I haven't done this in a while, but I recently heard that when I did, it was appreciated, so I figured I should start up again. Each week (or at least most weeks), I'll highlight two short stories that are in various free ezines or podcasts. I do this for two reasons: one, it gets me reading short fiction, which I've been lax on lately (the only short stories I seem to read anymore are #fridayflash stories, which are great, but I need to expand my horizons), and, two, I want to introduce others to stories they might not have seen. These won't be reviews, per say, but usually just a sentence or two on why I liked the story, or why you should read it. And as I said above, some of the stories are from free podcasts, so when I add those, I'll list both the URL from the podcast's web site, as well as how to find it on iTunes. I hope you enjoy these stories I'm sharing with you. And, no, I'm getting nothing from any of the ezines, podcasts, or authors. I'm doing this just to highlight short fiction I've enjoyed.
The first story this week comes from The Absent Willow Review. It's called Dust by Allison M. Dickson. This was an apocalyptic tale of killer moon dust that's brought back to Earth by the newly reopened lunar landing projects. I would have recommended this one simply because it was an excellent premise that was well executed by Ms. Dickson, but what sealed the deal was that there were a number of great lines throughout the story. I'm sure you'll find your favorite, but mine was: "The whole government threw down a steel curtain on Minos, and that left the news channels to do what they do best in the absence of facts: confuse and scare the living shit out of everyone." Love it! Check this one out.
The second story for this week is a podcast. It's from Escape Pod, and it's Episode 233: Union Dues - The Threnody of Johnny Turuko by Jeffery R. DeRego. You can also find it on iTunes. Search for Escape Pod, and download Episode 233. This one is from an ongoing superhero world created by Mr. DeRego, but it's not necessary to listen to what came before to get into this story. I've heard none of the others, and I enjoyed this one with no problems. It's about a group of teenage superheros who have actual powers, but also star in a TV series based on their lives. The main character of this episode is Johnny Turuko, the ladies man of the group. In real life, however, Johnny has a secret he wants no one to know: he's actually gay and in love with his male teammate. This story shows how this secret gets out, and some of the implications it means for Johnny and his team. Give it a listen!
I hope you take the time to check these out. And when you're there, check out the other stories in these great fiction depositories. You won't be disappointed. Until next time, keep reading and/or writing!