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Weirdbook 34 Now Available

Monday, April 3rd, 2017 | Posted by John ONeill

Weirdbook 34-small Weirdbook 34-back-small

Weirdbook editor Douglas Draa shares some good news in his editorial in the latest issue.

It’s hard to believe that we started this endeavor over a year ago. If you look closely, you might just spot a trend:

2015: One Issue
2016: Two Issues
2017: Four issues and one themed annual!!

That’s correct, Weirdbook has gone quarterly this year! As a thank-you to all the readers who made this possible, we will be putting out a themed “2017 Annual” special issue this October. Just in time for Halloween! I hope themed Weirdbook Annuals will become a yearly tradition that everyone looks forward to. This year’s theme will be “Witches.”

Good news indeed! Weirdbook — alongside Skelos, Cirsova, and Grimdark — is leading the recent Weird Fantasy wave, developing talented new writers in its pages and providing a center for this thriving new genre. It’s great to see it thriving, and I’m looking forward to that themed Halloween issue.

In the meantime, the issue at hand offers plenty to keep us busy — 181 pages of weird fantasy and poetry, to be exact. Valerie A. Lindsey reviews each of the seventeen tales within at Tangent Online. Here’s a sample.

Bret McCormick’s “The Demon in the Doughnut Shop” builds atmosphere with Jeff walking through a thick fog to his favorite breakfast place, Schooner Inn Doughnuts. Everything then seems to normalize as Jeff converses with Gracie. When she leaves for a few minutes, reality gets flipped on its ear. Jeff meets a demon who explains what the world really is and the help he’ll need from Jeff in the future. This story has excellent descriptions, good dialogue… just excellent writing and an interesting story…

“In the Gallery” by J. Michael Major tells the story of an artist, Trevor Wallace, struggling to find anyone to recognize his talents and set him on the path to success. After another rejection by an eminent gallery, Trevor meets a talented artist, Paul Gilmore, whose paintings appear to breathe with life. Paul takes the frustrated artist under his wing. Under Paul’s patient and encouraging tutelage, Trevor becomes a better artist and finally sells his first piece. The ending reminded me of the best of Night Gallery and I won’t give it away by saying more.

In Franklyn Searight’s “Excavation,” an odd mound in the middle of Morris Clooney’s yard gradually grows, becoming taller and taller each season. Unable to bear the anomaly any longer, Morris breaks down and hires Robert to remove the mound. He plants in the newly level area, but nothing thrives and the mound begins growing again. Troubling dreams torment Morris and he hires the same neighborhood youth to dig until he finds what is causing the mound…

Andre E. Harewood’s “Persephone” engaged me with the opening sentence and kept my interest throughout. It is a well-written tale of a woman who reluctantly agrees to a marriage that will restore the wealth of her family. Too late, she learns the true cost of gaining wealth for her family. It reminded me of an H. P. Lovecraft story.

Read her complete review here.

Valerie does offer one critique I have to agree with:

I was disappointed with the number of typos and editorial oversights throughout the issue. For example, there were several typos in “A Kiss for the Mirrorman” and “Zhar’s Outré House.” See also page 141, 4th paragraph, 2nd sentence – the glove should be ‘taut’ not ‘taught.’

Unfortunately, she’s absolutely right about the general low-quality of the copy editing. Even Doug’s brief 1-page editorial had errors. Weirdbook is a beautifully designed and thoroughly professional magazine; it deserves professional copy editing.

Weirdbook is published by Wildside Press, and edited by Douglas Draa. Issues are 170+ pages, and priced $12 for the print edition, and $3.99 for the digital version. Subscriptions are currently not available, but you can buy individual issues at Amazon.com and Wildside Press.

The cover this issue is by Tonis Pan.

We last covered Weirdbook with issue #33. The magazine’s website is here.

Our Late March Fantasy Magazine Rack is here. See all of our recent fantasy magazine coverage here.

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