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ISSUE no. 17 - WINTER 2014

In this issue of AE, all of Earth is haunted; a new product goes live; and a strange growth grows stranger.

Meanwhile, Jonathan Crowe reviews Ruth Ozeki’s Tale for the Time Being; D.F. McCourt turns his eye to narrative in games; and AE celebrates its fourth birthday.

FICTION
Ghosts of Englehart

Rati Mehrotra

The aliens were there, of course, but then they were always there, no matter what Mum said. Watching me with their gold-dark eyes, waiting to see what I would do.

 
Welcome to the Launch of the Adder5000

Alexandra Elizabeth Harrison

I am flawless. The most accurate of my kind. The Adder, Inc. Marketing and Communications department has prompted me to say this. [Confidence: 99.9%]

 
A Girl Who Grew Something in Her Armpit

Cathy Adams

When the creature first began growing in Cassie’s armpit, she hid it with short-sleeved shirts and pretended it wasn’t there.

 
NONFICTION & EDITORIAL
Over the Transom: The Voice

Helen Michaud

Most of these “Over the Transom” entries have their origins in trends that I discover in the notes that I make while reading submissions. Many of them talk about common pitfalls in creating a successful story, whether it’s neglecting to give characters enough definition or failing to let them make meaningful choices. This time, I’d like to talk about something that I often say about the stories that we do end up publishing.

 
A TALE FOR THE TIME BEING

Jonathan Crowe

Ruth Ozeki’s A Tale for the Time Being has managed the rare feat of winning acclaim on both sides of the genre divide: It not only won the Kitchies’ Red Tentacle Prize, a genre award, it was also shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize. (Something similar happened this year with Karen Joy Fowler’s We Were All Completely Beside Ourselves, which was shortlisted for both the Booker and the Nebula.) It’s what genre readers would call (and possibly dismiss as) a mainstream novel, but it’s unquestionably a work of what John Clute calls fantastika: It incorporates both fantasy and science fictional elements — on one level you could say that this a novel in which Zen Buddhism meets quantum mechanics — but those elements are put to use in decidedly non-genre ways.

 
Interactive Narrative and WordPlay

D.F. McCourt

This past weekend I had the honour of sitting on the jury for WordPlay 2014, an annual festival that celebrates writerly video games. Video games have incorporated text and prose almost since the beginning (“The princess is in another castle”), but the prevalence in games has waxed and waned.

 

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ISSN: 1925-3141