Improbability vs Probability Drives

Last week, in my post about DrWhoOnline, I talked about the advantages of the Tardis, Dr. Who’s spaceship, as a vehicle for writers (and not time or space travellers:-). In particular, how it was faulty and often didn’t arrive where the Doctor had set it to go. Like Douglas Adams’ Improbability Drive, in The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, the Tardis allowed the writers a wide range of story possibilities. My thinking in that, and previous posts, suggested that a Probability Drive narrows the field a lot — for writers! I’ve decided now, it doesn’t. After all, at some point in Earth’s past the conditions arose that favored carbon-based lifeforms, like us, and didn’t favor lifeforms based on other elements. But it’s possible there was a level of probability at that time where that wasn’t true and, consequently, one or more of the parallel universes running alongside ours is, for example, silicon-based.

If something as fundamental as that could have been different, then anything can be and my concerns for the number of stories are unfounded — thankfully. My first stories will be of small shifts in probability with small differences in outcomes. Al the obvious ones have been done to death (Nazi Germany winning WW2 seems to go on forever as does the British winning the War of Independence or Revolutionary War depending on which side you look at it from). The problem now is to find something that would have really made a difference. I’ll leave that to next week. While you’re waiting, why not visit my Amazon Author Page and check out all the books there.

The Complete Modest Proposal Institute Boxset

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