Tag Archives: short stories

Not All Elementalists Control Their Elements

Another random short-story recommendation:

Elementalism is one of the most common forms of magic in fantasy.  Flinging fire, whipping up the waters, hurlling thunderbolts.  Who wouldn’t love to do that?  But, like many other popular forms of magic, elementalism has lost its grip on real magic.  Because, real magic has a price.  And real big magic has a real big price.  Being tired for a few hours just doesn’t cut it.

And along some Helen Keeble and makes the magic magic again.  In Helen Keeble’s world of elemental magic, it’s the elements that are in control, and the humans who are just poor vessels of that power.  Specifically, I’m refering to two short stories in Strange Horizons, entitled “In Ashes” and “In Stone“, where we learn just what price you pay to control nature, and just how cruel the choice of who pays it.

And I guess what I’m saying here is that that’s how true magic works, or should be.


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Why Atsiko Hates Short Stories

Okay, let’s be honest:

Atsiko loves to read short stories.  Mostly spec fic short stories. *pauses for gasps of surprise*  And also other short stories.  *more gasps*

 But one thing about short stories that Atsiko does not like about short stories is writing them.  Because Atsiko is terrible at writing short stories.  They start out nice and short and stiff, and then they get long and squishy and…  well, you get the picture.  Obviously, this is not fun.

(I’m making an analogy about gum here.  I don’t need anyone else’s mind in the gutters, dirtying them up.)

But last night, I had a dream that I could turn wholesale into a perfect short story.  I had my first person character voice down pat.  (Normally, I usck at first person.)  I almost had the whole thing written in my head.  But then I had to go to class.  And when I sat down a few hours later to write, I had a hazy idea of what my story had been about, and not the first clue how to get it down on paper.  My poor brain was half boiled by all the mental cussing.

This happens to me every time.  Every single time.  Or something like it happens, anyway.

And that is why I will probably never finish a short story.  Darn it!  *goes to cry in the corner*


Posted by on September 8, 2010 in atsiko, Writing


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It’s All Just a Draft by Tobias Buckell

I just spent half-an-hour reading through this series of chapter drafts by Tobias Buckell, and I have to say, they’re pretty awesome.  Especially for people writing short stories, this is some must-read material.  There are a few things that some writers might find a bit controversial, but for me, Tobi’s articles squared extremely well with my experience–limited as it may be.

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Posted by on April 6, 2010 in atsiko, Authors, Writing


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