Thursday, November 17, 2011

Hannu Rajaniemi

Hannu Rajaniemi is from Finland and lives in Edinburgh, Scotland, where he is a director of a think tank providing business services based on advanced math and artificial intelligence. He holds a Ph.D. in string theory and is a member of the same writing group that produced Hal Duncan. He wrote The Quantum Thief in English.

From his Q & A at the Guardian:

Who's your favourite writer?

In terms of contemporary science fiction, I am in awe of Ian McDonald. Other names I could mention are Michael Chabon, Haruki Murakami and the Finns Mika Waltari and Tove Jansson.

What are your other inspirations?

The Quantum Thief drew heavily upon some of the strange architectural ideas in Geoff Manaugh's wonderful blog BLDGBLOG – both for strange futuristic cities and architectural ideas applied to the mind. Frances A Yates's book The Art of Memory, on the method of memory palaces, was also an important influence.

Writers tend to be like thieves or magpies – inspirations are stolen and accrete around some core concept until they snowball into something that starts moving on its own. For my next book, The Fractal Prince, the loot so far includes The Arabian Nights and Douglas Hofstadter's ideas on consciousness.

Give us a writing tip.

One of the most useful tips for me was...[read on]
--Marshal Zeringue