William Gibson deu uma longa e muito interessante entrevista a David Wallace-Wells, da revista The Paris Review, na qual fala sobre a sua vida pessoal, a descoberta da ficção científica, os seus métodos de escrita e a sua obra literária, desde os contos que começou a escrever ainda na década de 70 até ao incontornável Neuromancer (e restante trilogia Sprawl) e aos mais recentes Pattern Recognition e Zero History. Alguns destaques:
What’s wrong with cyberpunk?
A snappy label and a manifesto would have been two of the very last things on my own career want list. That label enabled mainstream science fiction to safely assimilate our dissident influence, such as it was. Cyberpunk could then be embraced and given prizes and patted on the head, and genre science fiction could continue unchanged.
You’ve written that science fiction is never about the future, that it is always instead a treatment of the present.
There are dedicated futurists who feel very seriously that they are extrapolating a future history. My position is that you can’t do that without having the present to stand on. Nobody can know the real future. And novels set in imaginary futures are necessarily about the moment in which they are written. As soon as a work is complete, it will begin to acquire a patina of anachronism. I know that from the moment I add the final period, the text is moving steadily forward into the real future.
There was an effort in the seventies to lose the usage science fiction and champion speculative fiction. Of course, all fiction is speculative, and all history, too—endlessly subject to revision. Particularly given all of the emerging technology today, in a hundred years the long span of human history will look fabulously different from the version we have now. If things go on the way they’re going, and technology keeps emerging, we’ll eventually have a near-total sorting of humanity’s attic.
Who were the writers that were most important to you?
Alfred Bester was among the first dozen science-fiction writers I read when I was twelve years old, and I remember being amazed, doing my own science-fiction-writer reconnaissance work a decade or two later, that someone I had discovered that young still seemed to me to be so amazing.
Bester had been doing it in the fifties—a Madison Avenue hepcat who had come into science fiction with a bunch of Joyce under his belt. He built his space-opera future out of what it felt like to be young and happening in New York, in the creative end of the business world in 1955. The plotlines were pulp and gothic and baroque, but what I loved most was the way it seemed to be built out of something real and complex and sophisticated. I hadn’t found that in a lot of other science fiction.
Fonte: Luís Filipe Silva / Facebook / The Paris Review