The Bargain

Earlier in August this year, I got an email from the good folks at Southern Star Publications, which published the winners of the contest held by Creative Writing Institute last year, in which I won third place.

They asked if I’d be interested to send in a story on the theme sentence for this year’s contest – “I got more than I bargained for.”

I sent in my story and am proud to be included in Creative Writing Institute’s third annual anthology – BARGAIN!

Written by CWI short story contest winners, finalists, judges, staff and invited best-selling authors, genres include general fiction, humor, fantasy, romance, dystopian, horror and sci-fi.

Bargain ebook cover 2015.jpg

Grab a bargain! Only $1.99! Available on Amazon. Do check it out and tell me what you think.

That’s all I have for this year. Hope to see you next year in a brand new 2016 with the year in review and lessons learnt (there were lots of those!).

 

 

Dear Robot

Kelly Ann Jacobson’s anthology of epistolary science fiction called the Dear Robot Anthology is out! She is organizing a blog tour, and today my post is a part of that.

The collection contains my story The Wrath of Sephilemea, which is written in the form of psychiatric case notes by a resident shrink-in-training who is brought in to help treat a robot that has unfortunately been afflicted with sarcasm.

The trigger for the story came to me as I stood in a long queue at the payment counter of a shopping mall. I remember my train of thoughts, which strayed to how boring the process of billing for your purchases was, especially considering that the activity prior to this, i.e. the actual shopping, was extremely pleasurable. I was thinking about how in the future we could all hire individual robots who would stand in queue for us and do our billing so that we didn’t have to do this tedious monotonous job that held no discernible reward other than getting to lug home our purchases. But then I thought, this delegation of work to the robot would work only provided the robot really did not have any semblance of emotions. If it did, it too might lose patience and throw in the towel well before the items were purchased and return home to its owner empty-handed.

On the strength of this I built my story around this pivotal incident, which is only the starting point. Though I have penned science fiction and fantasy stories, I had never written about robots before this, let alone writing about a sarcastic robot that has cut all ties to the three laws that bind it.

I had a great time writing this story, mainly because of the humor quotient in it. I am grateful to Kelly for working with me on it and taking me through the necessary editorial changes. It was a great learning experience and now I feel better prepared to tackle many more such science fiction stories swirling in my mind.

Do check out the other posts on the blog tour:

Monday 

Marlena Chertock

Kate Lechler

 

Tuesday 

Jacquelyn Bengfort

Diana Smith Bolton

 

Wednesday 

Gargi Mehra (That’s me!)

 

Thursday

Juliana Rew

 

Friday

Terri Bruce

Christina Keller

 

Giveaway: Five commenters will be selected from all of those who comment on any of the blogs during the five days of the week, including Kelly’s post about the blog hop, and they will win a free copy of the book (Only US Addresses please). This runs from 9:00 A.M. Monday morning to Friday at midnight. Please include your email address as, for example, name (at) gmail dot com, in your comment.

The book’s hashtag is #DearRobot.

Additionally, there is also a Goodreads giveaway and you can win additional books there!

Do check out the book and leave a comment for a chance to win!