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EP007: The Trouble With Death Traps

By Marjorie James.
Read by Stephen Eley.
All stories by Marjorie James.
All stories read by Stephen Eley.

A razor-sharp blade shot out of the wall and whipped in front of the teen’s face. Xnab hauled him back and spun him around.

“First thing you have to learn in this business: never kick anything. Got that?”

“Yes sir. Sorry sir.”

“Good.”

“Sir?”

“Yes?”

“What’s the second thing?”

Rated PG. Contains no sexual content or strong language. Does contain whirling blades of death.

Comments (12)

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  1. JesseWillis says:

    Nice editorial – it is an interesting movement. Hopefully it will cash out to providing a larger portion of harder SF than we have at present. While I have great sympathy for the Mundane SF movement I wouldnt sign on to the manifesto just yet. I’m much in favour of making more SF harder, and I can see the list of “don’ts” as helpful to that end, but it would rule out some very GOOD old SF that uses some of these “don’ts”. But if I can only sign on to one manifesto I’d make it the Steve Eley manifesto. Long live GOOD SF! Long live HARD SF! And long live ESCAPE POD!

  2. al saiz says:

    Give me magic,aliens, time travel and unlimited possibilities….the key is
    “Fiction”, that word is the anti-manifesto…I echo the sentiments of Jesse above….And long live Escape Pod.

  3. Michelle Crane says:

    I loved this story so much that I tried to google the author; however, all the links (in Google and Clusty) kept coming back to the podcast. Would it be possible for you to add in a link for the author’s web page (if it exists) to the descriptions? Thanks!

  4. SFEley says:

    Hi Michelle,

    Unfortunately, I didn’t get a Web site URL for Marjorie. If anyone wants to contact her, however, she did give me an e-mail address to share.

  5. Coyote says:

    Leave the manifesto folks to their own ramblings. The lack of a decent audience should catch their attention, more than anything we say.

    Excellent story! Wonderful read! This is quality work.

  6. Mike S says:

    I listened to this story today, my first podcast . . . and I thought it was terrific. A great story, well written — Pratchett would have been happy to write Trouble With Death Traps — and well read by Mr Eley. As I type this I’m downloading others to make next Monday at work go quicker.

    As for mundane SF, who needs it? Tell me it’s a joke. It’s a joke, right? Sheesh.

  7. Simon says:

    One of the better stories.

  8. Simon says:

    One of the better stories.

  9. Zach says:

    I listened to this again, today. As far as I’m concerned, the manifesto contradicts Clarke’s third law: “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.” If people in the Renaissance were given a story about modern transportation, either by road, rail, or (shudder) by air, they’d think it was impossible. These manifesto guys have done nothing else but limit their own work. Sometimes that produces better work, but making it a movement strikes me as wrong.

  10. [...] By Marjorie James. Read by Stephen Eley. Original podcast: June 23, 2005. [...]

  11. scatterbrain says:

    Loved the story, dislike mundane SF(the genre not the talk).

  12. [...] Editor’s note:  this is a sequel to EP007.  Listen to it here. [...]