The Dead, In Their Uncontrollable Power; The Two Bullet War; and Cratered by Karen Osborne
- The Two Bullet War.
- A beautifully written work that made Reid question the purpose of novels if perfection can be obtained in a short story?
- A story of three scenes: a death and setup; the story of lovers; and the two bullet war. The first and last scenes paint pictures of a world and leave us wanting more; but, the middle scene is a lull in pacing and slows the action. That being said the middle scene provides characterization and shows the powerlessness of the characters.
- The crafting of the prose: reference and foreshadow. In the micro prose of paragraph by paragraph, each paragraph contains a reference to what has already occurred in the story and a statement or foreshadowing of what is to come. Specifically used are the tactics of irony and question-and-answer. These techniques make for a story where each word contributes to building the world and defining characters; and make the reader flow effortlessly from paragraph to paragraph while comprehending a dense, tightly woven story.
- Example of the opening: The story begins with the description of an unpleasant death scene. In the second paragraph we are provided with the irony that the ideal death setting was set up, but the actual followthrough of making this death is not what was originally intended. The prose ties back to the expectation vs reality of the dying character; and then doubles down on why the death scene is even worse than the dying character wanted: her children.
Links to the Works
- The Two-Bullet War, on Beneath Ceaseless Skies
- The Dead, In Their Uncontrollable Power, on Uncanny
- Cratered, on Future: Science Fiction Digest
- 7/5: Promise of Blood by Brian McClellan
- 7/19: Izzy Wasserstein Short Stories:
- Pattern Recognition, on Daily Science Fiction
- Like Birdsong, the Memory of Your Touch, on Fantasy Magazine
- Dead at the Feet of a God, on Beneath Ceaseless Skies
- 8/2: Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
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