Just like "Alive," these are two stories that I just had a ton of fun writing. Both in the first person, both characters who could safely be accused of being a little heartless.
The first, "All the Stars in My Eyes," is a near-future sci-fi story about a doubler, someone who uses state-of-the-art tech to take the place of celebrities when they have to tap out for a bit. Seems like the need for the actual actor/actress to be on set is diminishing over time, so this is about a time when the need to actually be at their own meet-and-greets and on their own press tours is tenuous.
Here's the synopsis:
She's a doubler. Hired to take the place of imperiled celebrities.
She lives in the spotlight that isn't hers, revels in adoration she never earned. A composite of a failed actress and state-of-the-art disguises, she's lived the celebrity life for so long that she's starting to believe she deserves it.The second story, "In the Land of Dead Dragons," is a LitRPG short story about a woman trying unriddle her brother's lifestyle. In the absence of anything to go on in realspace, she dives into the most popular VR-RPG in the world, The Realm of Avarill, and tries to find anyone who might have encountered her brother in the years that he played the game.
And the synopsis:
Orin the Dragonslayer has vanished from The Realm of Avarill -- the most popular VR-RPG in the world. In his place, Valystra de Fere approaches.
She comes seeking Orin's legacy, tales of his heroics, and the cold trails he left behind. All so that, back in realspace, she might better understand the brother she fell out of touch with so many years ago.I added a series title, because I'd genuinely like to write some more stories using this setting. The one I'm starting to outline probably won't be nearly as silly!
Thanks and enjoy!