Customer Discussions > Science Fiction forum

Science Fiction, help finding these short stories by description


Sort: Oldest first | Newest first
Showing 1-25 of 35 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Dec 13, 2011 7:13:07 PM PST
I've been trying to track down some stories that are in short story science fiction collections that I read back in the 1980s. These collected works could be from as far back as the 1940s. For the life of me, I can't remember the names or the authors. Can anyone help me identify these stories?

Story one. They've invented teleportation. Only any living thing that goes through it dies. Eventually they find if you are unconscious you live. A boy on a space flight pretends to be unconscious for a interstellar flight. When they arrive, he dies, but is able to say one thing before he does. "It was so long."

Story two. Wars on earth are made obsolete by having an arena where the best soldier from each contry in the world must fight until only one soldier remains. That soldier's country receives spoils from the other losing countries. The soldiers gets immunity from any crime he commits and gets everything he ever wants as a reward. And no, this is not "hunger games". This story was written waaaay before that one. I think before the 1970s.

Story three. Earth men discover a ship that has a crew of plant creatures. The humans get captured by the plant creatures and taken back to their home world. A home world where animals are food to the plants. The plant creatures try to discover the location of Earth, but the last uneaten Earth man blows up the ship and with it the location of Earth.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 13, 2011 8:09:41 PM PST
W. Lybarger says:
The first one is easy The Jaunt by Stephen King.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Jaunt_(short_story)
Skeleton Crew

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 13, 2011 10:42:53 PM PST
Wow! Thank you! That's one down. Two to go. I feel like 1/3 ton weight has lifted. :) Again. Thank you.

Posted on Dec 14, 2011 1:29:09 AM PST
Story 3 is "Proxima Centauri" by Murray Leinster (Astounding Stories/March/1935)
Story summary at:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Proxima_Centauri_(short_story)

Posted on Dec 14, 2011 5:15:43 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 14, 2011 5:21:02 AM PST
Adam Kasanof says:
Story two is, I think, "Survivor" by Walter F. Moudy, and appeared in the May, 1965 issue of "Amazing." It also appeared (among other places) in Science Fictional Olympics (Isaac Asimov's Wonderful Worlds of Science Fiction #2) [Paperback], which Amazon is selling used.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 14, 2011 5:31:22 AM PST
Susan Dewey says:
I have a pre-80s short story I've been looking for. People have evolved and a new generation is sitting in a classroom. Presumably the adults have no new skills and use of the new generation powers is forbidden. One wise-guy kid asks why he should be paying attention to these outmoded ideas since he can -- and then manifests some kind of bright images that eventually turn into a tiger / monster -- something fearsome. Then the teacher says because -- and turns into a massive butterfly and demolishes the monster. Any guesses what this is?

Posted on Dec 14, 2011 8:24:50 AM PST
Thank you W. Lybarger, Gilbert J. Avila, and Adam Kasanof. Wow!!!! Thank you so much. This has been bothering me for over a month. Trying to track down these stories with such a bad memory for syntax was much harder than I ever thought. I was begining to think it impossible. You guys nailed it though. Thank you, thank you, true science fiction fans. I now love this forum.

Posted on Dec 14, 2011 8:27:47 AM PST
Wow, you guys RULE!

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 18, 2011 1:26:32 AM PST
Could you be a bit more specific? Was it a themed anthology? Young adult?
(I hope it isn't R.L. Stine--unless he's a "house name" the man practically poops out books).

Posted on Dec 18, 2011 4:09:23 AM PST
Okay, I'm going a bit nuts. There are two scifi books I read back in the eighties. I was pretty sure that both were by Kate Wilhelm but I can't seem to find them and I don't remember the titles.

Book 1. The earth passes through a cloud of interstellar dust. It turns out this dust has the effect of making water more viscous. This has all sorts of negative consequences (since people are 90% water)

Book 2: Someone has invented an immortality serum. Once you're injected, you get something like the flu. When you recover, you're immortal. The great aspect of this story was the way it worked on the social implications of a world where some people live forever and others do not.

Can anyone help with these?

Thanks!!

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 18, 2011 11:20:09 AM PST
The second one sounds familier, but I'm drawing a blank. If I haven't read it, I now want to. These stories all sound very interesting.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 18, 2011 3:46:00 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 18, 2011 4:11:39 PM PST
Sally, the first one is :"The Year of the Cloud." The second one may be "Welcome, Chaos" or "The Nevermore Affair," but I may be wrong.

Posted on Dec 18, 2011 5:38:52 PM PST
patrick says:
Perhaps you can help me recall the name of a scifi short story or novella that I read in the 80's. It concerned a future flooded earth where all of humanity lived on large ships. The ships were equipped with bronze fishing nets that were used to catch the only food supply they had available. If a ship lost it's nets in a storm, or caught them in an obstruction , then that particular ship was doomed. As a ship could only catch enough to feed its own passengers. Can't recall any more than that.

I believe the story was in a paperback collection of various authors, it may have been the first story in the book, possibly a very thick paperback. I thought it was in a Harlan Ellison's Dangerous Visions but it's not. I read it in the 80's, but it could have been printed at anytime. I seem to have lost that particular book and would like to get another copy.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 18, 2011 8:08:47 PM PST
Tom Rogers says:
It's off a few points from what you've described, but it might be "The Kragen" (Vance) the basis for his novel "The Blue World".

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 18, 2011 8:26:27 PM PST
patrick says:
Looks like an interesting story but no, that's not the one I'm trying to recall.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 18, 2011 9:25:16 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 18, 2011 9:26:27 PM PST
Tom Rogers says:
Might be the short story "Shark Ship" (Kornbluth)--the base scenario is a little different, but a lost net plays a big role in the story.

Posted on Dec 18, 2011 11:36:54 PM PST
This thread is great.
Does anyone know the name of this story?

It is about younger (teenager(s) joining some sort of military service, they are on some type of base on a moon or low gravity body. The cadets or trainees if you will smoked weed in the story. Also i believe in training one or more of the "cadets" died.

Regrettably all I can remember. I only read the first chapter and I would love to finish it (13 years later!)

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 19, 2011 4:36:25 AM PST
Yes! "The Year of the Cloud" sounds right. Thank you!

The title "Welcome, Chaos" sounds familiar - I'll check it.

Those two books (and also "Where Late the Sweet Birds Sang") convinced me that Wilhelm was a brilliant author. Since then, though, I've read a few of her other works and was far less impressed.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 19, 2011 11:06:11 AM PST
patrick says:
Thank you Tom! That is the story! With the title that you provided a quick google search shows that Kornbluth's novelette "Shark Ship" was also known as "Reap the Dark Tide" and was a 1959 Hugo Award runner up. It's the first story in a 1969 anthology edited by Robert Silverberg titled "Dark Stars", and I can tell by the cover art that it is the book I had. Thanks so much!

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 19, 2011 11:21:22 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 19, 2011 11:26:30 AM PST
patrick says:
For Phillip Miller,

"Ender's Game" the novel by Orson Scott Card maybe? It concerns children in a military academy, there is death, low gravity, I don't recall any weed smoking in the story though so it might not be the one you want.

Posted on Dec 19, 2011 11:47:55 AM PST
Susan Dewey says:
The short story I'm looking for may have been in Analog Science Fiction / Science Fact in the 70s or 80s. To recap:
People have evolved and a new generation is sitting in a classroom. Presumably the adults have no new skills and use of the new generation powers is forbidden. One wise-guy kid asks why he should be paying attention to these outmoded ideas since he can -- and then manifests some kind of bright images that eventually turn into a tiger / monster -- something fearsome. Then the teacher says because -- and turns into a massive butterfly and demolishes the monster. Any guesses what this is?

I don't believe this was a YA sort of story, since the message I remember is that we grownups have skills, but choose to learn the older way first.
Susan

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 19, 2011 1:23:18 PM PST
Tom Rogers says:
@Patrick, I am glad I could help.

Posted on Dec 19, 2011 2:40:13 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 19, 2011 2:40:47 PM PST
me FPA says:
I'm glad I clicked in here: Wilhelm's writing sounds interesting to me. It looks harder to get copies of much of her sci-fi; some of those books don't even have Amazon descriptions. However, I scrolled through most of the listings under her name, and I did find one ebook Fear Is A Cold Black: The Early Science Fiction of Kate Wilhelm. I'll start on her work there.

Now if Doris Piserchia's writing would come out on Kindle, I'd be even more thrilled. I also found her writing from someone's recommendation here. I think it was you, Tom?

Good reading, everyone!

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 19, 2011 3:40:44 PM PST
Tom Rogers says:
@me FPA, it was probably someone else, I don't think I've recommended Doris Piserchia on this forum--"Earthchild" is my usual nominee when she comes up. Her stuff's really good, kindo pushing the Ballard and Vance envelope, but it's a little weird for either contemporary tastes or for most SF fans who survived the crash of the New Wave, if she ever gets around to writing any more, she'll probably end up with the New Weird gang. She did a really good job of staying in the SF sweet spot, ie the long novella and short novel range.

Posted on Dec 19, 2011 4:07:50 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 19, 2011 4:09:36 PM PST
me FPA says:
Oh--sorry that it wasn't you! I just can't remember which thread someone mentioned her work in, but I found out about her somewhere in here. I've only read excerpts of her work, and your description sounds accurate.

I didn't know that length range is considered a sweet spot. That's the sci-fi book size I prefer, actually, but it seems like I'm always coming across long-novel lovers. Guess everyone's reading taste is different. I really love short stories too.
‹ Previous 1 2 Next ›
[Add comment]
Add your own message to the discussion
To insert a product link use the format: [[ASIN:ASIN product-title]] (What's this?)
Prompts for sign-in
 


Recent discussions in the Science Fiction forum

 

This discussion

Discussion in:  Science Fiction forum
Participants:  19
Total posts:  35
Initial post:  Dec 13, 2011
Latest post:  Feb 21, 2014

New! Receive e-mail when new posts are made.
Tracked by 7 customers

Search Customer Discussions