(photo courtesy of Chris Sharp)
This is the premise for a new short story I've been working on. It's called "Mind:set." It is a cross-genre bastardization of cyberpunk and fantasy.
Imagine a future people so calloused by desensitization that the word "lottery" doesn't mean a game where you might win a million dollars. It's where you are chosen to to play a virtual reality game via neural implants.
The prize: your life.
Welcome to Mind:set.
The Stringers live on the fringe. They refused to "sign up" for the roster of players and many don't even have shunts. They are "stringing" along. They are the bums of the future. They are the rebels, the outcasts, the scum of society.
Sixteen year old Luiza is entering adulthood and must sign up for the roster.
It's not how you play the game, Luiza decides. It's how the f*** do you win it?
Changing her mind when she is called sooner than expected for the "hook-up," she flees and joins the Stringers.
Will she escape her fate with Mind:set? Or be captured and forced to play for her life?