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Aphelion Editorial 056

February 2002

The Senior Editor's usual drivel about whatever...

by Dan L. Hollifield


Hello and welcome!

This month marks Aphelion's 5th birthday! Since 1997we've brought you the best amateur fiction on the web. We've never asked for anything in return except for your feedback in the Lettercol and in e-mails to the writers. This you have done, and this has helped to produce even better writers. The number of people who now give regular commentary and critiques of the stories and poetry has risen dramatically over the last year. I'd like to see the number of readers who make Lettercol entries increase- with even more comments on the stories. We've helped five writers and an artist to turn pro, and your opinions in the Lettercol might just help us help more. So don't be afraid, don't be shy, but do tell the writers what you like or disliked, or just plain didn't get. It'll help them write a better story next time.

I started a new Mare Inebrium story in early January and found myself written into a corner, so to speak, after about three weeks. I was trying something new, and ran into a snag. What did I do? I asked for comments from some of the Editorial Mafia and other writers. I put my working draft of the story online and passed out the URL to a select few. And boy, did I get ideas sparked off by their comments! I was dealt an easy day of overtime at work yesterday and was able to sit and do some uninterrupted thinking about the story, in light of the comments offered to me. I'm happy to report that I was able to integrate quite a lot of those suggestions into an escape hatch from my corner. And as soon as I can make time to get back to work on the story, I'll be able to make it better than it otherwise would have been.

But that's just the spirit of Aphelion in a nutshell. Helping each other, learning from each other, and -above all- entertaining each other. Hey, don't knock it, it works. I learn from each person who chooses to tell me what they liked or disliked about one of my stories. Each bit I learn helps me become a better writer. So you can see that taking the time to say a few words in a Lettercol entry is very important to each and every writer that we feature.

All of us wish to transcend the free-e-zine state and, rather greedily, wish to be able to ask you to pay to read our work. That's only natural for a writer to desire. It is work to write a good story, one that people enjoy reading time and time again. It was suggested to me that I make a link to my own stories more prominent here in Aphelion, but that's not what Aphelion is about. Its about writing, and learning, and teaching, and entertaining, and giving your opinion, and listening to the opinions an comments offered. So please do take the time to go to the Lettercol page and express your like or dislike of any given story. Its an important thing, a tool we need to use more often.

Thanks for your time.

Dan

THE END


2002 Dan L. Hollifield

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