Tor.com content by

Vylar Kaftan

Fiction and Excerpts [2]
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Fiction and Excerpts [2]

We’re Both Thinking of Telepathy: ESP in Genre Fiction

Does anyone have the power of telepathy? I sure don’t. But I always wanted it. I spent hours at childhood slumber parties, hoping to guess whether my friend was thinking of a star or a circle. I was definitely not a telepath, sadly, and my ten-year-old dreams were crushed. Heck, I would’ve been happy to be an anti-telepath: able to predict with 100% accuracy what my friend was absolutely not thinking of.

Telepathy, like many elements of science fiction, is wish-fulfillment. It’s fun to read because it’s fun to imagine. As a power, telepathy is pretty darned useful, depending on how it works and whether the user has control of it.

Here’s a few uses of telepathy in fiction.

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Read the First Chapter of Her Silhouette, Drawn in Water

All Bee has ever known is darkness.

She doesn’t remember the crime she committed that landed her in the cold, twisting caverns of the prison planet Colel-Cab with only fellow prisoner Chela for company. Chela says that they’re telepaths and mass-murderers; that they belong here, too dangerous to ever be free. Bee has no reason to doubt her—until she hears the voice of another telepath, one who has answers, and can open her eyes to an entirely different truth.

Vylar Kaftan weaves a dark tale of loss, regret, love, and revenge in the novella, Her Silhouette, Drawn in Water—available May 21st from Tor.com Publishing.

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Chasing Shadows: “FeastWar”

As we debate Internet privacy, revenge porn, the NSA, and Edward Snowden, cameras get smaller, faster, and more numerous. Has Orwell’s Big Brother finally come to pass? Or have we become a global society of thousands of Little Brothers—watching, judging, and reporting on one another?

Noted author and futurist David Brin presents Chasing Shadows, a collection of short stories and essays by other science fiction luminaries—available January 10th from Tor Books. Partnering with the Arthur C. Clarke Center for Human Imagination, Brin and scholar Stephen Potts have compiled works from writers such as Robert J. Sawyer, James Morrow, William Gibson, Damon Knight, Jack McDevitt, and many others to examine the benefits and pitfalls of technologic transparency in all its permutations.

Below, we’re pleased to share James Gunn’s introduction to the collection as well as Vylar Kaftan’s short story, “FeastWar.” Will tech-empowerment bring the ultimate in citizenship?

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