Thursday, December 31, 2020

Quick Sips - Tor dot com December 2020

Art by Micah Epstein
Just one novelette to close out the year for December’s Tor dot com, and it’s a return to a familiar setting for regular Tor readers. Wild Cards is a fascinating project, a world explored by a range of authors across a long stretch to alternate history. This story keeps things contemporary in that history, checking back in on Rustbelt and his adopted daughter as things in Jokerville get a bit…political. The story might lack some of the big spills that make the setting often rather action oriented, but it provides an interesting mystery instead, and a lot of character work. And before I give too much away, let’s just get to the review!

Wednesday, December 30, 2020

2020 Year-In-Review

Hello and welcome to the Quick Sip Reviews 2020 Year-In-Review. I got stats! Thoughts! Uh...that's mostly it! A lot of this is similar to what I've gone over in my 2020 Awards Eligibility Post, Comprehensive Post List, and Recommended Reading List. But while I've been able to touch there on a number of things that I've done and stories I've read, this is something more like a State of the Blog. I'm checking in to give the final stats of the year (though they'll be updated a bit after posting this as my final reviews come out, probably, over the next week or so). I'll probably ramble a bit as I go, and I might get a bit emotional, but if that doesn't bother you, let's get to it!

Quick Sip Reviews 2020 Recommended Reading List

Hello and welcome to the 2020 Quick Sip Reviews Recommended Reading List. List every year, I read A Lot of fiction this year, and this list represents what are my favorites from what I've reviewed on the blog. Meaning, for this at least, no works are considered that I didn't read and review. Lists like this are always limited. There's no way for one person to read all that comes out. I do what I can, though, and I find a lot of stories that I want to celebrate. Hence, the list!

As of now, there are 104 stories from 98 authors and spread over 34 different publications/publishers. 4 authors (C.L. Clark, Anya Johanna DeNiro, R.B. Lemberg, and Gabriela Santiago) appear twice on the list, and one (John Wiswell) appears thrice. The publications with the most placements are Strange Horizons and Beneath Ceaseless Skies, each with 8. There are far and away more short stories on the list than anything else (with 83), but there's also 7 novellas and 14 novelettes. And, completely messing with my wanting things to be neat and orderly, there were no authors represented on the list with last names beginning with Q, U, X, Y, or Z this year. Alas. 

For ease of use I've sorted the list by author's last name to the best of my abilities, and added little breaks for each used letter. I've included the publication but not the specific dates and I'm hoping the links are all more or less accurate. Not all stories are available for free online, but the links should take you to where you can purchase a copy or similar for those that aren't. I've also tried to put award distinction for length after each, but those should always be confirmed with the publication or author's official statement. I welcome corrections, and you can reach out via twitter, in the comments, or with an email to 

If you want more information on these stories, or want to see my reviews (I have reviewed or will review all of these on QSR), just copy the title and author and past into the search bar of the blog and it should come up. There was simply too much to get to to make comments for every story on the list.

2020 has been rough. But the fiction has been amazing, and has been a lot of how I've coped with...everything. So it is my supreme joy to present this list and honor the stories that have helped get me through these difficult times. A list of this nature can never be fully complete, though, and I do want to thank everyone out there writing and helping to put stories out in the world, from authors to first readers to editors to proofreaders and beyond. Thank you. And cheers!

Quick Sips - Baffling Magazine December 2020

Two more original stories round out the early access stories from Baffling Magazine for the year. Except, actually, I’m thinking that they’re (as well as those I’ve covered since October) technically going to be 2021 releases. At least, the issue is being released on the first day of the year instead of the last, so despite being up on Patreon, I think that makes them 2021 originals. Probably? Whatever the case, the stories are a wonderful (if rather difficult and complex) way to move into the new year. These are stories about bargains, about grim deals. Marrying the Devil. Embracing the illusions of a necromancer. It’s wrenching work, but also just excellent short SFF. To the reviews!

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

Quick Sips - Omenana #16

The first issue of Omenana came out just before I started doing reviews here at QSR (though I did read the issue and covered one of the stories in my new-at-the-time Monthly Round at Nerds of a Feather). Six years later and it’s still a wonderful source of SFF short fiction and a publication I look forward to diving into every issue. This latest is no exception, and the works are a nice mix of epic, intimate, gripping, chilling, and inspiring. I love the magic of the stories, the sharp edge of horror, and the beautiful hope that still clings to the narrowest of ledges. It’s a great issue, and I’ll get right to my reviews!

Monday, December 28, 2020

Quick Sips - Mermaids Monthly Bonus Issue

Art by Nilah Magruder
Following a successful Kickstarter, there’s a new source of aquatic speculative fiction in town—Mermaids Monthly! Edited by Julia Rios, the publication is officially launching in the new year, with a one year planned run. To whet our appetites before then, though, there’s a special bonus issue that has gone out to supporters already but which I am super honored to announce is available to everyone to read for free right now! The issue includes two reprint stories (one of which appears both in the original Spanish and translated into English and which I've reviewed previously), two original poems, a short graphic story, and a bunch of wonderful illustrations and small announcements about the publication. As I reserve the right to review reprints, I decided to exercise that to cover the story I haven’t already reviewed on QSR before. And already the publication shows great promise and a wonderful range. The bonus is available in three formats (the art looking best in the pdf) that are free to download, and I definitely encourage you to check it out. In the mean time, I’ll get right to the reviews!

Friday, December 25, 2020

Quick Sips - PodCastle #655-656 & 658

Welcome to a special Christmas edition of Quick Sip Reviews, where I look at the December short SFF from PodCastle! And, well, it’s really only a special edition because this month is so full of stories that I can’t even really take a single day off. Oops. But I have some free time so it’s time to post, and cover the three new stories out from PodCastle this year, including one that is definitely appropriate to review today of all days. The works look at family, at distance, at bargains and curses. And it makes for a wonderfully balanced reading on the month and just a fantastic way to end out 2020 for the publication. To the reviews!

Thursday, December 24, 2020

Quick Sips - Augur #3.2 [part 2]

Okay, so the latest issue of Augur is...big! Having just covered the first half of it, I would probably have waited to tackle the second half until next month. But as this is my last month doing these kinds of reviews, I’m going for it. Three short stories, four poems, and a graphic story all round out the issue, and it continues to be a complex and at times fairly grim collection. Like the first half, there are themes of loss and cultural destruction, the pressures of capitalism and colonialism. But there’s still some hope, and even a bit of fun, and I appreciate the varied ways the issue treats trauma and the decision to make change, to act in the face of corruption. There’s a lot to get to, so let’s get to the reviews!

Wednesday, December 23, 2020

Quick Sips - Augur #3.2 [part 1]

Art by Lorna Antoniazzi
I have been eagerly dreading the end of December for a number of reasons. Both because of the change it will bring and because I was suspecting that the year that kept on giving wasn’t going to give up without one last go. And I’m pleased to say I was right, as there are a few big releases that I probably would have broken up over a few months that I’m not going to do my best to fit in immediately. First out of the gate is Augur, with an absolutely packed issue featuring seven stories, eight poems, and a graphic story. That’s a lot, and I’m covering the first half of the issue today. It’s...well, it something of a heavy bunch of works, focusing rather sharply on loss, on conflict, on climate change, on cultural destruction. It’s not an easy issue to read, but it is an easy issue to like, and there’s tons of great works that I will get right to reviewing!

Tuesday, December 22, 2020

Quick Sips - Beneath Ceaseless Skies #319

Art by Avant Choi
The penultimate issue of Beneath Ceaseless Skies that I’ll be covering in depth brings two stories about cities. Cities that couldn’t be more different from each other, but cities all the same. And the decisions that people make in leaving, or approaching those cities. In one, the city is complicated by a spell and a grim bargain. In the other, the city is a living being, able to long and to love. The pieces find the characters weighing their options, deciding whether to take the safer route or strike out into the unknown. It makes for a fascinating issue, and I’ll get right to the reviews!

Monday, December 21, 2020

Quick Sips - Diabolical Plots #70

Art by Joey Jordan
December brings two stories to Diabolical Plots that explore characters trapped on a planet for an extended period of time, waiting for their extraction. For one, their time is more on purpose, as a spy sent to gather intelligence on a possible robot insurrection on Earth. For the other, their time comes as a result of a crash, and their time is spent trying to figure a way out of a further confinement. In both, the characters find themselves fond of beings they meet on their respective planets. For one, small music-loving creatures who are their only companions…well, mostly. For the other, a cat who doesn’t want to let them leave…alone, at least. For both people, humans stand as complications to their plans, but are ultimately rather unnecessary to their happinesses. To the reviews!

Friday, December 18, 2020

Quick Sips - Strange Horizons 12/07/2020 & 12/14/2020

I’m winding my way toward my final continuous comprehensive review of Strange Horizons. It’s…I have a lot of emotions about it, because Strange Horizons was I think the very first publication I regularly followed. The first I submitted work of my own to. I’ve reviewed every issue either here at QSR or when I reviewed at Tangent since November 2014. In that time I think it has been my favorite short SFF venue, going purely on how many of its works have ended up on my recommended reading lists. I am still definitely going to follow this publication, which has become a leader in exactly the kind of short SFF I want to read more of. It has pushed SFF in translation, has championed special issues, and has generally just been the kind of venue that embodies the work I love seeing in the field. These issues is no different, offering up a pair of stories and poems that shine with their creativity and heart. They are complex, they are beautiful, and I will with a flurry of conflicting emotions, get to my reviews!

Thursday, December 17, 2020

Quick Sips - Nightmare #99

Art by Marko Stamatovic / Fotolia
I continue to be impressed with the way that Nightmare Magazine has been pairing original stories in their issues, as December brings two works dealing with the bonds of sisters. Bonds that are cut short. By tragedy. By loss. And that provoke the remaining sisters in some difficult, profound, and unsettling ways. The stories are grim and they are creeping, complicating relationships that the survivors form and have, pushing them into perhaps dangerous situations, and always bringing them back around to the loss they’ve suffered. It’s a strong and resonating issue that works even better than the sum of its parts. To the reviews!

Wednesday, December 16, 2020

Quick Sips - Uncanny #37 [December stuff]

Art by Julie Dillon
Uncanny Magazine started around the same time that I got into reviewing. I have read every issue, and reviewed all but the very first one. So the bittersweet train keeps right on moving along as I come to my final comprehensive review of the publication’s original fiction and poetry. The works are strong, dealing a lot with the ways people sacrifice themselves, bend themselves, go without because they feel they should, because they think it’s right. And’s not. Not right for some people to give up their hopes and dreams for others, especially when that’s taken for granted, perhaps forced. The stories look at the difficulty of healing, of making space for yourself and your needs, of recognizing damage done, trauma, and starting the healing process. It’s another excellent issue from the publication, and I’m happy that I can go out on such a high note (though I will keep right on reading the publication, and my coverage won’t exactly end, just shift a lot). To the reviews!

Tuesday, December 15, 2020

Quick Sips - Clarkesworld #171

Art by Claudio Pilia
About six years ago, the first review to appear on Quick Sip Reviews covered Clarkeworld #100. Now, I’m covering Clarkesworld #171. So…it’s something of a moment for me. The issue brings the normal focus on science fiction, but also manages to weave a theme of home throughout the seven original stories. Home is something that means very different things to different people, and the works explore those definitions, those ideas, those realities through the lens of fiction. It’s not the happiest of issues (which I note only to say that if the publication wanted more happy submissions I’d recommend first publishing happier works) but a rather hauntingly beautiful bunch of stories. To the reviews!

Monday, December 14, 2020

Quick Sips - GigaNotoSaurus December 2020

December brings a story of space, space poachers, and women dealing with trauma through violence to GigaNotoSaurus. And okay, not just violence, but rather by forming a chosen family of people willing to risk their lives to stop a deadly exploitation and protect those who voices will the space between stars with song. The story is beautiful and moving, tense and action-packed, with a touch of tragedy but a build toward something transforming and wonderful. And before I give too much away, let’s get to the review!

Friday, December 11, 2020

2020 Awards Eligibility Post - Charles Payseur and Quick Sip Reviews

2020 has been something of A Year. For me personally, it’s had a lot of ups with the downs, and through it all I’ve been pushing to complete the sixth year of continuous short fiction coverage here at Quick Sip Reviews while also running content on my Patreon and abroad. And so as the year comes to a close, I find I have done a lot I am incredibly proud of, and that I want to share through this Awards Eligibility Post.

First and most, I am eligible for...

The Hugo Awards: Fan Writer - Charles Payseur
The Hugo Awards: Fanzine - Quick Sip Reviews, ed. Charles Payseur
umm...anything else that awards reviewing/fan work/blogging?

My contributions to the field are most evident right here, on Quick Sip Reviews, where for the sixth year in a row I have provided comprehensive reviews of original fiction and poetry of a great many genre publications. For ease of use, I have set up a page that has collected links to all of my posts put out this year, which lists all of the different publications I’ve covered. All told, I’ll have written more than 900 individual reviews on Quick Sip Reviews, and a whole lot more if you include the 100+ reviews I’ve done as part of my Sip of the Week coverage, on Goodreads, and elsewhere. I’ll have also run a number of other features, from interviews to personal essays to drunk explorations of nostalgia

2020 has been a year to leave everything on the field, and I’m still sprinting toward the finish line. I have some big posts yet to come, including my year-in-review and recommended reading list. And while there are some big changes coming that might decrease my overall reviewing/fan writing in 2021, 2020 has probably been my most prolific. I would be honored and grateful for whatever attention you have to spare with regards to awards this year. Thank you.

- Charles Payseur

[fwiw and for transparency sake. While first and most a fan, I have been paid for the Strange Horizons roundtable I participated in that is linked on the comprehensive link post, and I do run a Patreon, where some of the content is for paying patrons only. Further, the Medium articles (the Suikoden ones) were part of whatever system they use that can be monetized and I have made very small amounts of money on that. Cheers] 

Quick Sips - Flash Fiction Online December 2020

It’s another bunch of endings at Flash Fiction Online this December. First, it’s the end of the year, and the stories deal with feelings of winters, of heavy atmospheres, bleak realities, and for all that a warmth as people find people through their sorrows and stresses and move toward more hopeful futures. The second ending is that longtime editor Suzanne Vincent is stepping down. And while I have full faith in incoming editor Wendy Nikel, it’s still a moment to thank Suzanne Vincent for the years of amazing stories and wish her all the best in the future! Last, it’s another publication that I have reached the end of my full reviews for. I’ve quite enjoyed FFO and will definitely continue to read, even if I am no longer doing these complete review posts. So long, and thanks for all the flash! Cheers!

Thursday, December 10, 2020

Quick Sips - Beneath Ceaseless Skies #318

Art by Avant Choi
The latest issue of Beneath Ceaseless Skies is not afraid to get grim. Both stories are heavy tragedies, where torture is not uncommon and where both main characters find themselves drawn in directions they’re not supposed to go. One toward a lover it’s illegal to be with. Another toward a sea she’s been forever denied. Both of them finding ways to get around the restrictions, but both of them also paying a terrible price for it. These are not easy stories, and not cheery ones, for all they are linked by people reaching for love and belonging, finding only the rushing release of water and sorrow. So let’s get to the reviews!

Wednesday, December 9, 2020

Quick Sips - The Dark #67

Art by grandfailure
December brings more to a close than just the year at The Dark Magazine. It also represents the final issue with the editorial input of Silvia Moreno-Garcia, who has been co-editor for a few years now. I’m trying hard not to think of it as a loss, as her participation on editorial has in my opinion led to a stellar few years, where the magazine has been competitive in terms of quality with any publication out there (at least going by the number of stories that have landed on my recommended reading lists). And while this doesn’t necessarily mean that without her there the quality is going to slip, what I do know is that I’ve greatly appreciated what she’s managed to do there, the stories that authors have trusted her with to bring out into the world. Especially with a venue like this one, where the stories are so often grim and difficult, I find that trust is often an important thing, and I can only hope that the level of trust authors have in the publication to handle their stories compassionately and professionally will not falter. At the very least, I would like to thank Silvia Moreno-Garcia for her work and for the amazing range of stories she’s help put out, and to wish her all luck in future endeavors. It’s another bittersweet moment as well, as this will be my final complete review of an issue from the publication (though I will definitely still be reading). Luckily, it’s an extra-big issue in terms of content, with four originals, most of them spinning out from and taking place in Nigeria. So let’s get to the reviews!

Tuesday, December 8, 2020

Quick Sips - Fantasy #62

Art by grandfailure/Adobe Stock Image
In some ways it feels too soon to close out my full reviews of Fantasy Magazine, the publication only having relaunched last month. But I’ll still very much be covering the publication, which in that short a time has already shown itself to be a wonderful source of fantasy short fiction and poetry. December brings four short stories and two poems into the world, and the works are varied and interesting, dealing with space, with anxiety, with coping. The characters find that their situations seem to be pressing in around them, and they have to decide if they’re going to push back, break out, or embrace the squeeze. So yeah, to the reviews!

Monday, December 7, 2020

Quick Sips - Lightspeed #127

Art by Grandeduc / Adobe Stock Image
So this issue of Lightspeed Magazine begins my December coverage here at Quick Sip Reviews. As 2021 is bringing changes to the way I review, this is the final issue of Lightspeed that I will be reviewing with this amount of depth. I will still be reading the issues and engaging with the works, reflecting on them and my readings. But it’s still a somewhat emotional moment for me, after six years of continuous full coverage of the original stories, to reach this moment. Luckily, it’s a powerful issue to close on, looking at the nature of dreams and reality, stories and lies, and the truth in all of the above. The works are interesting and present a range of worlds where people are struggling against violence, corruption, and the threat of being consumed. These aren’t by and large happy stories, but they are provocative and rich in meaning and artistry. So, without further delay, my last (for now at least) full review of an issue of Lightspeed Magazine!

Friday, December 4, 2020

Quick Sips - Strange Horizons 11/30/2020

Art by Victor Bizar Gómez
I’m not one hundred percent sure what to do with this issue of Strange Horizons, which originally had a publication date of November 30 on it and now has December 1 (and it actually has both now, depending on where you look). Because I started it when it was November 30, I’m just going to keep that for now and decide later what to do about. It’s not the important thing about the issue, anyway. The important thing is that this is an ENORMOUS issue of Mexican SFF, featuring seven(!!!) short stories and three poems! The works are amazing and amazingly diverse, from intimate sci fi about algae, loss, and life on distant worlds to a person who just really wants to fuck a semi-gelatinous alien, the works are at turns complex, charming, and difficult. They are also always rewarding, and before I get to busy gushing about them here, let’s get to where I can gush about them in the individual reviews!

Thursday, December 3, 2020

Quick Sips - PodCastle #654

Sneaking in before the ending of the month, PodCastle released a single new original in November. And it’s a delightful dive into retro video games, into the fates of two monsters who start out life as a random encounter, expected to flare briefly in the player’s grind to higher levels. Instead, they end up leveling up themselves, and finding that they want more than just the tile they were assigned. The piece is interesting and deep, looking at games, at relationships, at fandom, and at stories. And I’ll get right to my review!

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Quick Sips - Tor dot com November 2020

Art by Red Nose Studio
November brings two short stories and a novelette to Tor, and a sense that each is playing with history in some interesting ways. The first is historical fantasy, looking at a past where vampires not only exist, but must police their own in the face of certain corruptions. Another looks at a world touched by the strange and otherworldly, a history turned familial when one character learns of their own connections to the sea, and to the beyond. And the final story deals with alternative history, with increasingly drastic attempts to change something that seems so small and simple, except that nothing is small or simple, everything large in the lens of humans lives. So yeah, to the reviews!

Tuesday, December 1, 2020

Quick Sips - Lackington's #22

Art by Kat Weaver
The latest issue of Lackington’s is out now and the theme for the issue is Archives. Now, like all themes at Lackington’s, things are often straightforward. Yes, some of the stories feature literal archives and collections. Museums and academic centers. Tomes and texts and all the things you might expect to find on dusty shelves preserved in time. But there are archives here that go beyond those, that jump out of the neglected shelves. Archives of people, of languages both living and dead, of refuges from hungry gods, of whole worlds and people finding ways to catalog and preserve themselves through time and space. The works are often deep and heavy, touched by poetry and more than a bit of tragedy. But there is hope to be found as well, and occasionally a spot of fun. The works cover an array of genres and styles, framing devices and voices, and they themselves represent an archive. An archive of archives, in a meta turn as only this publication can give. To the reviews!

Monday, November 30, 2020

Quick Sips - Fireside Magazine #85

The November issue of Fireside Magazine is out and…well, contains three short stories and two essays, plus now a number of apologies and announcements coming on the heels of the decision of the publication to have a white man record the audio for the entire issue which included, among others, the personal essay of a Black woman that was in part about her specific lens as a Black woman, and which…was not handled well. And this has opened up a larger conversation about audio recordings, racism, and editorial responsibility which has resulted, among other things, in the stepping down of the editor-in-chief at Fireside. All that said, and not to diminish the harm done, the fiction in this issue is amazing, and I’ll get right to my reviews!

Friday, November 27, 2020

Quick Sips - Strange Horizons 11/16/2020 & 11/23/2020

The latest two issues of Strange Horizons bring one short story and two poems out for our reading enjoyment. The story is heavy, and mind the content warnings on this one, but it’s also a lovely mix of mystery and horror as a young woman looks for clues about her brother’s disappearance. The poetry brings…not exactly a lighter mood to the issues, as it’s some challenging and sometimes grim work. But it does tie into the themes of hope in the story, hard as they might be to reach for. That while many wounds cannot be erased, the situations can be revised, the outcomes turned away from solely tragedy and given new life. To the reviews!

Thursday, November 26, 2020

Quick Sips - Baffling Magazine November 2020

November brings three early stories to the Baffling Magazine Patreon, examines family and loss. Death and the way people have to process it, have to face it, given the worlds they live in, the relationships they have. The characters are all dealing with complicated relationships. Two of the stories focus on people who haven’t really gotten along with parental figures. For one, it’s the parents of his boyfriend. For the other, it’s their own father. The third story deals not with a strained relationship but an absent one, a person bereft because of the violence of an empire taking up the cause of their dead lover and finding strength in poetry. And all told it’s a wonderful mix of stories, featuring fantasy, science fiction, and touches of horror. To the reviews!

Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Quick Sips - Beneath Ceaseless Skies #317

Art by Avant Choi
The two stories in the latest Beneath Ceaseless Skies are united by (aside from the fact that they’re both novelettes) the undimmable enthusiasm of their protagonists. Both main characters are driven, are artists, and they paint on large canvases. They are, in part at least, confidence men, there to sell something. They’re not exactly frauds, though, as each of them is selling something that people want. Good health. Good food. And an experience that will leave them feeling good about it. For both, though, something rears up that threatens their art, their profession, and their lives, and they have to stay sharp and depend on the people around them to come through...if not unscathed, then at least alive, and eager to get back on the road. To the reviews!

Regular Sip - Offstage Offerings by Priya Sridhar (Unnerving Books)

I’m back for a Regular Sip today for a wonderful new novella from Unnerving Books. I’m a little late to the part, as the book came out at the height of spooky season late last month, but given how the world has been, it’s possible people missed it in the chaos. Luckily, it’s a fantastic read whatever the season, and features a haunted theater, a queer woman dealing with crappy employment prospects, and worst of at an acting camp. The horror! Anyway, before I give too much away, let’s jump right into the reviews!

Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Quick Sips - Apex Magazine Promo 2020

Art by Justin Stewart
Apex is back! And okay, you probably already knew that. And yes, the actual launch date for the revamped Apex Magazine is actually in January. That doesn’t mean, though, that the editors could hold back, and so we get a special bonus sneak peek issue as an added gift this holiday season. It’s filled with heartwarming and--wait a second, I think I must have forgotten Apex’s specialty. It’s filled with two difficult and unsettling stories that look at the messy ways people live, love, and hurt each other. The stories reveal worlds that are reflections of our own, and the sights are rather grim. But grim stories can show us how to approach hard times, given the world we’re living in, perhaps we should take whatever instruction we can get. To the reviews!

Monday, November 23, 2020

Quick Sips - Nightmare #98

Art by Alexandra Petruk / Adobe Stock Images
The two original stories in November’s Nightmare Magazine present the horrors of school. Both the horrors of being around other students who might be terrible and abusive, and of being under the power of a teacher or professor who might be preying on students in some chilling ways. In both, the focus is on the ways the the students are made powerless in their situations, subject to the corrupt power of either a popular student or a teacher. For one, the horror stops with the things a teacher can do, the ways they can make their lesson stick in the most disturbing of ways. For the other, the horror doesn’t reach its peak until the student being abused and bullied finds she has nothing left to lose. In both, schools make powerful settings for the horror that unfolds, at least in part because the vast majority of people know exactly how school can be a horrifying place. To the reviews!

Saturday, November 21, 2020

2021: The Plan So Far

So, I’m starting to claw my way toward the new year, and I just want to sort of update people on what’s going on with the blog starting next year. For those who haven’t heard, I will be stepping back from doing reviews of whole issues, but I will definitely still be doing short SFF coverage. Check out The Plan below...

Friday, November 20, 2020

Quick Sips - Diabolical Plots #69

Art by Joey Jordan
The stories of Diabolical Plots’ November issue are…rather weird. Haunting. Featuring characters to have lost, who are faced with the prospect of a world different from the one they know. Absent the people who have given structure to their lives. Of course, that doesn’t mean that the characters are truly worse off, though. Because these losses, these changes, provoke the characters to introspect, to make changes, to better understand their own needs. And they find that independence is something they need, even if they’ve always been treated like independence would be impossible, or painful, or wrong. It’s an interesting issue and I’ll get right to the reviews!

Thursday, November 19, 2020

2020 Comprehensive Post List

Quick Sip Reviews 2020 Comprehensive Post List

Anathema: #10 [part 1]; #10 [part 2]; #11 [part 1]; #11 [part 2]

Apex: Promo 2020

Augur: #2.3; #3.1 [part 1]; #3.1 [part 2]; #3.1 [part 3]; #3.2 [part 1]; #3.2 [part 2]

Baffling: 07/2008/2009/2010/20*; 11/20*; 12/20*

Beneath Ceaseless Skies: #294; #295; #296; #297; #298 [part 1]; #298 [part 2]; #299 [part 1]; #299 [part 2]; #300 [part 1]; #300 [part 2]; #301; #302; #303; #304; #305; #306; #307; #308; #309; #310; #311; #312; #313; #314; #315; #316; #317; #318; #319; #320***

Clarkesworld: #160; #161; #162; #163; #164; #165; #166; #167; #168; #169; #170; #171

The Dark: #56; #57; #58; #59; #60; #61; #62; #63; #64; #65; #66; #67

Diabolical Plots: #59; #60; #61; #62; #63; #64; #65; #66; #67; #68; #69; #70

Escape Pod: #716&717; #718-721; #722-725; #748-751; #754-756; #765**

Fantasy: #61; #62

Fireside: #74; #75; #76; #77; #78; #79; #80; #81; #82; #83; #84; #85; #86/Autumn 2020 Quarterly**

Fiyah: #13; #14; #15; #16; Breathe Fiyah [w/Tor]

Flash Fiction Online: 01/20; 02/20; 03/20; 04/20; 05/20; 06/20; 07/20; 08/20; 09/20; 10/20; 11/20; 12/20

GigaNotoSaurus: 01/2002/2003/2004/2005/2006/2007/2008/2009/2010/2011/20; 12/20

Glittership: Winter 2020; Spring 2020

Heroic Fantasy Quarterly: #43; #44; #45; #46

Lackington's: #21; #22

Lightspeed: #116; #117; #118; #119; #120; #121; #122; #123; #124; #125; #126; #127

Mermaids Monthly: Bonus Issue

Mithila Review: #12 [part 2]; #12 [part 3]; #12 [part 4]; #13 [part 1]; #13 [part 2]; #13 [part 3]; #14 [part 1]; #14 [part 2]

Nightmare: #88; #89; #90; #91; #92; #93; #94; #95; #96; #97; #98; #99

Omenana: #15; #16

PodCastle: #606&608; #611; #614; #616&620; #622&623; #625&627; #638&640; #643; #654; #655-656 & 658

Serial Box: Knox: ep01.01-01.02; ep01.03-01.04; ep01.05-01.06; ep01.07-01.08; ep01.09-01.11

Serial Box: Machina: ep01.01-01.02; ep01.03-01.04; ep01.05-01.06; ep01.07-01.08; ep01.09-01.10

Serial Box: Ninth Step Station: ep02.01-02.02; ep02.03-02.04; ep02.05-02.06; ep02.07-02.08; ep02.09-02.10

Speculative City: #10**

Strange Horizons/Samovar: 01/06/20 & 01/13/20; 01/20/20 & 01/27/20; 02/03/20 & 02/10/20; 02/17/20 & 02/24/20; 03/02/20 & 03/09/20; 03/16/20 & 03/23/20; 03/30/20; 04/06/20 & 04/13/20; 04/20/20 & Samovar 04/27/20; 05/04/20 & 05/11/20; 05/18/20 & 05/25/20; 06/01/20 & 06/08/20; 06/15/20 & 06/22/20; Fund Drive 2020; 06/29/20; 07/06/20 & 07/13/20; 07/20/20 & Samovar 07/27/20; 08/03/20 & 08/10/20; 08/17/20 & 08/24/20; 08/31/20; 09/07/20 & 09/14/20; 09/21/20 & 09/28/20; 10/05/12 & 10/12/20; 10/19/20 & Samovar 10/26/20; 11/02/20 & 11/09/20; 11/16/20 & 11/23/20; 11/30/20; 12/07/20 & 12/14/20; 12/21/20**

Terraform: 12/19; 02/20; 03/20; 10/20

Tor: 01/20; 02/20; 03/20; 04/20; 05/20; 06/20; 07/20; 08/20; 09/20; 10/20; 11/20; 12/20**

Translunar Travelers Lounge: #2 [part 1]; #2 [part 2]; #2 [part 3]; #3 [part 1]; #3 [part 2]; #3 [part 3]; #3 [part 4]

Uncanny: #32 [01/20]; #32 [02/20]; #33 [03/20]; #33 [04/20]; #34 [05/20]; #34 [06/20]; #35 [07/20]; #35 [08/20]; #36 [09/20]; #36 [10/20]; #37 [11/20]; #37 [12/20]

* - Stories covered are technically 2021 releases
** - Reviews were technically posted in 2021
*** - Stories covered are technically 2021 releases AND the reviews were posted in 2021

Regular Sips (novellas)

City of a Thousand Feelings, Anya Johanna DeNiro (Aqueduct)
The Adventure of the Naked Guide, Cynthia Ward (Aqueduct)
The Four Profound Weaves, R.B. Lemberg (Tachyon)
Queens of Noise, Leigh Harlen (Neon Hemlock)
Cradle and Grave, Anya Ow (Neon Hemlock)
A Fledgling Abiba, Dilman Dila (Guardbridge Books)
Stone and Steel, Eboni Dunbar (Neon Hemlock)
Yellow Jessamine, Catilin Starling (Neon Hemlock)
Offstage Offerings by Priya Sridhar (Unnerving Books)


The Voyages of Cinrak the Dapper (Queen of Swords)
Weird Dream Society (Reckoning)
The Book of Shanghai: A City in Short Fiction (Comma)
Dominion: An Anthology of Speculative Fiction from Africa and the African Diaspora (Volume One) (Aurelia Leo)
Glitter + Ashes: Queer Tales of a World that Wouldn't Die (Neon Hemlock): Part 1; Part 2; Part 3; Part 4

The Sippy Awards 2019

The "I'd Ship That" Sippy for Excellent Relationships in Short SFF

Strange Horizons



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Some Queer Short SFF (12 posts, public)

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