From: John Holtom
Location: Luton, England
Dear Greg Bear
I remember some time ago you mentioned that unlike most in the US you knew about Dr Who - our resident science fiction hero whose stories are gripping for children of all ages.
Not only did we have the excellent penultimate episode this weekend but I am fairly sure that your brilliant idea of Moving Mars has been pinched!
The Daleks, Dr Who's ancient and most feared enemy, moved Earth into a new orbit along with 26 other planets. Unlike in Moving Mars when you moved the planet to save it from Earth, in Dr Who the Earth is moved to subjugate Mankind.
It is, of course, perfectly possible that Russell T Davies independently created the idea but I am pretty sure he is well versed in SF, so who knows.
When you have a few hours spare, I recommend watching it - it is a awash wish intriguing ideas about space/time and the production values are unusually high for UK TV!
From: Greg Bear
Planets have been moved before, of course. My daughter, Alex, has been keeping us abreast of these episodes. DOCTOR WHO no doubt prepares the way for the even larger-scale events of CITY AT THE END OF TIME, which should be available in the UK very shortly! (I'll send Mr. Davies a copy, should he desire one--I greatly admire good screenwriting, and DOCTOR WHO probably shows more consistent heart and pacing than any other science fiction show.)