Tag: numbers quartet

New fiction, offline and online


So, I haven’t posted a lot about this, but Daily SF is running The Numbers Quartet, the series of flashes Nancy Fulda, Stephen Gaskell, Benjamin Rosenbaum and I wrote–basing ourselves on physical and mathematical constants such as pi, infinity, the speed of light… The stories are going up one at a time until March 28th (they’re also available via email to subscribers a week early, and subscribing is free). You can check them out here.

My first two pieces are up, respectively set in Hà Nội (the exponential “e”) and Huế (Boltzmann’s constant “k”). The last story, “The Heartless Light of Stars”, which is based on the speed of light “c” and set in Sài Gòn, will be available March 14th to DSF subscribers (and will be up on March 21st on the DSF website).
“Worlds like a Hundred Thousand Pearls”
“The Princess of the Perfume River”

And you will also be able to find my short story “A Dance of Life and Dust” in Pandemonium: Stories of the Smoke, aka crazy second-person present tense written in the point of view of an AI in a futuristic London. Here‘s the complete TOC, and that of the supplementary chapbook, Fire–it all includes stories by Lavie Tidhar, Kaaron Warren, Adam Roberts, and Harry Markov. This is the one I workshopped on OWW in a bit of a hurry: many thanks to Oliver Buckram, Brent Smith, Larry Pinaire, Hugo Xiong, and Christine Lucas for their input!


At first, you make it easy for yourself. You possess a member of a clade on the outskirts, away from the dark, looming presence of the London Mind. You barely have to stretch yourself: the clade’s small village is halfway to your boundaries, and your ride–a woman named nDevan323–shares genetic material with the last Receptive you’ve colonised. As you slip into her bloodstreams, assimilating nanite after nanite, you taste familiar code, with the slightly acrid aftertaste of decay – the never-ending fight of the immune system against cancerous, decaying cells, the hundred infections dormant in the body, awaiting the smallest of nudges to unfold in dark, grim coronas within muscles and flesh and bone.

Numbers Quartet in Daily Science Fiction


So, now that it’s official…

Back in July, the awesome Stephen Gaskell got Nancy Fulda, Benjamin Rosenbaum and me together, and convinced out to collaborate on The Numbers Quartet. The idea was to use a similar format as The Alphabet Quartet published in Daily Science Fiction, but using numbers instead of letters as prompts: we have stories based on pi, the golden ratio, the speed of light… We wrote twelve of them all in all; and we sold the resulting compendium to Daily Science Fiction, where the pieces will appear, starting in January (one piece every week, 12 in all).

Mine form a loose trilogy of pieces set in Việt Nam’s three great cities (Hà Nội, Huế, Sài Gòn, from North to South, and inspired respectively by Euler’s number e, Boltzmann’s constant k, and the speed of light c). I wrote them all in August, back when we were travelling over the US and having fun at Worldcon; thank God they were flashes… Mostly near-future SF (with a softer edge for one of them). They should be published starting from February: the ordering of stories mean I’m not in the first four pieces, but you can check out Nancy’s, Steve’s and Ben’s pieces starting January 4th.