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Portland, OR, United States, 2006/01/01 - What would drive someone to create a computer virus? In "Memoirs of a Virus Programmer," a young programmer begins his career with absurd optimism and transforms into an isolated criminal.
What would drive someone to create a computer virus? In the new novel, "Memoirs of a Virus Programmer" by first-time author Pete Flies, the answer is love and madness. A young programmer named Johnny Pepper begins his career with absurd optimism and gradually transforms into an isolated criminal. The title is available in early January at Amazon, Powell's, Barnes and Noble, and Borders.
Modeled after Voltaire's Candide, the short chapters in "Memoirs of a Virus Programmer" are stuffed with humor. The pace quickens as Pepper struggles against a love-hate relationship with technology. The setting is Minneapolis in the year 2000. Fans of "Office Space" and "Fight Club" will be a target audience, and Flies has described the novel as "Neo-Luddite" literature and "a science fiction comedy."
The naïve Pepper is surrounded by modern character archetypes. From his faceless project manager, to his pontificating cube-mate, to the desperate housewife next door, he stumbles his way through a fictional memoir, making mud of his ideals. The tone and pace of the novel is upbeat: "My manager spoke in a genial manner, and as he spoke, his brushy moustache bounced over his upper lip like a little floor broom at work."
Pepper becomes consumed with his programming: "I looked for my viral insertion point. I opened and closed many files as I searched for something perfectly obtuse, a file that no one really understood or cared about any more."
The publisher is StoneGarden, a San Francisco company (stonegarden.net). The novel is 270 pages long.
About the Author
Pete Flies holds degrees in Computer Science and English. He worked as a software engineer at IBM during and after the dot-com boom. Some of his publications include poetry in the The Long Island Poetry Collective ("The Rebels are Dead"), a humor column for Fever Magazine in Seattle ("Single-n-Lonely, Married-n-Bored"), poems with Ya'Sou Online ("The Migration of Hope and Never," "Tattered Reams," and "On the Unified Holodeck"). Born in Rochester, Minnesota, he now lives and writes in Portland, Oregon and Zurich, Switzerland.