This has got to be one of my favourites. My story “A visit to the theatre” appears in the Static Movement anthology Bounty Hunter. The story is only a little over a couple of thousand words, but it’s a fun romp, I hope. It was inspired a little by the cover illustration (I love that picture), though it’s pretty dieselpunk. Lots of chasing and shooting, and I hope, an engaging satisfying story. Okay, opening paragraphs:
Nikki heard Sam’s Sikorsky spiracopter put down on the apartment building roof and she had her leg strapped on and guns layed out on her bed before he even got down to her door.
She opened the Venetians. In the wan dawn light commuter traffic was backing up along Lexington. Horns blared and taxi drivers yelled. The new traffic signals on thirty-second hadn’t worked right for weeks.
“It’s open,” she yelled to Sam’s pounding.
Nikki and Sam feel like characters I want to take out again, and their world is just slightly shifted from ours, so there’s lots of world-building which could be fun.
The anthology also has another story of mine, under the byline Michael Shone (I liked the theme, but I’m a bit shy about having multiple stories in a single anthology, so this was a solution), titled “Katie Stumbled”. This is a longer piece, still a bit action-oriented, but a very different tone (I hope) to the other story. It opens like this:
Bill Sefheron landed the ornithopter in Clarkeson’s town square. He’d known about the Casselith here, but seeing it loom from the South Dakota horizon as he’d made his low approach had surprised him. He hadn’t realized how big this one was. The main mass of its black stone must have been six hundred feet high, the near face tapered to perhaps two hundred feet across at the top. This Casselith probably occupied close to four acres at its base, making it one of the bigger ones. Sefheron saw windows in some parts.
Thanks again to Chris Bartholomew for her work on these anthologies.