Hello and welcome to the September issue of Aphelion.
First off, let's all celebrate Nate's longstanding contributions to
Aphelion. he's done more for us all than most people realize. He's worn
so many hats here, doing so many jobs, that the place seems to echo now
that he's back doing what he does best; writing his own words. I've
been privileged to read his latest story as a work-in-progress. You are
going to love it when he has it ready to release into the wide, wild
In other news, sadly, Carolyn has asked to step down as our Short Story
Editor. Life got in the way and she felt she couldn't give the job the
energy and attention that it, and you, deserve. She's done a great job,
and she will be missed by everyone here. The staff and I agree that
she'll be welcome back any time she is able to return, and we have been
honored by the time she was able to share with us. She has joined the
roving ranks of Aphelion Editors At Large, out there making the world a
better place for everyone who encounters them.
What we have here is a chance for someone else, one of you perhaps, to
decide you have the sort of drive to help your fellow readers and
writers. Being an Aphelion Editor is a strange job, really. It eats
your time, it brings you joy and frustration alike, the rewards are
few--yet incredibly meaningful and personal, but it won't drive you
crazy. No, you have to be crazy before you start, LOL! If you don't
think you're quite crazy enough, don't worry, we can teach you.
Right now, I'm the de-facto Flash Editor, Short Story Editor,
Production Editor, Mare Inebrium Shared Universe Series Editor, Senior
Editor and Publisher, and the day is still young! What all that means
is that I'm a bit overwhelmed at the moment. Thankfully, Iain
reaffirmed his offer to, temporarily, pick up the duties of the Flash
Editor until someone steps up to take over full time. So, that's one
hat I can take off for a while. I've got to figure out the arcane
incantations to redirect the Flash submissions to Oz where Iain's
flying monkeys can deliver them to him, but that's just Production
Editor stuff. I'm not very good at that, but one thing I am good at is
learning new things.
One thing being an editor can teach is how to become a better writer.
You start thinking beyond the terms of just seeing typos and
punctuation errors, into the realm of noticing how subtle differences
in wording and tone and structure can improve a story. You also learn
the importance of debate,diplomacy, and tact--as well as when it is
vitally important to occasionally decide that you can do no more to
help an individual without simply letting them go make their mistakes
and learn from the consequences. That last one hurts every time,
believe me, I know. You don't become an editor without the desire to
help people. You've become something between a tutor and a guru. You're
not an unquestionable master, but rather a guide leading by example.
That is a rocky road to have to follow. Yet it does have its rewards.
Have I made it sound grim and uninviting? Good. It's important that you
know what you're getting into. The rewards are that you get to help
people learn how to become better writers, become one yourself along
the way, and the thrill of seeing their success when they apply what
they've learned to jump through all the hoops that pro publishing
requires. When you get that e-mail telling you that one of your writers
has sold a story--that is one of the biggest thrills in the world.
You've made a difference, you've helped someone achieve a dream goal,
and you've made the worlds of words a much larger and more fun place to
It takes time, effort, and a fearless desire to help someone. It takes
being able to tell someone that their submission isn't perfect--yet.
And it takes the ability to tell a writer "I noticed a few things you
could do to improve this. Have you considered changing this bit to..."
And on and on and on. HTML is easy--even I've learned the basics. Web
production is a bit harder, but it becomes easier as you keep doing it.
Learning the ins and outs of different programs that make the job
possible is not without a learning curve, but once again it isn't as
overwhelming as it looks when you first start off. Do you think you
have what it takes to become an Aphelion Editor? Do you want to teach
and to learn at the same time? Are you willing to devote some of your
private time to reading new submissions, passing e-mails back and forth
with new writers, doing a bit of HTML coding, and socializing online
with the rest of the staff as we make each new issue ready to upload?
If so, we need you. Aphelion needs you. Your fellow writers need you.
Hop aboard this crazy train and find a place of your own where you can
help others become better writers. The staff all hang out on Facebook
Messenger for a group chat that is always ongoing. If you dislike
Facebook, we also have a seldom-used IRC chat room created just for
that reason. It can be reached with several different free programs
scattered about the web. But Facebook is the easiest way.
Come, join us, we have fun!
And now, this is ALSO a thing! Aphelion's first advert!
Feel free to share this on Facebook, G+, blog posts, and other
webpages. But only with the permission of the page or group owners! Be
polite and considerate, always. You'll have to look up the embed code
for the ad on You Tube, sorry about that, but the code won't display
correctly here. But the Share Code for Facebook and G+ is:
First off, if you do the Facebook thing, feel free to join us
on the Aphelion page there. The link is Aphelion
As an aside, the Editorial Mafia and I have found Facebook to be very
useful. Given our different
locations and schedules, it's come in handy as a way to discuss
production details of new issues. Sometimes there are several of us
using Facebook at the same time, so it's almost like the old chat room
days back in the 1990s.
My first collection of Mare Inebrium spaceport bar short
published in February of 2015 by Dark Oak Press. It is available in
an Nook e-book formats, paperback, and hardback. I also have three
albums of instrumental music out through the Create Space
self-publishing website. If you like, you can click on the photo or the
link below to
fin all the info you would need to purchase my book in your preferred
format, or an e-book of Flash of Aphelion, buy a CD of my music, or
listen to tracks off of the albums on my Bandcamp website. Enjoy!