Saturday, September 14, 2013

Mind Games

I wrote “Mind Games” back in 2006 (according to the date on the earliest version I can find on my computer). It was my first Foxe story, an attempt to see if I could transform the action-spy hero I created in my misspent youth (see "Foxe: The origins") into an action-SF hero I could write novels about (See the first two chapters of Prodigal Prince, and more to come).

How well I succeeded is anyone’s guess. I did get some decent criticism on the story in a critique session at Windycon (Jody-Lyn Nye said I write good action scenes) and I tried to work that feedback into subsequent revisions when I submitted them to magazines. Magazines that pretty much ignored them. Not that I’m bitter or anything.

To be honest, though, I can see why. There’s nothing earth-shatteringly original in “Mind Games,” nothing that would stand out in a slush pile of wildly creative stories from 126 other unknowns that came in the same day. But I think the elements still add up to the kind of action-SF short story I was trying to write: interstellar intrigue on a shipboard casino, a devious villain, an innocent to be rescued, and a satisfying amount of violence at the conclusion.

Let me know what you think.

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