a) Initial interests
William Gibson watched the original Alien when it first came out. He thought that there were germs of stories implicit in the art direction. He always wanted to know more about the crew, and why they were wearing sneakers in this amazing spaceship.
b) Following the dirt
Perhaps it even influenced his style of Science Fiction prose because it was the first dirty kitchen sink spaceship and it made a big impression on him, he wanted more dirt in the corners of science fiction and so when he started writing science fiction, that's the way he went.
- William Gibson: Alien came along and the dirty spaceship idea had been born… I wanted more dirt in the corners of science fiction https://twitter.com/BFI/status/537718213736296449)
- William Gibson: I
found a lot of things in the original that I found interesting even
when it first came out. I thought there were germs of stories implicit
in the art direction. I always wanted to know more about these guys. Why
they were wearing dirty sneakers in this funky spaceship? I think it
influenced my prose SF writing because it was the first, funked up,
dirty kitchen sink space ship and it made a big impression on me. When I
started writing SF I went for that.