provocative stories from a modern master of science fiction

DAVID BRIN's Insistence of Vision

Story Plant, 2016

Scroll down to read excerpts or to purchase INSISTENCE OF VISION.

What may we become? How will we endure?

The future is a daunting realm, filled with real and imagined perils. So enter it prepared!

Here are vivid tales about possible tomorrows, from the keen eye and colorful pen of David Brin. Visit a chillingly plausible tomorrow, when prisoners may be sent to asteroidal gulags. Or might prisons vanish and felons roam, seeing only what society allows? Suppose, amid lavish success, we gain the superpower to fly! Will we even appreciate it... or will we find new reasons to complain?

In "Mars Opposition," you'll experience an alien invasion like no other, confronting humanity with a stark and terrible choice. On the other hand, might fantastically potent new beings emerge out of ourselves, as revealed in "Chrysalis"?

Featuring guest appearances by Gregory Benford, Jules Verne, and Galileo, this adventure takes you beyond the very singularity in "Stones of Significance," pondering what could happen after humans are like gods. And "Reality Check" asks one of you readers — just one of you — to wake up!

And in "Temptation," we make a novella-length return to the world of the Hugo winners Startide Rising and The Uplift War.

Tomorrow awaits. We can face it and prevail. So long as our stance is brave willingness to look ahead ... with insistence of vision.

excerpts to read (or hear)

The Logs (complete story available on the podcast Novum, read by Ari Brin).

  • The Tumbledowns of Cleopatra Abyss (complete story available here)
  • Temptation (chapter 1 available here)
  • Reality Check (complete story available here)
  • Learn more about all of Brin's shorter fiction here.

    book sales

    purchase Insistence of Vision US: paperback and Kindle ebook and audiobook (unabridged) Canada: paperback and Kindle ebook UK: paperback


    Apple iBooks

    Apple iTunes US: iBook and audiobook (unabridged)

    Barnes and Noble

    Barnes and Noble US: paperback and NOOK Book

    indie bound US: paperback US: ebook

    Mysterious Galaxy

    Mysterious Galaxy San Diego: hardcover and paperback and (Kobo) ebook


    Powell's US: paperback

    table of contents

    table of contents

    Introduction by Vernor Vinge
    The Heresy of Science Fiction

    what we may become
    Insistence of Vision
    Transition Generation
    Stones of Significance
    News from 2035: A Glitch in Medicine Cabinet 3.5

    how we'll endure (tales of the Coss Domination)
    The Logs (available on the podcast Novum, read by Ari Brin)
    The Tumbledowns of Cleopatra Abyss
    Eloquent Elepents Pine Away for the Moon's Crystal Forests

    when we overcome
    Mars Opposition
    A Professor at Harvard
    I Could've Done Better, written with Gregory Benford
    Paris Conquers All, written with Gregory Benford
    A Retrospective by Jules Verne

    who we'll meet
    An Ever Reddening Glow
    The Diplomacy Guild
    The Other Side of the Hill

    where we will go
    Temptation: A Novella from the Uplift Universe
    The Avalon Probes
    Six Word Tales
    Reality Check (read on this site or free on Kindle)

    why we'll persevere
    Waging War with Reality

    Insistence of Vision in the world

    on the web

  • the Goodreads page
  • the Library Thing page
  • learn more about Brin's science fiction novels
  • read more of his shorter fiction
  • film & media queries

    Queries about film or media rights to any DAVID BRIN books or stories can be addressed to his film agent:

    Vince Gerardis
    Created-By Agency
    (with cc: to David Brin)

    Insistence of Vision reviews

    Sharp and Pointed

    "The stories in Insistence of Vision cover a wide range chronologically, in form, and in subject matter. One commonality in almost all of them, though, is that they’re intended to make the reader think, not just put his or her mind in neutral and enjoy a good but pointless tale (such sci-fi tales being all too common)."


    "Brin succeeds on all fronts, and if you like your SF hopeful, with a side order of forward-thinking “what-ifery,” this is the collection for you. Highly recommended."

    The Review Curmudgeon

    "Brin does alien perspectives well (perhaps it's part of his contrarian outlook on life), and the story also highlights an important philosophical question; it's Brin at, I think, his best, and certainly his most appealing."


    "The stories are excellent examples of hard science fiction and sufficiently varied to keep the book interesting. There is even a novella in his famous Uplift universe. The essays are very thought-provoking about science fiction, science, and the universe."

    Brad K. Horner

    "I loved this book. I've had the pleasure to read all of Brin's works, including all the short stories that were published in Otherness and before, so I already knew what I was getting into. He's always been a devotee of the need to be original, and I'm very pleased to say he maintains the ideal."

    a brief intro to science fiction author DAVID BRIN

    To learn more, visit his books page, or see his "about me" page or detailed biography.

    DAVID BRIN author


    David Brin's science fiction novels have been New York Times Bestsellers, winning multiple Hugo, Nebula and other awards. At least a dozen have been translated into more than twenty languages. They range from bold and prophetic explorations of our near-future to Brin's Uplift series, envisioning galactic issues of sapience and destiny (and star-faring dolphins!). Learn More

    shorter fiction

    Short stories and novellas have different rhythms and artistic flavor, and Brin's short stories and novellas, several of which earned Hugo and other awards, exploit that difference to explore a wider range of real and vividly speculative ideas. Many have been selected for anthologies and reprints, and most have been published in anthology form. Learn More

    Contrary Brin blog

    Since 2004, David Brin has maintained a blog about science, technology, science fiction, books, and the future — themes his science fiction and nonfiction writings continue to explore. Learn More

    social media influencer

    Who could've predicted that social media — indeed, all of our online society — would play such an important role in the 21st Century — restoring the voices of advisors and influencers! Lively and intelligent comments spill over onto Brin's social media pages. Learn More

    DAVID BRIN scientist


    David Brin's Ph.D in Physics from the University of California at San Diego (the lab of nobelist Hannes Alfven) followed a masters in optics and an undergraduate degree in astrophysics from Caltech. Every science show that depicts a comet now portrays the model developed in Brin's PhD research. Learn More

    transparency expert

    Brin's non-fiction book, The Transparent Society: Will Technology Force Us to Choose Between Freedom and Privacy?, continues to receive acclaim for its accuracy in predicting 21st Century concerns about online security, secrecy, accountability and privacy. Learn More

    speaker & consultant

    Brin speaks plausibly and entertainingly about trends in technology and society to audiences willing to confront the challenges that our rambunctious civilization will face in the decades ahead. He also talks about the field of science fiction, especially in relation to his own novels and stories. To date he has presented at more than 200 meetings, conferences, corporate retreats and other gatherings.Learn More

    future/tech advisor

    Brin advises corporations and governmental and private defense- and security-related agencies about information-age issues, scientific trends, future social and political trends, and education. Urban Developer Magazine named him one of four World's Best Futurists, and he was appraised as "#1 influencer" in Onalytica's Top 100 report of Artificial Intelligence influencers, brands & publications. Past consultations include Google, Microsoft, Procter & Gamble, and many others. Learn More

    other points of departure

    visit other pages on this website

    pages about DAVID BRIN

  • latest news and activities
  • information about DAVID BRIN
  • public speaking and consulting & popular topics
  • speaking/consulting references and testimonials & a list of past appearances
  • print and podcast interviews
  • video interviews and talks
  • Brin's presskit and complete biography
  • traditional media and social media
  • Brin quotes and frequently asked questions
  • pages about BRIN's science fiction

  • Brin's novels and books
  • Brin's short stories and novellas
  • all about Brin's uplift universe
  • a selection of book reviews
  • Brin's special-order books for sale
  • Brin's advice for new writers
  • Brin reviews sci fi films — including The Postman
  • a compilation of great sf books to read
  • recommended sf films
  • science fiction that teaches
  • BRIN's nonfiction explorations

  • privacy, security, accountability and transparency
  • designing and crafting our amazing 21st Century
  • predicting and projecting our near and far future
  • leading and following our politics and economy
  • keeping track of changes in science and technology
  • scanning our sky for habitable (inhabited?) worlds
  • Contacting BRIN

    All the Ways in the World to Reach David Brin

    an ornery, contrary BLOG, and other insightful wormholes!

    Do not enter if you want a standard "Party" line! Contrary Brin's incendiary posts on science, sci-fi and politics and its engaged, opinionated community poke at too-rigid orthodoxies, proposing ideas and topics that fascinate — and infuriate. See for yourself, and if you like — subscribe for more.

    Questions? Concerns? Email DAVID BRIN


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    reviews and recommendations



    David Brin has created some of the greatest classics of recent science fiction, including Startide Rising, plus the short stories "The Crystal Spheres" and "Thor Meets Captain America."

    Howard Rheingold, author of The Virtual Community

    "David Brin is one of the few people thinking and writing about the social problems we are going to face in the near future as the result of new electronic media. The Transparent Society raises the questions we need to ask now, before the universal surveillance infrastructure is in place. Be prepared to have your assumptions challenged."

    Los Angeles Times Book Review

    "David Brin is notable for unquenchable optimism, focusing on the ability of humanity to overcome adversity."

    Metroactive Books

    As a bestselling science-fiction writer himself (Earth, Startide Rising, The Postman), Brin gets paid handsomely to look into the future and report back on what he's seen.

    final thoughts ...

    ... for this page, at least ...

    Brin on writing

    "We all create monsters in our minds. The only important difference may be which of us let our monsters become real."
    — from Earth

    DAVID BRIN quote

    "For every good idea, ten thousand idiotic ones must first be posed, sifted, sniffed, tried, and discarded. A mind that's afraid to toy with the ridiculous will never come up with the brilliantly original."
    — David Brin