ecbatan (ecbatan) wrote,

Summary: Fictitious Force, 2009

Summary: Fictitious Force, 2009

Sadly, here's another magazine done gone. (And it's not the last post I'll make about a dead magazine this year!) Fictitious Force was notable for being tall and thin -- and for being consistently interesting. The one 2009 issue, #6, included 10 short stories (1 a short-short): as ever just under 40,000 words.

My favorite story was Justin Stanchfield's "The Buzz", about a future in which people are even more net-connected than now, and high school kids are obsessed with the online-mediated "buzz" or reputation of everyone. One kid is interested in a new girl, until he realizes her "buzz" is low for silly reasons (she's cute but plump, that sort of thing) ... then he learns that she is part of a movement trying to reject net connection entirely. I also liked a clever short piece by Marshall Payne, "The Rendezvous", in which a retired spy of sorts is approached by his old bosses to try to lure him back for one more mission -- the ending is a sharp nicely turned twist. There was also nice work from Katherine Mankiller and A. C. Wise.

There are some ambiguous bylines -- more than usual -- so in the two cases I was unable to determine the writer's gender I split them, and that gives 5 of 10 stories by women (50%), and 6 of 10 (60%) were SF. (The fairly even splits between SF and Fantasy, and between male and female writers, are entirely consistent with the magazine's history.)
Tags: 2009, magazines, yearly summaries
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