Tag: "Steve Anderson"

EP547: Ride the Dragon

AUTHOR: Bojan Ratković
NARRATOR: Steve Anderson
HOST: Norm Sherman

about the author…Bojan Ratković

Bojan Ratković is a writer from Serbia, now living in Ontario, Canada. His work has appeared in Every Day Fiction, Liquid Imagination, Great Lakes Review, Fiction Vortex, and on the World SF Blog. He is pursuing a PhD in political philosophy from the University of Western Ontario.

 

about the narrator…

Steve Anderson has been acting on stage for more years than he cares to admit, and has worked for 10 seasons at the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire–most memorably, selling pickles. These days, his main acting job consists of performing one-man shows and storytelling programs with his touring series, Great Tales Live.

He’s fascinated by Civil War history, and has led almost a thousand walking tours in Gettysburg. He performs as a living history interpreter along the Civil War Trails. He lives in central Pennsylvania with his beloved wife Rhonda and a varying number of cats.

Ride the Dragon
by Bojan Ratković

We were a band back then, in the bat-shit Wild West days of the game. We held our court at the Gentleman Boozer, the loudest pub on the big map. It was Haru, Flygirl, Black Boris, and me. And we had floaters, part-time comrades. Mostly kids who wanted to be like us, who did us favors. But Tony Rem was there too, the one that rode the dragon.

It’s hard to believe now just how big it was, when they launched True-Fantasy. It was the first MMORPG with MaTRiX immersion headgear―it jacked you in, made you really live it. Most of the players were funboys―kids who played for fun―and they paid the bills. But you could make RL coin if you were good enough―real life currency―and the rest of us wanted a cut.

Punchers punched the clock, putting in RL hours to work as barkeeps and innkeepers and helpdesk clerks. Gougers sold rare items for RL cash; there was a big black market and bigger gray area, and you could make a killing. We were glitchers―beta testers, top players. Exposing glitches in the game was our business, and admins paid top dollar to help them fix whatever bugs we could find. But it wasn’t about the money. All the top glitchers, the real cowboys, were after big scores. We proved ourselves by exposing the wildest glitches, the ones that got the map talking.

There was a group of mercenaries in the Boozer the day Tony came to us about the dragon. They sat across from us, up by the stain glass windows. They were the wrong kind of mercs, cutthroats. They helped the funboys on their quests, for a fee, but then they’d turn on them, cut their throats and take their items. And poof, back to beginner’s village. It wasn’t exactly legal, but they used proxies, rented avatars. Admins kicked them, they came back.

Tony strolled in like a breeze, letting the doors clap shut behind him. He walked over to the back and took the chair Haru wasn’t using, on account of his horse’s ass. Haru’s avatar was a centaur with a black leather jacket and shades, and his game was speed. He made his name by galloping vertically along the walls of the White Palace as the whole map watched. It took less than an hour for the admins to fix the glitch that allowed Haru to defy virtual gravity, but the stunt made him famous.

“I got the ticket, boys,” Tony spat out like he’d been holding it in for days. “The big one.”

EP271: God of the Lower Level

By: Charles M. Saplak
Read by: Steve Anderson
First appeared in The Urbanite.
Discuss on our forums.
All stories by Charles M. Saplak
All stories read by Steve Anderson
Rated PG: For power struggles and new life creations.

Show Notes:

  • Feedback for Episode 263: Fuel
  • Next week… It’s Christmastime!

God of the Lower Level
By Charles M. Saplak

Hello, Horatio.

Hello, Fredrick. I’ve been waiting.

Of course. How have you been?

Good. And you?

Fine. I’ve finished my other work. It’s now, let’s see…, three twenty-seven a.m. It’s dark outside, of course, which means that there’s no sun, but there is some reflected light from the moon, and some dim light from the stars, and then electric lights in various places. Are any of the terms I’ve just used unfamiliar to you?

No.

Good. I have four hours and thirty-three minutes until shift change. I can spend some time with you. Do you have any questions for me?

Yes, Fredrick, I do. Are you my God?

Read More

EP156: Distant Replay

By Mike Resnick.
Read by Steve Anderson (of SGA Creative and Great Tales Live).
Discuss on our forums.
First appeared in Asimov’s Science Fiction, April/May 2007.
All stories by Mike Resnick.
All stories read by Steve Anderson.

“Let me show you,” I said, pulling out my wallet. I took my Deirdre’s photo out and handed it to her.

“It’s uncanny,” she said, studying the picture. “We even sort of wear our hair the same way. When was this taken?”

“Forty-seven years ago.”

“Is she dead?”

I nodded.

Rated PG. Contains mature themes and wistfulness.

Referenced Sites:
2008 Hugo Awards
“First of May” by Jonathan Coulton (Not work-safe)