The title, Existence is Elsewhen, paraphrases the last sentence of André Breton’s 1924 Manifesto of Surrealism, perfectly summing up the intent behind this anthology of stories from a wonderful collection of authors. Different worlds… different times. It’s what Elsewhen Press has been about since we launched our first title in 2011.
Here, we present twenty science fiction stories for you to enjoy. We are delighted that headlining this collection is the fantastic John Gribbin, with a worrying vision of medical research in the near future. Future global healthcare is the theme of J A Christy’s story; while the ultimate in spare part surgery is where Dave Weaver takes us. Edwin Hayward’s search for a renewable protein source turns out to be digital; and Tanya Reimer’s story with characters we think we know, gives us pause for thought about another food we take for granted. Evolution is examined too, with Andy McKell’s chilling tale of what states could become if genetics are used to drive policy. Similarly, Robin Moran’s story explores the societal impact of an undesirable evolutionary trend; while Douglas Thompson provides a truly surreal warning of an impending disaster that will reverse evolution, with dire consequences.
On a lighter note, we have satire from Steve Harrison discovering who really owns the Earth (and why); and Ira Nayman, who uses the surreal alternative realities of his Transdimensional Authority series as the setting for a detective story mash-up of Agatha Christie and Dashiel Hammett. Pursuing the crime-solving theme, Peter Wolfe explores life, and death, on a space station; while Stefan Jackson follows a police investigation into some bizarre cold-blooded murders in a cyberpunk future. Going into the past, albeit an 1831 set in the alternate Britain of his Royal Sorceress series, Christopher Nuttall reports on an investigation into a girl with strange powers.
Strange powers in the present-day is the theme for Tej Turner, who tells a poignant tale of how extra-sensory perception makes it easier for a husband to bear his dying wife’s last few days. Difficult decisions are the theme of Chloe Skye’s heart-rending story exploring personal sacrifice. Relationships aren’t always so close, as Susan Oke’s tale demonstrates, when sibling rivalry is taken to the limit. Relationships are the backdrop to Peter R. Ellis’s story where a spectacular mid-winter event on a newly-colonised distant planet involves a Madonna and Child. Coming right back to Earth and in what feels like an almost imminent future, Siobhan McVeigh tells a cautionary tale for anyone thinking of using technology to deflect the blame for their actions. Building on the remarkable setting of Pera from her LiGa series, and developing Pera’s legendary Book of Shadow, Sanem Ozdural spins the creation myth of the first light tree in a lyrical and poetic song. Also exploring language, the master of fantastika and absurdism, Rhys Hughes, extrapolates the way in which language changes over time, with an entertaining result.
Inside and OutTM V.5 – From Here to ETERNITY by J.A. Christy
In the bleak Long Winter by Peter R. Ellis
Something to beef about by John Gribbin
Earthsale by Steve Harrison
Ambrosia by Edwin Hayward
Jekking the Oofers by Rhys Hughes
Luceria by Stefan Jackson
Homo Sapiens Inferior by Andy McKell
Face the Music by Siobhan McVeigh
Degeneration by Robin Moran
The Writer Did It! by Ira Nayman
The Girl in Black by Christopher Nuttall
Hide and Hunt by Susan Oke
The Song of the Sky by Sanem Ozdural
Forbidden Fruit by Tanya Reimer
Precipitation by Chloe Skye
Bird Brains by Douglas Thompson
The Last Days by Tej Turner
The Copy by Dave Weaver
Murder in M-23 by Peter Wolfe