The 50th anniversary of Apollo landing on the moon approaches, which is a great and wonderful thing, because it means a plethora of all things Luna, and hopefully there will be some gold among the dross.
Coincidentally, I have just finished the final draft of my third story about the Apollo mission, and launched it on a Saturn V out into the universe, hoping it will find a home.
The first, “This Neil Armstrong is not dead”, appeared in Cafe Irreal, an appropriate home for it. It posited a sort of Armstrong in the multiverse, including a floating Neil Armstrong on an EVA in my bedroom. His wife remains silent throughout, though there is a scene where he samples the dust of her, and seals it away for analysis on Apollo’s return to Earth. Of her silence, Armstrong thinks it “was for the best, he could not understand a word she said. The divergence was too great. He was amazed that she persisted in her existence, so many worlds away”.
The second, “Avoiding Gagarin”, appears in Aurealis magazine. This story writing thing is easy, thinks I, Aurealis accepts the first ever story I submit to it. Yeah well, they haven’t accepted anything since, so I’ve come down a peg or two. Each of the Apollo astronauts had a speaking role in this one, with a perhaps unrecognisable Buzz “the Boss” Aldrin having the biggest part. Michael Collins has a suitably humble walk on – actually, walk about – role. This story is part of shared world with two of my other stories, “The Big Reveal” and “Store in a dark place”. I have notes for others which I may get back to some day, but at the moment I am more interested in exploring some other worlds.
The third story attempts to make up for Mrs Armstrong’s silence in the first, with her having the main role. Its weird, it bears no relationship to any possible reality, and it is full of the 60s, with brief appearances from many famous folk, moon and otherwise, and many liberties taken with time and space. (There is even an uncredited cameo appearance from Sergeant Burns, my one-armed policeman of “The Penultimate Report of Sergeant Burns”, and who has appearance in KAIJU!, which appears on 1 July in Fleas on the Dog magazine.) I don’t know if anyone will buy it, but I sure had a lot of fun writing it.
See: Published stories