Welcome to issue 87 – the issue where we break your heart.
It is often said that we get what we deserve. I feel that is a narrow view of reality. But know that much of what we desire from life is shaped by what the world gives up. This is felt poignantly by the three protagonists in our three works of original fiction from August. “The Gentleman of Chaos” by A. Merc Rustad is a dark fantasy that shows the rewards of a well-disciplined long game. “I Remember Your Face” by E.K. Wagner is a heartbreaking post-apocalyptic tale of revenge, loss, and sacrifice. “Fall to Her” by flash fiction master Alexis A. Hunter takes us on a journey of unforgettable grief in a thousand words.
Our reprints this month are “Paskutinis Iliuzija (The Last Illusion)” by Damien Angelica Walters and an excerpt from Stay Crazy (Apex Publications, 2016) by Erica L. Satifka.
Poetry editor Bianca Spriggs has an impressive lineup of poems for us: “Not Like This” by Mary Soon Lee, “This Earth” by Frank Tota, “The Labyrinth Keeper” by Anton Rose, and “Perplexities” by Peter Venable.
A few months back, I was on the digital movie service Vudu and performed a sort for the highest rated genre movies by users and Rotten Tomatoes. To my surprise, the dark fantasy film INK (Double Edge Films) appeared at the top of the list. It’s long been a favorite of mine, but I had no idea its appeal stretched so widely. Betsy Phillips has interviewed INK (and The Frame) star Christopher Soren Kelly about the pair of films, and does a fine job describing why these films hold the appeal they do.
Rounding out our content are interviews with A. Merc Rustad and cover artist Marcela Bolívar and the latest incarnation of A.C. Wise’s short fiction review series “Words for Thoughts.”
Be sure to check out the podcast version of “A Gentleman of Chaos” by A. Merc Rustad as read by Mahvesh Murad.
Until next month!