Aphelion Issue 278, Volume 26
November 2022
Long Fiction and Serials
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Aphelion: The Webzine of Science Fiction and Fantasy

Issue 35, Volume 4 -- April 2000

Issue 36 will be online 1st week of May.

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Since January 27th 1997

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

Hello and welcome!

Well... A couple of points before we begin; Last month's editorial got a lot of feedback, for which I thank you all. Its gratifying to know that I can induce readers to think and debate about important issues. Also, one thing I forgot to note last month, it usually was not the administration that imposed registration or confiscation of the means of self-defence that the victims needed weapons to defend themselves against, but a later election that placed into power totalitarians whose path had been eased by the helplessness of their prey.

OK, that's the last mention of the previous installment. Now I go for the answer to your most burning question; "What's that idiot going to rant about this month?" (and if that's the most burning question in your life right now, I envy you)

And the winner is...

Why is it taking so long to make nuclear powerplants safe, effective, and profitable?

Fission reactors are children of the 1940s, this is the year 2000. We should be well into the fusion age by now. (After all, the oil companies are finally going to allow us to have electric, or partially electric, cars now that they've figured out a way to add rapid charger systems to the fuel pumps at the local gas stations.) We've got High Definition TV sets, DVD players, home theater systems, digital satellite TV systems... Why did we not demand research into safer nuclear power plants? Have we turned our backs on nuclear power?

It should be damned hard to find an undeveloped country on Earth in this day and age. Really. What's holding us back? What's taking so long? By now we should have cheap electricity available nearly world-wide. We should have tamed and farmed the deserts, colonized the seven seas and other planets. Hunger should be a fading memory. Disease should be fading too. But what have we got?

Same old, same old.

From the history I've been reading, I get the feeling that things aren't so much different now than they have ever been. Most of us are working ourselves to death just to stay alive. Children still die too young-, fewer than ever, yes -but still too many. Too many people don't have enough food, don't have medical treatment available, don't have a lot of things.

This is the dawning of the 21st century, the only outhouse in America should be an exhibit in the Smithsonian, not a fixture in hundreds of people's back yards.

What I'm getting at is that our priorities need some thought. Instead of getting people 500 channels of TV we might ought to be getting them the oppertunity to get some dinner. People pay money for food too, you know. Somebody needs to be opening up some new markets. But we seemed to have slowed down our desire for the next "golden age" in favor of being entertained.


Perhaps its time to wake up?

Get involved, demand changes, make the world different. Each of us counts for something. When we band together, we can make changes, we can make the world a better place. We've proved that already. So let's do it.

Its about time.

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

In Memory:
A.E. von Vogt
(1912 - 2000)

For more details, please see the in Locus magazine.

Serialized Stories

  • First War --Part 3--
    By David Allen
    In the distant future, mankind has come in direct contact with a deadly enemy. Life on earth suddenly takes a turn for the worse...
  • Hawking's Dawn --Part 3--
    By Ben Stevenson
    The life of Alec Kyte has always been an interesting one. At the forefront of inter-corporation espionage involving the new super-powerful entropy-based weapons systems, he is used to living dangerously and taking risks. But with the latest job, he has taken on more than he expects and, as his colleagues around him begin to have 'accidents', a sinister conspiracy becomes apparent. With enemies closing in, there is only one place to flee - the darkest, most remote region of space known to man. A hidden sanctuary. A Dark Haven.

  • Novelettes and Novellas

  • Eye 4
    By Barry Glick
    "When he woke to the sight of pure darkness, he knew something was terribly wrong. He didn't feel anything. There was no sensation at all. "

  • Read more great stories from the Aphelion Archives

    Short Stories

  • Cell Shift
    By Derek Robinson
    A room with a view is not something you want in this prison.
  • Custom Made
    By Ralph Benedetto, Jr.
    Every culture has its own codes of behavior. This makes it very easy for a stranger to get into trouble quickly.

  • The Portrait
    By Sommer Rae Meade
    The only witness to his crime was a portrait. And the portrait would never talk.

  • Pudgley
    By Linda Kelly
    If you would teach a dragon, you must start when he is small.

  • True Power
    By Jonjack
    Legends are wonderful things, stories passed from generation to generation. But what if someone was deliberately controlling those legends......?

  • The Serpent Does Not Always Appear as a Snake
    By Joseph B. St. John
    No matter how far we advance we advance, people will always be people.

  • Warped
    By David Allen
    Writer's Challenge II: "Frequently, the biggest trouble with time travel is keeping your mouth shut."

  • Darkness in Summertime
    By Django Wexler
    Dad never came with us up to the summer house; he couldn't leave the city. And Mom spent most of her days in town, visiting friends. It was nice, in a way; she trusted us. After all, what was the harm? The woods were safe, the house was safe, there was never any traffic. We didn't mind, because it meant we spent most days with the fairies.

  • "Stay"
    By Jeff Williams
    "If I could stay then the night would give you up
    Stay, and the day would keep its trust
    Stay, with the demons you drowned
    Stay, with the spirit I found
    Stay, and the night would be enough."

    Read the updated Submissions Guidelines
    Aphelion Submissions Guidelines Page

    Poetry and Filk Music

  • Sam's Lament
    By Rob Wynne

  • Midwestern Vamp
    By Mike Rasmussen

  • Song Of A Prisoner
    By Sven Klopping

  • Renewal
    By David Blalock

  • Features

    The Mare Inebrium shared universe project
    I open up my own Spaceport Bar to other writers! An introduction to the project.
    The Mare Inebrium Shared Universe Project

    The Mare Inebrium stories to date.
    A shortcut to the links to all the mare stories.
  • Aphelion's Daily Comics
    By Mark 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 installme nt!

  • Double Wide
    by Jim Parnell
    I'm in the mood for LOVE.....Ok, now what? WARNING: Contains Language.

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

  • - 1\21\2000 - A Challenge to Writers...
    Not a contest, but a series of ideas to spark off a story.

  • 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. I have two new rolls of film shot for this page and expect to update it within the nexw few weeks.


    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:

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    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

  • Excentrivial Musings: The Aphelion Cartoon Page.
  • Dan Hollifield reviews: Coming soon, a new review.
  • 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 1997-2000 by Dan L. Hollifield