COMPARABLE TITLES AND AUTHORS
THE MARTIAN BY ANDY WEIR
After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark Watney finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive—and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive.
Chances are, though, he won't have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plain-old "human error" are much more likely to kill him first. Drawing on his ingenuity, his engineering skills—and a relentless, dogged refusal to quit—he steadfastly confronts one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next. Will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds against him?
Characters are stranded in an unforgiving environment, desperate for rescue and fighting their surrounding elements. Shared main character who works through circumstances after a main incident to survive in an otherwise unsurvivable setting. Heavily-researched science implemented into the fiction. Existing technology is advanced to a near-plausible future.
While they possess isolated settings, the story of Current takes place deep within the Pacific, embracing the confined nightmares of the ocean floor as opposed to the vastness of space. Current focuses on the current political climate, including the need for renewable energy and the imposition of businesses that are "too big to fail." As a result, Current dissects "the American Dream" and what we do to achieve it, whereas The Martian focuses on a strictly survival.
STARFISH BY PETER WATTS
So when civilization needs someone to run generating stations three kilometers below the surface of the Pacific, it seeks out a special sort of person for its Rifters program. It recruits those whose histories have pre-adapted them to dangerous environments, people so used to broken bodies and chronic stress that life on the edge of an undersea volcano would actually be a step up. Nobody worries too much about job satisfaction; if you haven't spent a lifetime learning the futility of fighting back, you wouldn't be a rifter in the first place. It's a small price to keep the lights going, back on shore.
Narrative deals with capturing energy at the bottom of the Pacific Ocean. The crew at the bottom of the ocean struggle for survival in the extreme environment.
Starfish is far into the future, with crew that have specialty suits for free swimming. Current takes place using technology that already exists, or is in the early research phases. The energy harnessed from Watts' work is from undersea volcanic vents, whereas Current utilizes turbines to capture the ocean current. Current focuses on a diverse crew facing a number of challenges. Whereas the Rifters from Starfish are all essentially trained for the same function and take shifts.
POWERSAT BY BEN BOVA
America needs energy, and Dan Randolph is determined to give it to them. He dreams of an array of geosynchronous powersats, satellites which gather solar energy and beam it to generators on Earth, freeing America from its addiction to fossil fuels and breaking the power of the oil cartels forever. But the wreck of the spaceplane has left his company, Astro Manufacturing, on the edge of bankruptcy.
Worse, Dan discovers that the plane worked perfectly right up until the moment that saboteurs knocked it out of the sky. And whoever brought it down is willing and able to kill again to keep Astro grounded.
Diverse group of characters all working toward the common goal of sustainable, renewable energy for the world. Present technology is advanced to a near future. Government conspiracies and oil-magnates hindering the mission for selfish reason and gain.
Bova's narrative is told from the perspective of the bureaucrats and politicians involved in the high-level management of the satellite , more akin to Tom Clancy's Jack Ryan series. Whereas Current is told from the perspective of the crew aboard The Thales, the renewable station where the vast majority of the narrative takes place. Powersat also has very few female characters in a position of power or influence throughout the narrative. While the majority of Current's characters are male, the two female crew members are vital to the narrative and their presence is essential to the work.
sphere BY michael crichton
A classic thriller from #1 New York Times bestselling author Michael Crichton, Sphere is a bravura demonstration of what he does better than anyone: riveting storytelling that combines frighteningly plausible, cutting edge science and technology with pulse-pounding action and serious chills. The gripping story of a group of American scientists sent to the ocean floor to investigate an alien ship, only to confront a terrifying discovery that defies imagination, Sphere is Crichton prime—truly masterful fiction from the ingenious mind that brought us Prey, State of Fear, and Jurassic Park.
Crew travels to the bottom of the ocean. Heavily researched narrative with strong science and technology presence throughout.
Current is an entirely human narrative with no alien presence, nor are there any creature confrontations, such as the six-legged squids conjured from the sphere. Current focuses on the subject at hand of renewable energy and the survival story of The Thales crew.
primary and secondary target markets
MAle, 25-39, Generation Y and Older Millennials
Engaging All things nerdy. environmentally aware. politically active. strong social presence.
brands they engage
Alan is the type of consumers that regularly absorb media. From his smartphones, to engaging news websites, down to gaming, Alan is the every day consumer of all things geeky. He thrives on knowledge, including intelligent backups to political arguments, to which he has a tendency to skew left. He is also a first adopters of new tablet and smartphone technologies.
He was the boy who was in elementary, or middle school when Jurassic Park hit theaters. Michael Crichton's novel was likely his introduction to adult reading.
As a first adopter of new technologies, that engagement translates to enthusiasm for brands and specific authors. Alan will be the target to reach out to at conventions and engage positively on social media to raise brand awareness and drive increased sales and long-term loyalty.
female, 18-33, MILLENNIAL
Strong force driving female science and geek movement advocacy. grew up with harry potter. continued love of science-fiction, fantasy and reading. large proponent of current YA phenomenon.
BRANDS THEY ENGAGE
Nicole is the type who is unafraid to speak her mind. She is blunt; she is passionate. She grew up reading Harry Potter and a part of her never grew up. However, as she enters adulthood, her reading habits remain yet long for something different. She is the leader of her book club. She has a particular tastes in selecting her favorite books and breweries. Her voice is commonly heard on female-driven sites that advocate for fair treatment in the world, especially in areas usually allocated for "males" such as gaming, science, and speculative fiction conventions. She is a part of the force that has made adult females the largest gaming demographic.
MALE, 55-65, Baby-boomers
Grew up with the space race. Fascinated by the unknown. embraces nature and exploration.
BRANDS THEY ENGAGE
Richard was the Baby-Boomer who watched the Apollo missions, an age when every kid aspired to become an astronaut. He adopted Crichton in his early days, but finds excitement in new authors like Hugh Howey and Andy Weir. A traditionalist, he sees value in a traditional bookstore visit. He is enjoying the early years of retirement. However, his sense of excitement and desire for learning still remains. He bounces between fiction and non-fiction, and loves the resurgence of scientific exploration with the revival of "Cosmos" with Neil deGrasse Tyson.
by Ryan Vlastelica. The A.V. Club.
by Warren Adler. Huffington Post.
by Sarah Hughes. The Guardian.
by Robert Workman. A-List Daily.
by Michael Cavna. The Washington Post.