It came from Jonathan Laidlow

It came from Jonathan Laidlow

Jonathan Laidlow’s story “The Astronaut Tier” was published in Metaphorosis on Friday, 26 October 2018.

Metaphorosis October 2018
October 2018

“The Astronaut Tier” began life as a story called “Flailing”, written for a challenge on the sffworld forums in 2015 with the theme of “surprises in desolate places”. I remember I immediately had the image of a blighted Britain, but it took a little longer to find the main theme of the story, which was the Mars One project – a Dutch organisation which was looking for future astronauts not through expertise in astronautics but through social media. Around that time I saw the brilliant film about a woman in a cult, Martha Marcy May Marlene, starring Elizabeth Olsen and John Hawkes, and read Paul McAuley’s superb novel The Quiet War about the opening up of the solar system. I wanted to take these elements – crowdfunding the exploration of the solar system and cult dynamics and tell the story through Farren’s strength and agency.


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