Posts Tagged ‘SF Humor’

Thus was the call:  Welcome to Digital Science Fiction.  We are excited to announce our first open call for reprint short stories in the science fiction genre.  These stories will be published as stand-alone short stories and as part of an anthology of ten short stories under the Digital Science Fiction imprint, by the publisher, Digital Fiction Publishing Corp.  The announcement went on to specify that stories needed to be from 3500 to 7500 words long, “have appeared in professional or semi-professional books, magazines, collections, or anthologies,” and not be available for free on the internet.  And for which one would be paid, well, a bit, but reprints are reprints and money is money.  And so, why not?

As it happened, in fact, I had a 7000ish-word story published in the “Space Opera” section of NIGHT LIGHTS by Geminid Press in 2016 (see April 1 2016, et al.), a bit tongue-in-cheekish, having fun with the genre, you know, and ready to trot.  And so why not indeed?  Off it went just nine days ago and today the word came back from Michael Wills of Digital Fiction:  Thank you for sending us ‘The Needle-Heat Gun’.  We think it is a great fit and would like to publish it.  We will be in touch shortly with a formal contract and details for your review.


Yes, I do write science fiction sometimes — in fact I had started off with science fiction before I finally settled for mostly working in horror.  And while I don’t do very much SF now, every once in awhile the opportunity will come around. . . .

Besides, this story features a few standard horror tropes as well.

Thus the call went out from Geminid Press for an as yet untitled “Space Opera” anthology.  “Rock us with cool short stories that have laser beams, spaceships, heroes — both male and female — and far out faraway places.”  I had just happened to have wriSpace_Opera_Low_Restten a space opera parody of sorts, called “The Needle-Heat Gun,” which could fit the bill.  Moreover they were offering five cents a word, until recently a professional rate by SFWA standards and, I believe, still so for HWA.  It would have been wrong for me to desist.

They wanted a “tagline” in the cover letter so I also sent them this.  “’The Needle-Heat Gun’ is a somewhat tongue-in-cheek 7000-word story about how interstellar space hero Sledge Baxter saves the day, fights off at least three kinds of alien monsters, rescues the girl who then falls in love with him, ending up rich and beloved by all except by his sidekick who did all the actual work — but who has come to hate him for a completely different reason.”  What reason, you ask?

The good news came today from Editor Phillip Garver:  “Thank you for sending us ‘The Needle-Heat Gun.’  We loved it and would like to publish it in our upcoming anthology.”  Currently they’re looking toward a mid-to-late 2015 release, so you can find out then.  And as for what the book’s final title will be, etc., more information will be posted here as it becomes revealed.

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