chuckt wrote:There was one in Vol. 30. I didn't do a big search so I'm sure there are more. "The Pushbike Legion." (Pushbike = bicycle. Silly Brits). About a group of boys and their bikes who ride around wearing bits of junk they imagine is armor. They live in an oasis in the middle of a post-apocalytic earth. The main character is wry and sassy. So, not knee-slapping humor. It's great story. Here's a short snippet:
His mother had been furious. "Your shoes are ruined," she had cried. "We're not made of leather, you know."
"Yes, we are," he'd said, his chin thrust out belligerently as her hand cracked into the side of his head. His ear smarted for days after.
I notice the author gets away with exclamatory dialog tags, and blatant adjectives, but the world is super cool and he can definitely wordsmith. So maybe this is the type of humor that works in the contest?
Not to counter Chuck, but here's my counter to Chuck.
While there were a few funny spots in "The Pushbike Legion," I would never classify that story as a humor piece. Humor stories have funny at their core. Often, the entire story leads to the funny punch line, just how a joke works. There is often a nod or wink at the opening, saying, "You all know I'm joking here, right?" Think of Pratchett. From the moment you begin to read, he tells you this is a funny world, get ready for a funny story. I read a lot of Pratchett. I'm reading Lords and Ladies
again right now. And here, on top of my TBR box, is Guards! Guards!
Note the first page:
"This is where the dragons went....And although the space they occupy isn't like normal space, nevertheless they are packed in tightly....They could put you in mind of a can of sardines, if you thought sardines were huge and scaly and proud and arrogant."
See what he does? He identifies his genre right up front, and serves you a huge scoop of funny with extra sprinkles. It's like a jester jumping up and down, bells on his cap ringing merrily as he picks up a lute. "Hey, there, lords and ladies!" he says in a squeaky voice. "I'm going to sing you a serious song about star-crossed lovers, about death and woe!" You chuckle even before he plucks that first string, because presentation tells you this is going to be nothing of the sort.
That said, "The Pushbike Legion" is excellent, one of my favorite WotF stories, and I believe it was a published finalist. You have good taste, Chuck!
All the beast,