Register or log in:

F&SF Forum » The Process of Writing

July-Aug 2016 issue

(37 posts)
  • Started 2 years ago by Gordon Van Gelder
  • Latest reply from Gordon Van Gelder

  1. Gordon Van Gelder
    Editor/Publisher

    THE MAGAZINE OF
    FANTASY & SCIENCE FICTION
    July/August • 67th Year of Publication

    NOVELLAS

    The Vanishing Kind -76- Lavie Tidhar

    NOVELETS

    The Desert of Vanished Dreams – 25- Phyllis Eisenstein
    Vishnu Summer -152- David Prill
    The Thing on the Shelf -216- David Gerrold

    SHORT STORIES

    Trustworthy, Loyal, Helpful -7- Gregor Hartmann
    Spells Are Easy if You Have the Right Psychic Energy -49- Dominica Phetteplace
    An Open Letter to the Person Who Took My Smoothie from the Break Room Fridge -130- Oliver Buckram
    Last One Out -135- K. B. Rylander
    Killer -202- Bruce McAllister
    Jesus Has Forgiven Me, Why Can’t You -206- Betsy Phillips

    POEMS

    Martian Garden -59- John Philip Johnson

    DEPARTMENTS

    Books to Look For -60- Charles de Lint
    Books -69- James Sallis
    Films: Bunker Mentality -184- Kathi Maio
    Science: Our Super Cool Solar System – 189- Pat Murphy and Paul Doherty
    Plumage from Pegasus -198- Paul Di Filippo
    Coming Attractions -256-
    Curiosities -258- Robert Eldridge

    Cartoons: Arthur Masear (24, 58), Nick Downes (151).
    COVER BY MONDOLITHIC STUDIOS FOR “TRUSTWORTHY, LOYAL, HELPFUL”

    Posted 2 years ago #
  2. GusG
    Member

    Is "Desert" a new Alaric story?

    Anything from Ms. Eisenstein is exciting, but I am partial to Alaric.

    Always good to see David Gerrold too.

    Please send my apologies to Oliver Buckram, but that smoothie was delicious.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  3. rowsdower
    Member

    No Cowdrey. Whew. I'm good.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  4. SHamm
    Member

    6/16: New ish arrives in SF, CA. Another striking cover by the Mondolithic guys.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  5. GusG
    Member

    Mine arrived in Oregon today. Agreed SHamm, excellent cover.

    rows, get over yourself.

    And...YES on the new Alaric story. Excellent!

    Posted 2 years ago #
  6. rowsdower
    Member

    I am over myself, but I'm not over Cowdrey. Blech.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  7. JohnWThiel
    Member

    Came to terms with yourself, right, Rowsdower? But no one could come to terms with Cowdry.

    Posted 2 years ago #
  8. rowsdower
    Member

    You are a gentleman and a scholar, JohnWThiel!

    Posted 2 years ago #
  9. JohnWThiel
    Member

    Take me back to September 2013, when I saw my first story by Lavie Tidhar, "Oracle", in Analog. Tidhar said it blew his mind when he got the acceptance for the story. What I noticed about it was it had the name of a one time prominent sf fan who had a strange name, so it must have referred to him, in it, but the matter couldn't be asked about. It was the time of whales, with "Whale God", "Full Fathom Five", and a creature from a lagoon in it, and his next Analog sale was "Whalians" in April 2014. But the first story by him that really caught my attention was "Vladimir Chung Chooses Not to Die" in the September 2014 issue of Analog. Next I saw "Murder in the Cathedral" in the June 2014 Asimov's, the story that had the same name as a work by the poet T.S. Eliot. I guess the novella in this issue by the same man is one of the surprises you said you were getting ready for this issue. Mysterious title, "The Vanishing Kind"--it's a novella, I haven't read it yet. But I'm sure it'll be interesting. Another surprise author is Dominica Phetteplace, whose three episode story about sentient chips I've just finished in Asimov's. I believe she's a pretty new writer too. I'll be glad to get into the issue.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  10. eduskunta
    Member

    You did it again. I got my issue today 6-24-2016 in Oklahoma city, OK. And it still a week until July. Thank you.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  11. JohnWThiel
    Member

    Just to get started in a fine issue, a couple of the shortest pieces. Oliver Buckram's piece now defines his mode of writing, as most of his pieces in F&SF have been very similar, arranged japes referencing various forms of officialese. Will the reader know his new definatory insight into evil?

    The other short short was also about evil and the apocalypse, "Killer" by Bruce McAllister. I think warfare between demons and angels is clearly enough presented to say that that's what's in the story. Quite a lapse between stories, and the original from a different source! My my, that could be outsourcing.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  12. Dr. Caligari
    Member

    The new issue arrived on my Kindle today. Thanks, C.C. and Gordon!

    Posted 1 year ago #
  13. JohnWThiel
    Member

    Well, Dominica Phetteplace, good way to start out this issue of F&SF, giving it a serious read. She sticks pretty well with the bay area in what I've seen her write so far, one locale was San Francisco, and a note on her said she went to high school in Berkeley, and now Oakland is mentioned in this story. Everything I've read by her has a milieu of lowly employment in cafes and restaurants, in this one the hard-to-get-along-with young lady is employed at a Starbucks. This story concerns impotence, it seems to me, as does the poem after it.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  14. JohnWThiel
    Member

    Gritty realism from Lavie Tidhar this time. There's variety to what he writes. I didn't care much for this story because the realism wasn't very real. First, it's hard for realism to ring true in an alternate history setting, and second, there wasn't any reality to the realism; the people weren't acting like people act. The most I got out of the story was an author display, though I suppose other people might have found more interest in it.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  15. JohnWThiel
    Member

    "Last One Out", by Ms. Rylander (editor forgets the Ms in his introduction), reminded me considerably of Ray Bradbury's shockers. But of course it doesn't match Bradbury in effectiveness.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  16. JohnWThiel
    Member

    "Jesus Has Forgiven Me, Why Can't You?" doesn't offend my religious sensibilities. Apparently the only fantasy in the story was the presence of Jesus, which some might not regard as fantasy.

    I'd point out the extraneous mention of the Indiana Dunes.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  17. Mary Thornburg
    Member

    It's been a while since I've visited the forum, and anyway I think I may have said more or less this once a few years ago. But I'm gonna say it again. Of course there's no accounting for taste, and not every reader is going to like every story -- some of us may, in fact, dislike some particular author, enough to skip every story F&SF publishes by that author and take the chance that one of them might be something we would enjoy. God knows I do that myself. But to actively and whine-ily complain about one writer every time one of his stories appears and also every time one of his stories DOESN'T appear? This strikes me as awfully childish... tediously so, in fact.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  18. rowsdower
    Member

    Well, you must come around fairly often, to notice my tendencies, Mary. I'm honored. I'm also honored that you felt the need to speak up. Sorry it bothers you so much, but it has become a complete joke to me that Cowdrey appears here so often, with sub standard stories. But that's just me. When issues come out that don't have a Cowdrey, I feel the need to cheer. Sue me.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  19. eduskunta
    Member

    Actually, I do like Cowdrey.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  20. Dr. Caligari
    Member

    I used to find Cowdrey's serious stories "meh," and humorous stories dreadful, but he seems to have improved in the past year.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  21. JohnWThiel
    Member

    "Trustworthy, loyal, helpful". Glad to see the author defining karma, nice, simple, and to the point. I have been unable to guarantee the meaning of the concept until now. Kind of a dullard enterprise described. They sound like Toys-R-Us are one of their outlets. A rather sleazy store chain which has remarkable things in it but all of it with faults in their manufacture. The point? There it is.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  22. Dr. Caligari
    Member

    A good, but not great, issue IMHO. "The Vanishing Kind" is a very powerful, very noir, piece of alternate history, and "Vishnu Summer" is weird in a good way, but I found most of the other pieces to be either routine or (in the cases of Buckram and Phillips) just plain silly.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  23. JohnWThiel
    Member

    I noticed the story was noir, but I don't think that term for a story has sold very well.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  24. JohnWThiel
    Member

    I wonder if Rowsdower has read "Vishnu Summer" yet? It's not Cowdry. I just read it, and it seemed like a surrealistic portrait of the end of all things. Vishnu seems to symbolize death, and a form of continuance. There's actually some satire to it, too--if the ambiguous can be described as an actuality.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  25. C.C. Finlay
    Charles Coleman Finlay

    Tangent Online reviews the latest issue of F&SF, with praise for several of the stories, calling the Phetteplace "brilliant," Rylander's story "bittersweet," and Philip's story "a great piece of religious magical realism."

    The full review can be found here: http://www.tangentonline.com/print--bi-monthly-reviewsmenu-260/221-fantasy-a-science-fiction/3182-fantasy-a-science-fiction-julyaugust-2016

    Posted 1 year ago #
  26. C.C. Finlay
    Charles Coleman Finlay

    SF Magazines also reviews the May/June F&SF. It calls the Buckram and Rylander stories the best in the issue, but says that the stories by Eisenstein, Hartmann, and Phetteplace are also very good.

    http://sfmagazines.com/?p=1552

    Posted 1 year ago #
  27. JohnWThiel
    Member

    I noticed, by the way, that the Marketplace joke this issue was about Vishnu Summer. Which gets me a job.

    I found "The Desert of Vanished Dreams" not that much different from the last story by Phyllis Eisenstein that I read, so have to go by her mood paintings in finding something of great interest in the story.

    Referencing "The Thing on the Shelf", I saw the Bram Stoker award on the net, where they said Ellison and the other fellow were the designers of it...or did I actually see it there? I seem to remember seeing it somewhere...forget who posted it. Well, maybe the reason I don't remember it too well was that it was on Facebook.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  28. Dr. Caligari
    Member

    Reading the reviews, and the comments posted here by other readers, makes me appreciate more what a tough job C.C. has. You can't please everyone, but F&SF manages to publish a varied collection of stories each issue while maintaining a very high level of quality.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  29. C.C. Finlay
    Charles Coleman Finlay

    Dr. Caligari, exactly. Our goal is to find stories where the writing is so good that sometimes you'll end up liking stories that you don't expect to like. My favorite emails are the ones that start this way: "I don't usually enjoy sword and sorcery" (or space opera or fairy tales or literary stories or whatever) "but the story in your latest issue..."

    I know we can't please every reader with every story, but we work hard to make sure that every issue delivers some stories that readers know they're going to like and something that takes them by surprise.

    Posted 1 year ago #
  30. Greg
    Member

    Having expressed a less-than-positive opinion concerning the previous issue's cover (sorry about that) it's only fair to mention I like this one very much. It makes me want to pick up a copy of the magazine. I also liked MONDOLITHIC's November/December 2013 F&SF cover, which had sort of a high-tech, Prasat Bayon/Angkor Wat thing going.

    Posted 1 year ago #

RSS feed for this topic

Reply »

You must log in to post.