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Five Dispatches from the Third Word War that are sure to amuse

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Subterranean Magazine Fall 2009
Five Dispatches from the Third Word War
David Prill

Quirky is the word that comes to mind when trying to describe David Prill‘s short story Five Dispatches from the Third Word War.This highly amusing and imaginative story reveals the depth of the lie behind the old saying “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me”. As we all know words can cut the deepest but in this fictional world they kill… horrifically.

Secretary of State Keel lives in a world that has been demilitarized through treaties and piece signings. The stockpiles of all military grade weapons destroyed with all countries at peace and unable to go to war. However there are always those looking to get the upper hand as political unrest and misgivings lead countries to find new ways to defend themselves against their rivals. What better solution than to weaponize words themselves?

This is the ruble strewn world Keel lives in. A world that has been reduced by not only the destruction caused, but by the loss of communication and understanding as more and more words are weaponized and lost to the public. The characters are reduced to miming to communicate as the words themselves are no longer available and more are lost every day as the war continues. A dark world it is where even lollipops and sunshine can kill.

David Prill spins a rich and imaginative world full of enticing and believable characters. Created and described through his playful use of the english language. Not only does he write a tale on the use of language as a weapon he does so by making literary elements part of the underlying story. With copulative conjunction chairs, ICBNs (Intercontinental Ballistic Nouns), and the general public scrabbling for words this tale is sure to amuse all readers. Five Dispatches from the Third Word War will invoke a love of language in it’s readers and strengthen it in those so inclined already, a highly enjoyable story.

Interested in additional stories by David Prill? If so then you can read his work in these anthologies:

Zombies The Recent Dead edited by Paula Guran Poe edited by Ellen Datlow Logorrhea - Good words Make Good Stories edited by John Klima
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