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Summary, Postscripts, 2007 - The Elephant Forgets
ecbatan
Summary, Postscripts, 2007

 Summary, Postscripts, 2007

The UK-based magazine Postscripts stayed on a quarterly schedule with 4 more issues in 2007, their fourth year of publication. Notably, one of these issues was a particularly thick and handsome hardcover special Horror edition. Peter Crowther is the editor and publisher, and my Locus colleague Nick Gevers is the assistant editor.

The four issues contained some 275,000 words of new fiction, as well as a generous selection of interesting reprints in the special horror issue. There were 10 novelettes and 45 short stories, three of them short-shorts.

Of the novelettes, I preferred Graham Joyce's "The Last Testament of Seamus Todd, Soldier of the Queen", from #10 (Summer, the special Horror issue); and Marly Youmans's "Drunk Bay", from #13 (Winter). Joyce's story is spooky and uncompromising, a searing anti-war story about a Sergeant in the first Gulf War who finds himself trapped on a mine that will go off if he moves his foot -- then he meets a strange Arab with an interesting offer. Youmans's story is also in the horror range, about a girl on a Caribbean holiday who meets an attractive young man and allows herself to be taken off by him on a tour of the island which seems at first to threaten merely sex, but then something more sinister. Other novelettes by Lucius Shepard, Richard Paul Russo, and Michael Marshall Smith were quite good.

Of the short stories, my favorites were Stephen King's "Graduation Day" (Summer), about a young woman uncomfortable at a graduation party given by her much richer boyfriend's snooty family -- and what she sees that makes all that unimportant; Lisa Tuttle's "Closet Dreams" (Summer), one of the best recent horror stories I've seen, about a little girl kidnapped and imprisoned in a closet, and her ambiguous escape; Rosanne Rabinowitz's "96 Tears" (Autumn), about a man's suddenly entered relationship with an odd mathematician; Patrick O'Leary's "The Cane" (Autumn), a curious sort of hommage to Gene Wolfe, about a writer perhaps a bit like O'Leary visiting another writer perhaps a bit like Wolfe, and asking where the older writer gets his ideas; and Paul Di Filippo's "The End of the Great Continuity", far future SF about a man high in the bureaucracy of his society, which is based on everyone taking the roles defined for them, even unto marrying who they are assigned to marry, whose life (and whose society) is overturned by one woman's desires. Other good stories came from Brian Aldiss, Richard Parks, Chaz Brenchley, Allen Ashley, Stephen Gallagher, Mark Morris, and Eric Schaller.

Statistics: 6 of 55 stories, 11%, were by women. (This is a significant increase from 2006, when 2 of 36 stories, less than 6%, were by women.) I would call perhaps 16 of the 55 stories from 2007 Science Fiction, or just under 30%.

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