Monday, May 21, 2012

Translators wanted

I just encountered the Wikipedia entry for the Czech science-fiction author Ondřej Neff. Most of his stuff has not been translated into English. The entry only summarizes a few of his stories, but after reading these summaries I desperately want to read this author. Here's one: "Zelená je barva naděje" (Green is the color of hope):

describes an invention of an apparatus used for reading animal's minds and presenting them to humans in image form. The inventor tests the device on his friends' aquarium, causing much distress and anger because the apparatus shows the aquarium fish dreaming about killing and eating the humans, and dominating the world; as a consequence, all humans who saw the experiment feel they will never be able to trust any pet animal again. Twisted maybe. Oh my gosh I want to read that story. Here's another -- which those readers who have read my short stories and know my penchant for Fredric Brown and O. Henry endings will appreciate: "Strom" (The Tree):

a vision of a society after a near-miss ecological catastrophe, which was avoided only thanks to draconian laws of environment protection that put the nature and its preservation well above human life. The characters, last dwellers of a small village, are fighting a losing battle for their homes against a growing forest, as the laws prevent them from harming any tree.

Ah! Aha-ha! That is just perfect. It's not as if they adopted those environmental protections needlessly, it was only by them that they were able to stave off a disaster. And then they lead to another disaster! Ha! Seriously, somebody translate this guy's stuff and send it to me pronto, I need to read it.

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