News for October 23rd, 2009: ResAliens

Lyn Perry on the new edition of Residential Aliens:

It’s that time of month again! Hmm, that doesn’t sound right. But it does mean that 5 new stories have magicamally appeared here at ResAliens – 4 by new-to-this-zine “freshman” authors and 1 returning “zine-ior” (get it?), Fred Warren. Let’s start with his SF piece, a thrilling, and up-lifting, space adventure. But then hold on, the stories following Fred’s get increasingly dark and disturbing, concluding with a subversive bit of fiction by Jeff Parish.

Ready? Okay!

Headlining this month’s issue is Fred Warren’s excellent science fiction novelet, “Of All Things, Seen and Unseen,” based on the Rescue Sisters Universe created by Robert and Karina Fabian and featured in their anthologies, Infinite Space, Infinite God and Leaps of Faith. The stories in the anthologies are about a future order of Catholic nuns who provide search and rescue services to space workers and travelers throughout our solar system’s asteroid belt. “Of All Things” is a very imaginative and superbly written piece of speculative fiction that I commend to you.

Next up is “The Bee Stone,” a seemingly innocent little magical story by Jasmine Giacomo. This fantasy – told in the fairy-tale tradition – is more than a morality tale, so be careful.

Meghan McVey’s mystical Dune-esque science fiction novelet follows. “The Bottled City” is a stand-alone tale but feels like the first episode in an epic cycle of far-future Saharan stories. Maybe it will be.

One of the darker pieces ResAliens has published is Kristen Lee Knapp’s science fiction, “The Assassin, The Star, and The Steel-Faced Man.” This PG-13′ish tale is filled with intrigue, sexual tension, and betrayal. If you like gritty space thrillers, this is for you.

Finally, that subversive bit of fiction I was telling you about. Jeff Parish fuses fantasy, SF, and horror into a disturbingly humorous piece, “Where the Sun Don’t Shine.” Yes, that’s the title. It is an experiment in stretching the boundaries for ResAliens and isn’t particularly “spiritually themed” (as per my guidelines) but is intriguing, and speaks to the human experience of death in light of eternal truths. In other words, it had me thinking about the story long after I finished reading it.

Thanks for reading and thinking with me.
Your Fellow Alien, Lyn


News for October 21st, 2009

There's a new source for short stories in the Lost Genre - it has been up and running for several weeks now. From the creative team around Jeff Gerke at Marcher Lord Press and Where The Map Ends, we now have Anomalous Fiction. I believe it is still in beta, but all you writers be sure and take a look at this new and different concept. My apologies for not bringing it to your attention sooner - I'm now in deepest darkest Bavaria!

There's an interview and giveaway with Steve Rsaza, author of the new book The Word Reclaimed, at Jenniffer Allee's blog. The giveaway will be drawn this Friday so don't delay!

And check out Greg Mitchell's thoughtful and in-depth look at the question "Christian Horror - is that even possible?" at his blog, The Coming Evil.


Guild Member Spotlight: R.L. Copple

Welcome to our series of ongoing conversations with Lost Genre Guild members. Catch them here on Mondays!

Rick Copple - byline, R. L. Copple

When did you join the LGG? How did you make the connection?

October 22, 2008. I'd seen Frank Creed on forums and kept hearing about Lost Genre Guild. I finally asked him what it was about and decided it was something I would like to be a part of.

What's the first thing you remember that happened in the Guild?

When I jumped in, there was a discussion on short fiction, flashes. The good, the bad, and the ugly.

I challenged everyone to write a 100 word or less flash. Only Alice and myself participated that I recall, but it was fun.

Tell us some good things that have transpired from belonging.

Mostly support and help with marketing. Plus some interesting discussions from time to time. But it is great to have others in the same boat as yourself, who can not only help you, but you can help them.

What's your genre and subgenre? Why do you think that is?

I've done fantasy and soft science fiction, mostly space opera type. I also have a partiality to super hero stories.

I think it is because I find the unusual interesting. Maybe I'm just bored with real life. lol. But I experience that myself, I would rather read about life I can't experience. So, I tend to want to write that kind of story as well.

Do you like to read the same genre as you write? What other genres interest you? Favourite authors?

Yes, I like to read the same genres that I write in. About the only other type of story that interest me is comedy in general, and I tend to like spoofs in particular, but anything that can make me laugh and in good taste is fun to read, watch, or write.

I guess that's why my first published short story was a fantasy comedy: Dragon Stew.

Favorite authors are mostly in past years. Lester Del Ray, Asimov, Tolkien, Lewis.

Tell us about your published work, and where we can go to find out more.

I have a central place on my web site that list all my published works.


You'll find there several short stories, flashes, and poetry that's been published on-line. You'll also be able to see the blurbs, reviews, and where to buy my two published books, /Infinite Realities/ (Nov. 2007), and /Transforming Realities/ (Mar 2009).

What are you working on right now? How's progress?

Several projects. One, the final book in the Reality Series, /The Reality/, is in the editing stages. I'm hoping that one will be ready to come out in 2010.

Mind Game - is a space opera story in the polishing stages. I'm hoping to start finding a publisher for it soon. Jeremy and Mickey end up trapped along many others from Earth into a realistic virtual reality game which is really designed to trick them into fighting an real alien world's war.

Hero Game - is the planned sequel to that, which if I can come up with a good plot, will be the novel I write at his year's National Novel Writing Month.

Worlds Apart - a space opera style novel. This is the first novel I wrote in 2005 which started me down this writing road. I'm currently rewriting it fresh since there are so many problems with the original that I felt it would be easier to simply rewrite it than edit it.

On short stories, seems 2009 has been my rewrite year. I have about four rewrite request on short stories that I'm finding hard to get to with my focus on my novels. Unlike previous years, I've published no short stories or flashes to date. Not much time left!

How has the LGG helped you in your work?

The writing and discussions have been good, but I think the biggest thing is help with marketing and publicity. I don't take full advantage of everything, but the help with reviews and getting info on blogs has been a big help. And making contacts in the business is half the struggle. What better place to make friends that who can help each other get published and then to get the word out?

What are your dreams for the future of Christian speculative fiction, and for yourself within that?

As has been noted before by people higher up than me, the industry is changing. I think Christian speculative fiction is certainly going through an Internet/small indie press renaissance of sorts. The success of those efforts will open up opportunities in the more established CBA as well who have traditionally not been very keen on this type of fiction, suggesting Christians wouldn't buy it. I think we're proving them wrong.

I'm hoping that over time, I can carve my own nitch into this movement. Ideally, I would love to write full time. I know that is a dream, but dreams do come true, and while not easy, it is possible. Until then, I'll keep writing and selling. I figure at a minimum, it will be something in my retirement years to keep my mind active. And who knows, something I write could positively affect someone else's life. Actually, I believe it already has, so in my book that is a win-win situation.

Your best writing tip?

My *best* one. Hum. Probably this. Write. Don't expect to get rich. Write anyway. Don't expect to become an overnight sensation. Write anyway. Don't expect to become an expert writer on your first story/book. Write anyway. Expect to struggle with this for a few years before you really get noticed. Write anyway. If you love to write, do it because there's a story that has to get out. If you are writing, are open to learning, but always keep writing, you'll eventually find your voice, style, and stories that work for you. But you never will unless you keep on writing.

What else are you up to that our readers would find interesting?

Our regional National Novel Writing Month coordinator has asked me to manage a workshop on preparing/planning on writing your novel. It is scheduled to take place at the Pflugerville Public Library (north edge of Austin, TX) on Oct. 21st, at 7:00 pm Central Time. I think there is talk of the library recording it and putting it on the web as a podcast.

Something you reckon not many people know about you?

I used to draw comics and record stories on a tape recorded when I was a teen. Three of those comics that I still have are on my published page listed above. Free bonus material.

I also wrote a Shakespearian style comedy play in High School English class once. I wish I still had that, would be fun to read now.

Your website or social media profile?



Marcher Lord Press Announces Marcher Lord Select

October 17, 2009
Marcher Lord Press Announces Marcher Lord Select
(Colorado Springs, CO)--Marcher Lord Press, the premier publisher of Christian speculative fiction, today announces the debut of a revolution in fiction acquisitions.
"Marcher Lord Select is American Idol meets book acquisitions," says publisher Jeff Gerke. "We're presenting upwards of 40 completed manuscripts and letting 'the people' decide which one should be published."
The contest will proceed in phases, Gerke explains, in each subsequent round of which the voters will receive larger glimpses of the competing manuscripts.
The first phase will consist of no more than the book's title, genre, length, a 20-word premise, and a 100-word back cover copy teaser blurb. Voters will cut the entries from 40 to 20 based on these items alone.
"We want to show authors that getting published involves more than simply writing a great novel," Gerke says. "There are marketing skills to be developed--and you've got to hook the reader with a good premise."
Following rounds will provide voters with a 1-page synopsis, the first 500 words of the book, the first 30 pages of the book, and, in the final round, the first 60 pages of the book.
The manuscript receiving the most votes in the final round will be published by Marcher Lord Press in its Spring 2010 release list.
No portion of any contestant's mss. will be posted online, as MLP works to preserve the non-publication status of all contestants and entries.
Participating entrants have been contacted personally by Marcher Lord Press and are included in Marcher Lord Select by invitation only.
"We're also running a secondary contest," Gerke says. "The 'premise contest' is for those authors who have completed a Christian speculative fiction manuscript that fits within MLP guidelines and who have submitted their proposals to me through the Marcher Lord Press acquisitions portal before October 29, 2009."
The premise contest will allow voters to select the books that sound the best based on a 20-word premise, a 100-word back cover copy teaser blurb, and (possibly) the first 500 words of the book.
The premise contest entrants receiving the top three vote totals will receive priority acquisitions reading by MLP publisher Jeff Gerke.
"It's a way for virtually everyone to play, even those folks who didn't receive an invitation to compete in the primary Marcher Lord Select contest."
Marcher Lord Select officially begins on November 1, 2009, and runs until completion in January or February 2010. All voting and discussions and Marcher Lord Select activities will take place at The Anomaly forums in the Marcher Lord Select subforum. Free registration is required.
"In order for this to work as we're envisioning," Gerke says, "we need lots and lots of voters. So even if you're not a fan of Christian science fiction or fantasy, I'm sure you love letting your voice be heard about what constitutes good Christian fiction. So come on out and join the fun!"
Marcher Lord Press is a Colorado Springs-based independent publisher producing Christian speculative fiction exclusively. MLP was launched in fall of 2008 and is privately owned. Contact: Jeff Gerke; www.marcherlordpress.com.