Rated PG: For Bleeding Colors
In Order to Conserve
by Cat Rambo
In order to conserve color, the governments first banned newspaper inserts, the ones where dresses and dishwashers and plastic toys and figurines of gnomes with wary smiles tumbled across glossy surfaces. Readers faced columns of type interspersed with dour black and white line drawings, no slick sheets cascading on their laps as they unfolded the newsprint to gaze at the reports of latest developments in The Color Crisis. Others turned to the Internet, monochromatic monitors scrolled by blogs denouncing the Administration, the liberals, the conservatives, the capitalists, alien spiders, and a previously obscure cult known as the Advanced Altar of the Rainbow Serpent.
The change had been almost imperceptible at first. Only artists, fashion designers and gardeners noticed the dimming of shades, the shadows of reds, blues, purples that blossomed from less verdant stems. They brought the shift to the attention of white-coated scientists, who measured the changes in angstroms, then announced that laboratory results proved it true. Somewhere, somehow, color, once thought an inexhaustible natural resource, was running out, and doing so quickly.
About the Author
Cat Rambo lives, writes, and teaches atop a hill in the Pacific Northwest. Her 200+ fiction publications include stories in Asimov’s, Clarkesworld Magazine, and The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction. She is an Endeavour, Nebula, and World Fantasy Award nominee. Her 2018 works include Hearts of Tabat (novel, WordFire Press), Moving From Idea to Finished Draft (nonfiction, Plunkett Press) and the updated 3rd edition ofCreating an Online Presence for Writers (nonfiction, Plunkett Press). For more about her, as well as links to her fiction and her popular online school, The Rambo Academy for Wayward Writers, see her website kittywumpus.net
About the Narrator
Mur Lafferty is the co-editor and sometime-host of Escape Pod.
She is an American podcaster and writer based in Durham, North Carolina. She is the host and creator of the podcasts I Should Be Writing and Ditch Diggers. Her books have been nominated for the Hugo, Nebula, Philip K. Dick, and Scribe Awards. In the past decade she has been the co-founder/co-editor of PseudoPod, founding editor of Mothership Zeta, and the editor or co-editor of Escape Pod (where she is currently).
She is fond of Escape Artists, in other words.
Mur won the 2013 Astounding Award for Best New Writer (formerly the John W. Campbell Award), and the 2018 Hugo Award for Best Fancast for Ditch Diggers. She’s been nominated for numerous other awards and is always doing new things, so check her website for the latest.