Science Fiction & Fantasy




Editorial: November 2021

Welcome to Lightspeed’s 138th issue!

Many of us who grew up in the ’80s spent way too many hours and far too many quarters in our local arcades. But you don’t have to be a Gen Xer or even a video gamer to love “I Was a Teenage Space Jockey,” a heart-wrenching new story from award-winning author Stephen Graham Jones. Our other original fantasy short story is “Ten Scenes from A Typical Day in the Life of the All-Powerful Despot” by Adam-Troy Castro, if you ever wondered what the world would look like if the ultimate bad guy won. Izzy Wasserstein brings us our flash fantasy piece, “To Reach the Gate, She Must Leave Everything Behind.” We’re also reprinting Lisa M. Bradley’s “Men in Cars.”

Our first original SF short takes us on a wild ride across the universes in Elly Bangs’ “Space Pirate Queen of the Ten Billion Utopias.” Timi Odueso takes us to a world without rain in his new story “Cloudgazer.” Our flash story is “Stowaways” by Andrew Dana Hudson, and we have an SF reprint by Charlie Jane Anders (“The Turnaround”).

In nonfiction, we’ve got author spotlight interviews with our writers, and of course, our team of crack reviewers brings us a selection of book reviews. Our ebook readers will enjoy an excerpt from Brian Herbert and Kevin J. Anderson’s latest collaboration, Dune: The Lady of Caladan.

John Joseph Adams


John Joseph Adams is the series editor of Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy and is the bestselling editor of more than thirty anthologies, including Wastelands and The Living Dead. Recent books include A People’s Future of the United States, Wastelands: The New Apocalypse, and the three volumes of The Dystopia Triptych. Called “the reigning king of the anthology world” by Barnes & Noble, John is a two-time winner of the Hugo Award (for which he has been a finalist twelve times) and an eight-time World Fantasy Award finalist. John is also the editor and publisher of Lightspeed and is the publisher of its sister-magazines, Fantasy and Nightmare. For five years, he ran the John Joseph Adams Books novel imprint for Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. Find him online at and @johnjosephadams.