…is that I’ll hopefully get to see the New Hero’s rather nifty cover in print for the first time, with my guy Pete Stone right there on the cover. (Launch is Wednesday 20th June at the London Book Club, doors open 7 pm for 7:30 pm start, [details]).
Where genre meets literature, where geek culture meets the mainstream, there is Stone Skin Press. With a series of literary anthologies to challenge the boundaries between genres and creative scenes, Stone Skin gathers together writers from such disparate fields as gaming, literary fiction, F/SF, film, YA, comics, and podcasting. Its eclectic author rosters bring colliding perspectives to bear on themes that combine the classic with the surprising.
The first of these anthologies, The New Hero, features a short story by myself, set in an alternate 1988 in which Royal Space Force Space Lieutenant Pete Stone defends the United Kingdom’s new Solar empire in a Cold War that stretches from the frozen moons of Saturn to the burning rock of Mercury. (I previously blogged about this in a little more detail here).
I loved writing the story, and found working with the anthology’s editor, Robin Laws, incredibly rewarding. I’ve been really looking forward to the release of the anthology, so I’m delighted now to announce Stone Skin Press have just announced that they’ll be launching a preview edition of the book.
Here’s what their announcement said:
To celebrate International Short Story Day on Wednesday 20th June, we’ll be launching a preview edition of The New Hero at The London Book Club with Comma Press. Stone Skin Press writers Adam Marek and Janqui Mehta will be there to read from The Lion and The Aardvark, as well as other readings and short films. It’s free, and we’d love to meet you. Read more about the event.
Wednesday 20th June
The Book Club, 100 Leonard Street, London, EC2A 4RH
Doors open 7pm, event starts 7.30pm
Contact the venue at email@example.com or on 020 7684 8618.
For more information on International Short Story day, visit the website, or download the press release.
I’m planning on attending. Would love to meet some of you guys there.
What’s Stone Skin Press? Well it’s a newly launched fiction imprint from well-regarded gaming publisher Pelgrane Press (Esoterrorists, Trail of Cthulhu, Dying Earth), with renowned writer Robin Laws ably1 serving as Creative Director.
Why am I telling you this? For the self-centred and perhaps even egotistical reason that I’ve got a story in one of Stone Skin’s upcoming anthologies, along with such noted authors as Ed Greenwood, Adam Marek, Alex Bledsoe, Jesse Bullington, Richard Dansky, Monte Cook, Matt Forbeck, Julia Bond Ellingboe, and Kyla Ward.
The story I pitched, and which Robin and Pelgrane accepted, was a sort of pulpy, retro, alternate history space opera set in the future the people of the 1950s thought they were heading toward:
It is 1987. With outposts from the frozen moons of Saturn to the burning plains of Mercury, the sun never sets on the British Empire. Peter “Pete” Stone is a member of the Royal Space Force who, together with their allies in the United States Aerospace Force, keep the space-lanes safe from the ever-present Soviet threat. As a member of the RSF’s Special Investigation Bureau, Pete Stone uses his courage, his clear-thinking, and his arrogant conviction in his general superiority to dispatch the enemies of the Empire with a blend of style, brutality and wit.
And if that isn’t enough to tempt you, here are some teasers from a couple of the other (much better known than me!) writers who’ve contributed stories:
More news about which anthology I’m in and when it will be out, when I have it.
1When I throw in that “ably”, I really mean it. Working with Robin as my editor was both an education and a pleasure, so much so that I intend to write a later blog post (“The Benefits of a Zeroth Draft”) describing a little bit about the process.