Underread and Underrated, September 2021

Featured SCP!

SCP-5325: The Last Train Home

All subjects described a spray-painted neon red heart on the door of the carriage. It is currently unknown if the spray-painted heart is a memetic trigger.

Featured Tale/Format!

On The West-Bound Passenger Train

Two bodies, buried under earth, somewhere in - where had they been? Utah? Arizona? She supposed it didn't matter. Two bodies, and the worms, and the train striking on as trains do.

Topic and Prompt of the month!

Last Month's Pieces and Topic

MEMORANDUM 083, Prelude, and stories set in West and Central Asia

Topic + pick of this month!

Song of Sophia, Vast Suspended Ruins, and Articles That Jump Around Time

The vast majority of articles on the site trend toward the modern era. You can find ones that dip back into the 20th century, usually from the 40s onward, and occasionally you'll find some that do the opposite and leap ahead into the not-so-distant feature. These allow writers to explore period pieces and sci-fi, respectively, but most articles still remain ambigiously set, with the events of the anomaly occurring in the 21st century.

Of course, some articles buck this trend. While their framings may be modern, the events of the anomaly may have occurred centuries or sometimes even millenia ago. This is fun for history articles, because it allows writers to explore time periods so vastly different from now that a lot of our favorite narrative tricks won't make sense - you can't exactly find interview records from the 13th century, can you? It encourages us to get creative in what we do.

On the opposite end you have articles that jump into the distant future, presenting a view of the Foundation ranging from cyberpunk to scifi to obsolete. We have some canons dedicated to this idea, but many articles don't ascribe themselves to those canons; they simply establish the article's canon as the Foundation being an interstellar organization in the grim, dark future - or occasionally a happy future!

As authors, we should feel freer to jump around in time periods than the traditionally accepted give-or-take of 50 or 60 years. - someone has to push the envelope, right?

This month's challenge:

  • For writers: Write an article set in ancient history or the far future. What that means in terms of years is up to you.
  • For artists: Draw what you imagine Foundation personnel would have looked like in either of the above time periods.
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