Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Editor's Thoughts: "The Time It Happened"

Sometimes themes just have a way of imposing certain genres on an anthology. Third Flatiron's previous anthology skewed heavily toward fantasy and epic themes. In contrast, this edition, which calls upon the theme, "The Time It Happened," is almost entirely hard science fiction. We asked for tales that evoke an event that everyone remembers, or certainly would remember if it were to actually happen.
In sifting submissions we were pleased to receive a number of time-tinkering** stories, including a return of favorite character Dr. Leon Prinz in Martin Clark's intriguing alternate history recounting of the Apollo 11 mission in "False Footfall."
As every writer knows, it's well nigh impossible to get a tin foil hat story published, but you'll be glad to know we're publishing not one, but two! Ellen Denton's "Stilled Life" nicely complements Clark's offering. Did you know that William Safire once wrote a speech for President Nixon in case the astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin got marooned on the moon? The excellent cover by Keely Rew shows an angry Neil Armstrong about to school the clueless Nixon.
Humans may have some exciting future events to look forward to as they reach for the stars, as in Richard Mark Ankers' "Armada of Snow," Evan Henry's "With Gilded Wings," and Jason Lairamore's "Kin Carriers."
We couldn't leave out Sputnik, of course. Thomas Canfield spins an engaging tale about who really won the space race in "Puppy Love."
There's a healthy helping of sobering "what-if" scenarios, including "Net War I" by Elliotte Rusty Harold, "Going Viral" by Dan Koboldt, and "Good to the Last Drop" by Wendy Nikel.
With the passage of time come memories, which can be either heartbreaking, as in Atar Hadari's "Lincoln's Watch," or heartening, as in Larry C. Kay's "What Was Lost."
Anchoring the collection is "A Rock in the Air," an affecting tale about a man who is thrown forward in time by the explosion in Hiroshima and his ultimate decision to return home to be with his people.
Our flash humor offerings, "Blargnorff Industries New Employee Handbook Human Edition" by Dana Schellings, "The Zzzombie Apocalypse" by Mark Hill, and "Xenofabulous" by Amanda C. Davis," show the importance of proper behavior and attire as well as a good work ethic.
"The Time It Happened" proudly showcases an international group of new and established speculative fiction authors, who help us recall events as they could only happen in the mind's eye.
It's available on Amazon and Smashwords.
**If any of you cosmology buffs might be wondering if time is real or simply a construct of the human mind, we recommend a Guardian review of the Unger and Smolin book, "The Singular Universe and the Reality of Time," by Caspar Henderson.

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