A Webzine of Astonishing Tales
Issue #13. Spring, 2012
As of September, 2019,
the Flurb site's URL is
Albrecht, Ashby, Cha, Deitch, Garcia, Garrison, Hayes, Highsmith, Rucker, Quaglia, Salinas, Watson, What, Worrad!
Issue #13 Online:
[ Or See Ebook Version ]
Jane and the Roadspider
|Seth Kallan Deitch
The Gaon of Chozzerai
Journey to the Center of the Flat Earth
|Ian Watson & Roberto Quaglia
The Invention of Beloved Money
Give Granny a Kiss
A Bigger Piece of Nothing
|A. S. Salinas
Lohengrin & Tanhauser
|Rudy Ch. Garcia
Last Call for Ice Cream
|Cumulative Contents for All Issues|
From the Editor
September 19, 2019
Some sleazebag stole the noble Flurb website's old URL and wants to hold it for ransom. Feh. We've changed our URL.
Old addresses, no good anymore, don't go there, they go to crappy ads:
New addresses, work great, should be stable for a long time. These do not work with www in front.
If you have posted a link to a Flurb story, you might want to change the link. Change anything like
to something like
Flurb forever! Long may it wave. And eternal huzzahs to the fab Flurb authors.
And...thanks to Rudy Rucker Jr. of Monkeybrains.net for doing the URL fix and keeping us afloat.
September 1, 2014
I loved putting together these thirteen issues of Flurb. Getting my pro friends to unveil their more outré works was a kick, as was working with new writers to enliven the field. Flurb was well received, and I like to think it had a good effect on the on-going evolution of modern speculative fiction.
Issue #13 was a high point, an apotheosis for Flurb, and I'm not sure I'd ever be able to do a better one.
Having done an ebook version of Flurb in 2012, I quickly realized that I'd do well to use my new skills to get on the rising wave of self-publication. And this led to me starting Transreal Books for producing ebooks, paperbacks, and hardbacks of my own works.
Self-publishing is time-consuming. And I'm getting older. I no longer feel like I have the time and energy to put together a Flurb. I did the thirteen issues in six years, and that's going to have to be enough.
In any case, I'll do my best to keep all thirteen issues online at www.flurb.net for the foreseeable future.
Thanks for having been part of it. It was great ride. And special thanks one more time to my great authors.
March 27, 2012
Yeah, baby! With much programming and sweat, I've turned Flurb #13 into an ebook that can be read on any ereading device---Kindles, iPhones, Androids, NOOKs, Windows laptops, iPads, whatever.
Mobi (for Kindle) and Epub (for the others) now available for free download at /ebook/
Who knows where this may lead...
March 23, 2012
We've got thirteen pieces for the thirteenth issue of Flurb. This was an especially enjoyable issue for me, and it might be the best issue yet. I received a number of excellent stories from beginning writers, and they were eager to work with me on amping their stories to a very high level.
My story, “Jane and the Roadspider,” is a love story set in that transitional time—around the end of this century—when we’ll be replacing most of our machines with biotweaked plants and animals. I enjoyed placing the story in Louisville, Kentucky, where I grew up, and where my brother still lives.
James Worrad’s “Eye-High,” is a high-speed freaks-meet-aliens blast, with a cyberpunk flavor, and a delicious twist at the end. The story is shimmery and it glows.
Seth Deitch brings in a solid Golden-Age-style tale, “The Gaon of Chozzerai.” This is the kind of story that drew me into SF in the first place. Initially I’d thought the title was in some warped language—I thought of the classic tale title, “The Oofth of Ifth.” The actual explanation is funnier. Deitch comes up with a great science twist for his sense-of-wonder tale, and a haunting evocation of the ultimate library and museum complex that one dreams of.
Leslie What is back in Flurb, with “Counter.” It’s not science-fiction or fantasy, but it’s a disorienting glimpse into an off-kilter mind. Very evocative and moving. I thought about it for days after I read it.
When I saw the title of William Highsmith’s “Journey to the Center of the Flat Earth,” I pretty much knew I’d want to run it. Highsmith lives up to the title’s promise, and brings off a strong riff on Jules Verne’s classic novel, with intriguing metadisorientation at the end.
Yes, Ian Watson and Roberto Quaglia are nasty old men. But funny ones. I suffered through some airport security procedures last week, and it cheered me to chuckle (inwardly) about Watson and Quaglia’s conceit that the airport check-in ordeal may soon include a stop at an enema hut. Their story’s ruminations on the nature of money are clever and thought-provoking—despite the fact that, being far-out writers, these transgressive sages have little direct experience with cash.
Madeline Ashby makes her fourth appearance in Flurb, sharing the prologue of her forthcoming novel vN. “vN” stands for von Neumann, and the stand-alone “Give Granny a Kiss” is about androids living as people. It’s a familiar theme, but Ashby makes it intense and emotionally real. She piles on an escalating series of shocks, and after the tale’s frenzied denouement, I felt a little afraid of Madeline’s seemingly agreeable photo at the end.
Martin Hayes, a Flurb third-timer, treats us to an evocative and archetypal UFO tale. Are the saucers really coming? Enter “A Bigger Piece of Nothing” and see the big aha.
The redoubtable A. S. Salinas returns to Flurb with “Lohengrin & Tanhauser,” another of his Flash-Gordon-meets-William-Burroughs extravaganzas, overflowing with eyeball kicks, gently psychedelic, and gilded with touches of Futurama fun.
The new writer Wongoon Cha mixes visions of Oakland and Seoul to cook up “Procrastination,” a great adventure in a city infested by giant beetles. Are they evil invaders, huntable game, or cosmic mentors? Do your homework.
Andy Albrecht, another beginning writer, has written a gripping story about a pair of Beavis-and-Butthead-type no-goods who get mixed up with a by-no-means benevolent alien. To kick his story up a notch, Albrecht uses the cool pomo move of sampling in material from a mass-market tale of alien terror. A heady mix.
Rudy Garcia’s “Last Call for Ice Cream” is a hypnotic stew of spanglo slanguage, wry and funny, with a special surprise in every sentence, and a renegade view of life in these United States.
We close with SFnal poet Brian Garrison’s return to Flurb. Lovely stuff, Brian. Pure energy for the mainbrain.
As always, if you enjoy the pieces in our current issue #13, please favor us with a friendly remark at the comments link. Our authors need and deserve your praise.
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Issue #1, Fall, 2006
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Issue #9, Spring, 2010
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Issue #12, Fall, 2011
Issue #13, Spring, 2012
* Cumulative Contents
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