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9-21-06 | five-hundred years from now (1 Viewer)

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Chris Miller

WF Veterans
I’ve spoken to Hodge about helping with the next LM competition. He’s busy with school, as are a lot of you right now, and pretty much said—you do it. The writers known as eggo and Hawke have agreed to help, and I may solicit one more (non-student) “judge” to round out the field.

So here’s the challenge:

No more than 500 words (not counting the title) set 500 years in the future, i.e. circa 2506. The competition will close Jan. 1, 2507 at which time we’ll see whose was most accurate… Just kidding, but that’s the idea. Really it’ll close Sunday Oct. 15, 2006 and results posted within 7 days. Wax as poetic as you like, but compose and format it as flash fiction.

If you’re concerned with 1st rights or possibly submitting it someday then you can post it in the Writer’s Workshop LM thread.

Of course judges are ineligible.

The future has always held a special fascination for me. I really look forward to seeing what you all come up with.

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Chris Miller

WF Veterans
Hey Hakeem,

Thanks for the offer. I've got my 4th I think now. Two males, two females. But I'll absolutely keep you in mind for the next one (if I'm involved.)

Really it’ll close Sunday Oct. 15, 2006 and results posted within 7 days.

Maybe you'll enter something though?
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Ilan Bouchard

Personally I don't think one can have too many judges. Indeed, the more judges the more accurate the scores and the more critiques one gets. I remember the first LMs had almost a dozen judges.

That said, I am available to judge, either this one or the next.

Chris Miller

WF Veterans
Hey Ilan,

I don’t want to get into a situation where there’re more judges than entries on this one. Plus it might become more of an administrative headache. I’m not sure 100 judges would be any “fairer” than 1. I guess it’d all depend on the judges or judge. This is a fun competition and, like even serious competitions, highly susceptible to judging bias. Of course we'll strive to be as objective as possible and maybe even confer, but in the end it’s pretty much a crapshoot.

But I see your point: the more judges, the more comments each piece gets, theoretically. Maybe try the next one w/ letting anyone who wants to, judge, as in any non-entrant who’s willing to seriously comment and score every entry, have their scores applied. I’ve got the 4 judges now for this one:

Chris Miller

I know each of them e-personally and that we comprise a pretty mature (not {necessarily} to be confused with “old”) and diverse group of writers and critics.

So I hope you’ll enter something, and judge the next one.


Senior Member
The Flight
We had hard times, could not make pay,
prospecting out Capella way
But then we found, from radar blip,
an ancient race’s un-Real ship

It took hard work for us to learn
to make it go and how to turn.
When in command of what we saw
we headed inwards to the Core

It’s crowded there and not much fun
dodging stars on pinball run
We found a hole, as black as sin
before we knew, it pulled us in

We stretched right out, a mile long
accretion disk sang fatal song
Spiralled in on tangent dive
we came back out, but not alive

Event horizon changed our gears
and sent us back ten thousand years
We had to dance the spacelane fling,
to strings vibration we did sing

Lack of care had to our cost
spun us round and we were lost
But then we found the un-Real Drive
ventured where fantastic thrives

Time-span plunge through M-Brane depths
led us to our quantum deaths
We found charmed quarks adorable
which made our lives more probable

Finally we’d had enough
un-Real space is Real-ly tough
We thought to set our course for home
though alien spaces we did roam

When back amongst the Real once more
we spectro’d large stars by the score
Arcturus then did point the way
to where in space our home place lay

Rejecting un-Real phantom drive
increased our chance to stay alive
Used hyper speed, as quick as think
then hyper drive went on the blink

We cruised in from Rigel’s locale,
on fusion drive and solar sail
Our hyper drive was finally
fixed in un-Reality

With Beta Lyrae floating by
a fancy orbit we did try
Dodging neutrons, not much fun
ship tried to fly, up its’ own bum

We hit a cloud, at light times five
sudden stop, did we arrive?
Hard to tell, it came to pass
when last thing through your mind’s your arse

Dog Star bright, huge ball of fire
saw dragons there, don’t call me liar
Photonic flames, we flew in haste
swallowed whole, we came out waste

Barnard’s Star we thought to ride
from heavy protons we can’t hide
They strip away the flesh from bone
a high-charge diet, second to none

At last we came across Old Sol
welcome, warm, gravitic hole
Things had changed since last we saw
peace now reigned, there was no war

No pollution, no-one died
no politician ever lied
Prices now were much more real
no-one killed and none would steal

A mystery it was to see
it didn’t make much sense to me
But things aren’t always what they seem
I stretch, I yawn; oh what a dream!

Hope it's as much fun to read as it was to write...

Chris Miller

WF Veterans
Wax as poetic as you like, but compose and format it as flash fiction.

I rambled so much in the "rules" you probably missed the above. I was hoping to avoid having to compare apples to oranges. Fine to leave it as is here, but not quite sure it's eligible. You're welcome to re-format or submit another.

Interesting poem. Cool vernacular.


Senior Member
Flash fiction can't have poetic structure? I thought that was what the 'wax poetic' meant... Ah well...

Bugger! *grins*

EDIT: I will leave it in just in case you change your mind. Please let me know if it is definitely out of the running & I will write something in prose
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And anyone can enter this?

I am sure that I can write 500 words of some sort.

Or is there some kind of requirement of being a member for so long/having a certain number of posts?


Okay then. Here is my entry. I have only been working on it since last night when I first saw it and I hope it is okay...

Bluemen (486 words)

Do I dare? Indeed I do. I dare write this.

Is this what it means to feel? Indeed it is.

I didn’t take my pill. In fact, I threw the entire bottle out of the window this morning. That probably wasn’t the best idea. I’m sure that the Bluemen will find it soon. It will only be a matter of time until they’re here.

Until then, though, I am alive. Until then, I can see everything in its vibrant glory, the way that oh-so-ancient figure God intended it to be. I think I’m the only one that knows about “God” anymore. I have a “Bible” hidden under my bed.

I’m sure the Bluemen will find that as well.

If I’m already condemned, there’s no harm in refusing to conceal my evidence.

I’ve read a lot of books, most of them stolen from the underground cities.

(No one’s supposed to know about the whole world underground, underneath the cool gray ground that they tell us is natural. It’s just a case of finding the seams and pulling, ever so gently. There is a whole world down there. The world that existed before, the world that existed when men truly ruled themselves and the planet. I’m telling you know that they exist! They exist!)

They say that there used to be these silly things called “trials” where everyone would get up and shout and eventually a “judge” would say that the criminal was either condemned or “innocent”.

But I’m not supposed to know about that. The Bluemen wouldn’t like that at all.

I sit here. They will be here soon.

I breathe. The air has never tasted so good as it fills my lungs.

She had stopped taking the pills weeks before. She had been careful.

But, as always, the Bluemen had caught her. They disappeared her within a day.

The Bluemen are very efficient controllers.

This, I do all of this, for her. For what she believed in. For what she lived for. And what she died for.

I do this for the freedom of man! To no longer be subjected to “slavery” from the Bluemen!

They claim that they were here first, and that us, a non-sentient species, was raised to sentience through their benevolence.

I know the truth. They are not of this world.

I am going to seal this missive and leave it outside, in the bushes. Too likely, the Bluemen will find it.

But if you, reader, find it, know the truth!

You are a man. This is your planet.

Throw away your pills, they dull your senses. Visit the underground world. There are freemen there. Men who have never tasted the slavery of the Bluemen. Let them teach you. Read their books. Understand who you are.

And then rise up, rise up, and take up the mantle of humanity!

True Men we once were, and men we shall one day be again!

Chris Miller

WF Veterans
Selorian would like to keep the LM Entries thread separate from the other Workshop threads. He's placed a sticky thread for it in the Workshop. Would everyone who's posted over there be so kind as to copy your entry into this topmost thread. Any questions, PM or email me. Thanks.


Senior Member
Random obeservation, I got a comment that my story was another bleak future. I wonder if anybody thinks it would be worth writing about the future if it wasn't to warn against mistakes we are making now. I guess it would just make it a work of fantasy. I welcome any other musings...

...or not
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