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 26, Volume 3 -- July 1999

Issue 27 will be online 1st week of August.

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Since January 27th 1997

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Freefall! The Melonpool Chronicles


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

Something nice showed up in my e-mail last month. The fellow who did the artwork for the "Writer's Challenge" section sent me a message. I thought that I'd share it with you;

Dear Dan Toronto,Canada

I am still alive and working on new works as well as you are producing you
very best work indeed,well,I shall ever be thankfull to you,in fact you may
end-up saving my life!...since a literary agent went to the Aphelion site
and contacted me! they want to represent me in the futur...well done Dan!
it pays to know...unknown! who cares about friends?...even the good
ones!...Anyway,you have done a lot for me without knowing me! fortunately,I
consider myself a fine and decent fellow,I hope that your friend who had
some problems is Ok and in good spirit! Shall the sound of total victory
bless our soul forever!...Hell with anguish! feel free to use some of my
stuff,free of charge,(only for you!) and let me know if you want better
photos or lasers,I will comply gladly.

Have a most creative and pleasant day!

Have(also),a day of unbearable joy!

Be utterly good to your writing and your health!

Daniel Hanequand,born in the city of lights.

I knew that some of the writers we've featured in Aphelion had sold their work- through their own efforts -but this is the first time I can recall that someone got an agent because the agent was one of our readers. Feels good to have helped out, even if I didn't know it at the time.

Other news; This is our Space Opera contest issue- all the short stories in this issue are entries in the contest. There are eight finalists and two semi-finalists plus some special presentations by the staff that are in the spirit of the contest, but not entries. Our top three finalists will each recieve a custom award graphic to place in their own webpages. The awards were done by myself, with input from all of Aphelion's staff. Check out the contest entries and congratulate our winners.

Thanks for your time.


Tell us what you think in Aphelion's Lettercol!

I'd like to thank those of you who have sent e-mails or signed into the Lettercol 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
Kim Holec
Poetry Editor
Jeffrey Williams
Production Editor/Serials Editor

Serialized Stories

In Arms We Trust -Part 5 of 5-
By Vasilis Adams Afxentiou
It is not because other people are dead that our affection for them grows faint, it is because we ourselves are dying.
Maya -Part 7-
By A.D. Jackson
The mystery of Maya continues...
Superhero Nation-Part 2 of 5-
By Mike Tanier
It's 2049, and any kid can call himself a superhero if he's willing to spend a little money and break a few laws.
The Journeyman -Part 2 of 5-
By Allen Woods
Nothing in their lives could ever have prepared the citizens of Ithica, GA for the Journeyman.

Novellas and Novelettes

By Dan L. Hollifield
Alternate dimentions, aliens, flying saucers, time travel, a titanic space battle-
this story is my contribution to the Space Opera Contest- With new illustrations
by the author. This story originally ran in the last two issues of Dragon's Lair and
the first four issues of Aphelion. Presented here as a novella, the first two chapters
have never before been available to Aphelion's readers.

Read more great stories from the Aphelion Archives

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


Here are the finalists in the Space Opera contest. Everyone worked very hard on their stories- as you can tell when you read them. The judging was difficult because of the consistant high quality of the individual entries. The winners are indicated by their award banners. You know, I can't help but feel that the spirit of E.E. "Doc" Smith is looking down and grinning at us right now.

Contest Winners

Visit Aphelion Webzine T. S. George
has won
Space Opera
Story Competition

Grif's Secret

Visit Aphelion Webzine John A. Gilmore
has won 2nd place
in Aphelion's
Space Opera
Story Competition
The Loki Must Die

Visit Aphelion Webzine Atk. Butterfly
has won 3rd place
in Aphelion's
Space Opera
Story Competition

Think Slowly

The Finalists

These are in no particular order, by the way.

  • The Tanneh Death Chop
    By Kate Thornton
    Dan Holly sighed when she finished her story. "Why?" he must have been asking himself. "Why, of all the gin joints in the galaxy, did she have to walk into mine?" Aloud he said, "Jeeze, Baby Girl, I think this whole thing is maybe my fault."
  • The Face of the Enemy
    By David Blalock
    The Mogrum are coming and only the dedicated fighter pilots of ERCOM can stop them before they reach Earth. Some of them, however, may be just a bit too dedicated.
  • Grif's Secret
    By T.S. George
    As a pilot the best that could be said about him was that he was reckless. But Grif had one advantage..... he was as cunning as a shithouse rat.
  • The Loki Must Die
    By John A. Gilmore
    Armed with the Piscean Death Ray, the dreadnought Loki was bound for Earth and inevitable victory. But the "fish" hadn't counted on HEIDI, or her secret weapon, Florida Tafoya.
  • Othello Jones
    By McCamy Taylor
    After the Bolean war, the Syllians were grateful and their queen was beautiful and willing. Perhaps it was time for Jones to settle down
  • How Percy and Mercy Nuked Fairhaven
    By Frederick Rustam
    Inwardly, Percy and Mercy shrank from the idea of killing thousands, instead of their usual quota of one or a few. Outwardly though, they seemed unfazed by SpecOps' awful scheme.
  • Think Slowly
    By Atk. Butterfly
    How do you fight an enemy who has extra-sensory perception? Read on…
  • Wardog Refresh
    By E.A. Gundlach
    Wardog never quits. And if you kill him, it just makes him mad.
  • Semi-Finalists

  • Starfall
    By Mark E. Cotterill
    To Lyndon Mond, the job of Space Ranger seemed comfortable enough in these peaceful times. When contact was lost with sentinel station Gotlig-Prime, he was sure it was just a failed computer component...
  • The Book
    By David Allan
    "Within the book lay secrets that mankind had never been meant to know. And I was determined to learn them all. As I sat in my study, completely enthralled by the text before me, all hell decided it was just about time to break loose."

  • Poetry and Filk Music

  • Kelley's Bones
    By Brenda Sutton

  • Rememberance
    By Kim F. Holec

  • The Death of Sirti
    By Michael Carl Musser

  • The Deaf Do Not Hear the Drums
    By Iain Muir

  • 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 ark Stanley, and Steve Troop
    Did he say daily? Yep, Aphelion is proud to feature two of the funniest comic strips on the Internet, Mark Stanley's "Freefall" and Steve Troop's "The Melonpool Chronicles". Bookmark this page, you don't want to miss a single installment!

  • The Aphelion Interview: Allen Woods
    by Jeff Williams
    Jeff Williams sits down with one of Aphelion's most popular writers, to discuss his life and work.
  • Wayward Musings
    by Kim Holec
    Kim shares her thoughts on the new Star Wars film. Warning: Contains Spoilers You may want to read this after you've seen the new film, if you care about that sort of thing.
  • Double Wide
    by Jim Parnell
    A Day in the Life - For Those Who Would Be Bubba WARNING: Contains language.
  • A Word In Your Ear
    by Rob Wynne
    Rob Wynne remembers DeForest Kelley, who passed away in July...
  • The Listening Room
    by Rob Wynne
    This is a new column which will feature reviews of new filk albums and other musical releases of interest to SF fans. It will appear as often as Rob receives new material. This month: The new Kathy Mar album from Prometheus Records.

  • Excentrivial Musings
    The Aphelion Cartoon Page.

  • Dan Hollifield reviews:
    Coming soon- a new review. I promise.

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

  • 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.

  • P.S.

    In case anyone is curious as to exactly what's been keeping me so busy, I've planed a few webpages that show the progress of my landscaping, interior decoration, and housework. Look for it in my personal pages at Casa Vila. Its the begining of a sort of photographic timeline of my yardwork and such. I don't know why anyone would want to see it, but Rob thought that someone might so I worked it up. Expect it to be updated as I get new film developed and scanned.


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  • Click here to see the Links Page
  • A Challenge to Writers...
  • Short story submissions; Cary Semar
  • Serialized stories: Jeff Williams
  • 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.
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    Back Issues:

    Instead of the back issues the banner below now takes you to the Archives-where all our past stories are available for you to read.

    I've decided to ditch the back issues in favor of the Archives. The Archives are easier to use and can be indexed by author or story title. Hopefully this will ease the task of finding a favorite story. We may start a page of our past cover art, if there is a call for it. Thanks for your readership for without you, nothing we do has any meaning.

    Aphelion Back Issues!
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    Aphelion Webzine is 1997-99 by Dan L. Hollifield