Nature Future Conditional

The story behind the story: Home Cygnus

It’s very rare for there to be something that looks like a sequel in Futures, but this week, Home Cygnus by S. R. Algernon is just that. Regular readers will be familiar with his work — and if you’re not you can find out more at his website or by following him on Twitter (plus, his other Futures stories are listed at the end of this post). Here, he talks a little more about the origins of his latest tale — as ever, it pays to read the story first.

Writing Home Cygnus

This story is a sequel to In Cygnus and in Hell, and part of a series that is a prelude to novels set on the Cygnus colony. In Cygnus and in Hell left off with Dorothy making the decision to accept a slot on the Xi Zhong ship bound for Cygnus, so the next step would be to decide what to bring with her and what to leave behind, material possessions, emotions and memories. The things that she carries with her would be one part of the foundation of an entire civilization, as well as a source of comfort to her in the journey ahead. In writing the story, it occurred to me that the best things to carry on a journey are the tools that help us create new memories and build new connections, while also bringing the old ones to life. A conversation with Dorothy’s great-grandfather could be more significant than a cargo hold full of mementos.

Home Cygnus is part of a continuing series that will chronicle milestones and turning points in Dorothy’s life as she travels to 16 Cygni and perhaps beyond. The Cygnus colony will continue for centuries afterwards, but that is another story…

Other Futures stories by S. R. Algernon

A time for peace | Planetary defences | Cargo cult | A pocket full of phlogiston | The chains of plenty | Asymmetrical warfare | In a new light | One slow step for man | Genius loci | Legacy admissions | In Cygnus and in Hell | The palimpsest planet | e-PLURIBUS

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