The IWSG Anthology blog will be featuring posts from each of the contributing authors in Dark Matter: Artificial over the next few weeks. We’ve asked them to share a little about how they came up with their stories and preview what’s to come!
Tara Tyler on her short story, “Sentient.”
I love writing sci-fi and fantasy--the possibilities of alternate realities are endless. So when I heard the topic for the IWSG contest, I dove right in! First I researched Dark Matter--it's very elusive and mysterious. I thought I could shape it into anything I wanted, and I even gave it a consciousness: SENTIENT. Then thinking about all the turmoil in the world, with everyone isolated and divided, my story fell right into place. I've jokingly thought several times that this would be the perfect time for an alien invasion! Extraterrestrial life would probably view us as petty and selfish and weak on the surface. But if they took a deeper look, they would see we have many redeeming qualities.
So I made Dark Matter a floating presence--the fabric of the universe that keeps everything in balance. Representative scouts choose opposite human specimens, and Fate plays a part too, creating fun twists and turns--you know how opposites attract! So how will earth measure up? Are we worthy of existence? Or are we throwing the universe off balance?
Sentient Dark Matter representatives Grav and Absi are sent to study a developing species: humans. They will collect evidence to determine whether earthlings pose a threat to the balance of the Universe or not. But when the Dark Matter scouts inhabit the lower life forms, they discover these pitiful creatures are more powerful than they seem. Their very existence could incite galactic chaos or instill harmony. Dark Matter has a big decision to make.
“Grav, tell me again: if humans are so destructive, why aren’t we eliminating this planet?”
To provide a balanced report, Absi was chosen to accompany me on this trek down to Earth’s surface. I can attest opposites do not attract. My profound patience and peaceful demeanor will be challenged on this mission.
“If we destroy Earth, the universe would be sent reeling out of balance for centuries. We are looking for ways to preserve Earth and the stability of this galaxy without direct interference. Though humans can be volatile toward each other, they tend to balance each other out. They also like to explore but are oftentimes too inquisitive for their own good. As they venture into our domain of space and the cosmos, we must confirm their intentions. Purely routine, like every other evolving galaxy we observe.”
“What about Kristol? We destroyed them.”
“They destroyed themselves along with their warring sister planet Elko. Thus, the balance remained unchanged.”
Tara Tyler has had a hand in everything from waitressing to rocket engineering. After moving all over the US, she now writes and teaches math in Ohio with her husband and one boy left in the nest. She has two novel series, Pop Travel (sci-fi detective thrillers) and Beast World (fantasy adventures), plus her UnPrincess novella series where the maidens save themselves. She's a commended blogger, contributed to several anthologies, and to fit in all these projects, she economizes her time, aka the Lazy Housewife--someday she might write a book on that... Make every day an adventure!
Coming on Wednesday, March 31, 2021 . . .
Next up will be Deniz Bevan, who shares her backstory for "One to Another."
Yes, that's exactly what we need now - and alien invasion.
Your story had some funny twists.
I can't wait to read your story, Tara!
thanks, you guys - I love putting a little humor into my stories!
Love the idea of researching Dark Matter. So many story possibilities out there!
I hope balance does not rely on us! Looking forward to the release!
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