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from Aphelion's featured cartoonists!
The Senior Editor's usual drivel about whatever...
Hello and welcome!
Stop whatever you're doing! Eyes front- pay attention!
-OK people, as you regular readers know by now I don't usually tell you
to do something. I figure that your lives are your own and that its no
one's business but yours what you choose to do with them. That's my
philosophy of life as well as my political view, but I'm going to have
to speak out right now on two subjects that I feel very strongly about,
so bear with me and please forgive me for being opinionated.
You see, last week I found out that a crime had been
committed. Its not much of a crime, true, no one was killed or maimed.
But every reader of Sci-fi was ever so slightly injured about a year
ago- myself included -and I've taken it upon myself to clue you all in.
Have you ever heard of a couple of guys named Issac
Asimov and Robert Silverberg? What? The names sound familiar, but you
just can't place them?
Well, last week I found out for the first time that
they had a movie come out about a year ago. Did you know that? (If you
did, skip ahead to Item #2, this will be old news.)
The crime was committed by the folks who did the
adverts for the film. No surprize, you say? Well, it was to me. These
sorry gets made all of their ads to play up on the stars and the
general plot of the film, and ignored telling us who the writers of the
story that the film was based upon- thus depriving those of us in the
know of a really big reason to go to the theater for this movie. Sure,
the stars are very talented people, but the identity of the writers
would have drawn a heck of a lot more people out to see the film than
just the names of the stars did. At least judging by the box office
garnered by the movie. The studio could have made megabucks by simply
dropping those two names. They chose not to do so and I, like many
others, missed out.
Imagine that. They ignored a sure draw for Sci-fi
fans. And so the movie bombed for lack of advertising- or at least
proper advertising. But you now have the oppertunity to get something
back, as well as see a really great film.
Ready? Alright, here's where I tell you what to do.
Drop everything, stop whatever you're doing, and run,
drive, fly, teleport if you can- do not walk -to your local video
outlet and buy a copy of "Bicentennial Man" starring Robin Williams.
Yeah, him. And you thought that it was just a funny movie about a
robot, didn't you? So did I until I started watching the tape. Then
those two names fairly leapt off the screen at me. Suddenly I knew for
a fact that I'd been cheated out of a major good time. Right then I got
mad, but settled back to watch the film just in case the screenwriters
had done such a poor adaptation that the omission was pardonable.
They didn't and it wasn't. The basic story was called
"The Positronic Man" and the film not only did it justice, but I found
it to be the best film in recent memory- My memory, anyway.
Buy it, watch it, tell all your friends, give copies
away as birthday and Christmas presents. Do whatever you have to do, but
see this movie! 'Nuff said.
This one's directed mainly at America, so if you don't
live here then adapt my instructions to the situation in the country in
which you do live.
Its an election year here in the U.S. I don't give a
tinker's damn what party you support, if any, or what your politics
are. To my mind, that's irrelevant. Like religion, politics causes more
arguements and outrage than anything else on Earth. In short, I don't
really care what, who, or if you support any particular candidate or
But I do care that you choose to vote. You do have a
voice and I want you to use it! Go register to vote, now! (You can do
that on the way to the video store- save yourself a special trip.) Then
go out and vote on election day! There may not be anything that you
want to vote for, but there's sure to be lots that
you want to vote against. There always is, but if
you don't vote you've got no right to gripe about the mess the country
gets into because of your personal apathy.
I can hear some of you right now saying that your vote
doesn't count for anything. Well, it damn sure doesn't if you never
cast it. Do you want someone else telling you what
to do with your life? Isn't it your life? Isn't it
time that you seized the reins of power into your own hands and told
the politicians just exactly what you think of them?
Think about it. If you don't register and don't vote,
you have absolutly no control over what new laws are going to get
passed. Here's an example; at one time, the U.S. Post Office wanted the
right to collect the price of a postage stamp for every e-mail sent on
the internet. Now that one got squashed right quick, but what if it had
not been? What would have come next? Laws governing the content of
webpages? Laws restricting who can have a website? Mandatory websites
that you have to visit? Taxes based on the number
of megabytes that your website uses? The mind simply boggles- There's
no limit to what a government thinks that it can
get away with. And without your vote, there's nothing to stop the
buggers from passing any law they please. And nothing you could do
So if you live in a country where you (?still?) have
the right to vote, get out there and vote! Voting is all the control
that you've got over a government. And governments have to be controled
by the people that they govern, or else we're all just slaves.
Don't be a slave, go vote. Tell your government exactly
what you think of the job that they do. Choose to
protect your family, your loved ones, your community, your country,
your lifestyle. You do have the power, exercise it wisely- don't waste
OK, that's the end of my little rant. Please think
about it. Please vote, the way of life you save may be your own.
Thanks for your time.
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!
Senior Editor, Publisher
Short Story Editor
Production Editor/Serials Editor
Serialized Stories & Novellettes
Anartek --Part 2 of 2-- By Michael Patrick Aiello "For generations the Anarteks had lived apart
from the rest of humanity,
isolated in a far corner of the solar system. Their credo was
creation, and now they had come up with the greatest of them all: the
instantaneous movement of matter through space.
For Earth the news couldn't be worse.
The uncontrolled introduction of new
technologies into the economy had already caused untold misery. More
upheavals would not be tolerated. But for private investigator Angelo
McAuley, the issues were simple: survive. And so when a mysterious
named Samuel Tanner asked him to investigate the disappearance of a
addicted aristocrat, Angelo could hardly say no..."
Sword Is It, Anyway? --Part 4 of 5-- By Ralph Benedetto, Jr. In which Caitlin, Mal and Rivenbark discover
that their theft
of the sword has annoyed some people quite a bit. And there are the
gnomes. Sometimes it just isn't safe to take a little walk.
Best of Us By Tim Nordstrom A historical horror intended to depict the
effect of the first World War on the generation that lived (and died)
in it, "The
Best of Us" is derived heavily from poetry of the period, particularly
that of the English poet Wilfred Owen.
Spawn By Shalane L Weidow Shalane considers this story raw and poorly
written, but with a strong storyline. Feel
free to give her hell in the lettercol (constructive hell, that is).
By Bob Yosco How do you kill a man who doesn’t flinch at
the sight of a fireball, laughs at lightning bolts, and eats demons for
breakfast? If you are a sorceror, you need to come up with a
Orbital Cafe By Iain McWilliam On a dark night, a wrong turn takes two
travelers on a lonely journey into fear.
Updated -- 9-10-00 --
Each of the three links below have changed. Please take note and adjust
your Bookmarks if necessary. The first link below gives you the
introduction to the Mare Inebrium, the banner link now gives you acess
to all of the Mare stories, and the third link now gives you acess to
the Mare Inebrium Online Starter kit. The online Starter Kit will be
updated as often as Mare writers make necessary.
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
by Jim Parnell Jason Phone Home -- You make your own yuck
WARNING: Contains Language.
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
email@example.com 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!
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.