Friday means free fiction as always here at Futurismic, and coming up is your weekly selection of genre wonders that won’t cost you anything to read.
But before you dig in, make sure you go and read our latest published piece of fiction, David Reagan’s “Solitude Ripples From The Past“.
OK, on with the list!
Some innuendo-laden titles from Manybooks.net:
- “What The Left Hand Was Doing” by Gordon Randall Garrett – (“There is no lie so totally convincing as something the other fellow already knows-for-sure is the truth. And no cover-story so convincing …”)
- “Cum Grano Salis” by Gordon Randall Garrett – (“Just because a man can do something others can’t does not, unfortunately, mean he knows how to do it. One man could eat the native fruit and live … but how?”)
- “Hunters Out Of Space” by Joseph Everidge Kelleam
Solaris Books are sharing a complete Stephen Baxter story. Originally published in the Solaris Book of New Science Fiction Vol 1, “Last Contact” will show you why Baxter is rated as one of hard sf’s best sensawunda guys:
Caitlin walked into the garden through the little gate from the drive. Maureen was working on the lawn.
Just at that moment Maureen’s phone pinged. She took off her gardening gloves, dug the phone out of the deep pocket of her old quilted coat and looked at the screen. “Another contact,” she called to her daughter.
Caitlin looked cold in her thin jacket; she wrapped her arms around her body. “Another super-civilization discovered, off in space. We live in strange times, Mum.”
Furthermore there’s also a pair of critical essays which, despite Ms Jones’ self-effacement, are doubtless well worth a read if you like to analyse your literature as well as read it. They are:
- String of Pearls – “Sex and horror, perfect playmates or evil twins? Is this a genuine m/f divide? An examination of Jacqueline Carey’s Kushiel.”
- Wild Hearts In Uniform – “Secrets of the Pause: What did military sf do, in that brief hiatus when the USA was scratching around for a new external enemy? The answer may surprise you.”
Apex Science Fiction and Horror Magazine provides “Light Like Knives Dragged Across the Skin” by Paul Jessup.
Jayme Lynn Blaschke delivers installment 11 of Memory:
The strangling darkness vanished in an instant. His claustrophobic prison burst apart and Flavius found himself soaring a thousand feet above the ground.
He screamed against the rushing wind, flinging forward his cramped arms to shield his head. His sword spun away. The ground weaved wildly, see-sawing back and forth with the shockingly close clouds.
Freebies via F&SF by Lucius Shepard:
Lucius Shepard is the award-winning author of innumerable classics, many of which have appeared in the pages of F&SF such as “The Man Who Painted the Dragon Griaule” and “The Jaguar Hunter” (which you can read online at Infinity Plus). And, of course, he’s currently up for the Hugo Award, Nebula Award, and Locus Award for best novella, for his F&SF story, “Stars Seen Through Stone.”
“Stars …” is a super story, and comes with my recommendation, if that’s worth anything to you.
Jason Sanford likes to share:
My short story “Maps of the Bible” has just been published over on Monsters and Critics. Set in Alabama during the early 1960s, the tale is in some ways a ghost story (although it would be more correct to place the story within the Southern Gothic genre of literature). “Maps of the Bible” also functions as a prologue to my short novel Jeremiah, which consists of the story sequence “Cold Pelts,” “One Side, Two Weeks, One Bathroom,” and “Water Hearts.”
Thanks to the tireless Cole Kitchen, I have news of Escape Velocity, a hard science fiction magazine whose e-book versions are free-to-download PDFs. Escape Velocity:
“… publishes sci-fi stories from authors around the globe, future and historical science articles, Special Photo Features, and much more.”
Result! Thanks, Cole – added to the Sidebar of Free Fiction Justice.
Another couple of additions to the Sidebar:
- Pantechnicon – a multi-genre webzine with both stories and non-fiction
- Serendipity – this UK-based webzine specialises in magic realist fiction
Via Nick Mamatas:
It’s nerdy hobby theme month at Clarkesworld!
Cat Valente brings you “A Buyer’s Guide to Maps of Antarctica“.
My pick was “Birdwatcher” by Garth Upshaw.
And the non-fiction feature is “Of Dice and Men: Modern Fantasists and the Influence of Role Playing Games” by Jay Ridler and Justin Howe.
So get to clickin’ and enjoy your afternoon of twitching, giggling, hand-flapping self-stim glee!
Does that last sentence sound a little suspect to anyone else? Thanks, Nick!
Subterranean Online has a new Mike Resnick story – the Right Reverend Doctor Lucifer Jones once again encounters his nemesis in “Connoisseurs”.
Are you ready for episode 6 of Shadow Unit? “Endgames” was penned (or more likely typed) by Emma Bull:
As he walked the hall between Shadow Unit and the more public spaces of the BAU, Stephen Reyes pinched the bridge of his nose and slid his fingers hard down the ridge of each eyebrow, trying to push away his headache. He’d use both hands, but he had the case jacket in his right. The cause of the headache, those documents.
Bureaucracies would kill and eat you like any other monster. Just not quite so literally.
Jake Frievald of Flash Fiction Online dropped us a note about this month’s edition:
“It’s that time of the month again – we just went live on Flash Fiction Online with new free stories. The highlight for sci fi fans is Bruce McAllister‘s “Game”. I like the other stuff, too, though. :)”
And speaking of Flash Fiction … is that the march of the Fictioneers I hear?
There are a number of troops on leave – yours truly is focussing on longer stories for a while, Justin Pickard is in dissertation hell, Jay Lake is convalescing (get well soon, Jay!) and Gareth D Jones is excused for having sold a piece of fiction to Nature magazine – but there’s still the steady stomp of boots on the parade-ground asphalt:
- Clive Birnie is reiterating in “The Identity Thief 2.0“
- Don’t worry, Gareth L Powell; it’s not “The End Of The World“
- Greg O’Byrne is looking good in “The Red Dress“
- Neil Beynon is giving you the “Devil Eyes“
Plus we have new recruits. Sarah Ellender and Gaie Sebold will be posting on alternate Fridays over at their PlotMedics site; Gaie goes first with “Folie a Deux“.
And that’s about everything from the immense sprawl of the interwebs, as far as free fiction is concerned. Don’t forget to send us your plugs and tip-offs – and have a great weekend!