Wednesday, June 3, 2015

On A Spiritual Plain

"On A Spiritual Plain" by Lou Antonelli is a short story nominee for the 2015 Hugo awards. It's a double-puppy, although it does not feature any good-old-times space military. Instead, it is the brief tale of a minister to the first human base on a planet where the spirits of the dead are consistently observable and eternally preserved after death (because of magnetism!).

Short stories are: short. I have read that authors try to make every scene, every utterance, every sentence in a short story serve two or even three purposes, to squeeze meaning and significance into such a small package. Good short stories stay with the reader, unpacking in the mind, a long while after the action of reading is complete.

This story doesn't do that. It was very straightforward, it presented no special challenges, it was not particularly memorable. I'm not sure it even had a conflict, nevermind a resolution. I will not be thinking about it for a long time, or even for much longer than it takes to post this.

Also, he misstated the golden ratio. Others have noted this. It is certainly not rational.

This post's theme word is betide, "to happen" (intransitive). Ghosts and magnets betide.

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