One night, I dreamed I was writing a short story.

I suddenly awoke. The story was still there in my memory. So I wrote it down, word for word, exactly as I had dreamed it.


The Stardrive That Didn’t Really Work (1997)

Melvin discovered that if rocket nozzles were shaped a peculiar way, spaceships could travel faster than light.

Bold adventurers set out to explore the stars. Colonists followed. Civilization spread to the farthest reaches of the galaxy, and a glittering age of peace and prosperity ensued. Melvin was immortalized in statues and encyclopedias, and a building at a large university was named in his honor.

Centuries passed. Then a delegation of beings from another dimension arrived on Earth. They studied Melvin's peculiar nozzle shape, and made a sound like laughter. “This doesn’t make your ships go any faster,” they said. “It only looks that way.

“You stand too close.”

In an instant, all the distant cities erected in the mind of Man were lost. No one had actually travelled any farther than the Moon, except for Melvin, who went to Heaven.