Aphelion Issue 278, Volume 26
November 2022
Long Fiction and Serials
Short Stories
Flash Fiction
Submission Guidelines
Contact Us
Flash Writing Challenge
Dan's Promo Page

Aphelion: The Webzine of Science Fiction and Fantasy

Issue 22, Volume 3 -- March '99

Issue 23 will be online 1st week of April.

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Since January 27th 1997

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Happy New Year?

New Years in March? Has your (T)rusty Senior Editor finally lost it? Hmmm... Nope.

I'm talking about rebirth- of a sort -and birth itself. I'm about to become a godfather again, as my best friend and his wife are going to have their first baby together this month. Also, My own life is finnaly back in high gear after all these months of marking time. It seems like its now a case of "so much to do and no place to hide", as an old friend of mine is fond of saying.

Aphelion seems to have weathered the storm of technical troubles that plagued us in Febuary, spring is on its way, and lots of stuff that had been on hold is now rushing forward at Warp 9. In other words- We're back and better than ever!

As I mentioned in the Lettercol in January, most of the Aphelion staff met at a New Year's Eve party here in Athens. Martin grabbed my camera and took a few photos of us... I'm going to post those here in place of my usual boring editorial. There were only four of the pics that turned out- it seems that Martin was jet-lagged and took a lot of shots of the floors, but here is the best one that actually had the camera pointed in the right direction.

The rest are located on this page. I hope you enjoy them!

Jeff, Kim, Myself, and Rob

In the background, you can see Aphelion's rejected story files- LOL!!!

Since I don't have anything else to say this month, I'll let you get to reading- after all, that's why you're here!


Tell us what you think in Aphelion's Lettercol!

I'd like to thank those of you who have sent e-mails or signed the Guestbook for your feedback. Keep those messages coming, folks! Without those messages we will never know what we need to improve upon. Hope you like the improvements so far!

Aphelion Staff:

Dan Hollifield
Senior Editor, Publisher
Roger Bennett
Editor Emeritus
Robert Wynne
Cary Semar
Short Story Editor
Lee Whiteside
SFTV Schedule Reporter
Martin Delgado-Scott
Serials Editor
Kim Holec
Poetry Editor
Jeffrey Williams
Production Editor

Serialized Stories

  • Threat of Valleor -Part 7-
    By Dan L. Hollifield
    The adventure continues as the Reever and his friends visit Tulag, the kingdom of magic. (Thanks for allowing me to take this time off to get my real-world life back in order.)
  • Zod -Conclusion!-
    By Neil McGill
    A side-splitting sci-fi romp through the cosmos. Look out Douglas Adams! McGill may just steal your thunder!

  • In Arms We Trust -Part 1 of 5-
    By Vasilis Adams A.

  • Maya -Part 4-
    By A.D. Jackson
    The mystery of Maya continues...

  • Read more great stories from the Aphelion Archives

    "Ray Guns and Space Ships and Fires...Oh My!"

    Not long ago, Cary Semar posted a request on the Lettercol for more "hard SF" types of stories, tales involving space ships and science and gun fights and. . . Well, what started as a joke among the staff ("Gee, why don't we just have an all Space Opera issue?") is turning into a reality, with your help of course.


    Yes, by popular demand, we are requesting submissions for an issue of short fiction dedicated entirely to tales of starships, to ditties about intergalactic war, to works about strange discoveries in space--in short, an all Space Opera issue.

    When the stories are published, we will pick what we feel to be the three best pieces submitted (ranked 1st, 2nd, and 3rd of course). Winners will receive a prized featured space in the special issue and will also receive a graphic for their webpage or desktop wallpaper. The graphic will be provided by esteemed publisher Dan Hollifield and by notorious webmaven Robert Wynne.

    Submissions for this special issue should be sent to shorts@aphelion-webzine.com and should be clearly labeled as entries for the Space Opera Contest. (DO NOT submit serials as they will not be affected by the contest.) Stories should be no less than 2500 words and no more than 10,000 words in length. All submissions for the contest must be received by May 20, 1999. Multiple entries will be accepted. Editorial review will be limited to technical issues only (format, length, spelling, punctuation, etc.).

    The theme issue itself will be published in July 1999.

    This contest is not open to the staff of Aphelion though their stories may appear in the issue if they choose to write one and if space is available.

    So charge up those disrupter banks, let loose the dogs of intergalatic war, look out for the Grey Lensmen, and may the best beings win!

    Short Stories

  • The Land of Ooo-bla Dee
    By D.A. Krikorian
    You never really begin to learn until after you know it all...
  • Sister Death
    By McCamy Taylor
    Brother Doctor, do not be afraid to tell me of the closeness of death. It is for me the door to life.

  • Human and Naked
    By Franchot Lewis
    Fifteen ...human elders in a sorry chorus ... wailed like infants for the androids to keep doing for us, and especially to keep the pabulum coming.

  • Carrots
    By Laurie Christenson
    The Curse of the Carrot Woman!

  • Yet Another Reality
    By A. J. Thompson
    The mind is a very powerful thing and you can do anything with it if you choose to.

  • The Blue Orb
    By Mark Archibald
    Space Teens Go Cruising...

  • Strange Business
    By Joseph B. St. John
    There was a certain King that left on a spring night to fight the battle of good and evil.

  • Harry Chapin's Waltz
    By Jeff Williams
    The Mare Inebrium's jukebox holds the key to mysterious patron.

  • Dark Hunter
    By Martin Owton
    A minstrel's song holds the key to defeating a monster.

  • Swing Low, Sweet Chariot
    By Jim Peters
    In this sequel to "The Bluesman" the lives of an entire species hang in the balance as revenge proves itself to be a two-edged sword. A Mare Inebrium story.

  • Companion
    By Brian Huisman
    Gary had no aim in life, until the day he first saw a talking dolphin.

  • Look What I Found
    By Dave Mansfield
    Astronaut Pilot Aaron Breedlove had something to prove, to Mission control, to his late comrades, and to his father.

  • Because of the server trouble last month and because Febuary was so short anyway, we're going to keep these online for one more issue. Please take the time to vote in the survey.

    Dan's Birthday Picks

    Some of my favorites from the previous issues of Aphelion
    These stories aren't necessarily the best that Aphelion has ever published, but they are the ones that I have read over and over again. So many good stories have appeared here that I thought it would be unfair to call these few the "best of..." so I'm just calling them my favorites. I hope you like them as much as I do. I didn't include any of the serialized stories and only one by a staff member, so you can be sure that there was no nepotism involved and that these are a good sample of what we have published to date. The Editorial Mafia made me hold down the number of picks so as to leave room for the rest of this issue's stories- Otherwise, this would just be another way to access the Aphelion Archives. LOL!

  • Waiting in a Stony Place
    By W. Fraser Sandercombe

    Fraser has a way of bringing characters to life on the page so that you actually care about what happens to them when the story is over.
  • A Man Shoots His Own Dogs
    By Bob Blacketer

    Bob's work seems to grab you by the throat and shake you. Strong emotions and convincing backgrounds are his specality.
  • Calling All Stars
    By Frederick Rustam

    Its always a delight to recieve a submission from Frederick- his stories are well thought-out, surprising, and wonderful.
  • Over the Hill
    By Jim Parnell

    A gritty little tale of cyberspace, detectives, and future crime- Jim proves that he's not just a top-flight musician any more.
  • Yesterdays Glory
    By Robert Wynne

    Rob's only Mare Inebrium story to date and the best example of how to add background characters to a Mare story. He even taught me a few things.
  • Language Barrier
    By Kate Thornton

    Kate's shuttle pilots come across as living, breathing people. They're as real as you or I and just as vital.
  • Dan's told you his picks. Which was your favourite? Let us know in the
    Aphelion Survey!

    Poetry and Filk Music

  • Clutter
    By Martin Jack

  • Mulder
    By Pravin Jeyaraj

  • The Unicorn Continued
    By David Blalock

  • Soul Searches of the Darklight
    By Daniel O. Wait

  • Features

    The Mare Inebrium shared universe project
    I open up my own Spaceport Bar to other writers!
    The Mare Inebrium Shared Universe Project
  • Aphelion's Daily Comics
    By Ian McDonald, Mark Stanley, and Steve Troop
    Did he say daily? Yep, Aphelion is proud to feature three of the funniest comic strips on the Internet, Ian McDonald's "Bruno the Bandit", Mark Stanley's "Freefall", and Steve Troop's "The Melonpool Chronicles". Bookmark this page, you don't want to miss a single installment!

  • Dan Hollifield reviews:
    This month- Roadmarks by Roger Zelazny

  • Excentrivial Musings
    The Aphelion Cartoon Page.

  • Mare Inebrium Wallpaper Page
    51 JPGs you can download and convert to Bitmaps for wallpaper. This is a slow-loading page, but well worth it.

  • The Awards Page
    All of the Awards that Aphelion has won.

  • If you would like to receive notices from Aphelion when this page is updated, please join our new, revised, automatic mailing list. To subscribe:
    Send a message to majordomo@america.net with the following in the body of the message:

    subscribe aphelion <email address>

    As always, this mailing list will only be used to notify you of new issues and will never be given out to anyone else... 'cause I hate spam as much as you do!

  • Click here to see the Links Page
  • A Challenge to Writers...
  • Short story submissions; Cary Semar
  • Serialized stories: Martin Delgado-Scott
  • Poetry: Kim Holec
  • Features: Robert Wynne
  • Mare Inebrium Stories: Dan Hollifield
  • Click here to see the Submissions Guidelines Page.
  • Aphelion Explanations and Thanks Where the name "Aphelion" came from and other info.
  • Books Music Enter keywords...

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    Back Issues:

    For a time we will have back issues available for you to read.

    These will be removed when space on the new server gets to be too small. Click on the banner below to go to the Back Issues! Thanks for your readership for without you, nothing we do has any meaning.

    Aphelion Back Issues!
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    Aphelion Webzine is 1997-98 by Dan L. Hollifield