In 1981, I was a futurist - or at least I was a guy who put on a futurist hat occasionally - and I wrote about the 21st century.

William Gibson

William Gibson

Profession: Author
Nationality: American

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I didn't have a manifesto. I had some discontent. It seemed to me that midcentury mainstream American science fiction had often been triumphalist and militaristic, a sort of folk propaganda for American exceptionalism.

I started writing short fiction very briefly, as I imagine is the case for some novelists.

I'm quite good friends with the putative director, Vincenzo Natali, and I'm a big fan of his work, but beyond that, I don't like to talk about other people's work work-in-progress.

I've never really been very interested in computers themselves. I don't watch them; I watch how people behave around them. That's becoming more difficult to do because everything is around them.

Whenever I read a contemporary literary novel that describes the world we're living in, I wait for the science fiction tools to come out. Because they have to - the material demands it.

Sometimes, I can myself be frustrated by books that seem to me to be insufficiently realistic about the world's potential for just being totally a randomly bad place.

I assume that - because you can get degrees in journalism from very reputable universities - I assume that people can be trained to be journalists. I've never been entirely certain that anyone can be trained to be a novelist in the same way.

For years I have been mourning and not for my dead, it is for this boy for whatever corner in my heart died when his childhood slid out of my arms.

I find it interesting to see people - mostly people who are younger than I am - going to considerable trouble to try to reproduce things from an era that was far more physical, from a less virtual day.

I've become convinced that nostalgia is a fundamentally unhealthy modality. When you see it, it's usually attached to something else that's really, seriously bad. I don't traffic in nostalgia. We're becoming a global culture.

I'm often saddened and dismayed to see myself portrayed as either a Luddite or as a raving technophile. I've always thought that my job was to be as anthropologically neutral about emerging technologies as possible.

I don't think nostalgia is a healthy modality. But nostalgia and a sense of history are not the same thing. Nostalgia is a dysfunction of the historical impulse, or a corruption of the historical impulse.

Time moves in one direction, memory in another.

I can't imagine writing a book without some strong female characters, unless that was a demand of the setting.