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Norman Spinrad’s QUARANTINE

Masses and masses of stuff to catch up on today, so I’m going to forgo the usual big rambly post until later, as I clear through my inbox.

Norman Spinrad.  Yes.  His BUG JACK BARRON was a big influence on TRANSMETROPOLITAN. Fantastic writer.  His work is big, muscular, aggressively inventive and fiercely intolerant of bullshit.  I got this in email from him while I was on the road:

   QUARANTINE–an experiment in epublication

  Norman Spinrad, who has published over sixty works of short fiction, many of them widely anthologized, in everything from Playboy to New Worlds to Liberation to Isaac Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine, has put his latest, QUARANTINE, directly on sale as an original “mini-ebook” on Amazon and Barnes & Noble for the mini-price of $3.00.

“Too hot for any conventional magazine to handle, not that it surprises me,” the author explains, “which makes it an ideal guinea pig for this epub experiment.”

QUARANTINE is the novelette-length story of a terrorist attack on New York using a genetically engineered virus that spreads ambiently and gives the entire population of Manhattan Island, tourists and all, uncontrollable diarrhea.  Nor is this surrealism or satire, and the biotech is all too plausible.

Certain to gross out, disgust, and/or outrage a mass audience, but perhaps just the sort of thing that arouses pleasure for the very same reason in a certain niche readership.

The question this experiment seeks to answer is how many readers is that?  If this can work for something like QUARANTINE, it can work for all sorts of fiction by all sorts if writers, and if it does, the short story could teleport itself from condition terminal into an unexpected golden age.

To learn more go to NORMAN SPINRAD AT LARGE:


QUARANBTINE at Barnes & Noble:  At Barnes & Noble

Published in researchmaterial