AUSTIN, Texas—"Did you like the movie?"
Twelve seconds after I've introduced myself to Bill Nye, under the auspices of interviewing him, I find myself receiving the questions. He's TV's "The Science Guy," after all, and he has reason to ask that opening question: his entire life was just put under a documentarian's microscope. He had not seen Bill Nye: Science Guy until the night before (nor had pretty much anyone else, since it was the film's world premiere). Already, it's time for peer review.
I offer my own succinct statement—"I really liked it"—and Nye fills the following brief pause with all of the thoughts he's come up with in the past 12 hours. He appreciates how the film talked about the congenital condition on his father's side of the family; wishes the film offered more context for a story about his early career; is happy about new footage of one of his science-debate opponents mulling a change of heart. "That's surprising and cool!"
This essay was written in 1990 and updated in 1996 by Robert J. Sawyer, the sci-fi author writer behind such novels as Flashforward and more recently Quantum Night. 27 years later, he's still using WordStar.
As recently as 2014, George R. R. Martin, of A Song of Ice and Fire fame, used a DOS-based version of WordStar, and probably still does today.
I'm not sure why they don't just use Emacs or something. Enjoy this walk down memory lane...
Many science fiction writers—including myself, Roger MacBride Allen, Gerald Brandt, Jeffrey A. Carver, Arthur C. Clarke, David Gerrold, Terence M. Green, James Gunn, Matthew Hughes, Donald Kingsbury, Eric Kotani, Paul Levinson, George R. R. Martin, Vonda McIntyre, Kit Reed, Jennifer Roberson, and Edo van Belkom—continue to use WordStar for DOS as our writing tool of choice.
Still, most of us have endured years of mindless criticism of our decision, usually from WordPerfect users, and especially from WordPerfect users who have never tried anything but that program. I've used WordStar, WordPerfect, Word, MultiMate, Sprint, XyWrite, and just about every other MS-DOS and Windows word-processing package, and WordStar is by far my favorite choice for creative composition at the keyboard.