cambridge sf workshop - future boston

In January of 1994, Future Boston was published as a Tor hardcover. Later that year it was followed by the trade paperback.

The publication of Future Boston was the culminatiion of eight years of hard work. Pieces of it had been published in magazines as far back as 1989. We'd been working on it long before that.

Future Boston was a collaborative novel written by CSFW. It was every bit as collaborative as any novel though it took the form of a collection of short stories, brochures, letters to management, drawings, maps and cartoons. The authors were David Alexander Smith, Sarah Smith, Alexander Jablokov, Geoffrey A. Landis, Jon Burrowes, Steven Popkes, Resa Nelson and Steven Caine. Of those eight, only Popkes, Jablokov and Sarah Smith are still in the workshop. Jablokov, in fact, took a sabbatical for some time after the Future Boston was completed. The shakeup was not terribly surprising. Anybody who's ever worked on a long project has been witness to a change of order when the project is finished.

The workshop was changed by it. Some left shortly after its completion. For some, it remained their single foray into publishing of any kind. Some authors thought it was the worst thing we'd ever done. Some thought it was the best. Some felt both ways, changing their minds over the years as time gave perspective.

Future Boston was the brainchild of David Alexander Smith who ultimately edited the work when it was published. Smith and Popkes both wrote novels about the place. All of us wrote reams of material, some stories, some explanatory material. Some was included in the final product but a great deal was not.

Like any significant experience, the story of the making of Future Boston is as varied as the tellers. To the left are a collection of recollections, articles and essays about it. A search of the web will produce multiple reviews.

Future Boston is out of print but used copies can still be found.