I’ve just added another page to the Developmental Shorts menu, this time Beyond Reasonable Doubt, the winner of the 2014 Orwell Society Dystopian Short Story competition. The prize is a good one for students and is judged by some key figures in the academic world. The guide for the competition went somewhere along the lines of ‘write something that Orwell would have approved of’.
There are deliberate nods to 1984 throughout, including one I thought was really obvious but which no-one has spotted or yet commented upon.
The story arose from my own fear of terrible misrepresentation of statistics. Many of us fall into one or two categories that put us at more risk of particular crimes or activities, but risk does not equate to reality. There is, of course, a risk that a micro-meteorite lands on my head an dkills me: it does not mean it will happen. With humans, the presence of an even larger risk or stistical likelihood cannot cope with the reality of someone facing up to being a thinking, feeling, compassionate human being as a result of what they might have been through.
The page here is Beyond Reasonable Doubt, but it is also available as .mobi/kindle format from the Developmental Shorts page.