Myths & Delusions • Editorial • July 2015

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Welcome, readers, to the third year of Mythic Delirium’s second life.

We have fantastic fantastical fictions awaiting you in this issue, in which vampires and otherworldly beings consort in the circles of high fashion, witches swoop in from the sea to right ancient wrongs and fates hang on the outcome of a game of chess between opponents a century apart.

Our verses for this issue expand the otherworldliness, adding new chapters to the tales of Oz and The Tempest, granting new coats to villains and secret lives to cabinets, discovering new senses and working hearts.

It’s a wonderful way to celebrate, and boy, are we celebrating here at Mythic Delirium Books!

In May, Anita and I launched a Kickstarter campaign to reignite our flagship anthology series, and thanks to a moving show of support from the speculative fiction community and the incredible generosity of our backers, Clockwork Phoenix 5 is alive!

We’re reading new story submissions right now, seeking work compatible with that special alchemy that’s ours and ours alone. If all goes according to plan, a new phoenix will phase in from the flames, interlock its gears, spread its razor feathers and soar to the sky come January.

(If that last paragraph sounded way over the top, you need to read the introductions I wrote to the first three books in the series, heh, heh.)

Our Kickstarter triumph capped off an amazing month. At its start, my own debut book of short stories, Unseaming, became a finalist for the 2014 Shirley Jackson Awards in the category of best collection. Just before the Kickstarter ended, Bone Swans by C.S.E. Cooney (the first collection from Mythic Delirium Books devoted to just one author) earned a starred review from Publishers Weekly (“brilliantly executed”) and a rave review from Locus (“twisted genius”) appeared right after the campaign ended.

I want to pause her to offer a special thanks to Francesca Forrest, a longtime part of the team here at Mythic Delirium, for generously allowing her young adult indie novel Pen Pal to be part of our reward packages, and for donating her artistic “bottles for messages” (a message in a bottle drives the plot of Pen Pal) as giveaway gifts.

Anita and I have all kinds of Kickstarter rewards to make, so the rest of our year will be a busy one. (Not that it wasn’t busy before!) Future issues of Mythic Delirium number among those rewards (nice how that works out) but our zine was going to continue humming along under its own power regardless of how the Kickstarter fared. Our October-December issue is not to be missed, with uncanny fictions from Fred Coppersmith, Michael J. DeLuca and Vanessa Fogg, and poems from Shveta Thakrar, J.C. Runolfson, Sonya Taaffe, Judith Roney, Wendy Rathbone, Sandi Leibowitz and Beth Cato, all behind a stunning cover from M Sereno.

If your subscription isn’t current or is about to expire, you can fix that here. Many thanks, too, to those who used the new Kickstarter campaign to subscribe or renew.

A note about the new issue’s cover: Paula Arwen Owen, one of our favorite artists (who created the stunning cover for Clockwork Phoenix 5), took her inspiration from Cassandra Khaw’s “Her Pound of Flesh.” (You will quickly see why.) Any excuse to showcase Paula’s work is a good one.

In addition to the books and zines, we have other things coming down the pike as well, a number of them Kickstarter fueled, such as the second Mythic Delirium anthology, covering issues 1.1 to 1.4, with more stunning cover art from Galen Dara, or my own follow up to Unseaming, titled The Spider Tapestries.

But I’m going to leave you with those hints and no more, because I need to finish up this issue.

 

—Mike Allen, Roanoke, Va., June 2015

 

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