The format of a Wikipedia page is used as the chilling delivery mechanism for this piece of speculative fiction. The distancing effect heightens the horror.
Black Mirror meets Henrietta Lacks in this short story by Erik Hoel who I had not heard of until today, when I came across his name here and also in a completely unrelated blog post by Peter Watts about the nature of dreams.
A very affecting short story by Ben. I look forward to reading more of these.
A blog post from the future. I’m on board with the subgenre of speculative blogging.
I’m an agent of the 28th Amendment, the abolition of the 2nd. If it sounds sanctimonious to trace my authority to a decade-old government document that I have never read rather than my employee handbook, it’s only because I value my life.
It’s just about an old monkey who speaks human language, who scrubs guests’ backs in the hot springs in a tiny town in Gunma Prefecture, who enjoys cold beer, falls in love with human women, and steals their names.
A sequel to 2006’s A Shinagawa Monkey, translated by Philip Gabriel.
Here’s a BBC adaption of that J.G. Ballard short story I recorded. It certainly feels like a story for our time.
A biblical short story from Adam Roberts.
A cli-fi short story by Paolo Bacigalupi.
The terrific Hugo-winning short story about inequality, urban planning, and automation, written by Hao Jinfang and translated by Ken Liu (who translated The Three Body Problem series).
Hao Jinfang also wrote this essay about the story:
I’ve been troubled by inequality for a long time. When I majored in physics as an undergraduate, I once stared at the distribution curve for American household income that showed profound inequality, and tried to fit the data against black-body distribution or Maxwell–Boltzmann distribution. I wanted to know how such a curve came about, and whether it implied some kind of universality: something as natural as particle energy distribution functions, so natural it led to despair.
A near-future sci-fi short by Hannu Rajaniemi that’s right on the zeitgest money.
The app in her AR glasses showed the car icon crawling along the winding forest road. In a few minutes, it would reach the sharp right turn where the road met the lake. The turn was marked by a road sign she had carefully defaced the previous day, with tiny dabs of white paint. Nearly invisible to a human, they nevertheless fooled image recognition nets into classifying the sign as a tree.
A tale of the Fermi paradox featuring data preservation via tardigrade as a means of transmitting information beyond the great filter.
A near-future tale of post-Brexit Kafkaesque isolationism in the skies.
It turned out that taking back control also meant creating an aerial deadzone. Nothing can fly in here without a Library of Alexandria’s worth of paperwork, and nothing can fly out without the same.
There are some delightfully dark touches to this Cory Doctorow coming-of-age near-future short story of high school students seizing the means of production.
A small black mirror.
A wonderful sci-fi vignette from Matt.
A short story set in a science-fictional future that just happens to be our present.