Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Down to a Sunless Sea is out!

Down to a Sunless Sea, one of my fairly early stories, is finally out - Locothology, by Loconeal Publishing, is available on Amazon as of right now, and I am expecting my contributor's copy any minute. I have a soft spot for this story; my absolute favorite thing to do with genres, assumptions, paradigms, and other shibboleths is to subvert them, and this story lets me do this with several tropes: Steampunk (I threw in nuclear power,) love stories (this one takes place in a bordello,) and Chekhov's gun.

The sad part is, in spite of having fiction by some great writers in the TOC, this book is woefully under-promoted. Hey, guys, just because my story is about ancient submariners, does not mean the book should run silent and deep after its release! Let's make some noise!

Oh, and the cover shows a moonlit seascape. What's my piece called? "Down to a Sunless Sea!" Dare I say mine is the cover story? If so, a disclaimer: there is no bat in my story. I guess I'll have to read the book to find out who wrote about the Chiroptera on the cover.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

A Very Good Question.

James Bambury asks a very good question:

Nothing but speech?

I've read three dialogue only sf stories over the last little while. They all have slightly different conceits and approaches but have no text markers save for section breaks or denoting a speaker. It sounds like the kind of experiment that should go very wrong most of the time but have possibilities within the constraints of flash to shorter-short story word lengths.

So, dialogue only stories: Do they work? Do these?

Judge - James Will Brady
Ideomancer -

Geoffrey W. Cole - Michel "The Meteor" McLure
AE Scifi -

The Pleasing Shapes - Franco Raud
+Kasma Science Fiction Magazine   -

I think they do work. I think they work very well. I think they have worked very well since well before Aristophanes, Plautus, Terence, Shakespeare and Gogol: since the first cave dwellers made shadow puppets in the dying firelight on a long winter night, and pitched their voices to match the bear's roar and the wolf's howl.

I think there's a time and a place for a description, and then there is the time to let the reader imagine the place and the dramatis personae.

I have a few stories in which the narrator's voice got in the way of what the characters were doing. If this is a new thing, I applaud it; and though it's not I applaud it still. Because - the play's the thing...