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The Monthly Aqueduct

News about all things Aqueductian

Welcome to our news-packed Fall update on what we and our friends have been up to. Do not miss our three(!) new releases, the new issue of The Cascadia Subduction Zone, and a call for submissions, as well as articles, reviews, free-access fiction, interviews, and even a poetry award announcement. Here we go.

by Gemma Files

Cover image of INVOCABULARY$10.00 (paperback)
$5.95 (e-book)
Buy now

Myths and fairytales, monsters and magic, dead gods and forgotten goddesses—these are the subjects that most often inspire Gemma Files' third collection of speculative poetry. By running folk horror symbolism through the filter of contemporary language, she maps the shadow-side of fiction out with spells, curses, confessions and prayers in an effort to show how the stories we tell ourselves pull us headlong forward through history, illuminating all the most unsolvable central mysteries of human existence in words of both faith and fear.

You can read a sample of purchase it on our website and elsewhere.

People Change
by Gwynne Garfinkle

Cover image of PEOPLE CHANGE$10.00 (paperback)
$5.95 (e-book)
Buy now

The stories and poems in People Change illuminate the personal and feminist concerns evoked by classic horror movies and other aspects of popular culture. Mining the implications of figures like the Bride of Frankenstein, Samantha Stephens, and the Stepford Wives, the book explores such themes as family and misogyny. At times horror merges with autobiography, as in "It's a Universal Picture." The women and girls in Gwynne Garfinkle's stories variously seek the gift of flight and the gift of friendship, real and imaginary.

Read a sample now or purchase a copy, available on our website and elsewhere.

The Adventure of the Dux Bellorum
by Cynthia Ward

$10.00 (paperback)
$5.95 (e-book)
Buy now

We are pleased to announce the release of Cynthia Ward's novella The Adventure of the Dux Bellorum, a sequel to The Adventure of the Incognita Countess (published by Aqueduct in 2017) and the next instalment of her Blood Thirsty Agent series.

Intelligence agent Lucy Harker receives the most dangerous assignment in the world—keeping Winston Churchill safe on the Western Front. Despite her unique abilities as Dracula's daughter, she loses Churchill to Kaiser Wilhelm's inhuman allies. If she's to recover Britain's greatest leader, Agent Harker must gain the aid of her Austrian lover, Countess Karnstein—better known as Carmilla. But the notorious vampire is keeping secrets that might doom the British Empire.

Read a sample now or purchase from our website.

What the critics say about The Adventure of the Incognita Countess:

"Ward’s work is excellent, at once a simple adventure story and a feminist text, and it invites readers to reexamine what they think they know about history. Fans of the paranormal, queer romance, and political intrigue will celebrate this short novel"
  —Publisher's Weekly, starred review.

"[G]rand and smashing recursive steampunk in the manner of Alan Moore's League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, and a splendid romp indeed."
  —Asimov's SF, Paul Di filippo.

"It's a story that defies the pressure to be a queer tragedy, and plays with that trope rather heavily, calling to mind the ways that queerness is often an element of the monsters depicted in Victorian literature, but here it's allowed to be reclaimed and celebrated...[A]n impressive bit of world building, and it almost begs for further exploration. At least, I would be more than willing to return to this world of monsters, intrigue, and spies. An excellent read!"
  —Quick Sip Reviews, Charles Payseur.

The Cascadia Subduction Zone,
Vol. 8, 4

Detail of featured art in the new Cascadia Subduction Zone$5 (print)
$3 (PDF)

The Fall issue of The Cascadia Subduction Zone is out. The issue includes a short fiction by Susana Vallejo (translated from the Spanish by Lawrence Schimel), poetry by Deborah L. Davitt, Lesley Wheeler, and Sonya Taaffe, a Grandmother Magma column by Julie Phillips, Karen Burnham's column, and reviews of work by Rebecca Roanhorse, Rachel Fellman and others. The issue's featured artist is Heather Tatarek. You can purchase single copies or subscriptions on the website; the electronic edition is $3 for an issue or $10 for a year's subscription, while the print edition is $5 for an issue or $16 for a year's subscription. 

Volume 8, 4

Flash Fiction
     by Susana Vallejo
Haunted ~ Ceres ~ Reborn in Blood ~ Contemplation ~ The Barn-Raising
   by Deborah L. Davitt 
Racketing Spirits ~ Hairy On the Inside ~ 
Bad Dragon ~ Where Dragons Come From ~ 
White Noise Machine Now With Twelve Settings!
    by Lesley Wheeler 
Ariadne in Queens A ~ Vixen When She Went to School
    by Sonya Taaffe
Grandmother Magma
The Hearth in the Spaceship
“The Shobies’ Story” by Ursula K. Le Guin
   reviewed by Julie Phillips 
Dust Lanes
Short fiction reviews 
   by Karen Burnham
Book Reviews
The Breath of the Sun, by Rachel Fellman
   reviewed by Arley Sorg 
Heroine’s Journey, by Sarah Kuhn
   reviewed by Erin Roberts 
Down Girl: The Logic of Misogyny, by Kate Manne
   reviewed by Nancy Jane Moore
Trail of Lightning, by Rebecca Roanhorse 
  reviewed by Kathleen Alcalá
Featured Artist
Heather Tatarek

Le Guin tribute poetry anthology:

Portrait of Ursula Le Guin smiling at the camera with a wool sweater on.Poet and editor Rose Lemberg is still seeking submissions for "Climbing Lightly through Forests," an anthology of poetry in tribute to the life and works of Ursula K. Le Guin. It is due for publication by our press sometime in 2019:

"I have received many wonderful submissions for CLIMBING LIGHTLY THROUGH FORESTS, the Ursula K. Le Guin tribute anthology, during the open period. I would like to get some more poems to read! Therefore, I am EXTENDING the deadline till December 15th, 2018, 11:59PM Central. Please look at the guidelines and send me your work! 

Regarding submissions I already received: I will respond to everybody who submitted in the next 4 weeks with either a rejection or a hold notice. If you receive a rejection, you will be able to submit again before the extended deadline."

Christina M. Rau,
First Place at 2018 Elgin Awards

Cover image of LIBERATING THE ASTRONAUTSLast September, the Science Fiction & Fantasy Poetry Association (SFPA) announced the winners of the 2018 Elgin Awards for best collections of speculative poetry published in the previous two years. Named after SFPA founder Suzette Haden Elgin, awards are given in two categories: best chapbook and best full-length book.

Here at Aqueduct we're particularly pleased that Christina M. Rau's Liberating the Astronauts (Vol. 55 in our Conversation Pieces series) won in the Full-Length Book Category. Read an excerpt now.
2018 Elgin Award Results:

Full-Length Book Category
First Place: Liberating the Astronauts • Christina M. Rau (Aqueduct Press, 2017)
Second Place: Satan’s Sweethearts • Marge Simon & Mary Turzillo (Weasel Press, 2017)
Third Place: Love Robot • Margaret Rhee (The Operating System, 2017)
Chapbook Category
First Place: A Catalogue of the Further Suns • F. J. Bergmann (Gold Line Press, 2017)
Second Place: Astropoetry • Christina Sng (Alban Lake, 2017)
Third Place: The Terraformers • Dan Hoy (Third Man Books, 2017)

This year’s Elgin Awards had 22 nominees in the chapbook category and 30 nominees in the full-length category, one of the largest years since the awards were first established in 2013.

Congratulations to everyone who placed!

Black Speculative Arts Movement
in Europe

Aqueduct author Sheree Renée Thomas (Sleeping Under the Tree of Life, 2016) recently toured Europe alongside other members of the Black Speculative Arts movement. Eric Otieno writes for GRIOT

Art by Stacey Robinson"Black Panther, the movie, catapulted Afrofuturism and Black ideas of alternative future into the mainstream. For many viewers across the world, the movie was the first time that they were exposed to Afrofuturism in a palpable, experiential way. But as Reynaldo Anderson of the Afrofuturism 2.0 & The Black Speculative Arts Movement contends, 'Afrofuturism and Black futures have been around for a long time, even as they have only began going mainstream in the last decade.'"

BSAM visited four cities —Berlin (Germany), Rome (Italy), Bilbao (Spain), and Birmingham (UK)—, showcasing recent literary and artistic work within afrofuturism and introducing European audiences to the latest discussions around the field.

(Image: "The Harbinger," Stacey Robinson, 2016)

Short story by Celeste Rita Baker
in Strange Horizons

Strange Horizons has a new short story by Aqueduct author Celeste Rita Baker (Back, Belly, and Side, 2015). "De MotherJumpers," about surviving the Middle Passage by creating societies in the oceans, is now available both in print and in podcast form, read by the author herself.
On contemporary poetry

We enjoyed Emily Polson's piece for Book Riot on reading, understanding, and loving contemporary poetry as part of any writer's diet, titled "How I Overcame my Fear of Reading Contemporary Poets."
Timmi Duchamp & Rachel Fellman
on the books they've been reading

Aqueduct author and publishing director Timmi Duchamp (Chercher La Femme) and debut novelist Rachel Fellman (The Breath of the Sun) chatted with the Nerds of a Feather blog about their latest reads. For Timmi's, click here; for Rachel's, here.
(Small) reviews roundup
Cover image of The Adventure of the Dux Bellorum, featuring a pterodactyl over a steamy volcano.We thoroughly enjoyed Liz Bourke's recent review of Cynthia Ward's new novella, The Adventure of the Dux Bellorum, in her Tor.dom "Sleeps with Monsters" column:

"There’s a word for this kind of story, and that word is gonzo. Utterly unashamed kitchen-sink-including adventure fun. (Though Lucy is a British imperial chauvinist, and while the narrative calls her on her hypocrisy, it could do it a lot more and it wouldn’t be enough. And Ward is a lot kinder to Churchill than I could ever be.) This is the modern, feminist, queer version of a Boy’s Own Adventure story, and Ward brings it all together in a satisfyingly explosive and emotionally meaningful conclusion."

Meanwhile, in Locus, Ian Mond has written a very positive review of Timmi Duchamp's new novel, Chercher La Femme:

Cover image of Chercher la Femme, featuring fractal designs over a misty background."L. Timmel Duchamp’s eighth novel, Chercher La Femme, might have been more than 20 years in the making, involving numerous re-writes and multiple critiques, but I can report that the final product justifies the effort....

Chercher La Femme remains a novel that incorporates many of the best aspects of science fiction – a sense of wonder, an exploration of the self, a coming to terms with the alien – woven together with a great deal of intelligence, sympathy and insight."

Forthcoming titles
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