And other people have remembered, and they come back to us, they say, “Hey–don’t worry, don’t be afraid, ever, because this is just a ride...” And we... kill those people.

-- Bill Hicks

 [ Issue 2010.21; Cover art © 2010 Eric Asaris ]

Issue 2010.21

Short stories


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This will be the last issue of The Future Fire for a while, at least until early 2011. The editors all have other lives, and at the moment those seem to be taking over. Families, day jobs, degrees, relationships, our own writing and other projects. Running a magazine is hard work, and sometimes it gets in the way of other things that are, frankly, more important. Sometimes you just need a good long break. It will by no means be the last issue ever, as we have every intention of picking up where we left off some time next year. Please keep an eye on the front page for updates, or follow our MySpace blog or Twitter status. We'll be back.

In the meantime we have a fine issue for you this month, with a varied mix of stories from past TFF favourites RJ Astruc and Mark Harding, and new faces Sara Hosey and Kelly Jennings, and fine illustrations from artists also old and new. With stories from the gritty, Victorian values past and the equally gritty, lawless future, with totalitarian dystopias and cyber-terror, this may be one of the most exciting issues we've ever published.

Putting together this issue has reminded us of every reason we have for running a magazine of social, political and speculative cyberfiction: great fiction, writers who are a joy to work with, inspired and professional artists. But it has also reminded us of the reasons we need to take a break: collaborators letting us down at the last minute, slipping deadlines, everything happening in the wrong order, delays piling up like mismatched tetrominoes (most people have been very prompt and professional, but every slight delay has happened at the worst possible point in the chain). Worst of all, it doesn't make us feel much like professionals.

Rather than end on a bum note, however, I do want to emphasize that the contributors to this issue have been a real pleasure to work with, that the content is second to none, and now that we've finally got this one out, we can't wait to come back from hiatus next year and start doing it all again!

Djibril al-Ayad, June 2010

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