‘I Focus On The Way Technology Is Changing What It Means To Be Human’: Author Ken Liu On ‘The Hidden Girl And Other Stories’
The Simon & Schuster author discusses his new book filled with short stories about science fiction, fantasy, and the future of technology.
(CBS Local)– Ken Liu is known around the world as one of the best short story writers in literature.
The award-winning author is back with a new book from Simon & Schuster called “The Hidden Girl and Other Stories,” which is a collection of sixteen of his best short stories from the last five years about science fiction, fantasy, and what it means to be human.
“I have published 150 short stories by this point and I have one previous collection called The Paper Menagerie and Other Stories. This is the second one and it combines some of my newer stories and the overall themes of how do we remain human in the face of cataclysmic change,” said Liu in an interview with CBS Local’s DJ Sixsmith. “When I wrote these stories, I wasn’t thinking of pandemics. What I try to focus on is the way technology is changing and defining what it means to be human and how do we react to that.”
One of the topics that Liu honed in on is how technology has changed what it means to know something.
“We think that we know something, but all we know how to do is look it up,” said Liu. “I was a practicing lawyer for many years and you can’t actually draft anything from scratch anymore. You take a form and you modify it. I wanted to explore this idea of the externalization of our knowledge and our sense of identity. The way we put so much of it out into the digital world. A lot of the stories explore this concept of singularity, which is the idea that we become digital beings. What does that mean and how do you remain human in a world like that.”
Liu’s book is available now wherever books are sold.
Watch all of DJ Sixsmith’s interviews from “The Sit-Down” series here.