Cosmic Convocation, Starry Eyed Press’ first official space opera anthology features a story called Time Stampers by author Asch.
We had a chance to sit down with her to get the scoop on both the story and her processes.
Asch, tell us more about yourself, your life and writing career.
Born with limb deficiencies, I first fell in love with the philosophical sandbox that science fiction offers for ‘spaces between’ reality and perception. As a kid, I watched Star Trek: The Next Generation “The Masterpiece Society” highlight how disability necessitates innovation; thus, I saw how progress requires adversity and drew courage from it. In my lifetime, I’ve mastered many ‘impossible’ tasks by writing my own story, and this has influenced my passion for writing stories—and telling them, as an English teacher, in the classroom.
Tell us more about Time Stampers.
A captain often connects to his ship. Captain Arron Yarrig feels no differently about his time-stamper transport, Terrier X. This, the ship’s, last mission, will be his, as well. A scut-box of ash reveals that it might be another crew member’s, as well. As the crew of Terrier X scramble to time-stream the truth, the personal missions derailing orders remind them all that time rejects stamp.
What was the inspiration behind this story?
I wanted to flip the coin or turn the table, on social constructs by delving into the psyche of Devex Turginsnormal. I imagined the future of technology as offering historical scholars holographic escapism gathered from primary sources collected by time-travelers. When I was a kid watching Star Trek, I liked the episodes in which we got to view a sequence of events from multiple perspectives. For me, this story fulfills the five-year-old Trekkie’s desire to join that universe, so it had to be told from multiple perspectives.
What sci-fi books have you recently been reading and which titles represent your long-time favorites?
I am reading Aliette de Bodard’s Xuya Universe quartet, Pump Six by Paolo Bacigalupi and Clarkesworld Year Twelve (anthology).
I love Dune, Ender’s Game and Foundation. I follow Escape Pod, Strange Horizons, and, of course, Cosmic Roots and Eldritch Shores. The story that stuck out to me last year was “Remembery Day” by Sarah Pinsker, which I read in The Best of Apex.
Tell us more about your writing process.
I love King’s On Writing, Vonnegut’s Pity the Reader and Gaiman’s interviews and tips on writing.
My personal writing process evolves. I used to prepare for an experience with diligent research until, with a head brimming with fact, I would write stream of consciousness. My whims pulled me like the wind coaxing a balloon. Now, I indulge ideas more carefully, letting them show me why they should, like cream, rise to the top. Over weeks or months of proposing details, I sort out which story ideas seem most ready to prepare. When I decide to give a story time to manifest, I start it with a plot in mind. I begin with the scene that appears clearest in my mind. I often start in the middle of the story, bouncing back and forth between the beginning and ending, editing all the while.
Ebook and illustrated paperback available here.