ASH: Coherent Super Stories #27 - Secret of the Silver Skull

Scott Eiler seiler at
Mon Apr 11 18:35:52 PDT 2011

Wil Alambre wrote:
> Dave Van Domelen wrote:
>> Author's Notes:
>>       This was written for HCC #19, but when I went to look up the exact
>> wording of the challenge for these end notes, I discovered I'd 
>> forgotten a
>> fairly important part of the title: "WHAT IS THE SECRET OF THE SILVER 
>> MACHINE?"  Yeah, as you may have noticed, there's no machine here, just a
>> silver skull.  I considered reworking the story to make it better fit the
>> challenge, but in the end decided against it.  I'll leave it up to Wil
>> whether to include it in the voting (assuming I don't come up with 
>> another
>> story that better fits the challenge before the deadline).
> If you think about it, you do wrap up with Zugmann making a connection 
> between the dead alien and it's buried ship. So technically we can say 
> it fits... as the secret of the silver skull'S machine. That being said, 
> I wouldn't mind another story. I am enjoying the different 
> interpretations of challenge phrase :P

Indeed.  In my own story, I felt free to make the secret of the machine that it 
*was* a machine - or maybe the power it chose to use at Devil Armageddon time.

I'd have to say, this story was more like an info piece plus a prelude to the 
next story, whatever that may be.  But I liked it.  When I say I'm partial to 
writing dry info stuff myself, it's because I really *do* like to read it.

(signed) Scott Eiler  8{D> -------- ---------

Only their myths concerned peace and contentment, and that in such a
coercive, sullen package it was obvious that the Earth humans resented
the very idea.

- from "Passing" by Elaine Radford, Aboriginal SF, May/June 1987.

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