Science Fiction & Fantasy

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Editorial

Editorial, December 2010

Welcome to issue seven of Lightspeed! Here’s what we’ve got on tap this month:

December 7

Our lead story this month, “In-fall,” by Ted Kosmatka, puts us aboard a ship hurtling through space. Aboard this ship, two men—mortal enemies—await their inevitable deaths, although that means something very different for each of them.

In our first nonfiction article this month, “Black Holes: Starving and Misunderstood,” Dr. Pamela Gay gives us another perspective on black holes. Did you know they’re simply longing for attention, maybe a little extra companionship? And they’ll do whatever they can to get it, so it’s best if you stay out of their way.

December 14

“The Observer,” by Kristine Kathryn Rusch tells the story of a woman separated into various parts of herself. However, there’s always a dominant side. And that side will do whatever it can in order to survive. (Reprint)

In our feature interview with Greg Bear by John Joseph Adams and David Barr Kirtley, Bear discusses writing for Halo; his new novel Hull Zero Three; his collaboration with Neal Stephenson, The Mongoliad; and advising the Department of Homeland Security. (Reprint)

December 21

After reading our third piece of fiction for the month, “Jenny’s Sick” by David Tallerman, you might do a double take when you see your colleague coughing by the water fountain. A seasonal cold, he says, but are you certain that’s the case? Maybe it’s something more serious.

In the related nonfiction article, “Five Upcoming Plagues (We’re Doomed),” Genevieve Valentine keeps us up to speed on when and if we should pull out those face masks. Better stock up—just in case.

December 28

For our final story this month, we present “The Silence of the Asonu” by Ursula K. Le Guin, which allows us a glimpse into a race of people that do not speak as we do, but have plenty of other ways to communicate, some which may be more powerful than our own. (Reprint)

And for our final piece of nonfiction, we have an article by Lawrence M. Schoen, one of the world’s foremost authorities on the Klingon language. In “Linguistic Expectations,” he explains how if we’re ever going to understand alien speech, we’d better ditch our current expectations and start thinking above and beyond the norm.

That about does it for our fiction and nonfiction selections for December, but be sure to also look for our author spotlights, and keep an ear out for our podcasts of “Jenny’s Sick” by David Tallerman and “The Silence of the Asonu” by Ursula K. Le Guin, along with a resyndication of Drabblecast’s performance of Kristine Kathryn Rusch’s “The Observer.”

So that’s our issue this month. I hope you enjoy it. And remember, if you don’t want to wait for the content to be released on the site throughout the month, or you’d just like a handy, downloadable version of the magazine on your favorite handheld electronic reading device, Lightspeed is available directly from our publisher, Prime Books, in DRM-free ePub format, and is also available in Kindle, iBooks, and Mobipocket format from external vendors, or from Fictionwise, which offers a variety of formats.

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John Joseph Adams

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John Joseph Adams, in addition to serving as publisher and editor-in-chief of Lightspeed, is the editor of John Joseph Adams Books, the SF/Fantasy imprint from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. He is also the series editor of Best American Science Fiction & Fantasy, as well as the USA Today bestselling editor of many other anthologies, including The Mad Scientist’s Guide to World Domination, Robot Uprisings, Dead Man’s Hand, Armored, Brave New Worlds, Wastelands, and The Living Dead. Recent projects include: Cosmic Powers, What the #@&% Is That?, Operation Arcana, Loosed Upon the World, Wastelands 2, Press Start to Play, and The Apocalypse Triptych: The End is Nigh, The End is Now, and The End Has Come. 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 is a eight-time World Fantasy Award finalist. John is also the editor and publisher of Nightmare Magazine and is a producer for Wired.com’s The Geek’s Guide to the Galaxy podcast. Find him on Twitter @johnjosephadams.