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Local author pens science fiction novel in six months

Rick Monroe

Special to the Village News

Gene Alexander, 60, knows success as a computer scientist, lecturer and senior research engineer in the department of mechanical engineering at Stanford University. Later, he was an assistant professor and director of Launch Labs, School of Business and Economics, at Chapman University.

"I'm the founder or co-founder of multiple companies – most failures. – but a few acquired, one public," he said during a recent interview at a Fallbrook coffee house.

He also holds nine issued U.S. patents.

And on Jan. 1, he launched a new career as a writer, starting a science fiction novel. "Metrics" was published on July 15. Alexander is handling the marketing and promotion of the book, but he also has hired a production company because his next goal is seeing the adventure novel turned into a movie.

He described Metrics as a "fun science fiction book with some violence and a comic book feel." If it was released as a movie it would likely be rated PG-13 or R, he said.

Alexander's first version of the book was as a screenplay, but he revised it – with good feedback from others – to be a 53-chapter book.

"It's designed for a movie," he said. "That's a tough task because you have to be prepared to have a thousand no's before getting a maybe. You can't become discouraged."

He's also starting a second science fiction book.

Alexander and his family moved to Fallbrook five years ago. He and his wife Victoria have a home-schooled daughter, Elana, 14. Prior to moving here, the family lived in Orange County before taking a one-year road trip across the U.S. to consider places to settle. They chose Fallbrook.

"We love it here," he said. "What a beautiful community."

He's become active in the community as a troop leader of American Heritage girls, chair of Good Dog! Service canines, and member of the VFW and several homeschool organizations. The family attends Christ the King Lutheran Church.

Alexander said he has been influenced by his hero, Russian novelist Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn.

Metrics is about Lech Sen and his band of genetic computationalists, who are trying to open source the human genome, but somehow the team gets side-tracked by 3,000-year-old Sumerian Urn data, recently unearthed but kept private by a power-hungry tech oligarch.

Lech is mystified to find that the decrypted data contains much more than he bargained for, and decrypting it manages to transform Lech's Wisdom-Of-Crowds spam filter into a villainous artificial intelligence, SpamKiller. To keep the data from SpamKiller, Lech encodes the data into his team's JUNK DNA, unwittingly and unwillingly transforming them into long-lived super-athletes.

After the near total destruction of humanity, Lech and the JUNK crew must band together again to overthrow SpamKiller. In turn, SpamKiller and his oligarch henchman create a set of death games, the Metrics, to force-evolve replacements for the missing scientists, all the while maintaining a deadly obsession with fighting spam.

The book is available on Amazon.com.

 

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