Sunday, November 2, 2014

2015 Young Explorer's Adventure Guide

Dreaming Robot Press has a great project up on Kickstarter and I'm proud to be a part of it. My story, "The Journey of a Thousand Miles", written as C.J. Daring is included. 

I've written plenty of stories for my children but, in truth, most of my work is not intended for a younger audience. The 2015 Young Explorer's Adventure Guide, though, is perfect for our youngsters who want to travel in time, explore mysterious hidden realms and travel to the distant worlds. It's more than a little exciting to be a part of this anthology, let me tell you. A science fiction anthology actually that parents, teachers and librarians can recommend to their middle graders with confidence. 

Below I've copied part of the Kickstarter campaign complete with the pitch video but don't let that stop you from from visiting the campaign page. The 2015 Young Explorer's Adventure Guide needs to help to be the best anthology it can be and blaze the trail for future editions that our children can enjoy and use as their own inspiration and stepping stone to the stars.


Science Fiction for a Middle Grade Audience. An anthology to bring the stars to a new generation!

Sally Ride, first woman in space and Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient, famously said:

“Young girls need to see role models in whatever careers they may choose, just so they can picture themselves doing those jobs someday. You can’t be what you can’t see.”

Girls need to read stories where any number of possible roles are modeled for them. Just as importantly, boys need to read stories where girls are active participants in adventures. And children of all colors and backgrounds need to know the future includes them.

According to a 2011 study of 6,000 children’s books, only 31 percent had central female characters, and even fewer featured main characters of color.

A genre that’s supposed to inspire us towards a bright future isn’t making space for half the population’s dreams. Boys go and have adventures, girls are to be defended, or prizes to be won, and the landscape is very, very white.

It’s time for a bigger universe.

We've got a great collection of 20 stories from amazing authors, ranging from Nebula and Hugo winners to relative newcomers to the field. 90% of the stories in the anthology are brand new, and 80% have central female characters. We don't have girls who are prizes to be won or waiting to be rescued. All of our heroines and heroes are on their own adventure, not a side note in someone else's. Our characters are white, black, asian, latino. Human and robot. Everyone belongs here.

Marilag Angway started her foray into science fiction and fantasy sometime in the early ’90s by reading books written by females for females. She had no idea that these books were far and few at the time, and feels lucky to have had the opportunity to be inspired by female authors to think big and never stop imagining. When she isn’t scribbling her mind away, she’s lending what brainpower she has left to a good cause: the molding of preschool minds. Gotta start them young, right? You can find Marilag’s bookish and writing and randomy ramblings at

Deanna Baran lives in Texas and is a librarian and former museum curator. She writes in between cups of tea, playing Go, and trading postcards with people around the world.

Mike Barretta is a retired U.S. Naval Aviator who currently works for a defense contractor as a pilot. He holds a Master’s degree in Strategic Planning and International Negotiation from the Naval Post-Graduate School and a Master’s in English from the University of West Florida. His wife, Mary, to whom he has been married to for 23 years, is living proof that he is not such a bad guy once you get to know him. His stories have appeared in Baen’s Universe, Redstone, New Scientist, Orson Scott Card’s Intergalactic Medicine Show and various anthologies.

Eric Del Carlo's short fiction has appeared in Asimov’s, Strange Horizons, Shimmer, Michael Moorcock’s New Worlds and many other venues. He has written novels with Robert Asprin, published by Ace Books and DarkStar Books. His latest novel, an emotionally charged urban fantasy entitled The Golden Gate Is Empty, which he wrote with his father Vic, is forthcoming from White Cat Publications. Eric lives in his native California. Find him on Facebook for comments or questions.

Salena Casha's work has appeared in over 30 publications. She was a finalist for the 2013-2014 Boston Public Library’s Children’s Writer-in-Residence and a 2011 Bread Loaf Scholarship Recipient in Fiction. Her first three picture books were published by MeeGenius Books. One of them, titled Nuwa and the Great Wall, was featured in the 2014 PBS Summer Learning Project for kids. When not writing, she can be found editing math books, carving pumpkins and travelling the world. Check out her website at

Ron Collins’ work has appeared in numerous magazines and anthologies, including Analog, Asimov’s, and Nature. This summer saw the publication of Four Days in May, a short collection of stories set in and around the Indianapolis 500 written in collaboration with John C. Bodin. Of “Goliath vs. Robodog,” he writes: “It’s interesting to imagine everything robots will be able to do in the not-so-distant future, but sometimes it’s too easy to overlook things that really matter.” You can find more about Ron at

Cory Cone lives, works and writes in Baltimore, MD. He studied painting at the Maryland Institute College of Art, where he met and married his wife. He now works full time at the college and writes strange fiction in the evenings. His website is, and you can follow him on Twitter, @corycone.

C.J. Daring, alter-ego of the evil William R.D. Wood, lives in Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley in an old farmhouse turned backwards to the road. C.J Daring pens works of mystery and adventure for readers of all ages. Some are set in the far reaches of space. Some in the murkiest depths of time. And sometimes, when you’re not looking, maybe even your own back yard! Check in and see what coming next at

Anne E. Johnson lives in Brooklyn. Dozens of her short stories for young readers can be found in publications such as Spaceports & Spidersilk, Jack & Jill, Red Squirrel, and Rainbow Rumpus. Her middle-grade paranormal novel, Ebenezer’s Locker, was published by MuseItUp. Candlemark & Gleam is publishing her series of humorous science fiction novels, The Webrid Chronicles, and they will also release her YA adventure novel, Space Surfers, in 2015. Learn more about Anne at her website,

Brigid Collins Kendall is an author living in Michigan with her husband, Nick, and their cat, Brooke. She writes mainly works of fantasy and science fiction. She has written and published two novels, with her third due to be published this fall. Two of her short stories will be appearing in Fiction River late in 2014, and she has achieved Honorable Mention in the Writers of the Future Contest. She also enjoys music, video games, and copious quantities of stuffed animals. Brigid Collins has a blog at and can be contacted through that site, as well as through her twitter account, @purellian

Amy Griswold has written two gaslamp fantasy/mystery novels with Melissa Scott, Death by Silver and A Death at the Dionysus Club (Lethe Press) and has short stories forthcoming in several anthologies. She also writes Stargate Atlantis tie-in novels for Fandemonium Books. She lives in North Carolina with her partner and daughter, and works as an educational testing content specialist. Find her online at, or follow her on Twitter at @amygris.

Jeanne Kramer-Smyth has been writing since she first got her hands on a typewriter at age 9. Since then she has worked as a software developer, traveled the world, and written poetry. She is currently an archivist by day and a writer, glass artist and fan of board games by night. She has studied fiction writing with both Judith Tarr and Mary Robinette Kowal. She especially enjoys fantasy, science-fiction, YA, and historical fiction. She lives in Maryland with her husband, son, sister-in-law, and cat. You can find her online at

Nancy Kress is the author of thirty-three books, including twenty-six novels, four collections of short stories, and three books on writing. Her work has won five Nebulas, two Hugos, a Sturgeon, and the John W. Campbell Memorial Award. Most recent works are After The Fall, Before The Fall, During The Fall (Tachyon, 2012), a novel of apocalypse, and Yesterday’s Kin, about genetic inheritance (Tachyon, 2014). In addition to writing, Kress often teaches at various venues around the country and abroad; in 2008 she was the Picador visiting lecturer at the University of Leipzig. Kress lives in Seattle with her husband, writer Jack Skillingstead, and Cosette, the world’s most spoiled toy poodle. Visit her website at

A champion of NaNoWriMo, Vanessa MacLellan is an avid reader of anything with pizazz. Words have been her companions since she was ten, forcing atrocious adverbs upon her mother. Her fantasy novel, Three Great Lies, has recently been accepted by Hadley Rille Books and is scheduled for release in the winter of 2015. She’s had three short stories published by online magazines. When not in the office or writing, she bird watches and hikes. Vanessa can be found at

Phoebe North lives in upstate New York with her husband, her daughter, and her cat. She is the author of Starglass and Starbreak, a science fiction duology from Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers. Find her online at

Angela Penrose lives in Seattle with her husband, five computers, and some unknown number of books, which occupy most of the house. She writes in several genres, but F&SF is her first love. She likes writing for anthologies for the variety, and the challenge of writing to a theme; this is her fourth anthology sale. You can find her at

A Nebula Award winner and Hugo nominee, Eric James Stone has been published inYear’s Best SF, Analog, and elsewhere. Eric is a Writers of the Future winner, graduate of Orson Scott Card’s writing workshop, and assistant editor at Intergalactic Medicine Show. Eric lives in Utah. His website is

Sonja Thomas, a recovering CPA, writes for children of all ages, from humorous middle grade to young adult fantasy to adult horror. Raised in Central Florida (the wonderful world of Disney, humidity and hurricanes) and transplanted to DC for 11 years (go Nats!), she’s now ‘keeping it weird’ in Portland, OR. To stay sane she dances, doodles and plays with furry, four-legged friends. You may even hear her belt out an awesome Xena yodel. Visit her at or follow her on twitter @bysonjathomas.

Deborah Walker grew up in the most English town in the country, but she soon high-tailed it down to London, where she now lives with her partner, Chris, and her two young children. Find Deborah in the British Museum trawling the past for future inspiration or on her blog: Her stories have appeared in Nature’s Futures, Cosmos and Daily Science Fiction and The Year’s Best SF 18.

Jeannie Warner spent her formative years in Southern California and Colorado, and is not afraid to abandon the most luxurious environs for a chance to travel anywhere. She has a useless degree in musicology, a checkered career in computer security, and aspirations of world domination. Her writing credits include blogs of random musings, thriller novel manuscripts, stories in Tightbeam online magazine, KnightBridge’s Rom Zom Com anthology, the Mad Scientist’s Journal, several police statements, and a collection of snarky notes to a former upstairs neighbor. She lives in the San Francisco Bay area near several of her best friends whom she refers to as “minions.”

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

A Bastion of Great Science Fiction

Here's the cover of the October issue of Bastion Science Fiction Magazine. Beautiful, isn't it?

Inside you'll find:

“Zero's Hour” by Eric Del Carlo
“When the Wind Blows on Tristan da Cunha” by Meryl Stenhouse
“Waterman High Speed Axials” by William R. D. Wood
“Time Enough” by Salena Casha
“Sympathy for the Download” by Matthew Lyons
“In the Space Between” by Jeff Stehman
“Shudder” by Manfred Gabriel
"A Vision of Paradise" by Alvaro Zinos-Amaro

Check out Bastion's website to learn more about past issues and how to submit your own work. They're a great bunch to work with.

From their About page:

"Bastion is a new science fiction magazine publishing digitally on the first of every month. Each issue will contain 7 to 9 original short stories. Our yearly anthology will be available in both digital and print formats in early December. Immediate goals for our young magazine include establishing a solid reader base so our contributors can get paid professional rates for their work. As writers ourselves, we understand the importance of getting compensated for an author's work, so we evaluate what we can offer our authors each month. Additionally, we do our best to respond meaningfully to each submission within a reasonable amount of time, since we understand how frustrating it can be to wait for weeks or months without ever hearing back. We're also working toward becoming a qualifying market for the Science Fiction Writer's Association, which we hope will help to develop our contributor's professional qualifications.

"Finally, although we do what we can to focus on our contributors, our ultimate goal is to publish stories of the highest quality for our readers.

"As we're in the process of expanding and developing a reader base, we'd love it if you would tell your friends about us."

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

BASTION Science Fiction Magazine

I'm happy to report R. Leigh Hennig and the fine folks at Bastion Science Fiction Magazine will be running a story of mine in their October 2014 issue!

It's an excellent magazine and you really should check it out. Why? Well, it's excellent. I thought I said that.

Being a bit of a cover art junkie, I just love their covers. Take a peek at issues 1 - 7.

Beautiful. Especially Issues 3 and 7. Those are my personal faves.


"The Dreamcatcher", by M. Justine Gerard
"The Last Repairman", by David Austin
"Shale", by David Jack Sorensen
"The Crystal Forest", by Kurt Heinrich Hyatt
"That World Up There", by Kurt Bachard
"Shock", by Samuel Marzioli
"The Dead Channel", by David Galef
"Lighthouse to the Depths", by Nicholas Mazmanian


"Moving Past Legs", by Jamie Lackey
"The Endless Flickering Night", Gary Emmette Chandler
"Worried About", by Brandon McNulty
"Vines", by G. J. Brown
"A Considerate Invasion", by Mark Patrick Lynch
"A Rather Different Sort of F-Bomb", by Marty Bonus
"Zombie Limbo Master", by Rosemary Claire Smith
"Nigh", by Eric Del Carlo
"Wruyian Sands", by Jessica Payseur 


"Two Gentlemen" by Kurt Bachard
"Past Imperfect" by Dominic Dulley
"The Tree" by Benjamin Sperduto
"Miracle of Asteroid Camp 88" by Michael Andre-Driussi
"Bartleby, the Robot Killer: A Story of Difference Street" by Alex Livingston
"Compile Sensory Information and Extrapolate" by Jenna Bilbrey
"The Broken Places" by Melanie Marttila 


"Abandoned", by Hannah Goodwin
"Degausser", Axel Taiari
"Forever Lights", by Peter Medeiros
"Red Rubber Nose", by Robert Quinlivan
"Remember Prometheus", by Eleanor R. Wood
"The Maltese Pterodactyl", by George S. Walker
"The Properties of Water", by Alex Hernandez 


“The Skip” by Clint Spivey
“Zip” by Emma Osborne
“Going Solo on a Goldilocks” by Mary Alexandra Agner
“The Cure” by William Delman
“That Place Betwen Déjà vu and a Memory” by J. Daniel Batt
“Mirror of Stars” by Frank Smith
“Nestmaker” by Jared W. Cooper
“Sanctuary Farm” by Garrick Fincham


“Death Wears Yellow” by J.C. Davis
“The Custody of Memory” by Paul Hamilton
“Debugging the Ghosts” by Damien Krsteski
“The Last Lawsuit” by Maggie Clark
“The Long, Slow War” by Stephanie Herman
“The Loop” by James Hart
“Pancakes” by John Herman

Friday, August 1, 2014

Omni Reboot

When Omni hit the shelves in 1978 I was not a magazine reader. I'll give you that I was only a kid, so magazines were not exactly at the top of my reading list alongside the assorted comics, occasional issue of Eerie and my completely accidental exposure to Heavy Metal. What a ride that was, but that's a story for another day. The only magazines I'd been exposed to at that time, and came close to taking a liking to, were the copies of Popular Science and Popular Mechanics that the barber shop would have while I was waiting on a haircut. Every now and again, Bobby, the barber, would tell me to take one with me. I'd check out the pictures mostly and read an occasional article but none that made a lasting impression on me. 

And then there was Omni. A single word did not go unread. What flipped the switch for me?

Was it the artwork? That amazing blend of surreal and hard science? Sometimes risque, sometimes bizarre and always provocative to those long superseded and impressionable young synapses.

The fiction was amazing. My first exposure to a number of authors I now consider my favorites. Arthur C. Clarke, Ben Bova, Fritz Leiber, George R.R. Martin, Greg Bear, Gregory Benford, Harlan Ellison, Isaac Asimov, Joe Haldeman, Orson Scott Card, Philip K. Dick, Robert Sheckley, Robert Silverberg, Roger Zelazny, Theodore Sturgeon, Ursula K. LeGuin and William Gibson.

And the ideas and visions of the future. Everything from concept cars to space elevators. Hmm. Although the space elevator might have just been part of an artwork spread. And again, the artwork. I connect stories with vivid imagery when I'm reading, when I'm writing. I still remember how disappointed I was when the novelization of Heinlein's Number of the Beast didn't carry the same style of artwork that accompanied the teaser excerpt from Omni. The humanity!

Sigh. Good memories. Many late nights reading through each and every word.

My collection is long gone after many moves while in the Navy and since, but browsing through Google's instant archive of cover images, I remember almost every one.

And now, thanks to Jeremy Frommer, editor Claire L. Evans, and a host of others my work will be appearing online under Omni's new mantle, namely, Omni Reboot!

Life is good.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Photo Prompts

I've mentioned Photoshop before. It's a great program even in its older incarnations like mine which is rumored to have been discovered in a certain cave west of the Dead Sea in 1948. I spend more than a little time adjusting, tweaking, and downright screwing with images. The images I create are either interpretations of stories I'm working on or serve as inspiration for stories yet to come. It's a great way for me to get my creative energies going.

In and out of the internet there's never a shortage of good photo prompts. If you take a moment to look around, you can't help but trip over a good one, sometimes literally. Occasionally, though, one catches my eye and the inspiration strikes. Hell, if you want to hook me into an anthology or magazine, an intriguing cover will do it every time.

Writer's Digest puts out a photo prompt every couple of months under their Your Story Competition banner. When this one came up I was tempted without even looking at the word count but then I saw 25 words or fewer and I was all but reeled in already.

My humble entry took third place and you can see the top ten entries here and in the July/August 2014 issue.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Scares That Care

The Scares That Care Weekend Convention is a horror convention designed to delight horror fans while benefiting those in need. “Scares That Care!” is an IRS approved, 501(c)(3) charitable organization, designed to bring together the fans of “all things spooky.” Whether it’s haunted houses, paranormal, horror films, or anything else in the “vein” of the horror genre, “Scares That Care!” brings together those individuals in order to give back to the families that need it most…and in turn, become “Good Ambassadors of Horror.”

The difference between our convention and the other, fantastic shows that are out there, is simple. All of our proceeds will go to the families that need our assistance. We pride ourselves in being an organization that has no salaries, and no paychecks. We do this because it’s the right thing to do, and we want to represent the Horror community in the best light possible.

That's what Joe Ripple had to say about the Scares That Care Weekend on the website devoted to the event. I was fortunate enough to be invited to sit at the table for the Horror Writers Association's newborn VA Chapter. Not hiding behind my laptop in my super-secret skycave was a little out of my comfort zone, but after meeting and talking with all the folks that happened by our table, I'm thinking its time to go shopping for a new comfort zone. 

I'd never been to a con before so this was an awesome experience for me.

A few highlights for me:

1) Manning the HWA table with Dee Southerland (unstoppable force behind the HWA's VA Chapter)

2) Talking with fellow HWA member D. Alexander Ward about all things writing.

3) Meeting Jacob Haddon of Apokrupha and editor of Vignettes From the End of the World.

4) Reminding Matthew Warner that we've met before. A couple of times. I really need to do something memorable next time.

And even though I didn't get a chance to meet any of them, being within arms length of:

5) Yaphet Kotto, Parker from Alien.

6) Sid Haig from House of a 1000 Corpses. My first memory of Mr. Haig was playing the bad guy on Jason of Star Command! That kinda dates me but its worth it. Drago rules.

7) Chris Sarandon from Fright Night and The Princess Bride.

8) Amanda Bearse from Fright Night and, of course, Married with Children.

9) Bill Atherton from Ghostbusters and a metric ton of other things.

10) And Elivra herself, Cassandra Peterson. Wow, just wow.

The last word I heard was uncertain on whether or not we can expect a Scares That Care Weekend 2015, but if there is one (and I certainly hope there will be!), I'll be one of the first to block off that weekend on the family calendar, book a room, and drag the family kicking and screaming when the times comes. They say they don't like the kicking and screaming part, but deep down, I know they really do.



William R.D. Wood and Delona Southerland

For anyone who wants to know, this is who we called.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Phobos Magazine Issue Two: Emergence

Phobos Magazine, Philadelphia's semi-annual magazine of weird fiction, has just released it's second issue! Issue Two: Emergence contains my story, "Moonspots," I'm proud to say. You'll find some excellent stories all hunted down and corralled in these pages by editors Robert Corry, Luke St. Germaine, and Adam Halterman.

Phobos Magazine is pleased to present our second issue, "Emergence," which features thirteen short pieces about transformation, skin-shedding, things coming together, bursting forth, surfacing from the depths, and emerging from the darkness for good or ill. These short stories, flash fictions, and poetic works of weird fiction are by an international cast of both new and established talent.
--Amazon blurb

Authors include:

The Last Deduction, by A.E. Decker 
Angels, by K.C. Norton
Dream of Alligators, by Jerard Fagerberg
Hail Khepera in Thy Boat, by Elizabeth Twist
Tybault the Resurrectionist, by Luke St. Germaine
Nightmares, by Arthur St. Germaine
Under Two Moons, by Jonathan Shipley
The Wedding Party, by Joel A. Nichols
Carnival Country, by Daniel Nathan Horn
Blackhearted Son, by George Cotronis
Last Routine at the End of the World, by Ian Hunter
The Work Party, by E.E. King
River Path, by Tina Crone

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Den's Used Caskets

Sky Warrior Books will be releasing an anthology of vampire fiction later this year containing my story "Den's Used Caskets."

In all fairness, I'm not much of vampire guy. In fact, I wasn't much of a vampire guy before it was cool to be not much of vampire guy. That assertion not withstanding, one of my favorite stories is "Adaptive Strategies." In that one, the vamps are played by my interpretation of the Indian asrapa. Beautiful and graceful. And anything but human. That non-sparkly, non-angsty view of vampires is what attracted me to this anthology.

The submission call for These Vampires Don’t Sparkle – A Vampire Anthology read as follows.

"At Sky Warrior Books, we’re not above…well, anything. Hence, we love Vampires – but NOT the sparkly kind. We’re betting you love vampires too. So, send us your best work on vampires, original or reprint (must have the rights), of stories 500 to 7000 words in length. Can be fiction, nonfiction, or poetry. Sure, we’ll take standard horror and dark fantasy, but you can be creative. vampires in space, vampire critters, vampire love stories (uh, no erotica or sparkles), fantasy vampires, steampunk vampires, vampire humor (a strong plus), vampires on stakes…well, you get the idea."

"Den's Used Caskets" takes a more traditional approach to vampires and I hope readers find it a lot of fun.

The Table of Contents will appear something like this.

Vampiric Fluff by Rhonda Parrish
The Hall of the Cavern King by Alexis Glynn Latner
Customer Service by Katherine Tomlinson
Luftgeist by David Lee Summers
A Novel Love by Steve Alguire
Pixie Dust by James Pratt
To Catch a Glimpse by Margaret McGaffey Fisk
Two Fangs by Jonathan D Nichols
Charlie Makes His Way by Peggy McFarland
Saving Grace by Lillian Csernica
The Longest Night by Cynthia Ward
Crosses by David B Riley
Night Work if You Can Get It by Jeff Baker
Solutions by Bear Weiter
Origins by Rie Sheridan Rose
Little Brother by Evan Purcell
And Thus Returning by Lyn McConchie
Truck Driving Women by Trudy Myers
Drac's Diet by John Lance
Outcast by Chris Barili
Desperate Sparkles by Guy Anthony De Marco
From Family Blood is Born by Dana Bell
Avalon Knocking by Vic Kerry
Safe Haven by Jonathan Shipley
Den's Used Caskets by William RD Wood
Kids These Days by Mac Jones
Mountains of Hope and Dreaming by Chris Wong Sick Hong

Monday, April 28, 2014

Vignettes from the End of the World

The End of the World arrived two days ago.

Yep, friends, it's all over. That comfy little garden of bus passes and cellphones and digital watches (primitive, true, but still a pretty neat idea) is over dude and dudess. Done. Spent. Belly up. Pau hana. 

Luckily, if you missed it, your can relive the world's final moments over and over at your leisure in an assortment of flavors, one sure to suit your fancy. Not that it really matters because the next stop is the Hereafter. Heaven. Valhalla. The Other Side. Sto-Vo-Kor. 

You get the idea.

Check out the buying options below, get yourself a copy, and bask in the Vignettes from the End of the World. The end only comes around 58 times, so make the best of them.

Through the publisher:

From Smashwords:

And CreateSpace:

And its not a book if you can't get it from Amazon:


And that killer table of contents one more time:

Christine Morga, Essel Pratt, Cameron Suey, T. Fox Dunham, Guy Anthony De Marco, Mandy DeGeit, Jessica McHugh, Kristopher Kelly, E. Catherine Tobler, Jamie Lackey, George Cotronis, William R.D. Wood, Lee Clark Zumpe, Lincoln Crisler, Eryk Pruitt, Michael H. Antonio, Kallirroe Agelopoulou, Steve Calvert, Rebecca J. Allred, Darcie Little Badger, Erik B. Scott, Terry M. West, Glenn Rolfe, Josh Strnad, J.A. Martin, Darryl Dawson, DJ Tyrer, Joana Eça de Queiroz, Lex T. Lindsay, Arno Hurter, Cameron Shifflet, J.P. Freeman, Marie DesJardin, Dusty Wallace, Doug Murano, Ken MacGregor, Victoria Dalpe, Kelda Crich, Pedro Iniguez, Joey Capora, S.R. Mastrantone, Damir Salkovic, Sylvia Spruck Wrigley, Jason Sharp, Leslianne Wilder, Jennifer Loring, Bryce Hughes, L.C. Mortimer, Rebecca Barbee, E. E. King, David Turnbull, Richard Thomas, Rose Blackthorn, K.Z. Morano, Adrian Ludens, Kenneth W. Cain, Michael Haynes, Michael Penkas.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Alternate History 101

All of us wonder what our lives would be like if we'd made one decision instead of another. If we'd asked Jenny to the prom instead of Christine. If we'd chosen Army instead of Navy. College instead of North Sea gunrunning. Steak instead of chicken.

Running what-ifs through through an imaginative mind can change your whole world, literally. And those are just the changes on the level of a few lives. Suppose large-scale historical events played out a little differently. Suppose they played out very differently. Now, those changes could blossom out and change your hometown, your home state, your whole country. Even the world. Hell, maybe all of human history. Doesn't that sound like fun?

A lot of authors sure think so, this one included. Few are the wordsmiths that don't dabble along alternate timelines in one form or another. Countless movies, novels and short stories have explored this theme and there are some great examples of each. Fatherland and Cast a Deadly Spell come to mind for cinema, the latter tossing magic into the mix.

In the prose world, Harry Turtledove is just about untouchable. His Worldwar series is one of my favorites.

I played on that playground once or twice myself. Most recently in the Altered America anthology from Martinus Press, released in late March. Editor Martin T. Ingham included my story, "Goodbye, Norma Jean," along with twenty others - full Table of Contents below.

Gotta go. Phone's ringing. Caller ID says its that guy from North Sea Importers again. Why does he keep calling me?

Rio Grande by Jackson Kuhl
We the People by Dan Gainor
A Single Decision by Bruno Lombardi
What If... The Louisiana Purchase Never Happened by Edmund Wells
The Orthogonian by Sam Kepfield
Revolution 1865 by Brad Hafford
Ship of Souls by Erik Bundy
End of the Rainbow by Dusty Wallace
The Loyalist Washington by Owen Morgan
Guns of the Green Mountains by Ryan McCall
The Shining Path by Jason Sharp
The Union Forever by Sean Menken
Goodbye, Norma Jean by William R.D. Wood
Wild Blue by Jeff Provine
Avoid Seeing a Mouse by James S. Dorr
Thomas Edison Visits Selwood by Martin T. Ingham
Divided States of America by Lauren A. Forry
A Girl’s Best Friend by Cyrus P. Underwood
The Lights on Broadway by Charles Wilcox
The Black Blizzard by Philip Overby
The Road Was Lit With Moon and Star by Bruno Lombardi