Or, on the importance of being a reviewer
The Best Science Fiction Short Stories – and where to find them!
Alienation by Robert Pritchard is Borjesian-style science fiction, in the style of T’Lon or Ulqbar, featuring linguistic invasions, reality altering and mouth-watering weirdness.
And the Hunter, Home From the Hill by Edward Morris is dark and brooding superhero fiction, the way it should be written.
The Flight Of The Red Monsters By Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam is a story of direction-less hate and war unleashed, of violence perpetrated without any consideration for the risks and the eventual downfall inherent in a genocidal war between species.
Transmatic by Chris Kelso is an exercise in weirdness. Featuring hitmen with retirement dreams of purchasing candy-apple red Nove Supremes, doctors with scientific degrees on fields no-ones ever heard of and casual personality-wiping detox programs.
Cybernetrix by Carlton Mellick III is the weirdest work of 80’s sociopolitical satire you’ll ever read, based on one of the worst-best examples of early computer animation in popular culture.
CL3ANS3 by Carrie Cuinn is Lovecraft mythos for the digital age. It’s digitized horrors lurking somewhere behind and above your user-interface. It’s about ancient cosmic horrors catching up to our own alienated world and molding it to their own image.
For Sale: One Red Planet by Jeff Hewitt is the story of ECD Trimmond and his continued attempts to get rid of the real-estate burden that is Mars, passed down to him from his forefathers and the interested parties that pester him along the way.
Open Lines By Jeremy Maddux is late night talk-show madness. It’s madness in the airwaves, it’s drama in the recording booth. It’s red ON AIR lights flashing against the enveloping night, radiating outward from your AM dashboard radio.
Maker Of Flight by Richard Thomas is what happens when you make a story that should become a stop-motion animation short for the ages.
The Server and the Dragon by Hannu Rajaniemi is a story about the mindscapes of machines, of the infinity of universes contained in the confines of a mind.
Black Sun by Todd Nelsen is a story about a hero returning to fight the good fight, roused after his imprisonment by cosmic power, to set the world to writes, superhero-style!
North of the Arctic Circle By Peter Rawlik is a story about Christmas and the joy it brings to the meek and the mighty alike. It’s a story of almost-redemption and it plays out like a Hammer Horror Christmas Special.
The Stanley Parable by Galactic Café is an exercise in existential horror, detailing the further adventures of Stanley and the Narrator through video game hell. True to almost every depiction of Hell worth its salt, it is absurdly funny and harrowingly dark.
After the Myths Went Home by Robert Silverberg is the one story you know it would make for an awesome Dr Who special. Or Twilight Zone episode. Or anything, just somebody PLEASE MAKE THIS!
“Leor’s new machine had crystal rods and silver sides. A giant emerald was embedded in its twelve-angled lid.”
There are no problems in the future. Everyone’s belly is full, no-one drowns or thirsts or is ever unhappy. There are such lovely marvels in the future, when the mysteries of the Universe have been laid bare and Earth’s problems are in Earth’s past, the planet itself a distant memory.
It is the best of times and the worst part is, everybody agrees.
The Weaponized Puzzle by David Conyers is the second book in the Harrison Peel series, telling the further adventures of Australian Intelligence Service operative Peel, the world’s leading authority on 21st century encounters with the Mythos and Australia’s least lucky bastard.
Stop me if you’ve heard this one by KC Ball is a story about cruelty, phobia of germs and the ramifications of situational comedy, in regards to interspecies’ culture. It’s also kind of horrifying.
All Art Is Junk by Rob Harris is a 30k word ode to weirdness, art, pure mindless mayhem and the End Of The World. Also, cyborgs.
The Impossible Object by David Conyers is Lovecraftian military SF for the 21st century, the way it ought to be done. It moves at a breakneck pace, it screeches as it takes turns across the asphalt of your brain and it crashes against the inside of your skull toward the end.
5 Science Fiction shorts you should watch right now, because they are sweet, they are funny, they are compelling and they are proof that great stuff can be made when you have the inspiration and the bloody-minded tenacity to pull them off. A perfect way to end this Loathsome Summer.