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Links to Short Stories around the Interwebs


Clarkesworld Magazine has published The Fish of Lijiang, a short story by Chinese writer Chen Qiufan, translated by Ken Liu.

I found it a rather sad story, both from a topical point of view as well as what it promises for the future of humanity - and especially on that level it is much more believable than I'd like it to be, given the subject matter!

The full story can be found here - go read & enjoy!

If you want to support Clarkesworld then you could always become one of its Citizens.

Lauren Beukes - Unathi Battles The Black HairballsLauren Beukes has a new 'short' story (it's not all that short)  - Unathi Battles The Black Hairballs - out on SFX.

The story is a firework of ideas and concepts and cultural cross-linkages and styles (the approach is reminiscent of Tom Holt, but much more modern, and much more fun to read) - even the opening sequence starts as it means to go on, ie cross-cultural and full of allusions :

Unathi was singing karaoke when the creature attacked Tokyo. Or rather, she was about to sing karaoke. Was, in fact, about to be the very first person in Shibuya’s Big Echo to break in the newly uploaded Britney come-back hip-hop remix of the Spice Girls’ classic ‘Tell Me What You Want (What You Really Really Want)’.

So - very much recommended! The full story can be found here.

And I want more stories about Flight Sergeant Unathi Mathabane, her mecha, and her whale penis leather boots. Please?

Norman Spinrad - QuarantineNorman Spinrad's Novellette Quarantine has been rejected by the New Yorker, by Asimov's SF Magazine, by Analog, and by others, apparently. And so Norman decided to start an experiement, and sell it in downloadble format(s), for a minimal cover price ($3) from Barnes and Noble and from Amazon.

His reasoning for this, and the reaction of his fans, can be found here on his blog.

I haven't bought & downloaded the story (yet?)... The question asked is valid, though: how much are we willing to part with for our reading matter, all the more so for short fiction? Or are we too used to getting it all for free by now? Answers on a postcard, please...

Lavie Tidhar - The School Lavie Tidhar has self-published a short story called The School on his own blog.

The School has a go at a number of right-wing mindsets, thought patterns, and associated SF authors who use them in their books. I found it neither subtle nor very clever; but, as some commentator pointed out, a good long look at who us pushing what unsavoury theory in SF might well be overdue, so I give Lavie credit from that point of view; and cannot fault him for trying and pointing at something a lot of people frequently would prefer to ignore.

Also, whilst this was turned down by major publications for SF short stories because some people got cold feet at the implicatinos of publishing the names named - yes, it might well be, and I could see why, but I don't think that this is unpublishable, and that thus the tag line of The Story They Wouldn't Publish is overly melodramatic.

But make up your own mind - the story, in full, can be found here.

Aliette de Bodard - The Jaguar House, in ShadowAliette de Bodard has her Hugo and Nebula nominated short story - The Jaguar House, in Shadow - up at her website:

The mind wanders, when one takes teonanacatl.

If she allowed herself to think, she’d smell bleach, mingling with the faint, rank smell of blood; she’d see the grooves of the cell, smeared with what might be blood or faeces.

She’d remember–the pain insinuating itself into the marrow of her bones, until it, too, becomes a dull thing, a matter of habit–she’d remember dragging herself upwards when dawn filters through the slit-windows: too tired and wan to offer her blood to Tonatiuh the sun, whispering a prayer that ends up sounding more and more like an apology.

The god, of course, will insist that she live until the end, for life and blood are too precious to be wasted–no matter how broken or useless she’s become, wasting away in the darkness.

Here’s the thing: she’s not sure how long she can last.

It was Jaguar Captain Palli who gave her the teonanacatl–opening his hand to reveal the two black, crushed mushrooms, the food of the gods, the drugs of the lost, of the doomed–she couldn’t tell if it was because he pitied her, or if it’s yet another trap, another ambush they hope she’ll fall into.

But still… She took them. She held them, wrapped tight in the palm of her hands, as the guards walked her back. And when she was alone once more, she stared at them for a long while, feeling the tremor start in her fingers–the hunger, the craving for normality–for oblivion.

The mind wanders–backwards, into the only time worth remembering.

Read the full story here

 

Thomas Pynchon - Slow Learner

 

Sydney Padua - The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage

 

Peter Watts – Maelstrom

 

Iain Sinclair - Radon Daughters


Andy Weir - The Martian

 

Charles Stross - The Atrocity Archives

 

S.P. Somtow – I Wake from a Dream of a Drowned Star City

 

Tricia Sullivan – Occupy Me

 

Lavie Tidhar - Central Station

 

Liz Williams - Empire of Bones

 

Thomas Pynchon – Gravity’s Rainbow

 

Somtow Sucharitul – Starship & Haiku

 

Doris Lessing - Shikasta

 

Aliette de Bodard – In the Vanishers’ Palace

 

Peter Watts - Blindsight

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