William Gibson famously coined the term "cyberspace," and gave us a singular vision of the future in early cyberpunk novels Neuromancer, Count Zero, and Mona Lisa Overdrive. In the three decades since, his fiction has crept closer to a recognizably contemporary setting; the gradual change isn't surprising, given his belief that "cyberspace has everted. Turned itself inside out. Colonized the physical."

Along the way he's taken on the occasional nonfiction assignment, with the results collected for the first time in his latest book, Distrust That Particular Flavor . The title refers to Gibson's dislike of the "exasperated visionary" tone of H.G. Wells, a voice Gibson hears in much mainstream sci-fi. Rather than imagine himself capable of predicting the future, he explores our fragmented, ever-changing present, curating the choicest bits on his Twitter feed, @GreatDismal. (The name comes from the Great Dismal Swamp Wildlife Refuge, located near his childhood home in Virginia.) During his recent book tour, he took time to talk about writing nonfiction, his love of cities, and his particular view of the present – all delivered in careful, precise words barely tinted with Southern accent.