Robin de Voh
there's never enough stories

Nanoprep 2021 Day 9: The Lyfecycle Algorithm

By Robin de Voh on 2021-10-14

Lyfecycle was the new, happening kid on the block of social media sites. People were sick of facebook, and though instagram was still going strong, their main product was just dying off. Ex-facebook employees had abandoned ship and started Lyfecycle to directly compete with their old employer and every other social media site at the same time. It was time for something new.

Lyfecycle promised better privacy control, better content selection, and just generally a more positive and fair representation of what was actually going on. This had been enough to pull a lot of people in, and independent audits of the code base and the outcomes had shown that Lyfecycle indeed was showing more relevant, balanced content.


Nanoprep 2021 Day 8: Memories III

By Robin de Voh on 2021-10-13

It's been 4 years since I sat down to write one of these, and it's been an interesting time to say the least. Normally this is where I'd turn down the lights and light the incense, but I looked for it but couldn't find any incense. I guess I didn't bring those along in the move. Oh well, time to order some new ones, I guess.

Cedar wood and jasmin, burnt at the same time, their smells mingling together. I described it last Memories as something that had once started as a romantic thing -- cedar wood was my smell, jasmin was hers. I also said then that it had by that point in time stopped having that romantic meaning.

We're in for a ride on that topic, actually.


Nanoprep 2021 Day 7: Great Minds Dream Alike

By Robin de Voh on 2021-10-12

Emily never really dreamed much, or at least she thought she didn't, because she hardly ever woke up remembering any. So it was odd to her when over the past week, almost every single night, she would wake up having dreamt something. Knowing what she dreamt, because she remembered it, and remembered it almost too well. No nightmares, just dreams of vaguely known things and people and the absurd situations dreams often bring.

But twice, and she wasn't sure what to make of it, she thought that weird kid from school was there. She didn't even know what his name was, and couldn't really recall his face, but she somehow felt it was him. Not prominent or anything, not a central figure in her dreams, but more of a side character.

Like he was hiding in the corners of her subconsciousness.


Nanoprep 2021 Day 6: Not Picky Enough

By Robin de Voh on 2021-10-11

He crossed the street and his nerves were really starting to act up now. He didn't go on dates from online apps often, mostly because he was so nervous about the entire idea. A meat market where anything not perfect would get a rejection. And also because he was quite picky. But he also figured that if he didn't go out there and get a coffee or drink with anyone, it'd also be a useless effort.

So he'd responded enthusiastically when she asked him out for a coffee and a walk. She seemed nice, her profile said she was into backpacking -- so was he! -- and rock music -- him too! -- and she considered herself politically liberal -- also a plus! He'd ignored that last one once, and found out she was actually a little bit racist, so he made sure that he'd avoid people like that from now on.

Racism isn't a turn-on.


Nanoprep 2021 Day 5: Where the Hell is Hugo Vickers?

By Robin de Voh on 2021-10-08

This wasn't right, Jay thought to himself as his sensors continued not showing him Vickers' location. Vickers had been gone for days now, and that had for certain not been the intent. The dock on which their ship, the Fides -- and therefore Jay -- was docked at, had only been booked until yesterday, and he'd already had to fake a longer docking permit. He knew he wouldn't be able to keep it active for more than a few more days.

What damn ship misplaces its pilot, he thought to himself, disappointed in himself.


A New Challenge!

By Robin de Voh on 2021-10-08

I just decided this year isn't stressful enough. So a new challenge for this year's nanoprep has arrived!

I will not miss a single update in October.

When I do, I will make up for it by writing 2 stories instead.

I'm keeping November somewhat looser, but for October I'm being more strict. Too often in previous years I'd be like 'oh, I'll just make up for this later' and miss at least 3 stories a year.

Not this time. There's consequences now.

Let's do this.

Nanoprep 2021 Day 4: Convince Me

By Robin de Voh on 2021-10-07

The video flickered on and a bespectacled man appeared on screen.

"So why are you here?" the therapist said.
"I'm here to learn what therapy is like, so maybe I can put my doubts, fears, to the side and be willing and able to commit to it," I said.

It was awkward to sit here, staring at a computer screen, having a one on one with someone I didn't know, with both a clear idea of what this conversation was going to be about, and also no clue whatsoever how it'd progress beyond the first few sentences.


Nanoprep 2021 Day 3: On the Trail

By Robin de Voh on 2021-10-06

It was the 3rd day of his first long hiking trip ever. He'd started in a little town and was following a mostly well-marked trail. Wild camping was allowed in the area, so he'd been enjoying the sunsets from the comfort of his tent. The nights were soft and rain-free, so he slept without the rainfly on, just the mesh inner tent. The first night he'd seen the stars a little, since he wasn't that far away from town, but last night, the second night, all of the stars in the sky just popped. He'd been amazed. And so were the two other campers that had set up their tents near him.

He enjoyed the stars every time he woke up -- he thought he just hadn't adjusted to sleeping on the trail yet -- because he kept having nightmares. He usually didn't have many nightmares, but maybe he was just really tired. It was his first long distance hiking trail, and it probably didn't help he'd run out of water earlier in the day, due to his water filter breaking. He eventually fell into a deeper sleep though.

Until he woke up early in the morning, earlier than intended. He had heard a sound he hadn't expected, which shook him awake suddenly. He noticed his tent was open partly. He'd groggily got up and looked around, but he couldn't see anything.

But then he saw it. And then he ran.


Nanoprep 2021 Day 2: The Wall

By Robin de Voh on 2021-10-05

High, shiny apartment buildings formed the skyline of Geo City. Between the different building, skyways snaked back and forth. They were the only way from building to building, and all of the skyways and buildings together, well, they essentially were Geo City. Most of which was invisible, due to the heavy fog.

King looked down and adjusted his footing on the edge of the building top. He was up on the highest building he had found an entrance to the upper levels for. He checked his breather stats and they were fine. 89% full, he'd be fine for another solid 17 hours. He took a deep breath in, and closed his eyes. It's now or never. After all the preparation, he couldn't turn back now. He tensed up and let his breath slowly escape.

Then he jumped.


Nanoprep 2021 Day 1: Halloween Crowd

By Robin de Voh on 2021-10-04

It had been 2 years since their last Halloween party, and though normally they weren't even that into Halloween, it was one of the first 'holidays' they were able to go to a party for. Vaccinated -- though not against the spookiness! -- and ready to mingle, Alim and Esther got out of their car and double-checked each others' costumes.

He was dressed as Aladdin, and Esther, against Alim's many, many requests, as Abu. Something about not wanting to dress up as the token 'sexy girl'. But once the costume had come in he'd agreed it was way funnier and she had been right to choose it.

"Ready to go?" Esther asked him.
"After you, my... monkey?" he said tentatively, awaiting her approval.