I find writing short stories to be a sort of laboratory for testing ideas. They’re perfect for fiddling with characters or questions or dialogue. Mr. Snow, for example, was written purely as an exercise in dialogue. I wrote Ice and Fire last year in an attempt to create a fairytale. I’m not sure if I succeeded, but I enjoyed the process. I included a shorter version of the story in The Mike Murphy Files. This single version is longer and more carefully shaped. At any rate, if you’ve never been to Lune, this story is for you.