1. “10 Things I Know About Jesus” by Steven Popkes
He decided to adopt me. That’s the way he says it, too. Like it was as simple as adopting a cat or taking in a stray dog. For him, I guess, it was.
2. “Let There Be” by JD DeLuzio
She knows what we have all been told: the Creator made the world for both kinds, and allotted to one the day and to the other the night, and it was not for either to traverse that boundary more than needful. .
3. “Sharali” by Gaie Sebold
There are rare wines and spiced meats and a caged goblin with its wrinkled little face like a map of some distant country, sitting apathetically on a heap of old pelts. .
4. “Palimpsest” by Kevin Cockle
It was all-consuming precision work, writing this forgotten alphabet that was English, but looked almost like a wildy stylized Arabic from a distance. .
5. “Ghost Ride” by Leslie Claire Walker
Trapped in their own pain, they were. They kept to themselves—didn’t even talk to each other. And they never got in his way, in all the years he’d been driving. .
6. “One Shoe Highway” by Kim Neville
For a moment he said nothing. I think he was thrown off by my voicing an opinion. It’s not like I don’t have opinions. I’ve just found life is easier if I don’t share them. .
7. “The Devil’s Eyes” by David Gordon Buresh
He had a way of smiling that made you feel uneasy, a way of holding himself that made you unwilling to put your back to him. .
1. “The Proof is in the Reading” Editorial by Diane L. Walton
2. “Apocalypse: It’s the End of the Word As We Know It” Author Interview by Op-Ed by Allan Weiss
3. “Kevin Cockle: Grist for the Mill” Author Interview by Roberta Laurie
4. “Kenn Brown” Artist Interview by Cat McDonald
about our contributors
David Gordon Buresh has found telling stories has been a lifelong passion: “A story holds within it a power to change the life of anyone who encounters it. By telling a story, you are sharing your imagination with any who encounter it. And while my imagination may stray along darkened pathways and down sunken roads, I invite anyone to walk them with me. It’s a hell of a ride. When I’m not telling stories, I make a living being a concierge, which one can understand only furthers my passion of collecting stories.”
Kevin Cockle made his first professional fiction sale to On Spec in 2003. Since then, Kevin has gone on to place stories in a variety of anthologies—most notably Tesseracts 13 and 15, and the Stoker award nominated Evolve: Vampire Stories of the New Undead. “Palimpsest” marks Kevin’s eighth appearance in the pages of On Spec, which is seven more than Vegas oddsmakers had originally anticipated.
JD DeLuzio grew up in northern Ontario, but now lives and works in London, Ontario. He has one published book, Snow-man’s Land (1995), a handful of published short stories and articles, and numerous online reviews and other ephemera. He has also workshopped several plays with teenagers. Currently, he is completing a no-budget educational film and an ironic speculative novel.
Roberta Laurie won her first writing competition when she was 17, and she’s been writing ever since. She has been published in three anthologies and is co-editing a fourth, Snapshots of Stony Plain: A Writers’ Landscape, due to be released this year. Roberta has written for several magazines including WestWord and Yoga Bridge and volunteers for the literary magazine Other Voices. You can learn more about Roberta by visiting her website at www.creativewhispers.ca.
Cat McDonald is a freelance designer and editor living near Edmonton, Alberta. Aside from fiction in Tesseracts 15 and Here Be Monsters 7, she is generally assumed (correctly) to be up to no good. And under the influence. Often both. Usually both.
Kim Neville lives near the beach in Vancouver, BC, with her husband and daughter. When she’s not writing or working she loves taking photographs, although to be honest she’s not very good at it. She does, however, bake tremendous brownies. Her fiction has appeared in Leading Edge and Island Writer magazines.
Steven Popkes was born in Southern California, the hybrid offspring of a Missouri aerospace engineer and New Mexico writer. After California came Alabama, New Mexico, Washington, Missouri and finally Massachusetts where he now resides. He is a software engineer in his day job and by night raises turtles, gardens and aspires to make a drinkable wine from Concord grapes.
William B. Robison is Professor of History at Southeastern Louisiana University, co-author (with Anna Sue Parrill) of The Tudors in Film and Television (Mcfarland, forthcoming 2012), co-editor (with Ronald H. Fritze) of Historical Dictionary of Late Medieval England (2002) and Historical Dictionary of Stuart England (1995), and author of essays in the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, as well as articles and reviews in numerous journals. He also is a musician and maker of short films. Recently he has published poems in Asinine Poetry, decomP magazinE, and Paddlefish. He lives with his family in Baton Rouge.
Gaie Sebold was born in the US to an American father and English mother, and has lived in the UK most of her life. She now resides in leafy suburbia with her partner, writer David Gullen, a daft cat, and a lot of plants and books.
Her debut novel introduced brothel-owning ex-avatar of sex and war, Babylon Steel (Solaris, 2012); the sequel, Dangerous Gifts, is out in February 2013. She has won a few awards for poetry (her first collection, Urban Fox, is published by Tall Lighthouse) and has sold a number of short stories; three have received honourable mentions in Year’s Best Fantasy and Horror. She reads obsessively, gardens amateurishly, and sometimes runs around in woods hitting people with latex weapons.
She blogs with David Gullen (in the guise of Lord and Lady Plott) at www.weedingandwriting.com. Find out more at: www.gaiesebold.com
Leslie Claire Walker lives among the lush bayous of southeast Texas and takes her inspiration from the dark beauty of the city, the power of myth, and music ranging from Celtic harp to heavy metal. Her stories have appeared in many magazines and anthologies. Leslie navigates the corridors of corporate law by day and writes by night. In her very spare, spare time, she loves to dance, cook, play the harp, and hike. She travels frequently, most often to the Pacific northwest and, it seems, Ireland.
Allan Weiss is a short-story writer based in Toronto. Four of his SF stories have appeared in On Spec, including three in his series about Jewish wizard Eliezer ben-Avraham. He is Associate Professor of English and Humanities at York University, specializing in Canadian literature and science fiction; one of his courses is on apocalyptic science fiction. His website is www.allanweiss.com.
In Upcoming Issues
Amber E. Scott, Sandra Riedel, Sarah Frost, Tyrell Johnson, Brent Knowles, Lynn Stansbury, William Vitka,