Spreading the Space Love and Other News

As anyone who has read the MISSION SPACE chapter of my book Mousetrapped will have guessed, I’m convinced it’s my mission to open the eyes of the uncaring masses to the utter awesomeness that is NASA’s manned exploration of space.

Something else that’s awesome: U2’s current tour, U2-360, which I was lucky enough to see in Dublin in July 2009. Part of the tour was a link-up with the crew of the International Space Station and Bono and The Edge got to visit Mission Control in Houston, something which I WILL NEVER FORGIVE EITHER OF THEM FOR. (Unless they arrange for me to meet Adam Clayton over a candlelit dinner. Then I’d consider forgiveness. Maybe.) U2.com produced the video below to commemorate this collaboration and like all things involving space, it’s pretty inspiring.

Look out for a brief appearance by Twitter star and NASA astronaut Mike Massimino (“Astro Mike“) who has talked about listening to U2’s ‘Beautiful Day’ while looking down on the earth from space. Coincidentally that’s also the song I used – somewhat, ahem, illegally – to accompany my footage of the Space Shuttle Discovery launch I got to see on October 22nd, 2007, also known as the Best Day of My Life Ever Ever.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Say what you like about Bono – I know I do – but this is exactly the kind of thing that will bring an appreciation for space exploration down here to earth, perhaps even to new generations, which in turn reminds us all that absolutely anything is possible.

Last week I was a total slacker on the blog posting front but my monthly hits didn’t suffer. Why? Because 300 of you read my post about Penguin taking unsolicited submissions. To put this in perspective, I normally get around 80-120 hits on a day I post, and my most-visited post ever was the one in which I shared my agent news back in April, and that got around 350 visitors on the day it went up. I also hear Bubblecow’s post on preparing to submit to Penguin was it’s most popular ever. Am I the only one who finds this kind of scary? (Besides the Penguin employees tasked with reading the queries, of course.) I posted about it to, yes, let people who have a manuscript ready know about it, but also because up until a year ago I would have thrown something together in a weekend and sent it off, and I wanted to warn against doing that. There’s no need to panic, especially since lovely people like Penguin Ireland accept unsolicited manuscripts all year long, from anyone. So calm down.

THIS week however, I have some exciting posting to do. On Wednesday I’ll be telling you how many copies of Mousetrapped I’ve sold, and how much money I made off them. Squealing and such! Can you take the excitement?

(Don’t answer that.)

Heineken not included.

And finally, look what my parents brought me back from their hols: a coffee scented candle! My life is now complete. Well, almost. I’m just waiting for that Adam Clayton dinner…

Boy, there were a lot of links in this post.

Click here to read more about why I’m certifiably astronuts.

Click here to read more about Mousetrapped: A Year and A Bit in Orlando, Florida.

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