WiFi SciFi

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New Video Interview

There’s a brand new video interview with me on the Forbidden Planet website.

Watch it here.

The Unexplained

Photo by Artem Kovalev on Unsplash

I’ve had a few folk ask me about UFOs recently, so I thought I’d say a word or two about the unexplained in general.


I’m fascinated by the stories about UFOs and the lore and history surrounding them, but I’ve never seen a single scrap of actual evidence or anything that has convinced me they actually exist. Don’t get me wrong, I would love to know whether alien life exists, I just struggle with the idea they travelled across hundreds of light years to skulk around probing random lumberjacks.


I know some people I trust who claim to have experienced ghostly phenomena. Personally, I’m not convinced. I don’t like the idea that we might endure as disembodied spirits after death. However, just because I don’t believe in the supernatural, that doesn’t mean I want to piss it off. And to be honest, I find it much easier to believe in them at 3:00 am than during daylight hours.


There’s all sorts of weird stuff out there. I had a couple of strange experiences on Loch Ness once, for example. And I like to try and keep an open mind, but extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence.

I’ll believe in the Illuminati when they send me an invite to join, and even then I’ll be pretty bloody sceptical.

Weird animals in various parts of the world? I can see that’s not beyond the realms of possibility. “There are more things in heaven and Earth, Horatio,” and all that.

But, at the end of the day, while all this is a lot of fun, and great material for stories, I am not convinced any of it actually exists. Maybe one day, I’ll see a flying saucer or a headless spectre, but for now, you can place me firmly in the unbeliever camp.

Free Novella

Hello, friends.

Following the example of writers such as Adrian Tchaikovsky, Tade Thompson and Dave Hutchinson, I’ve decided to make some work available for free download during this Covid-19 crisis.

In my case, it’s a novella titled Downdraught.

I hope you enjoy it.

Download the PDF here

Why A Dystopian Future Isn’t Inevitable

That title might seem a little ironic now, but my monthly column for The Engineer is now online.

To counter all the doom and gloom, I decided this month to look ahead to a world where political and industrial inertia have been conquered, and engineers set free to tackle the challenges ahead. So, come with me to the world of 2100 AD. Many of our children and grandchildren are still alive, and have families of their own right now, but their way of life is as different to ours as ours is to that of the Victorians.

You can read the full article here.


Things seem to have become very real, very quickly. As a result, I’ve reluctantly cancelled my attendance at Eastercon.

A couple of weeks ago, I don’t think any of us thought we’d be self-isolating and avoiding the office, pubs and family gatherings. But here we are.

I just want you to know that we’re all in this together. I’ll keep posting my usual positivity on Twitter, but if any of you are feeling lonely, please feel free to use this page to reach out. You can drop me a direct message, or use the comments section below to start a conversation with other readers. In the meantime, stay safe and stay well.

Your pal,


Tomorrow’s Transit Technology

My new column for The Engineer is now online.

From sub-surface freight delivery tubes, to space elevators for ferrying workers to off-planet manufacturing facilities, resident science fiction writer Gareth L. Powell ponders some of the ingenious transit technologies of the future.


As the title says, the BSFA Award shortlists have been announced, and I have works nominated in THREE CATEGORIES!

  • Best Novel
  • Best Shorter Fiction
  • Best Non-fiction

Plus, Julia Lloyd’s cover for FLEET OF KNIVES pops up in the art category!

See the full results below:

Best Novel

  • Juliet E McKenna – The Green Man’s Foe (Wizard’s Tower Press)
  • Emma Newman – Atlas Alone (Gollancz)
  • Gareth L Powell – Fleet of Knives (Titan Books)
  • Adrian Tchaikovsky – Children of Ruin (Tor)
  • Tade Thompson – The Rosewater Insurrection (Orbit)

Best Shorter Fiction

  • Becky Chambers – To Be Taught, If Fortunate (Hodder & Stoughton)
  • Amal El-Mohtar & Max Gladstone – This is How You Lose the Time War (Jo Fletcher Books)
  • Fiona Moore – Jolene (Interzone #283)
  • Gareth L Powell – Ragged Alice (Tor.com)
  • Tade Thompson – The Survival of Molly Southbourne (Tor.com)
  • Ian Whates – For Your Own Good (Wourism and Other Stories, Luna Press)

Best Non-Fiction

  • Farah Mendlesohn – The Pleasant Profession of Robert A. Heinlein (Unbound)
  • Glyn Morgan & C Palmer-Patel (Eds) – Sideways in Time: Critical Essays on Alternate History Fiction (Liverpool University Press)
  • Gareth L Powell – About Writing (Luna Press)
  • Adam Roberts – HG Wells: A Literary Life (Palgrave Macmillan)
  • Jo Lindsay Walton – Away Day: Star Trek and the Utopia of Merit (Big Echo)

Best Artwork

  • Aitch & Rachel Vale – Cover for ‘Deeplight’ by Frances Hardinge (UK edition) (Macmillan Children’s Books)
  • Chris Baker (Fangorn) – Cover for ‘Wourism and Other Stories’ by Ian Whates (Luna Press)
  • Julia Lloyd – Cover for ‘Fleet of Knives’ by Gareth L Powell (Titan Books)
  • Charlotte Stroomer – Cover for ‘The Rosewater Redemption’ by Tade Thompson (Orbit)
  • Richard Wagner – Cover for Interzone #284 (Interzone)

Huge congratulations to everyone on the lists, most of whom I am proud to call my colleagues and friends.

Reddit AMA

The Future of Wearable Exoskeletons

My latest column for the Engineer is now available on their website, and looks at where developments in exoskeletons and implantable electronics might ultimately lead.

“Maybe we could even replace the bulls at Pamplona with synthetic bulls controlled by gamers from around the globe, allowing thrill seekers to brave a trampling while sparing actual animals the stress of the event—and who wouldn’t want to remotely gore a few tourists, just for fun?”

Read the whole thing here.