Monthly Archives: July 2021

Ep069 Izzy Wasserstein Short Stories

Short Stories of Izzy Wasserstein

Izzy Wasserstein is a prolific new writer, writing and publishing over twenty-five short stories in the past four years! In this episode we discuss three short stories.

Episode Discussion

  • Dead at the Feet of a God – read it on Beneath Ceaseless Skies
    • A story written in reverse chronological order. Wasserstein plays with linear narrative by revealing additional information by going back in time. By wrapping a past with a return to the present the reader gets a clear juxtaposition between the world of the past and the world of the present and the motivation of the main character.
      • The world of the past builds on the additional loss of the main character. Of meeting and possibly falling in love, and then going farther back to see that the society has changed into this worship of this new god.
      • How the theme of “chipping away” ties in with the character by utilizing this non-linear juxtaposition between past and present.
  • Pattern Recognition – read it on Daily Science Fiction
    • A work of anti-humor, where an expectation is set up and then is intentionally not resolved.
      • The dangers of anti-humor. Once the punch line of the joke is known, you cannot have it used on you again. The length of setup of the joke must be taken into account so as to not appear that you’re wasting the audience’s time.
  • Like Birdsong, the Memory of Your Touch – read it on Fantasy Magazine
    • A stream of consciousness.
    • Isaac and Reid dig into the possibilities of the meanings in this abstract weaving of thoughts.

Upcoming Episodes

  • 8/2/2021 – Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
  • 8/16/201 – The Buried Giant by Kazua Ishiguro

Ep068 Promise of Blood by Brian McClellan

Promise of Blood by Brian McClellan

Promise of Blood is the first book of the Powder Mage Trilogy, a work of Gunpowder fantasy where guns coexist with magic. The story follows the events which occur immediately after a successful coup by the military leader Tamas. The book is an amalgam of mystery, adventure, and political fantasy to deliver an enjoyable

Episode Discussion

  • Variety of Character and Story Arcs
    • Tomas and the political drama following the aftermath of the coup: reactionary factions, assassination attempts, disagreeable council members and foreign influences.
    • Adamat and the mystery story of a secret prophecy.
    • Taniel and the invading war army.
  • Narrative Progression
    • The change of a single setting. Tomas and Adamat spend the story within the capital city, but the setting is not stale. As the story progresses the setting changes: reactionary factions bar off city blocks, an earthquake shakes the city, a strange cook feeds the populace.
    • The change of setting. Taniel adventures to the border and then to a the temple of the past god.
  • Character Traits. Utilizing the common character model (possibly defined by Brandon Sanderson) of how a character must not have all three: Capability, Agency, and Likability.
    • Tomas: high capability, high agency, not very likable.
    • Adamat: high capability, low agency, high likable.
    • Taniel: high capability (specifically with war and battle), medium agency (story growth from low to higher), and high likable.

Upcoming Episodes