Aphelion Issue 287, Volume 27
September 2023
Long Fiction and Serials
Short Stories
Flash Fiction
Submission Guidelines
Contact Us
Flash Writing Challenge
Dan's Promo Page
P&E Top TenP&E Top TenP&E Top TenP&E Top TenP&E Top TenP&E Top Ten

Hello and welcome to the September 2023 issue of Aphelion!

I have spent the best part of August dealing with a wonky Internet connection. It's not on my end, rather my ISP is suffering from a load of cascading equipment failures. As soon as they get everything fixed, my service comes backat least for a little while at a time. In the past week alone, I've gotten home from work to discover that we had only had Internet for about fifteen minutes at a time, then no connection at all for thirty minutes to an hour. Lather, rinse, repeat... My wife was quite frustrated, as was I when I tried to deal with the situation. I quickly discovered that the problem wasn't with any of my equipment. The modem was working, the router was working, the wifi was workingthey just weren't getting a steady signal. I could see the connection reestablish itself, then drop, over and over again. Which made dealing with any Aphelion submissions which I hadn't previously downloaded quite the PITA. I'm going to have to start downloading every submission as I see it come in so that I can at least read and edit the stories when I'm forced offline. Now, that said, between Monday and Friday of each week, the absolute earliest I will see any submission is 6 PM US Eastern time. I'm working ten-hour days now, and will continue to do so until at least the middle of October. Same job as I've held for the past few years, just a lot more of it. But, during the last week of October-first week of November time frame, I will submit my official retirement papers. The result of that will be that ninety days later, I will be removed from the company payroll system, thus becoming "no longer gainfully employed." My pension will be rolled over into an IRA account, my 401k will either be rolled over into the same IRAor cashed in, and I will no longer be forced to be awakened by an alarm clock. I'll be getting a stipend from the pension IRA—which will eventually be supplemented by my Social Security. To quote Tom Baker from his final episode of Doctor Who, "the moment has been prepared for..." I have been working towards this for over forty-five years. I am quite ready to shed that particular harness. This old workhorse is more than ready for "pastures green."

The upshot of all that is I will be free to write stories and music, make artwork, do household repairs, go to conventions, and have all the time left in my mortal span to finally enjoy each day I am given. And enjoy it, I will

Now, here is more good news. My first book, "Tales From The Mare Inebrium," will be reissued by Three Ravens Publishing before the end of the year. Better news; it will be a Volume 1, which means that I have already begun writing Volume 2. Three Ravens also has the Tom Darby prequel "A Disposable Man" in the queue for release, as well as "Fly By Wire" and they are waiting on me to finish "The Cat And The Crow"—which will be my first foray into the Fantasy genre. I'm hoping that I will be allowed to do the cover artwork for FBW and C&C. We shall see. Further down the road, I hope to finish the Steampunk novel, then expand "Test Run" and "Diablo Canyon," into full novels, and I have been asked to write the soundtrack to "Life On Cora," an original comic and animated movie being done by an online friend in the Netherlands, Mike Jimmy Lortia de Bruin. Busy, busy, busy!

But first, I have sixteen more weeks of gainful employment to accomplish. One foot in front of the other. Slow and steady wins the race.

And so, now it's time for a change of pace.

The online streaming shows "Stupid O'clock" and "Last Man Standing" have been uploaded live to YouTube as well as several Facebook pages for over two years now. They are basically live-streaming chat shows covering a range of topics, modeled on the types of conversations people have after hours at SF&F conventions. Joe McKeel and I have archives of past shows on our own YouTube channels. Check 'em out if that sounds like something you'd enjoy I've put links in our Features section that will take you to the YouTube archives of both shows.

With all that said, it's high time I shut up and let you get to reading. 

Enjoy yourselves,




Title: NGC 7027

Courtesy: NASA, ESA, Joel Kastner (RIT)