Monday, June 15, 2020

Own Goal, by Dennard Dayle


(Apocalypse) On the eve of a planetary war, Leon works for an ad firm, and he’s working on ads for a city-killing weapon that throws tungsten rods. (3,628 words; Time: 12m)

"," by (edited by Neil Clarke), appeared in issue 165, published on .

Mini-Review (click to view--possible spoilers)

Review: 2020.313 (A Word for Authors)

Pro: The tension rises steadily through the story. There’s a bit at first over whether Leon will even keep his job, but that’s eclipsed as soon as war in declared.

Leon’s journal entries give us a little insight into his personality. He does have some feelings, but he’s way down on the empathy scale. Even so, I found myself rooting for him.

Con: The story is too on-the nose. It just has one note, and it’s a real downer.

It’s also a little sloppy. First it says that “Demes is a liberal republic, and Union is a theocracy,” but later is says, “When Demes’ cleric sovereign reportedly told the Union premiere . . .”

Technically “Will the Circle Be Unbroken” was written in 1907, so it’s not really antebellum. Considering what’s about to happen, though, it’s great dramatic irony.

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Dennard Dayle Info: Interviews, Websites, ISFDB, FreeSFOnline

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