You're about to launch into an adventure at AntipodeanSF, the online magazine that's devoted to the regular monthly publication of fabulous and original science-fiction, fantasy, or horror mini-stories of about 500 words each, with occasional features of 1000 words and beyond.
AntipodeanSF will entertain you, yet won't take hours to read.
Please spend a few moments to read this month's stories, reviews, and other information about down-under SF. Alternatively, listen to all of the stories on the AntipodeanSF Radio Show, weekly.
AntipodeanSF is also optimised for reading on your i-phone, i-pod, other mobile phone, or PDA device. Read us anywhere!
One thing I grok* about speculative fiction, and this is the term I'll use instead of science fiction despite that being what I might have used 20 years ago, is its power to explore uncomfortable notions, powerful notions, and potentially deadly notions. Specfic takes ideas and stretches them, nudges them, seeds them into our collective memespace. Readers, listeners, viewers, and creators all — some of us are all of the above simultaneously — are then given to test those notions, to conduct thought experiments, and to make or alter conclusions. And be ready for the next series of tests.
*Grok: understand (something) intuitively or by empathy (Oxford Dictionary of English), originally coined by Robert Heinlein in his novel "Stranger in a Strange Land" (1961) as a Martian word meaning 'to drink'. But you must read the novel in order to truly grok the meaning of grok.
Welcome to the laboratory of the mind.
Angela Slatter, "The Girl With No Hands & Other Stories", Ticonderoga, 2013
This is the first time I've had the opportunity to review a collection of short stories rather than a novel, and it's a lovely place to start.
I don't tend to read a lot of short stories, mostly because the thing I enjoy most about books is becoming invested in the characters and the world. Short stories don't give me that chance for prolonged acquaintance. There are, however, some volumes of short stories which have stayed on my shelves for years, being dragged from house to house, growing gradually more tattered. Volumes which my collection would not be complete without. And they are, almost without exception, fairytales.
Peter picked up his phone and surreptitiously used the torch function to check the colour of the vegetable beside his fish. Green. It was broccoli, turned dark magenta by the light of the sun.
"We can cope with this," said Rebecca. "What's the worst that can happen? The bees can still see in ultraviolet. Plants will flower and seed. We just have to adjust our way of seeing."
Micah gazed through the thick partition of the observation room. He sighed and turned to his sister. "It's the only way to ensure our survival. There are only remnants left of the ones who chose to live out there, I have tried to ensure some of their genes survive too."
Dan's unease at being in a strange building was only a little allayed by the presence of his unnerving companions.
The Cat, obviously a fitness fanatic, bulged, rippled and flexed with every step as he strode along the echoing corridor, dust motes spreading their pixie wings behind him.
The Specialist spoke solemnly, his finger pointing to the patient chart on the flat screen before him. "As you can see here, and here, and here, there are worrying spikes in the results."
He sighed, removed his glasses, and wiped them on a handkerchief before raising his eyes.
We all agreed. Dick was lucky to have bought his house in Schlich Street when he did.
We? Tom and his girlfriend Alison, and me and my squeeze, Karen. Tom worked in the University of Canberra Linguistics Dept, and Alison was a policewoman, but I never held that against her.
Under The Weather 2024
by Ed Errington
Maraiek Into Mariut: A Tragic Entanglement
by Wes Parish
by Kevin Ikenberry
The Purians v Australia
by Tony Meacham
by Simon Lenthen
by Natalie JE Potts
A Matter Og Technique
by PJ Keuning
I can make you a prince, she said.
A prince? What's that?
She said, trust me, I know what I'm doing.
So I trusted her; she was persistent.
Now I'm deformed, a biped!
No female wombat will look at me now.
You can't trust these human witches, can you?!
Smith seconded to 2055, Jones transferred to 1990, Barnes higher duties in 2066, Kendall lower duties in 1880, Nerk on "fast time" and Bloggs on "slow time." Borthwaite on annual leave. No one currently available for normal time duties in the present day.
Management of Time: Good
Time Management: Poor
Anne Leckie's debut novel "Ancillary Justice" has won the 2014 Arthur C Clarke Award.
This is the latest in what is becoming a string of awards for the novel told from the point of view of an intelligent spaceship.
Source: The Guardian
The 2014 inductees to the Science Fiction Hall of Fame are Leigh Brackett, Frank Frazetta, Stanley Kubrick, Hayao Miyazaki, and Olaf Stapledon.Read more...
The 2014 Locus Awards winners have been announced:
SCIENCE FICTION NOVEL
Abaddon's Gate, James S.A. Corey (Orbit US; Orbit UK)
The Ocean at the End of the Lane, Neil Gaiman (Morrow; Headline Review)
YOUNG ADULT BOOK
The Girl Who Soared Over Fairyland and Cut the Moon in Two, Catherynne M. Valente (Feiwel and Friends)
Ancillary Justice, Ann Leckie (Orbit US; Orbit UK)Read more...
There’s no real objection to escapism, in the right places… We all want to escape occasionally. But science fiction is often very far from escapism, in fact you might say that science fiction is escape into reality… It’s a fiction which does concern itself with real issues: the origin of man; our future. In fact I can’t think of any form of literature which is more concerned with real issues, reality.
By Anne Leckie
This Hugo nominated (winners yet to be announced) and Nebula Award winning story does the SF genre justice indeed. What happens when artificial intelligences have control of warships, and warships can inhabit human bodies? What happens when humanity settles far-flung solar systems? The answers may surprise. I'm still ruminating on the philosophical questions raised by this space opera.
By Angela Meyer
I'd have happily published many of the stories in Captives in AntiSF if they'd ever been on offer. This is an amazing collection of flash fiction that embodies all that I like about the form. Why? Because each story leads you to imagine, to go into the "What If?", to discover things lurking and unwritten, but made all the bolder and real because they come from you instead of the text.
From Inkerman & Blunt
By Sean Williams
Sean Williams does it for me, and I suspect he's bound to do it for you. Science fiction, yes, tick that box, but with Sean's slant — his intellect and humour (both dark and light) shine in these stories. Oftentimes the material also has a South Australian, which really sits well with a ex-Adelaide boy. It's like visiting home. Yes. This book is a great way to dig into Sean's work, and perhaps his head. You won't be disappointed.
Available from Ticonderoga
We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves
By Karen Joy Fowler
A magical book book about family love. Definitely not hard SF in the traditional sense, but don't let that shy you away. What is it like to be raised from birth with a chimp? How would a chimp integrate into a human family? What effects would it have on the chimp, and how would that impact on each of the members of the human family? Told from the point of view of Rosemary, and with a special focus on her sister Fern.
Nebula shortlisted. Available at Amazon.