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Taking Submissions: Tales From The Cyber Salon Event #3

August 15, 2021

Deadline: August 15th, 2021
Payment: £50 payment
Theme: A Sense of Community

Tales From The Cyber Salon Event #3 – A Sense of Community

Throughout 2021, Cybersalon will host ‘Tales of the Cybersalon’, a series of interdisciplinary technology and policy investigations through science-fiction storytelling. We want your stories and we want you. Help us imagine the future of our digital revolution in industry and society, and to identify and explore its emerging cultures.

Each event will feature new speculative short stories purpose written for the exploration of The High Street, Social Communities and Political Representation. Each short story will interrogate where we are and where we might be going. And we’d like your submissions.

Selected writers will be expected to engage with the panel experts ahead of the event to finesse the technological aspects of their fiction. Each event will have three or four new short stories which will be released in advance to the audience on Cybersalon’s Medium page.

The stories will be read on the night by their authors, followed by a panel discussion between the writers and the technologist domain experts who inspired them, with an open invite to audience questions to wrap up.

We’re looking for submissions of approximately 1000 words that explore the future by extrapolating from the present. Please bear in mind that we are not looking for the post-apocalyptic or utopias on other planets; the stories need to be plausible enough for our experts and audience to engage with them meaningfully. If you want to get a feel for Cybersalon you can view the first two ‘Tales from the Cyber Salon’ events on Health and the High Street & browse our video archive https://www.youtube.com/c/CybrSalon/videos.

Submissions close at 11:59pm (BST) on 15 August 2021.

Theme: The Internet’s role as a force for rapidly changing our experience of community was provided some surprise competition this past year, in the form of Covid-19. We’ve met our neighbours clapping for the NHS, sometime for the first time, and stayed in touch through hyper-local, social media and chat. We’ve traded hugs for high-definition video calls and the euphoria of crowds for the endless recycling of cardboard delivery packaging. As we emerge from our lockdowns and self-imposed isolations into the world again, is this our chance to choose our communities anew? Who might they be next? What could they look like? Have we discovered Covid-19 ‘keepers’ or developed ones we should never want again?

In their seminal 1986 study, McMillan and Chavis identified four elements contributing to a “sense of community”: Membership, Influence, Reinforcement, and Shared Emotional Connection. As our territorial and technological landscapes continue to evolve, we invite you to explore that definition with us and to offer new visions of community in our near-future.

  • Expert Panel Lead: Rachael Armstrong (@livingarchitect), Professor of Experimental Architecture in the School of Architecture, Planning and Landscape at Newcastle University, 2010 Senior TED Fellow & Metabolism Lead Coordinator for the Living Architecture Systems Group.
  • Expert Panel: Edward Saperia (@edsaperia), Dean of The London College of Political Technologists at Newspeak House, Wikimania 2014 Conference Director, Community Strategist and Game Designer.
  • Expert Panel: Yen Ooi (@yenooi), Visiting Lecturer MA Creative Writing University of Westminster, Councillor & Member British Science Fiction Association, Advisory Board Member Readerly, PHD Candidate Royal Holloway.

Background materials: “Sense of Community: A Definition and Theory” – David W. McMillan & David M. Chavis

“Community has got Britain through the pandemic. How can we create more of it?” – Stephen Reicher

“Welcome to Convergence Culture” – Henry Jenkins

“The Internet is Us” – Douglas Rushkoff

6:30pm – Tuesday, September 21st

Submission guidelines

  • Length: approx. 1,000 words
  • Closing date for submissions: 11:59pm BST, Sunday 15 August 2021
  • Payment and conditions: No reprints. £50 payment for exclusive world rights. The author will not be able to re-use the story until six months after the event without express permission from Cybersalon.
  • Please submit by email to [email protected].
  • In the subject line please state: Sense Of Community | your name | your story title
  • Please submit your story in the Microsoft Word document format as an attachement to your email and include your name, contact details and title of story in the Word document.

The stories will be chosen by the hosts of the evening, Benjamin Greenaway and Stephen Oram.

Benjamin Greenaway writes software for ecommerce and web start-ups, a career that has taught him many times over the benefit of being able to tell a good story. He is an unpublished amateur of short scifi and writes his stories to shortcut the product development cycle and side-step a life in politics.

Stephen Oram writes science fiction. He is a founding curator for near-future fiction at Virtual Futures, a writer for SciFutures and a member of the Clockhouse London Writers. He is published in several anthologies and has two published novels. His Nudge the Future collections have been praised by publications as diverse as The Morning Star and The Financial Times.

Via: Cyber Salon.


August 15, 2021