Sale announcement: my science fiction short story “Driftwood” will appear in Analog Science Fiction and Fact! This will be my fourth appearance in Analog, and will hit print sometime in the next 18 months.
Alien life may be unlike anything we know, difficult to spot, impossible to communicate with. But there are ways to detect its presence. But if you find those complex molecules once you’re already in orbit around a distant planet, what the hell do you do about it?
The drone’s telemetry scrolled up the side of my windowscreen, number after number building toward an answer, overlaid on the live view of Driftwood’s longest mountain range. One set of numbers blinked yellow, alongside an unfamiliar symbol. I paused the scroll. At the screen’s edge, my husband’s videocall continued in thumbnail, volume down low. I expanded the image to a size I could see. “I gotta run. Something’s going on with a geo drone.”