Short story: “Veil of Ignorance”

by look i have opinions

“Veil of Ignorance,” by David Barr Kirtley

Originally published in The Phobos Science Fiction Anthology Vol. 3: All the Rage This Year (2004), edited by Keith Olexa; appeared in Lightspeed Magazine, February 2015; read aloud for MechMuse Audio Magazine; also available on the author’s site

4454 words

Marvelously clever, and I found the ending very believable. I would not take this drug, but if I did, I would never stop. Being a particular person is hard.

The characters are cardboard-thin stereotypes (Kirtley says in his Lightspeed Author Spotlight that he needed them all to be recognizable types). I couldn’t help wishing they were even vaguely likable or sympathetic, but I see why it would difficult to write them that way without making the piece overlong or confusing. The story is pretty compelling anyway.