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Another Story ID

(9 posts)
  • Started 9 months ago by Gordon Van Gelder
  • Latest reply from JohnWThiel

  1. Gordon Van Gelder

    Can anyone here identify this story?

    Music store owner with perfect pitch and a library of music in his head is living a life of genteel poverty and not much hope. The aliens come. A couple come into his shop (l think) and play him some music. He comments that a note in their playback is out of pitch. Soon they are coming to him, telling him pick out music he really likes. Turns out the aliens are spreading his music through the galaxy, and he becomes the famous music guy...

    Posted 9 months ago #
  2. schatzfam

    Hi Gordon:

    Any idea as to when and where the story appeared? Was it in F&SF? Any idea of the decade?

    Posted 9 months ago #
  3. CarlGlover

    I vaguely recall a story entitled "Creative Constructions, Inc." by Kent Patterson in an early '90s Analog which I believe had a similar theme. Not really sure, though.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  4. schatzfam

    Hi Carl:

    You have a great memory. I did a quick read through of the story and it is close enough to the description that it may be the one. The story appears in the March 1991 issue of Analog.

    Posted 9 months ago #
  5. Gordon Van Gelder

    Another query:

    Sometime from the late 1960s through the 70s there was a
    story where a man and a woman at a dinner party
    were talking about the way groups of people tend
    to fall silent at 20 past the hour. they speculate
    that God went away and programmed that silence
    into people so they could hear him announcer his
    imminent return, this happens and civilization
    falls into chaos as people panic about being held
    responsible for their actions.

    Any ideas on the story's id? There was an earlier
    story by Mildred Clingerman that revolved around
    the periodic moment of silence in conversations,
    but we think this is a different story.

    Posted 6 months ago #
  6. JohnWThiel

    That sounds like one of Richard Lupoff's time stories. I suppose it isn't, but I'd be interested if anyone knows what it was. I liked Lupoff's sidereal look at things.

    Posted 6 months ago #
  7. MattHughes

    I read it, all those years ago, but of course I can't remember more than that -- except that it happens as the clock reaches twenty minutes past the hour, and it's caused by an angel passing. Whenever I'm in a chattering crowd that suddenly falls silent, I look to see what time it is.

    Posted 6 months ago #
  8. C.C. Finlay
    Charles Coleman Finlay

    I shared this question over on the @fandsf twitter feed and got two replies (so far):

    "I read this story, and my memory would put it even earlier than the late 60s, but no way to be sure. I can't remember the author or title. Sorry."

    "The Name That Book group at (@librarything) is good for this sort of question. Membership is free for those who catalog fewer than 200 books. Please read the instructions before posting."

    Posted 6 months ago #
  9. JohnWThiel

    I hear the ballroom clock in the Cinderella story is in use as a constant among observers of time. This may be a comment about the story, whatever it was.

    Posted 6 months ago #

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