. What we do know is that it tried to eradicate us from the face of our planet and then stopped for no discernible reason. What we do know is that its work is not done.



I am Kevin Bohacz the bestselling novelist of Immortality and a lucid dreamer… Welcome to my dreams. I am also a writer for national computer magazines, founder and president of two high technology corporations, a scientist and engineer for over 35 years, and the inventor of an advanced electric car system – the ESE Engine System (circa 1978). I was also a short order cook for I-Hop, flipped burgers at McDonalds, and delivered Chicken Delight. All of those careers and more are behind me now that I am a full time storyteller, a catcher of dreams. Thank you for reading my stories and making this all possible.
His latest books are Immortality and Ghost of the Gods.

Visit Kevin’s website at www.kbohacz.com or follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/kevinbohacz