I didn’t do very well with my serial web fiction Honor&Truth, but now that I’ve decided to begin again with the tale, I know what mistakes I’ve made. That said, there are some pretty awesome web serials out there and I thought I’d take the time to tell you about the ones I most admire.
When her parents died in a global pandemic, seventeen-year-old Cassie Thompson thought her biggest problem was finding her next meal. But “Telo” is a virally-transmitted genetic disease that targets adults, and no one is immune. Surviving to adulthood isn’t looking very good as her city succumbs to food shortages, sanitation problems, and gang violence. When Cassie accepts an invitation to join a group of young people living in a luxury hotel, she thinks her most immediate troubles are over. Her new tribe appears committed to alliance-building, order, and civility. She soon finds, however, that her new friends have dark secrets and the boy she is falling in love with might be the most dangerous of them all.
2. Caught Somewhere In Time by David Schick – I started reading CSiT over a year ago and unfortunately never finished (something I intend to do soon), but that is certainly not an indication of how incredibly awesome this story is. This glossy professional tale combines cool hard science, space, and aliens. It is so very worth the read.
In the twenty-third century, humanity will live in colonies on many different worlds, all of them still within this Solar system. We will not be part of any league of alien cultures living peacefully among the stars, because even though we can move around the solar system in a matter of hours or days, the next nearest star is not close enough to reach in a human’s lifetime, or even a hundred generations. We are caught somewhere in space, unable to leave this part of the galaxy, and no one ever really comes here for a visit.
The recent discovery of our ability to move through time presents alternate ideas on how to reach alien cultures. The prevailing idea is that we could feasibly go back in time and meet any extraterrestrial culture that might have previously visited us, maybe at a time in our history when we were simply not evolved enough to understand the implications of such a meeting. The most likely candidate is the alleged crash of an alien ship outside of Roswell, New Mexico in 1947.
Caught Somewhere in Time follows a team of humans as they embark on a journey to encounter alien life in our own past, while discovering the seeds of a project called The Children of Time.
3. Dark Roads by Lazlo Azavaar – I read this story to completion in a short period of time. I loved the swift pace and this story is about as unpredictable as they come.
Two runaways, their psycho dad, and an unseen enemy. No longer able to withstand his abuse any longer, Callie Longstreet, in a fit of anger, takes a frying pan to the back of her father’s head and knocks him out cold. Now, she and her older brother Michael must ride the dark roads, pursued by nightmares, their psychotic father, and an unseen enemy who watches their every move.
There is a sequel called The War of the Ma’jai. Lazlo Azavaar says it’s stalled. Perhaps if you went over to the site and made some noise you’d prompt him to get a move on…
4. Starwalker by Melanie Edmonds – Like CSiT, Starwalker is one of those ubber slick and professional looking serial blogs. The writing is just as terrific. I found Starwalker around the same time I started my blog as well and was unable to finish it. Again, the fact that I didn’t finish reading is absolutely no indication of how wonderfully smart and tightly written this piece of serial fiction is. It is simply golden and is on my list to go back and complete.
The Starwalker is a starship with an experimental star-stepping drive. Designed to use the gravity wells of stars to fold space, she can travel between star systems faster than FTL. That is, if they can get it to work.
She is run by a sophisticated AI who doesn’t always follow her programming. She has only just been born, and she has a lot to figure out. She is often torn between the needs of the crew and the demands of the scientists responsible for running the tests on the new drive. There are politics surrounding this new drive of hers that she has to get a grip on before they get a grip on her.
Most of all, she needs to track down and explain the glitches in her software before someone notices and wipes her memory drives. What she doesn’t know is that it wouldn’t be the first time.
5. The Apocalypse Blog – also by Melanie Edmonds – The end of the world, zombies, and a girl who blogs about it…nuf said. Zombies are always a good addition, or a bad one, depending on the situation you’re in.
On 24 December 2008, a bomb was detonated over Faith’s home city and her world ended. This blog is the chronicle of her struggle to survive and make sense of the broken remains left behind by the bomb, told in real-time.
She must battle through acid rain, sickness, and the descent of her own society. Then, the dead start shambling. With a small group of like-minded survivors, Faith has to find a way to live without losing all sight of who she is in a world ready to devour her.
(All descriptions come from author websites or other places they are visible.)