Friday, May 23, 2008

[C2] Short stories: A reading guide by quality - Part 10 of 10

This file does not contain any new content - at least at the time of creation. It contains a portion of the short story C1 list that existed on 23 May 2008 because that list has grown too big & unwieldy - later half of that C1 list is now in this file. Some opening remarks of main story list document conventions, if you are here the first time.

This file will again be split in future when it grows big - so it's not safe to link to. Links should be only to original main story list that contains initial part & links to remaining parts; that's the only stable URL among the files comprising this list.

Idea is to keep each file between 25 & 50 stories.

List navigation.

Current file's name is in bold. Files earlier in the list hold better stories; those later in the list worse stories. Files names Ai contain A-rated stories, etc.

first, previous, next.
A1, A2, A3, A4, B1, B2, B3, B4, C1, [C2].

Story list (best first).

  1. * [ff] João Ventura's "Bad Manners" (C); download; AntiSF, #119 (April/May 2008); science fiction: Using a black hole as a data storage device!
  2. * [ff] Luke Kepreotis' "Finite Horror, Infinite Hope" (C); download; AntiSF, #119 (April/May 2008); fantasy: A little girl faces the monster courageously & saves humanity!
  3. * [ff] Bill West's "On The Edge" (C); download; AntiSF, #109 (June/July 2007); religion: Description of some ritual among monks.
  4. * [ff] Stephen L Thompson's "Of Course" (C); download; AntiSF, #113 (October/November 2007); science fiction: Apparently a well written story, but I cannot figure out the punchline. Aliens in a spaceship are in serious trouble. There is an unfamiliar quadrupedal creature in a corner of the room. Aliens don't quite recall what they did that has so disturbed them, & where this creature has come from.
  5. * Paul Sheringham's "Venom" (C); download; AntiSF, #113 (October/November 2007); fantasy: I didn't really get this story. A victim & her torturer. An attempt at her escape is foiled. She eventually surprises him with a vicious attack, but there is hint this attempt is also futile.
  6. * [ff] Leslie Blake's "The Bowl Of Stew" (C); download; AntiSF, #119 (April/May 2008); non-genre: Cannot figure out - a man wakes up to find him in a dungeon & he's afraid of stew.
  7. * [ff] Rachael Ryan's "Saint" (C); download; AntiSF, #119 (April/May 2008); fantasy: A gang is out hunting blood-sucking demons. But who's demon?
  8. * Judith Berman's "Awakening" (C); download; Black Gate, #10 (Spring 2007); fantasy: Ghosts, sorcery, swords, etc.
  9. * Jennifer Pelland's "Captive Girl" (C); download; Helix #2, Fall 2006; science fiction, horror: Three little girls are mutilated & abused for years by a security agency in the cause of the state.
  10. * David Brin's "Reality Check" (C); download; Nature magazine, 16 March 2000: A stupid answer to "why haven't we met aliens yet?"
  11. * Benjamin Rosenbaum's "A Siege of Cranes" (C); download; fantasy: Literally a ravaging witch story; I could also see it as a terrorist story.
  12. * Marc Laidlaw's "An Evening's Honest Peril" (C); download; Flurb #3 (Spring-Summer 2007): Senseless babble about swards-and-magic killing adventure in a Tomb teeming with magical creatures ready to be murdered!
  13. * Elizabeth Bear's "Black is the Color" (C); download; fantasy: A monster hunts & kills a girl.
  14. * Henry Gee's "Are We Not Men" (C); download; Nature magazine, 30 June 2005; science fiction: Homo sapiens are only one among 20 odd hominids that rule earth!
  15. * Michael Swanwick's "Lord Weary's Empire" (C); download; Asimov's, December 2006; fantasy: Story of an urban gang among a community of many kinds of magical creatures, & with an incomprehensible end.
  16. * Ekaterina Sedia's "The Taste of Wheat" (C); download; Clarksworld, August 2007: Children's fairy tale. A girl keeps going to sleep at odd hours, & dreaming of conversations with Gautam Buddha (founder of Buddhism). Towards end, we don't quite know if she is dreaming, or in a magical world!
  17. * Darja Malcolm-Clarke's "The Beacon" (C); download; Clarkesworld, August 2007: Bio-luminescent beacon locates an airport visually for approaching airships.
  18. * Caroline Lockwood Nelson's "The Captain Is the Last to Leave" (C); download; Strange Horizons, 9 July 2007; fantasy: An immortal non-human humanoid woman keeps starting life in human world, & always ends up killing her husband & kids!
  19. * Joanne Merriam's "Little Ambushes" (C); download; Strange Horizons, 20 Aug 2007: An alien makes a painting for a human lady that reminds her of little ambushes awaiting her at home - in the form of little things, like an unused bag, that remind her of her ex-husband.
  20. * [ff] Chris Pavey's "Assassin's Sorrow" (C); download; AntiSF, #110 (July/August 2007); non-genre: A woman is sad after killing her lover.
  21. * [ff] Shaun A Saunders' "Global Consumables" (C); download; AntiSF, #120 (May/June 2008); non-genre: Last manufacturing company left on earth can no longer pay its 3 employees!
  22. * [ff] Paul Ryan's "Lake" (C); download; AntiSF, #120 (May/June 2008); non-genre: Two friends are out fishing & gossiping.
  23. * [ff] Cheyenne Warlock's "The Witches Hammer Voyages" (C); download; AntiSF, #120 (May/June 2008): There is some magic at harbor because of visiting ship named "The Witches Hammer".
  24. * [ff] Daniel S S Santos' "Apocalypse, Now There's A Good Idea" (C); download; AntiSF, #120 (May/June 2008); non-genre: "Writers Against Unoriginality" have triggered a mass-killing weapon to destroy most humanity, so originality can return to literature!
  25. * [ff] Christopher Elston's "Wired For Sound" (C); download; AntiSF, #120 (May/June 2008); horror: An old man's idea of relaxation is to hear sounds of agony from victims of torture!
  26. * Theodora Goss' "Catherine and the Satyr" (C); download; Strange Horizons, 1 October 2007: Non genre. A slave gains his freedom.
  27. * Jetse De Vries' "Qubit Conflicts" (C); download; Clarkesworld, May 2007; science fiction: Eons from now, long after humans & planets are gone, our solar system is occupied by a bored AI!
  28. * Eileen Gunn's "Speak, Geek" (C); download; Nature magazine, 24 August 2006; science fiction: A genetically tweaked dog, now working as a coder at a genome programming firm, accidentally discovers an interesting undocumented feature of the upcoming product - "Man, 2.1".
  29. Michael Swanwick's "Congratulations from the Future!": Future history of Asimov's Science Fiction magazine.
  30. * [ff] Charles Richard Laing's "Yum Yum" (C); download; AntiSF, #110 (July/August 2007); non-genre: A cannibal of a man is contemplating eating his landlady!
  31. * [ff] Deven Kivioja's "Sweat" (C); download; AntiSF, #110 (July/August 2007); non-genre: Sounds like something about promiscuous sex; cannot quite figure out.
  32. * 15 October 2007: Jason Stoddard's "Making Payments" (C); download; Strange Horizons, 15 October 2007: Hopeless techno-babble.
  33. * R J Astruc's "The Perfume Eater" (C); download; Strange Horizons, 16 July 2007; fantasy: Good prose but I could not quite get the point of the story - something to do with almost-human mythological creatures from Iranian folklore of medieval times.
  34. * Benjamin Rosenbaum's "The House Beyond Your Sky" (C); download; Strange Horizons, 4 September 2006: A complicated religious tale on what is god & where we came from.
  35. * Leah Bobet's "The Girl From Another World" (C); download; Strange Horizons magazine, 13 August 2007: I cannot even figure of what the story is about!
  36. * Robert Metzger's "Perchance To Dream" (C); download; Nature magazine, 17 Nov 2005: Some kind of a doomsday scenario where there are very few real people - and they are living in constantly dreaming state - using some kind of ubiquitous virtual reality devices.