Special thanks to Sensitivity Readers Kati Gardner and Elliot Dunstan who were both extremely helpful and are most definitely not responsible for any errors or harmful tropes that I didn't fix properly—or that I added afterwards in a fit of editing enthusiasm. Apologies to vegetarians, who are vital to the world's survival but also provided some excellent villains here. The cover, splash screen, and icon art were purchased from Shutterstock. I am disabled, although not in the specific ways of some of the characters here. Capitalism tells me that I'm worth less because I'm not able to work at a 'real' job. At the same time, being disabled means I'm able to write full-time—which is wonderful. Like most disabled people, I feel both bitterness and gratitude for my disabilities. I also wear glasses, without which I am helpless. But that's not a disability, because modern Western society and technology can handle low vision easily. I very much hope that many more disabilities can be neutralized by a combination of technology and social change. The "disabilities" in this story were chosen because they are already, in the present day, a mix of annoyance and advantage. Hearing impaired people sometimes choose not to accept medical intervention for their hearing, because they would rather remain at the center of the vibrant and culturally distinct Deaf community (and because artificial hearing can sound awful). Sign languages are as easy to learn as any other language, and have their own advantages and disadvantages. For a fictional society that lives on and in the water, with transparent walls, the advantages far outweigh the disadvantages. Olympic runners who use prosthetics are faster than those using ordinary feet, and amputee children are designing and 3D-printing their own prosthetics that can shoot glitter, act as multi-tools, or show off their fashion sense. A woman I used to babysit has a job making inexpensive prosthetics for amputees in third-world countries. Whenever society and/or technology improves, the definition of disability changes. For me, the hardest part of being disabled is not the disability itself but the way able-bodied people treat me as worthless, stupid, disposable, demanding, or a liar. The COVID-19 pandemic has shown how powerful people often treat disabled lives as less valuable than their own (many disabled people are also immunocompromised, including me and several of my closest friends). At the same time, it has shown that the vast majority of people are willing to make great sacrifices in order to protect vulnerable people. I believe that, overall, Western society is getting better at caring for the disabled, and I believe that the trend towards kindness and justice will continue. This story is, of course, science fiction. I have improved greatly upon existing technology, particularly regarding the future of prosthetics and the invention of capital-g Glass. And the main character's prosthetic tail should more accurately be called a fin, but calling it a tail is way more fun. Please do flag any harmful tropes, mistakes, etc that you see. You can email me directly. I am also the writer of the award-winning piratical Hosted Game Scarlet Sails and the magical steampunk Hosted Game Attack of the Clockwork Armyas well as the cozy murder mystery HG Death at the Rectory. I am one of the writers for both the retro scifi comedy HG Starship Adventures and the portal adventure HG Lost in the Pages. And I write novels and other interactive fiction. For my non-digital stories I have an online store for those who like that sort of thing.
"The Floating City" is Copyright 2020 Felicity Banks. All rights reserved.
Choice of Games LLC is a California Limited Liability Company dedicated to producing high-quality, text-based, multiple-choice games. We produce games in house, including Choice of the Dragon and Choice of Broadsides. We have also developed a simple scripting language for writing text-based games, ChoiceScript, which we make available to others for use in their projects, and we host games produced by other designers using ChoiceScript on our website. All of our games are available on the web. We also produce mobile versions of our games that can be played on iPhones, Android phones, and other smartphones.
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