maxbarry.com
Thu 29
Apr
2021

The Ship With No Name

Providence

In PROVIDENCE, did the main ship have a name? If so, I somehow missed it :( Several other Providence-class vessels were named.

StarMan

You’re right! It surely has a name, but we never find out what it is. Everyone calls it “the ship.”

This is one of those oh-so-clever arty author choices, so sorry about that. The idea is to make the ship feel a little more mysterious, more like the fabric of the environment (like “the earth” or “the air”), and also emblematic of the whole collection of AI ships in general. Because, not to get too spoiler-y, there is no real difference between one ship, all the ships, and the corporation that makes the ships. I encourage you to view them all as a single entity.

That goes for the salamanders, too. And maybe the humans! The crew are individuals, but they’re also cogs in the wheel of a military war machine, which grinds toward a particular outcome regardless of the hopes/dreams/desires of each person. So from the perspective of a salamander, or a ship, there may be no practical difference between the people, either.

I’m not a big believer in oh-so-clever arty author devices, because I feel like the worst thing you can do to a reader is remind them they’re reading a book. But if I can slip in something like this without you noticing, I’ll do it.

Providence is out in sexy-looking paperback in just a few days! Find a copy here.

Comments

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Radiatia (#6360)

Location: Christchurch, New Zealand
Posted: 43 days ago

I have a headcanon that Surplex Industries is based in Providence, Rhode Island hence the name of the ships. I don't recall you specifically saying where they were based (it's been a few months since I read it) and I don't recall you ever saying they weren't based there so... the headcanon remains.

Machine Man subscriber Max

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Quote: "I'm my number one fan!"
Posted: 43 days ago

I mean, it makes sense to me.

Comfed (#8266)

Quote: "Shrimp conspire behind closed doors."
Posted: 42 days ago

Clearly it’s Providence, Trinidad and Tobago.

Machine Man subscriber Bob (#4095)

Location: Kansas
Quote: "Freeze!!! This is the Government!!"
Posted: 37 days ago

It's in there or what?

Machine Man subscriber Max

Location: Melbourne, Australia
Quote: "I'm my number one fan!"
Posted: 35 days ago

It's not in the book, no. It's not even in my head. I don't know what the ship is called. But it must be called something, since all the other ships have names.

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