New Pages, well respected among those who follow cutting edge fiction, has reviewed the recent edition of Fiction International in which my story “Playing the Long Game” appears. I am fortunate to have been singled out for attention from the reviewer, alongside author Paul Forristal.
“The stories that are highly experimental in a manner of textual organization are balanced with the more conventionally organized narratives that tend to experiment in the tradition of 1960s science fiction and the fabulists. If fiction is to evolve, it must mutate like any other bio-organism. Compare Paul Forristal’s “What Happens” with John Edward Lawson’s “Playing the Long Game,” for example. Lawson’s story is framed as an interrogation of a former president, but functions as a political commentary in a surreal format where a machine approximates God in omniscience, omnipotence, and essential judgment. Conversely, Forristal’s story employs graphics, fonts, and pacing in close simulation of an interface and riffs off of a variety of forms and structures to spell out his narrative. Both create a feeling of experiencing the future and transform time and the experience of reading. And while one might seek out the more traditional forms, the experiments in this journal are not too far from the canon.”