Aphelion Issue 295, Volume 28
June 2024 --
Long Fiction and Serials
Short Stories
Flash Fiction
Submission Guidelines
Contact Us
Flash Writing Challenge
Dan's Promo Page

Aphelion Editorial 037

July 2000

The Senior Editor's usual drivel about whatever...

by Dan L. Hollifield

Hello and welcome!

What's the burning issue this month? Nothing big, really. I was researching some details for a story and encountered some curious coincidences about Mars and the missions launched to explore it. It seems that everyone who sends probes to Mars suffers higher than average losses of contact. No matter who sends 'em up, they crash, they spin off into space- crippled, they just outright vanish with no hint of why. When this series of facts ran into my interest in the Face on Mars and my love of conspiracy tales... Well, the three of them just set up light housekeeping in the back of my mind for a while. After percolating in my subconscious for a while, their synthesis popped up last week during a "zen" moment at work- when I was simply bored out of my mind and let my imagination roam.

Wouldn't it make a gripping story to suppose that the two recent US Mars probe losses were actually nukes sent by some covert group within the US government to blast the Face on Mars into rubble before public outcry force them to spend money on manned missions? You could develop the story in any of several directions and still wind up with a good tale. Oppressive government, secret societies, covert agencies, the military-industrial complex against the everyman... Wherever your own imagination roams. I was able to use this in one direction on the story I was researching and brought in unique details during the outlining of it.

So what am I getting at? I think that a writer needs to have a lot of interests and input in order to obtain the elements of a rousing good yarn. Be eclectic in your reading, sample lots of different viewpoints, and wonder "what if?" a lot. Listen to the back of your mind from time to time.

By the by, I offer the previous story idea free gratis to any or all, though I might want to try my hand at it myself at a later date. I'm too busy with my real life to take the time necessary to think paranoid enough to write conspiracy stories right now. I've got half a novel that I'd like to finish- 'specially since it’s a Mare Inebrium story that's turning out to have some important loose ends of the mythos tied up within it. Plus I'm working lots of overtime at the factory still, because I spent too much money on vacation. Well, that's enough blather from me for now.

Thanks for your time.



2000 Dan L. Hollifield

Comment on this story in the Aphelion Forum

Return to Aphelion's Index page.