The 2008 Locus Award finalists have been announced, and we’d like to congratulate Gene Wolfe and Ted Chiang, whose stories from F&SF “Memorare” and “The Merchant and the Alchemist’s Gate” are both on the shortlist. EDIT: Congrats to Lucius Shepard too, who is also on the ballot.
We’d also like to congratulate Gordon for being nominated in the best editor category and…ourselves, for being nominated in the best magazine category. Thanks to everyone who voted!
Peter S. Beagle is the author of many novels and stories, including the beloved classic The Last Unicorn. In 2005, F&SF published Beagle’s Nebula Award-winning sequel to The Last Unicorn, the novelet "Two Hearts." You can read that story here. But Beagle’s history with F&SF begins way back in 1966 when we published his story "Come Lady Death" (which originally appeared in The Atlantic Monthly). That story was recently adapted into a podcast on the new fantasy-focused Escape Pod spin-off PodCastle. You can listen to the whole story here.
Don’t forget, today’s the last day to vote in the Locus Awards poll.
George Tucker–author of "Circle," which appears in our May 2008 issue–said in an interview that the story is about a Seminole shaman who’s hired to exorcise a downtown Miami construction site. "There are three threads that intersected to form this story: Native American mysticism, the Miami Circle, and the Miami housing bubble," Tucker said in an interview.
Tucker has been fascinated by Native American mysticism for as long as he can remember. "The first book I ever bought, while on a field trip to a natural history museum in northern Arkansas, was The Indian How Book by Arthur C. Parker. I reread [it] until the spine cracked and pages started to fall out — every page thrilled me," Tucker said. "I’ve written several stories featuring Native American protagonists. Billy Black is the first of these characters to appear in print."
The second thread is the Miami Circle archaeological find, Tucker said. "I’m a paleophile, pure and simple. I love the idea of finding a mysterious ritual site (in my mind an ancient, haunted place, where sacrifices had their throats cut while worshipers chanted praises to dark gods) in the middle of a thriving glass-and-steel metropolis. I’m infatuated by the thought that the ancient, dark and bloody past lurks under the foundations of our buildings and in our genes — and from time to time leaps out and takes us by the throat. Even though ‘Circle’ is a light-hearted story it touches on these themes," Tucker said. "By the way, the developer who owned the lot the Miami Circle was found on wanted desperately to move it — and Mayor Joe Carollo (aka Loco Joe) agreed, citing a $1.1 million loss in annual property taxes if the condo didn’t go up as planned. In my imagination, people like Joe Carollo decided that Baghdad’s Ministry of Oil should be heavily guarded in April of 2003 while looters took ancient and irreplaceable works of art from the National Museum."
Yes, I know it’s Sunday, but I forgot to post this on Friday, and Free Fiction Sunday ruins the alliteration.
Daryl Gregory is the author of about a dozen stories, which have appeared in F&SF, Asimov’s, and elsewhere. His first novel, Pandemonium, will be published by Del Rey Books this Fall.
Daryl’s website, darylgregory.com, features a number of pieces of free fiction, including several F&SF stories, such as his first pro sale, "In the Wheels," "The Continuing Adventures of Rocket Boy," and "Free, and Clear."