Size / / /

Content warning:


I tell my friend I am writing a science fiction novel. Oh, like Star
Wars? I love that movie. No, I reply, I am writing a novel.
It has a double plot. A man’s world is ending, and so is his marriage.

I liked that in Interstellar, she says. Does your planet explode?
Are there blasters? You need guns for special effects.
My pages don’t boom, I admit. No flashing lights. Just words.

People like that? What about a soundtrack? That worked
for Guardians. Your book should have a soundtrack. Why not
put out a playlist, tell people which chapter gets which song?

I shake my head sorrowfully. No music either. Too much happens
in a vacuum. You need air for vibration. It’s not fair, she says.
No one has trouble breathing in the movies. What about

the science? Are drives warped? Can you beam anywhere?
I’m embarrassed. My science is fine. No one travels.
They can’t figure out why things don't work. Their best people

get blown up. That’s good, she says. Blown up is good.
The bigger the better, I agree. And the cat? How does it
get saved? Ahh. The cats. Yes, I have them. They eat people.

Her eyebrow lifts. I don’t think it works that way. What about
your hero? Who plays him on screen? You’ll need star power.
I think about that. The man is kind of average. Me, I guess.

You are not attractive, she says. That’s true, I say. That’s why
I’m writing a science fiction novel. A man’s world is ending.
It always is, she says. You need a better plot. I do, I say. I do.



Liam Corley has been writing a science fiction novel since 2012. He teaches American literature at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, and his poems can be found in Badlands, Chautauqua, First Things, The Wrath-Bearing Tree, and War, Literature & the Arts. He can be found at www.liamcorley.com or http://www.cpp.edu/~wccorley/.
Current Issue
29 Nov 2021

It is perhaps fitting, therefore, that our donor's choice special issue for 2021 is titled—simply—Friendship.
The year before this, the girls at school had called her Little Lila .
Pictures of me that day are kept in the ship’s files, sent back to Earth to be used in my captors’ eventual war crimes tribunals.
Perhaps a new urban system of star navigation is needed
This world, covered in spectral ebullience, was tied together by bows of light
Are you a good witch / or a bad witch? / as if there’s an answer earned, inscribed in bubbles reflecting an inverse crown.
When does the pursuit of pure thought, pure idealism, pure escapism become detrimental?
Wednesday: The Best of World SF, Volume 1, edited by Lavie Tidhar 
Friday: Anti-Life by Vee Tat Lam 
Issue 22 Nov 2021
Issue 15 Nov 2021
By: Madeline Grigg
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 8 Nov 2021
By: Allison Parrish
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 1 Nov 2021
By: Liam Corley
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Podcast read by: Liam Corley
Issue 25 Oct 2021
Strange Horizons
Issue 18 Oct 2021
By: K. Ceres Wright
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 11 Oct 2021
By: Lisabelle Tay
Podcast read by: Kat Kourbeti
Issue 4 Oct 2021
By: Anthony Okpunor
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
Issue 2 Oct 2021
Podcast: Fund Drive 2021 Poetry 
By: Michael Meyerhofer
By: Wale Ayinla
Podcast read by: Michael Meyerhofer
Podcast read by: Ciro Faienza
29 Sep 2021
Opening to fiction submissions for the month of November!
Load More
%d bloggers like this: