Jack Vance, sorted by year written
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From Wikipedia: “The Houses of Iszm is a science fiction novella by Jack Vance, which appeared in Startling Stories magazine in 1954. It was reissued in book form in 1964 as part of an Ace Double novel, together with Vance’s Son of the Tree . The story published in Startling Stories is about 22,000 words while the version that appears in the Ace Double still less than novel length at about 30,000 words. The Houses of Iszm was re-published as a stand-alone volume in 1974 by Mayflower. ” (more on Wikipedia)
Republished by Spatterlight in 2012.
A mystery story, set on a planet with marine life.
Fletcher tried to recall the line-up of barges along the dock. If Mahlberg, the barge-tender, had been busy with repairs, Raight might well have gone out himself. Fletcher drew himself a cup of coffee. “That’s where he must be.” He sat down. “It’s not like Raight to put in free overtime.”
Ahead shone the Bio-Minerals mast-head light, climbing into the sky as the barge approached. Fletcher saw the black shapes of men outlined against the glow. The entire crew was waiting for him: the two operators, Agostino and Murphy, Mahlberg the barge-tender, Damon the biochemist, Dave Jones the steward, Manners the technician, Hans Heinz the engineer.
Republished in Chateau d’If and Other Stories, Spatterlight 2012.
Luke often daydreamed of a more sumptuous life: AAA nutrition, a suite of rooms for his exclusive use, Special Coupons by the bale, Class 7 Erotic Processing, or even Class 6, or 5: despite Luke’s contempt for the High Echelon he had no quarrel with High Echelon perquisites. And always as a bitter coda to the daydreams came the conviction that he might have enjoyed these good things in all reality. He had watched his fellows jockeying; he knew all the tricks and techniques: the beavering, the gregarization, the smutting, knuckling and subuculation…
Republished in The Moon Moth and Other Stories, Spatterlight, 2012