A Webzine of Astonishing Tales

Issue #9, Spring-Summer, 2010

Callaway, Di Filippo, Guffey, Harris, Kek, Koja, Lupoff, Mitchell, Randall, Roston, Rubin, Rucker, Scholz, Shay!



Issue #9 Contents:

Danny Rubin
The Palmetto Man
Adam Callaway
The Goddess of Discord Lives on Mulberry Street
Rudy Rucker
Val and Me
Paul Di Filippo
The Soft Armada
Robert Guffey
Philip Harris
Insect Girl Climbs to Paradise
Richard A. Lupoff
Cairo, Good-bye
Alex Roston
Technical Difficulties
Jessy Randall
Alphabet Island
Chistopher B. Shay
Mari Mitchell
DarliJ's House of Tea
Kathe Koja and Carter Scholz
Clod, Pebble

Cumulative Contents of
Issues #1-#8


From the Editor

March 8, 2010

Another Flurb emerges from life’s stormy sea.

I’m especially proud to be presenting the first-ever publication of “Palmetto Man,” by Danny Rubin. Rubin is the writer responsible for Groundhog Day, a movie which many people (including me) quite seriously view as one of the very greatest SF films ever made. I happened to email Danny about his work last month, and he came up with this wonderful and previously unknown tale.

The gnarly and subcultural Kek is back for another visit to Flurb. His “Search” takes us on a dreamy, postcyberpunk waltz with the grateful undead. What does it mean to lose a loved one?

Adam Callaway’s “The Goddess of Discord” is a kick-ass example of the Seussian street-surrealism that infuses the finest SF. For his hero against the forces of chaos Callaway enlists...an accountant!

My contribution, “Val and Me,” is based on the first three chapters of my forthcoming novel, Jim and the Flims. Rather than hitting the hard SF here, I’m working a supernatural fantasy vein with stoner surfers in Santa Cruz.

Flurb co-founder Paul Di Filippo is back with some Max-Ernst-like collage work. “The Soft Armada” is a surreal comic-strip in four panels. Happiness is a warm Bessemer converter.

With “Ticks,” Robert Guffey brings us an utterly charming and high-concept take on a certain well-known pop-culture myth. To say more would be to spoil the surprise.

Philip Harris’s “Insect Girl Climbs to Paradise,” gives us a fresh and energetic take on the classic theme of a world behind a wall.

I’m enormously pleased to have the old master Richard A. Lupoff in this issue with his nostalgic and subtly fantastic story about a movie theater, “Cairo, Good-bye.”

Alex Roston’s hard-edged “Temporary Difficulties” shows a guy bringing the bad news home.

Jessy Randall’s “Alphabet Island” is an intriguing meditation on the nature of language, couched in the vintage SF format of a report on an experiment.

Christopher Shay’s Pynchonesque romp, “IntheBeginning™” is a mind-boggling carnival of worlds. It's very difficult to write a fresh and funny story about virtual reality games, and Shay does the job in spades. A wonderful piece, exquisite.

Mari Mitchell reaches back to one of the classic tales for her sweet “DarliJ’s House of Tea.”

And, wrapping it up, Kathe Koja and Carter Scholz have joined forces for “Clod, Pebble,” a wry, bittersweet take on the vicissitudes of author book-signings.


Looking ahead, Flurb #10 is scheduled for September, 2010. I'll be going for a rabble-rousing Election Year theme with an all-star roster. For issue #10, I'll return to the by-invitation-only editorial policy that I used for the first few issues. That is, for #10, I'll be dunning my writer acquaintances for stories, rather than accepting open submissions.


If you enjoy the stories in our current issue #9, please favor us with friendly notes at the comments links!

---Rudy Rucker


Cumulative Contents for all issues.
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Back Issues:

Issue #1, Fall, 2006
Issue #2, Winter, 2006
Issue #3, Spring, 2007

Issue #4, Fall, 2007

Issue #5, Spring, 2008

Issue #6, Fall, 2008

Issue #7, Spring, 2009

Issue #8, Fall, 2009

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