As his mother approached, Till dropped his eyes automatically back to the simultaneous equations he was working on. “When I am older” he thought, “and when I am done with school I will train to be an astronaut and go out looking for Goldilocks planets across the galaxy.”
Till’s eyes wandered away from the numbers and looked out of the window. The sun sat fixed and still in his place, casting his cool red glow over the world, as if to say, yes young man, one day you will train for the fleet and join the Goldilocks expeditionary force in search of worlds beyond even your imagination.
The object that I used as my starting point was the phrase “Goldilocks planet” and an artist’s rendering of a discovery announced on 30th Sept 2010 of the first truly earth like planet which has just the right conditions for life. I decided I would write about this from the point of view of the new planet, not from earth, but I wanted to keep this fact in suspense, and create an impression at first that the writing was from a human and earth- bound perspective. I tried to make the opening as normal as possible, so I chose a kid sitting at a breakfast bar, in front of a tv screen, half doing his homework and half watching tv. My first draft contained phrases that referred to time, for example, “has been announced this morning” and “One day, when I am done with school” but when I read the text over, I realised that time is all relative to the sun and the earth, and that in a different solar system there would not necessarily be days or mornings, since this new Goldilocks discovery apparently faces its dwarf star sun all the time and does not rotate. I took out these references and made them general. Then I checked for consistency and changed all the color references too, making them applicable to a spectrum dominated by red. I learned that science fiction is