Blog Archives

Edition 29: Notes From the Editor

Welcome back for 2016’s last edition for SQ Mag. We’ve been busy bees the last couple of weeks: the Story Quest Contest has begun (don’t forget to submit); our new submissions are currently open; Star Quake, Best of 2015 has been finalised and submitters notified.

We’re excited to open for serialised fiction again, and we have also opened for general submissions. To ensure that we are getting a mix of wonderful authors previously published with us, and new talent, we’ve got two areas for submission.

While there is a new method in place, which I think will make the whole experience better, there will be some tweaking of the process as we go on—we will make sure we don’t need to take long hiatuses and also so we can get our responses back to authors sooner. It’s part of big ideas, crucial to preparing for bigger and better.

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Edition 29: Book Review: The Never Never Land (eds. McHugh, Akhurst, Berrie)

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 Reviewed by Sophie Yorkston


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Disclaimer: I am friends with many of the writers from this anthology on social media, as our community is not excessively large. However, I bought this anthology and have no obligations for reviewing.

Canberra boasts one of the most cohesive writing communities in Australia, and the Canberra Speculative Fiction Guild (CSFG) boasts some illustrious members. While also incorporating authors from other cities, The Never Never Land anthology boasts some of this country’s best authors, with stories that have a recognisable Australia in them.

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Edition 28: Notes From the Editor

This edition we have a slate of newcomers to SQ Mag. We begin with a conspicuously different and bizarre tale from Rob Francis, Detestiny. I will never look at a prize the same way again. Lo, Behold These Many Gods and Mike Adamson will lead you across the galaxy, to individual truths. In Daemiel Watches, Cynthia J. McGean explores the discarded, the dark recesses of our past human follies and foibles. And speaking of follies, Purity by Les Zigomanis envisions the age-old worry on unplanned consequences. Beth Deitchman bedevils us in La Voshnikaya in a most alluring way.

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Edition 27: Notes from the Editor

When you are such a small team, there’s no room for the slack. We’ve had a delay in releasing due to an illness, and we apologise for any inconvenience or the delay of the thrill of publication for our authors. Both the publisher Gerry and I know that delight, so we empathise.

We welcome you to Edition 27 and a collection of excellent stories. There’s names that our readers might recognise in our line-up. Russell Hemmell brings us relentless alien mercenaries in Green is the Colour of Doom. Rue Karney is making a name for herself in the Australian speculative fiction community and appears here in the delicious fantasy The Butterfly Pie. Well-known horror name Patrick Freivald darkens an attic doorway in Splinter, making sure no one will ever look at an oak in the same way again. We welcome Ryan Cage and his first publication with the excellent sci-fi, Evie and Zeke. Always a soft spot for the robot survival story. Finally we finish with Austin Hackney’s steampunk, The Wrangler, a reminder that the revolution rarely is bloodless. Read the rest of this entry

Edition 27: Book Review: The City of Mirrors (The Passage Trilogy) by Justin Cronin

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 Reviewed by Sophie Yorkston


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After the decimation of the original twelve antivirals, The City of Mirrors continues hot on the heels of the settling dust. Read the rest of this entry

Edition 23: Book Review: The Ghost of Matter by Octavia Cade

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 Reviewed by Sophie Yorkston


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When The Ghost of Matter popped up in my social media feed,  shared by New Zealand writer friends as one of the soon to be released Paper Road Press Shortcuts series, both the title and the hauntingly stark cover intrigued me.

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Edition 22: Book Review: She Walks in Shadows (eds. Moreno-Garcia and Stiles)

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 Reviewed by Sophie Yorkston


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There’s an outdated perception that women, either as characters or writers in the Lovecraftian realms, don’t belong. She Walks in Shadows comes off the back of a quite successful Indiegogo campaign, suggesting that the reading public are looking for this myth to be dispelled.

Editors Silvia Moreno-Garcia and Paula R. Stiles of Innsmouth Free Press looked at the disparity in this well-loved section of speculative fiction and put together a list of authors with ties to Lovecraftian mythos from all over the globe, and a significant inclusion of writers of colour.

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Edition 21: Book Review: Currents of Change by Darian Smith

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 Reviewed by Sophie Yorkston


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I wish to disclose that I have appeared alongside Darian in The Best of Twisty Christmas Tales from Phantom Feather Publishing, and subsequently connected as writers online. However, this review was unsolicited, and I purchased the novel of my own volition. – Sophie

While traditional speculative fiction publishing houses are currently disinclined to publish paranormal romance, this subgenre won’t take no for an answer, so is growing in indie and self-publishing arenas. Currents of Change is a New Zealand paranormal romance self-published from a denizen of the same country, Darian Smith.

Sara O’Neill arrives in the small town of Kowhiowhio on the crest of traumatic life changes. She’s hiding out in her grandmother’s childhood home, there for as long as she needs to be.

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Edition 20: Book Review: Phantazein edited by Tehani Wessely

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 Reviewed by Sophie Yorkston


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When I picked up Phantazein it was the exquisite cover by Kathleen Jennings that first drew me in, knowing what an incredible publishing professional Tehani Wessely is upon seeing her name, and the recognition of several of the contributors.

What I didn’t realise was that this wonderful collection, that surprised Ms Wessely in the way it came together, was the antidote to my frustration at the lack of women’s voices and stories promoted in our genre.

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Edition 18: Film Review: The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

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 Reviewed by Sophie Yorkston


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Another year and another J.R.R. Tolkien trilogy with Peter Jackson at the helm draws to a close with The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies. The final film in The Hobbit trilogy has hit silver screens the world over and merchandisers weep into their poor empty hands.

I will admit, that while I have read both The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, the challenge of The Silmarillion has not been one I have elected to undertake. It is an admission that I am not well-versed on the parts of Tolkien lore that have fleshed out this children’s story (however, I am still a card-carrying fangirl: I have made my pilgrimage to Hobbiton!).

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