28 June 2022
I've been reading a lot of slush. A few times recently I've been quite confused about what happened in a story or what a story meant. I think in those cases, the author had a wonderful story in his/her mind but it didn't quite all make it to the page. In that case, unfortunately, we're going to pass on a story. You don't want to confuse your editors!
Luckily, this is an easy problem to solve. Have a friend, relative or writing partner read the story and then ask them: What happened? If your reader can't tell you, you probably need to put more on the page. (We've all been there.)
Good luck with putting it on the page!
22 June 2022
14 June 2022
NEBULA AWARD FOR NOVEL
A Master of Djinn, P. Djèlí Clark (Tordotcom; Orbit UK)
NEBULA AWARD FOR NOVELLA
And What Can We Offer You Tonight, Premee Mohamed (Neon Hemlock)
NEBULA AWARD FOR NOVELETTE
“O2 Arena”, Oghenechovwe Donald Ekpeki (Galaxy’s Edge 11/21)
NEBULA AWARD FOR SHORT STORY
“Where Oaken Hearts Do Gather”, Sarah Pinsker (Uncanny 3–4/21)
THE ANDRE NORTON NEBULA AWARD FOR MIDDLE GRADE AND YOUNG ADULT FICTION
A Snake Falls to Earth, Darcie Little Badger (Levine Querido)
Reading excellent fiction helps writers create excellent fiction! Enjoy!
08 June 2022
- "A River in the Desert" by LCW Allingham--A girl who grows up being trapped by others' expectations discovers a mysterious connection to her lost mother... and a forgotten truth.
- "U-Boat Grim" by Eric Wampler--In World War II, a German U-Boat is carrying something even more terrifying than Nazis.
- "Biofuels, Baby!" by C. M. Fields--When a space fuel researcher tries to do the right thing in an evil empire, her career takes her into uncharted territory.
- "Beyond All Known Parameters" by Mike Morgan--The legend of a fallen metal hero is the only weapon a captured warrior has left to wield.
- In our Editor's Corner, Associate Editor Bonnie Ramthun shares the horrifying tale "The Little Hitchhiker" --read it if you dare!
Check them out if you haven't already!
31 May 2022
We need to thank our excellent cover artist and authors. Hurray for our creatives!
We need to thank our excellent editors and tech staff. Thank you for all your hard work!
And most of all, we need to thank our readers! Woo hoo! We wouldn't exist without you!
Thank you, everyone!
24 May 2022
I grew up in Wyoming and drove many miles along the State's highways and two-lane roads, sometimes during terrible storms. If you've ever encountered a ground blizzard near Elk Mountain or driven across the Red Desert at night during a thunderstorm, you know what it's like to be driving white-knuckled at the edge of catastrophe.
One night I came across Steven Spielberg's short film, Duel. The screenplay was written by the great Richard Matheson and was the first film directed by Spielberg. In the story, a traveling salesman ends up being chased and terrorized by an unseen semi-truck driver. The 74-minute film was an ABC Movie of the Week in 1971.
Spielberg is known for hiding his villain, most famously in the movie Jaws. The near unbearable tension of this man-eating shark movie is that for most of the film, you don't see the shark at all. Rumor has it that Spielberg didn't intend to do this. He was going to feature his shark, but the mechanical creature kept malfunctioning, and he had to come up with clever ways to keep it out of the picture.
After watching Duel, I'm not so sure about this rumor. Jaws aired in 1975, four years after Duel. The way Spielberg uses the truck driver in Duel is startlingly similar to the way he uses the shark in Jaws. We never see the face of the truck driver in Duel. When the truck first menaces the traveling salesman, played with tense perfection by Dennis Weaver, he spots it reflecting from the trembling, shaking side mirror of his car.
Spielberg also used this side-mirror shot in Jurassic Park, this time for the tension-releasing humorous moment of seeing "Objects in Mirror Are Closer Than They Appear" as the T-Rex chases the Jeep holding our protagonists.
In Duel, the side mirror shot is terrifying. The semi-truck roars like a predator as it attempts to run the salesman's car off the road. The windshield reflects the glaring sun, never giving a glimpse of the driver inside. The tension ratchets up with every passing moment as the truck, and its unseen driver try to hunt down and kill David Mann.
Sure enough, the next morning, I had to get up and drive to Rock Springs, Wyoming. I admire and appreciate our American trucking fleet, but that day I regarded them all with suspicion. And during that drive, I wondered if one of those trucks was driven by something other than a human driver.
The next week I wrote The Little Hitchhiker, inspired by winter driving and a short film called Duel. I hope you enjoyed it. And if you haven't seen Duel, I highly recommend giving it a try.
Thanks, Bonnie! Very interesting!
Be sure to check out "The Little Hitchhiker" and all the rest of the stories on May 31, 2022!