Sunday, February 17, 2019

The Secretary - Main Street Theater

The Secretary
Main Street Theater
[Left to right: Elizabeth Marshall Black as Janelle, Alice M. Gatling as Ruby,
and Bree Welch as Lorrie]

The good news is that I didn't miss Main Street Theater's production of "The Secretary", because some extra performances were added to the run. The bad news is that I saw it on the very last night, so I can't urge you to go see it this time around. (But I can urge you to go to a different performance at the Main Street Theater; they really put on some terrific productions!)

Written by Kyle John Schmidt and directed by Julia Traber, this little one-act, one-set, six-actor oddity is a satiric commentary on gun culture in our country. The theater's website description says:

Ruby runs a small-town gun company, manufacturing products like “The Bridesmaid,” “The Babysitter,” and “The Mallwalker,” But what happens when guns start going off all over town–and no one’s pulling the trigger?!!

So you can guess what "The Secretary" refers to. Hint: it's not a person.
Read more!

Monday, February 4, 2019

Short Fiction read in January 2019

Short Fiction read in January 2019

Image from used under a CC license

New year, new re-start of the Great Short Fiction Reading Project!

Here's what's different this time around: In addition to picking stories of various lengths from different sources, I plan to read every story published this year by Daily Science Fiction (five days a week), Every Day Fiction (seven days a week), and Nature's "Futures" section (once a week). Those are all flash (except for the occasional DSF story that tiptoes past the 1,000 word mark), so it should be manageable. I'm also going to post monthly stats, which I'll put way down at the bottom of the post so nobody has to see them if they don't want to.

Here's what's staying the same: each month I'll blog about my favorites from that month's reading, and list all the remaining stories I've read and the collective sources they came from.

These are my four favorites of the 85 stories I read during January (alphabetical by author):

"Terra Forms" by Jennifer Campbell-Hicks and Justin Adams

Length: 5,230 words
Category: Science fiction - hard (short story)
Where Published: Perihelion
When Published: 2018-04
Link (free to readers)

This is hard SF with emotions, some neat technologies I haven't seen elsewhere in fiction, and themes of terraforming and colony ships. And it's well-written. In other words, there was no way I was not going to love this story. There's one plot "conflict" element at the end that I wasn't initially sure I liked, but the more I think about it, the more I realize it adds a layer to a story that otherwise might have been too "tidy."

Read more!