APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14


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Post May 31, 2014, 09:52:33 PM

APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

The Scheherazade 7 Challenge

A generous patron who wishes to remain anonymous has offered $20 U.S.D. for June's flash fiction contest winner to be awarded through PayPal or given to the winner's favorite charity. I. Verse has offered his $20 prize from the May flash contest as well, so there is a $40 prize for June's contest.

THE PREMISE: "The Sultan of the red planet is mad! He misses no opportunity to remind the system that his home was named after the god of war." The ambassador's hands shook as he pushed through the throng in search of a place to compose himself, but at that moment the crowd contracted as a flurry of dancers, each trailing a long colorful veil overhead, trotted into the center of the court, and the chief diplomat of old Earth, whose wealthy predecessors were once welcomed with much pomp and circumstance was now dismissed from the Sultan's court like a beggar, and jostled into the shadow of a massive pillar near the court's entrance. Abra, his sole assistant, tried to protect and steady the old man. The ambassador turned to him. "Diplomacy has failed, my boy... I've failed. I fear Earth's fate is now sealed."

"Perhaps, sir, it is time then to try what I spoke of... yes?" The young man looked at the older with an earnestness and eagerness that was a breath of oxygen to the dwindling flame of the old man's hope.

"Perhaps... " The ambassador looked out through the entrance of the palace and across the causeway to the endless red sands of Mars and the readying fleet of warships.

"Very well. Bring in the storyteller."


***

One Thousand and One Nights, or as it is often referred to in English, the Arabian Nights, is a collection of folktales from the Middle East, and parts of Asia and Africa which was compiled during the Middle Ages. It is probably best known as the source of stories about Sinbad the Sailor, Aladdin, Ali Baba, genies, magic lamps, and flying carpets. But it is also known for the story of Scheherazade, the storyteller.

The story goes that Scheherazade married the Persian King Shahryar who, due to his first wife's treachery, would marry a woman each day and then have her executed the following morning in the belief that all women would eventually betray him. To escape the same fate, Scheherazade told the king a story on their wedding night, ended on a cliff-hanger, and made the king wait for the ending until the following night when she finished the story, but then also managed to start another. He was so intrigued by her stories, and she was so skillful at telling them, that she was able to stave off her execution for 1001 nights, by which point the king had grown to love her.

The story of Scheherazade is a framing story for the folktales contained in One Thousand and One Nights. A framing story is a literary device wherein one story either sets the stage for another central story or is used to connect a series of stories which are being told within the context of the framing story.

So for this challenge I am presenting you with a framing story, the tale of a future version of Scheherazade, the robotic storyteller of old Earth, Scheherazade 7, who has access to any story placed on Earthnet over the next 1000 years, including the flash stories written by you for our flash contest. Your job is to write a flash story that will fit within that framework.

Here is the setup: About a thousand years in the future, well... okay, the year 3001 to be exact, after humans have terraformed and colonized much of the solar system, a wasted Earth has lost its place as the cultural center of human civilization. The average human doesn't even remember, much less care, that Earth was humanity's birthplace, except for the few unfortunate humans who still live there.

At the time of our story, the Sultan of Mars, powerful and arrogant, is on the verge of attacking Earth with his fleet of warships. The ambassador from Earth, having tried all diplomatic means to stay the Sultan's hand, takes a gamble--perhaps the robotic storyteller Scheherazade 7 drawing on the stories of old Earth can remind the Sultan of Earth's significance or at least delay the war long enough to find a solution. So the flash stories you submit for the contest will be the tales that Scheherazade 7 is telling to the Sultan and his court.

I think there are a whole slew of ways to approach this challenge. On the one hand you could simply write a darn good flash story and submit it. This challenge really gives you free rein similar to January's Almost No Holds Barred Challenge. Your story can be any genre of speculative fiction, so science fiction, fantasy, or horror are all fine. You can pick your own theme; your story doesn't have to be directly tied to the framing story in any way. Your story will simply be one that Scheherazade 7 chooses to tell.

However, One Thousand and One Nights is an extremely rich resource. The Wikipedia article about it discusses how some of its elements can later be found in science fiction, fantasy, and horror stories. So I encourage you to draw on One Thousand and One Nights for inspiration while writing your flash story. You could, for instance, incorporate a genie into your story the way Michele Dutcher did in her story "Spam" for the March 2014 flash contest, or reinterpret the genie of the ring motif more loosely as I did in my story "Preparing to Jump" for the November 2011 flash challenge. You could tell a science fiction story that includes a ship called The Flying Carpet which has a crew of forty alien thieves, or a fantasy story about a character who has to know a magic word like Open Sesame to gain access to a secret treasure. Give us a story of merfolk, or a city plagued with ghouls, or even delve into the Arabian Nights influences on horror such as H.P. Lovecraft's by writing a story exploring the Persian sources of the Libro di Sinistro. The Arabian Nights is filled with examples of quests, twists of fate, heroes and anti-heroes, and wild adventure. So the possibilities are endless.

You can include elements from the framing story in your flash story if you choose. Scheherazade 7 could be referred to as the narrator of your story, or you could describe the Sultan of Mars as he listens and reacts to her tale if you'd like. You could also reference some of the events that might happen between now and the time of the framing story 1000 years from now. Maybe your story is a Ganymedian folktale, or mentions the Earth/Luna war of 2560. However, flash stories are short. So including references to the framing story is certainly not a requirement or expected.

The only thing that I'd keep in mind is that your story is supposed to be told by Scheherazade 7, and she is picking stories in an attempt to either convince the Sultan of Mars that Earth is worth saving, or entertain him long enough to delay the impending war.

Here are some helpful links:

"Spam" by Michele Dutcher: http://www.aphelion-webzine.com/newforum/viewtopic.php?f=48&t=4912&start=150#p68673

"Preparing to Jump" by J. Davidson Hero: http://www.aphelion-webzine.com/newforum/viewtopic.php?p=27362#p27362

Wikipedia article on the Arabian Nights: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arabian_nights

A list of tropes found in the Arabian Nights: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Literature/ArabianNights

THE CHALLENGE: I challenge you to write a speculative fiction flash story that fits within the framing story of Scheherazade 7. Good luck and good writing.

REQUIREMENTS: (1) Your story must be a speculative fiction story; (2) 1,000 words or less, not counting title, byline, "The End," or punctuation such as #### used to separate sections; (3) The characters and story must be fictional; (4) One entry per author; (5) Give your story a title and a byline; and (6) Keep it clean. No worse than PG-13. When it comes to ratings, I'm going to use movie ratings as a guide from now on. But bear in mind that ratings are fairly subjective and applying a movie or television rating to a flash story is not the easiest thing to do. A lot depends on context. If you think something in your story may push it beyond PG-13, but you can give me an example of a PG-13 movie where the same thing was allowed, then I'll allow it.

LEGAL RESTRICTIONS: While you may reuse your own intellectual property in these challenges, stories that infringe on the copyrights, trademarks, or personality rights of others will not be accepted.

Yes, now you can write a sequel to one of your own previously published contest stories, but you cannot write a sequel to another writer’s story. Works of fan fiction will not be accepted. That means there is no use of copyrighted characters or settings, or references thereto. Even though the Wicked Witch and Dracula may be in the public domain, don't expect me to allow them. No person that was ever a "real life" human being may be used as a character, but can be referred to, as in "President Kennedy had declared it would be so." Character names may not be copied from fiction or real life, even if changed, i.e. Char-less Darween.

DISQUALIFICATIONS/REFUSALS: If, in my judgment, any requirement or rule is missed, I won't post the story for voting, but authors are free to resubmit with changes until the deadline. Should a story be initially accepted and posted in the challenge, but then later judged by me to be in violation, the story may be disqualified and removed from contention at any time before contest end. Authors who feel a story may be in violation should send me a PM and state their case.

REUSABLE STORY ELEMENTS: Reusable story elements are unique story elements introduced in these challenges which may be used over and over again in any Aphelion Flash Fiction Contest by any author. A given reusable story element will not be appropriate for every challenge, given genre or other challenge restrictions, but if you feel a reusable story element fits the current challenge and its use will enhance your story, then you are free to incorporate the element into your story. Other authors' use of a reusable story element in no way limits or affects your use of the element. Only the information included in the description of the reusable story element is usable. Any expansion of this information in other authors' stories is not usable. You may, however, build on elements from your own previous stories with the caveat that you may be sacrificing your anonymity for the contest voting.

The Libro di Sinistro: use anything from the pseudo-history of this sinister book in your story. viewtopic.php?f=48&t=12939#p67572

Scheherazade 7: use anything from the framing story of Scheherazade 7, including the premise, characters, and setting.

HOW TO ENTER: Stories must be sent by PRIVATE MESSAGE to davidsonhero, and NOT posted into a thread. Just click the 'PM' button at the bottom of this post and paste your story in the message. You are responsible for doing your own formatting, and leave an extra line between paragraphs, just like when you see them in the 'zine. I will allow different colors, but not changed fonts or sizes, artwork, or any other embedded or external links.

DO NOT send a regular email to me.

Stories will be posted "blind"--without the author's name on them. They are placed in a random order which is generated by an online random generator. When the poll closes after the voting week, I'll post a list of the stories and who wrote them. All entries will then be reposted in the Flash Archive with the author's byline.

Entries from new authors are strongly encouraged. C'mon. Give it a try!

NOTE: ONLY REGISTERED MEMBERS of Aphelion's forum who have posted at least one message may submit a story. Without that one post, the system will not let you send a PM. Registration is easy though. Click the "Register" link at the top of this page to get started.

DEADLINE: Stories should be in by 9 p.m. Central Standard Time (GMT-5), Sunday, June 22, 2014. The stories will then be posted for voting at approximately 10 p.m. Voting will close on Sunday, June 29th at approximately 9 p.m., GMT-5.

VOTING: Voters will rank the stories favorite to least favorite and also pick one story to receive the challenge bonus by filling in a form that is posted by me immediately following the post containing the stories for this challenge. Voters will copy and paste the form into a PM and send it to me for tallying. One vote per user (that is, per ip address).

A challenge entrant who does not rank the stories will receive a deduction in their own score at the time of contest close.

If two or more stories are tied at the end of voting, there will be a succession of one-day runoff votes until a single winner is chosen.

WHAT YOU WIN: The first place winner will receive $40 U.S.D. awarded through PayPal or donated online to their favorite charity. Winners also gain bragging rights--there is stiff competition each month amongst some great stories. All participants get improved short fiction skills, increasing their chances in the marketplace, without the lengthy investment in time a longer story would take.

COPYRIGHTS: By entering this challenge you are granting Aphelion: The Webzine of Science Fiction and Fantasy perpetual non-exclusive electronic rights to post and archive your contest entry. All other rights are retained by you, the author.

Image

REUSABLE STORY ELEMENT:
The Scheherazade 7 Framing Story

by John David Rose


3001 CE

"The Sultan of the red planet is mad! He misses no opportunity to remind the system that his home was named after the god of war." The ambassador's hands shook as he pushed through the throng in search of a place to compose himself, but at that moment the crowd contracted as a flurry of dancers, each trailing a long colorful veil overhead, trotted into the center of the court, and the chief diplomat of old Earth, whose wealthy predecessors were once welcomed with much pomp and circumstance was now dismissed from the Sultan's court like a beggar, and jostled into the shadow of a massive pillar near the court's entrance. Abra, his sole assistant, tried to protect and steady the old man. The ambassador turned to him. "Diplomacy has failed, my boy... I've failed. I fear Earth's fate is now sealed."

"Perhaps, sir, it is time then to try what I spoke of... yes?" The young man looked at the older with an earnestness and eagerness that was a breath of oxygen to the dwindling flame of the old man's hope.

"Perhaps... " The ambassador looked out through the entrance of the palace and across the causeway to the endless red sands of Mars and the readying fleet of warships.

"Very well. Bring in the storyteller."

***

Sleek and metallic, Scheherazade 7 walked into the Sultan's court, not in the clunky manner one might expect of a robot, but with a distinct air of human femininity. She was the storyteller, famed throughout the solar system, and loved by all who knew her. The Governor of Triton had all but begged for her to travel to that cold, dark, distant colony, and the board of Tethys Interplanetary, the gas mining cartel of Saturn, had promised to pay handsomely for her immediate return to Shangri-la, but her recent tour of the Jovian moons Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto had already been extended a year and next she was booked to headline for six months at Venus' floating pleasure palace, El Cielo, followed by a short lecture series at Luna's Lacus Oblivionis University before returning to Earth for some much needed rest, refurbishing, and upgrades.

However, as the last great innovation to come out of the dying industries of old Earth, she was at the beck and call of Earth's government and its Ambassador to Mars. She didn't mind though, she had met him once before and she liked him. If she could help, she was willing. For not only did she hold within her vast data bank all the stories uploaded to Earthnet over the course of a thousand years, her unique empathy algorithms which allowed her to read the hearts and minds of her audience and choose a story perfect for the situation, allowed her to truly care about the fate of the humans who lived on Earth and whose ancestors had written the stories so central to her being.

"If you can but delay this march to war, my dear," the Ambassador said, charging her with her task as he clasped her hands. He looked tired, and old; there was no strength left in him. Scheherazade 7 looked into his eyes and felt in her circuits all the stories of old men who had struggled hopelessly against death to preserve something for the next generation, and automatically she began to sequence the tales she could tell him to fend off his growing despondency.

The young man, Abra, who had retrieved her from her transport ship, and led her now to the court, whispered in her ear, "Tell him some stories of Earth. Not of what we are, but of what we once were--our place in the solar system. Show him the richness of our heritage. Perhaps if he is reminded... " She smiled at him as her processors sorted through a thousand and one tales of a good and faithful servant.

"I will do what I can," she said.

Then she looked across the great domed chamber to the dais on the other side, and began to gauge the grim countenance and hardened heart of the Sultan of Mars, and wondered what type of story she would need to tell him first.

The End
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Post May 31, 2014, 10:38:19 PM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

Shit, this is like a final exam, only if you fail you're dead. This is really a tough one to do properly in 1000 words with hook and bait yet.

Nice, real nice.

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Post June 01, 2014, 03:04:45 AM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

Participants have three weeks to write a story for this challenge.

Just remember that the challenge is to provide Scheherazade 7 with an interesting (and effective) story to tell the Sultan, not really to continue the framing story itself. So if you start to feel like your idea is getting too big because you're trying to tie in elements from the setting and history I hint at in the framing story, then scale it back. You can submit a story for this challenge that doesn't make any references to the framing story at all. The framing story is there to give you some direction and a reason why a number of different types of stories, science fiction, fantasy, horror or any of their subgenres, would be told together by one storyteller.

I hope everyone has fun with it. :)

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Post June 01, 2014, 12:12:13 PM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

Mm, tough challenge.

I wonder if I can get up enough motivation if I look at this as a way to avoid working on my novel . . .
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Post June 01, 2014, 04:15:50 PM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

A good one. Like the freedom in this one.
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Post June 02, 2014, 05:24:39 PM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

Too many ideas being already on my mind about this challenge, that offers a very good setting, for sure...but today is still vacation here in Italy because it's the festivity to celebrate the Republic, so, I'll immediately write down tomorrow one of those... :D

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Post June 02, 2014, 08:04:17 PM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

Happy Festa della Repubblica, Sergio. :)
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Post June 03, 2014, 07:08:53 AM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

Thanks, indeed!!!

And what a wonderful exotic cover, again...eh,eh :shock: :shock: :shock:

Mine is already done for this month, but I wait for some useful reviews/suggestions before sending it, of course!!! :D

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Post June 04, 2014, 08:47:14 AM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

I just want to clarify the rules etc:

So the Frame story is set in 3001 and Scheherazade 7 robot is visiting the Sultan's court, trying to "remind the Sultan of Earth's significance or at least delay the war long enough to find a solution". But once inside the frame, the story itself can be in any time period, right?

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Post June 04, 2014, 09:00:00 AM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

And now for another of the little jokes I like to post related to the challenge themes.

---

The Sultan of Mars was considering blowing up Earth. In desperation, the robot storyteller Scheherazade 7 was sent to tell the Sultan some stories hoping to change his mind. The robot began:

"Once upon a time, the Sultan of Mars was considering blowing up Earth. In desperation, the robot storyteller Scheherazade 7 was sent to tell the Sultan some stories hoping to change his mind. The robot began..."

:mrgreen:

---

Incidentally, a long time ago the Magic the Gathering card game once had a Scheherazade card that made you stop your regular game and play a new one separately. And before Wizards of the Coast knew as much about how combos worked, several "infinite" combos were possible with what are now restricted/banned cards. Most of the time it was about gaining infinite life and stuff. But with a "proof of concept" deck (that card is not legal in tournaments), you could win a beer bet with a friend that you would win when they give up.

So once your "combo" kicks in, you spawn infinite copies of that card, creating infinite subgames! So you win when your opponent simply gives up! I retired from that game almost a decade ago, so I don't know any of the details of how to set up the combo anymore, but it's quite possible, though I remember the old versions I knew took a lot of cards to completely set it up.

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Post June 04, 2014, 02:42:01 PM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

TaoPhoenix wrote:I just want to clarify the rules etc: So the Frame story is set in 3001 and Scheherazade 7 robot is visiting the Sultan's court, trying to "remind the Sultan of Earth's significance or at least delay the war long enough to find a solution". But once inside the frame, the story itself can be in any time period, right?


Yes. The framing story is set in 3001 and the Sultan' court as you said. The story you are writing to fit within the frame story can be set at any time, and it can be any flavor of speculative fiction you like. Although when I think about it, if you include parts of the framing story in your story, i.e. you dedicate a few sentences to describing Scheherazade 7 telling your story for instance, then by default your story becomes speculative fiction, so really the story within the story, which you are writing, could conceivably be any genre.

Bottom line, you can pretty much write whatever your muse inspires you to write for this one. I think the key to this challenge is having whatever you write make sense within the framing story. Does that further clarify or confuse the situation? :D

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Post June 04, 2014, 02:56:43 PM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

TaoPhoenix wrote:And now for another of the little jokes I like to post related to the challenge themes. ---The Sultan of Mars was considering blowing up Earth. In desperation, the robot storyteller Scheherazade 7 was sent to tell the Sultan some stories hoping to change his mind. The robot began:"Once upon a time, the Sultan of Mars was considering blowing up Earth. In desperation, the robot storyteller Scheherazade 7 was sent to tell the Sultan some stories hoping to change his mind. The robot began..."


I think a few iterations of this type of endless story loop would result in either; a ) the sultan being mesmerized to the point of drooling, thus ending the threat of war; b ) the sultan ordering one of his guards to do a cold reboot on the storyteller; c ) both her head and his exploding simultaneously. :shock:

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Post June 04, 2014, 03:28:07 PM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

davidsonhero wrote:
TaoPhoenix wrote:And now for another of the little jokes I like to post related to the challenge themes. ---The Sultan of Mars was considering blowing up Earth. In desperation, the robot storyteller Scheherazade 7 was sent to tell the Sultan some stories hoping to change his mind. The robot began:"Once upon a time, the Sultan of Mars was considering blowing up Earth. In desperation, the robot storyteller Scheherazade 7 was sent to tell the Sultan some stories hoping to change his mind. The robot began..."


I think a few iterations of this type of endless story loop would result in either; a ) the sultan being mesmerized to the point of drooling, thus ending the threat of war; b ) the sultan ordering one of his guards to do a cold reboot on the storyteller; c ) both her head and his exploding simultaneously. :shock:


Depends on the type of story. In any "serious drama" story it's either B1 from you above and/or B2 "I've had enough, fire away at Earth!"

C is comedy skit material which includes stuff like tricking the Sultan into a legal contract from some higher authority like a Federation "that he can't take action until the story is complete", or getting him drunk and segueing into a nice round of "999 sharp swords on the wall, 99 razor sharp swords; take one down, chop a prisoner down, 998 sharp swords on the wall."

A could be psychological suspense thriller. What if a spy managed to sneak an injection into the Sultan of a drug that trashed his short term memory? Then the robot (which is custom made to loop) can then confuse the Sultan into forgetting he's heard it before, and thinks it's a new story.

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Post June 04, 2014, 03:30:04 PM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

davidsonhero wrote:
TaoPhoenix wrote:I just want to clarify the rules etc: So the Frame story is set in 3001 and Scheherazade 7 robot is visiting the Sultan's court, trying to "remind the Sultan of Earth's significance or at least delay the war long enough to find a solution". But once inside the frame, the story itself can be in any time period, right?


Yes. The framing story is set in 3001 and the Sultan' court as you said. The story you are writing to fit within the frame story can be set at any time, and it can be any flavor of speculative fiction you like. Although when I think about it, if you include parts of the framing story in your story, i.e. you dedicate a few sentences to describing Scheherazade 7 telling your story for instance, then by default your story becomes speculative fiction, so really the story within the story, which you are writing, could conceivably be any genre.

Bottom line, you can pretty much write whatever your muse inspires you to write for this one. I think the key to this challenge is having whatever you write make sense within the framing story. Does that further clarify or confuse the situation? :D

John


Yeah, and that's what I thought it was. Just checking...

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Post June 04, 2014, 03:45:52 PM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

TaoPhoenix wrote:A could be psychological suspense thriller. What if a spy managed to sneak an injection into the Sultan of a drug that trashed his short term memory? Then the robot (which is custom made to loop) can then confuse the Sultan into forgetting he's heard it before, and thinks it's a new story.


That works. :lol:

As I told one of the other writers, consider the framing story open source. You can use it as little or as much as you want in this challenge. If you're more inspired to continue the framing story than you are to write a story within the framing story, that is fine with me too. :)

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Post June 04, 2014, 04:41:04 PM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

davidsonhero wrote:
TaoPhoenix wrote:A could be psychological suspense thriller. What if a spy managed to sneak an injection into the Sultan of a drug that trashed his short term memory? Then the robot (which is custom made to loop) can then confuse the Sultan into forgetting he's heard it before, and thinks it's a new story.


That works. :lol:

As I told one of the other writers, consider the framing story open source. You can use it as little or as much as you want in this challenge. If you're more inspired to continue the framing story than you are to write a story within the framing story, that is fine with me too. :)


Nah. In a lot of these challenges I get these little "throwaway" ideas that are part funny and part amusing for a day, like something shiny for a magpie. I post them here to get them out of my head so I can stop giggling!

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Post June 08, 2014, 12:58:47 PM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

Two submission have been accepted for the contest so far.
You have two weeks left to write a story for Scheherazade 7. :)

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Post June 09, 2014, 12:17:11 PM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

[quoteIncidentally, a long time ago the Magic the Gathering card game once had a Scheherazade card that made you stop your regular game and play a new one separately. And before Wizards of the Coast knew as much about how combos worked, several "infinite" combos were possible with what are now restricted/banned cards. Most of the time it was about gaining infinite life and stuff. But with a "proof of concept" deck (that card is not legal in tournaments), you could win a beer bet with a friend that you would win when they give up.

So once your "combo" kicks in, you spawn infinite copies of that card, creating infinite subgames! So you win when your opponent simply gives up! I retired from that game almost a decade ago, so I don't know any of the details of how to set up the combo anymore, but it's quite possible, though I remember the old versions I knew took a lot of cards to completely set it up.][/quote] TaoPhoenix

Since we're talking card games and RPGs - my sons have put their own RPG on the market: Soul Assault RPG. All new monsters and heroes in an original universe. Check it out on Amazon. I promised I'd tell my nerd friends and TaoPhoenix started it!
Since the house is on fire - at least let us warm ourselves.

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Post June 09, 2014, 11:22:03 PM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

Michele, that's cool! I'll check it out.
John
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Post June 10, 2014, 02:52:11 AM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

I used to play that game, years ago, and I still have a considerable collection of those cards today...eh,eh O0

Another very good friend of mine here in Italy, whose name is, by chance, Michele :!: ( but he is an Italian male engineer...) had a better collection than mine, very valuable ( about more than 5,000 dollars overall at that time ) but it was stolen while he was playing at a tournament in Lucca Comics many years ago, unfortunately...so, always pay attention when you go around bringing along such a costly collection of collectable playing cards... :? :cry: :roll:

And many thanks for your advice about the interesting new RPG of your sons, indeed!!! :D

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Post June 10, 2014, 10:06:20 AM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

Looking forward to reading and voting! If an idea comes to me I will get it down and submit it.

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Post June 12, 2014, 07:18:22 AM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

I've got one in the works.
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Post June 15, 2014, 11:06:51 PM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

There's a week left for any of you working on stories for this challenge. We have four in; keep them coming.

John
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Post June 17, 2014, 02:54:48 PM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

We should do a challenge where every story must include a recipe and see who can be the spoiler for Richard Tornello!
Remember: when people tell you something’s wrong or doesn’t work for them, they are almost always right. When they tell you exactly what they think is wrong and how to fix it, they are almost always wrong. – Neil Gaiman

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Post June 17, 2014, 08:47:47 PM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

Not a bad a idea. I wouldn't want to muscle in on Richard's shtick though.

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Post June 17, 2014, 10:05:45 PM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

boil boil toil and trouble.

A cook off, crunchy frog, sauteed cat, baked baby with carrots and cranberries, yum!
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Post June 18, 2014, 01:33:29 AM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

Damn, I can hardly believe it, but I've finally got a submission--in the pipe now; I hope John doesn't kick it for some reason.
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Post June 18, 2014, 07:05:04 AM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

Eddie wrote:
We should do a challenge where every story must include a recipe and see who can be the spoiler for Richard Tornello


If the recipe is good and can be baked into a story, as opposed to simply just being there, sort of like an introduction, that would be neat. the key would be for someone to test the recipe! Then after the meal or dish is made and sampled, only then can the story be judged!

Give the main dish a $$ limit for ingreediments (sic) say $50.00. I have one that's great that calls for a cheap cut of cow. I happen to use filet instead because I like the texture. And since I don't eat cow very often it's a treat for me, though not for the cow or what ever it was called in the Hitchers Guide. It's simple with a few ingredients, side dish is anyone's choice and the wine should match the meal.

Just remember if you use someones published recipe you must give credit to the chef, and if you modify it, a least a tip of the hat. The ones i used are from my wife or my own. I tried to get a cake recipe from my daughter but she said it was a secret that she couldn't give out, from a pastry chef she worked with at the Inn in Little Washington. It was fucking great! I wanted to use it in this upcoming challenge too. You all would have loved it, well maybe.

How's that?
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Post June 18, 2014, 07:41:49 AM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

I definitely think if it was a challenge everyone else would be an underdog. It is definitely your niche. I have one I was tossing around because I have seen yours and any concept new to me intrigues me. I always want to see if I can "do that". I didn't even think of giving credit on the recipe. That would be important!
Remember: when people tell you something’s wrong or doesn’t work for them, they are almost always right. When they tell you exactly what they think is wrong and how to fix it, they are almost always wrong. – Neil Gaiman
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Post June 18, 2014, 08:09:28 AM

Re: APHELION FLASH FICTION CONTEST: June '14

Recipes - good one - a recent 'Daily Science Fiction' had an excellent use of this but the main theme was gender role reversal (in expectation, not behaviour). http://dailysciencefiction.com/fantasy/ ... tice-cakes
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