From Modern Mythcraft to Magical Surrealism

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August 2022 (Issue 82)

In this issue’s short fiction, Eliza Chan explores gender and power across generations in “The Tails That Make You,” and P H Lee’s “A True and Certain Proof of the Messianic Age, with two lemmas” brings us folklore through an algorithmic lens; for flash fiction, Mary Soon Lee explores classic fairy tales through a different lens in “Introduction to Couture 101,” and M. H. Ayinde grows something new in “Girlfriend Material”; for poetry, we have “The God’s Wife” by Nana Afadua Ofori-Atta and “The Himba Destroyer” by Yvette Lisa Ndlovu. Plus! A collective interview (part one of two) with several of the Top Ten Finalists for this year’s Locus Awards, from the Best Fantasy Novel category.

In This Issue: August 2022 (Issue 82)

Nonfiction

Editorial: August 2022

In this issue’s short fiction, Eliza Chan explores gender and power across generations in “The Tails That Make You,” and P H Lee’s  “A True and Certain Proof of the Messianic Age, with two lemmas” brings us folklore through an algorithmic lens; for flash fiction, Mary Soon Lee explores classic fairy tales through a different lens in “Introduction to Couture 101,” and M. H. Ayinde grows something new in “Girlfriend Material”; for poetry, we have “The God’s Wife” by Nana Afadua Ofori-Atta and “The Himba Destroyer” by Yvette Lisa Ndlovu. Plus! A collective interview (part one of two) with several of the Top Ten Finalists for this year’s Locus Awards, from the Best Fantasy Novel category! Enjoy!

Flash Fiction

Introduction to Couture 101

Before we delve into the difficulties of designing doublets for dragons or flame-resistant undergarments for would-be dragonslayers, let us consider six instructive examples. Firstly, Cinderella. Set aside the matter of her ballgown. Any fairy godmother can conjure a fabulous confection of chiffon or taffeta. Focus instead on the shoes.

Nonfiction

Editorial: August 2022

In this issue’s short fiction, Eliza Chan explores gender and power across generations in “The Tails That Make You,” and P H Lee’s  “A True and Certain Proof of the Messianic Age, with two lemmas” brings us folklore through an algorithmic lens; for flash fiction, Mary Soon Lee explores classic fairy tales through a different lens in “Introduction to Couture 101,” and M. H. Ayinde grows something new in “Girlfriend Material”; for poetry, we have “The God’s Wife” by Nana Afadua Ofori-Atta and “The Himba Destroyer” by Yvette Lisa Ndlovu. Plus! A collective interview (part one of two) with several of the Top Ten Finalists for this year’s Locus Awards, from the Best Fantasy Novel category! Enjoy!

Fiction

The Tails That Make You

Ninth – It is a few days before your suspicions are confirmed. Perhaps it is the baggy trousers your daughter has started to wear, or that she picks at her food. She will lie if you ask her outright, this you know. You throw her bedroom door open without warning, the damp towel clutched around her chest after the shower the only barrier between you. Her mouth hangs open, shrieking like brakes in protest.

Poetry

The God’s Wife

The moon is a god / It is best to thank him. / The night is the time of spirits; of the dead / It is best to stay inside

Author Spotlight

Flash Fiction

Girlfriend Material

The label said, Grow your own girlfriend! Cultivate the perfect partner! Just add water! Sam pulled the packet off the shelf.

Poetry

The Himba Destroyer

i. / I met a god today / he sat by / the window in economy / no leg room

Fiction

A True and Certain Proof of the Messianic Age, With Two Lemmas

Once upon a time, in the dark ages before the singularity, there was a fox who, while walking its way along a riverbank, saw a great big bevy of catfish fleeing in a panic this way and that. Curious, the fox called out to the fishes, saying, “Good fishes of the stream, I see you fleeing in a panic this way and that. I do not wish to interrupt your suffering, but I am curious and as a fox I must follow my curiosity: Surely, there must be some great evil from which you are fleeing?”

Nonfiction

Interview: Locus Awards Top Ten Finalists, Part One

We invited the authors of the top ten Best Fantasy Novels (according to the Locus poll) to participate in a brief collective interview, to discuss their work, their careers, and other things. We asked them all the same ten questions, with the request that they respond to at least seven of them, and let them pick whichever questions they want to answer. We are breaking the interview into two parts, across two issues, for space. We hope you find their responses as interesting as we did!

Author Spotlight