Su J. Sokol’s ‘Cycling to Asylum’ Headed For The Screen

Kiss Off Entertainment is taking SF Canada member Su J. Sokol’s Cycling to Asylum into development as a feature length film, to be adapted and directed by Sara Beth Edwards.

The Sunburst Award long-listed novel revolves around young parents whose views are at odds with authoritarian government in near-future New York. Laek is a history teacher with a secret radical past while his partner Janie is an activist lawyer representing the city’s most disenfranchised. Together they struggle with how to instil anti-authoritarian values into their two kids, without those beliefs endangering their children’s welfare in an increasingly hostile political climate. How can they live with integrity and still be safe?

“The subversive themes and non-binary characters absolutely drew me to this story,” said Edwards. “But also the depth of emotion as they fight not just for physical survival but the preservation of their beliefs, their humanity.”

Su J. Sokol is a social rights and anti-border advocate originally from New York City where she worked as legal services lawyer. Her short fiction has appeared in The Future Fire, Spark: A Creative Anthology and Glittership: an LGBTQ Science Fiction & Fantasy Podcast among others. Sokol’s latest interstitial fiction novel, Run J Run, will be published by Renaissance Press in 2019.

For more news about Sokol’s publications, including where to purchase Cycling to Asylum, visit her website at sujsokol.com.

Book Launch for Nathan Elberg’s Quantum Cannibals

Double Dragon Publishing has recently released SF Canada member Nathan Elberg’s first novel. Quantum Cannibals is genre-bending, character-driven literary fiction that weaves multiple intersecting narratives that span time, from Bronze Age Mesopotamia to a Post-Modern city-state.  It’s the epic story of three incarnations of two people- alternately son and mother, husband and wife, father and daughter, savage and scholar, who simply want to return to the home they were brutally evicted from.  Quantum Cannibals brings together authentic cultures from Melanesia, Siberia, Europe, the Americas, and more.

Osnat and her husband have been exiled to a frozen wasteland along with the rest of the Eber people.  Facing cold and starvation, they encounter a small band of savages who brutally assault, rather than help them.  Back in the natives’ village, a transgender shaman adopts Osnat after dismembering her husband.   Previously an eminent quantum biologist, Osnat knows she is stuck with the savages.  Amid her grief, fear, and hatred she realizes she has only one choice: to survive, become one of the natives in order to save the remaining few of her people.  But Osnat refuses to abandon her quest to bring the Eber people home, nor her thirst for vengeance.  Terrified by her own behavior she goes to war, armed with bone knives and improvised nuclear weapons.  As she makes a new home for her family and people, she discovers that paradise is the place she previously thought of as hell.

Saima, a northern savage, has been brought across the barrier from the cold, primitive Edge of the World to serve as a handyman in the high-tech but effete Modern Age.  At first, life here seems pleasant: plentiful food, warm houses, and casual sex.  However, he isn’t here to fix machines, but on a mission to take back from this world what its ancestors stole when they sent the Eber people away.

In the bucolic Early Bronze Age, Taiku, the regional chieftain prepares for an epic confrontation.  Rumors have been building of the inexorable approach of an army led by a bloodthirsty conqueror with a pious agenda.  Taiku turns to Asenath, the wise and beautiful local leader of the Ebers, as he tries to unite the disparate, squabbling tribes of the region.

Kirkus Reviews describes the novel as “…an intricate web of characters and events. The author pulls it all together, however, in admirable fashion through solid characterization; the sweeping mix of science, mythology, history; and precise, yet metaphor-filled writing… Those willing to decipher it all will be greatly rewarded.”

For more information about Quantum Cannibals or to order, visit www.quantumcannibals.com

A book launch will take place on Sunday January 20, 2019, at 5:30 pm at Beth Zion Congregation, 1 Place Sidney Shoham Place, Cote Saint-Luc, QC H4W 0B9. Register online at https://bethzion.shulcloud.com/event/tubshvat5779 or through the office at 514-489-8411 or bethzion@bethzion.com.

Short Fiction from Kristene Perron

SF Canada member Kristene Perron is the feature author in the current issue of Pulp Literature magazine. “Flavour of the Forsaken” asks us to savour the simple things in life and to question the validity of tradition.

Find Issue 20 (Autumn 2018) in both print and digital at Pulp Literature’s website.

Kristene is the co-author of the adventure science fiction series Warpworld and the 2010 winner of the Surrey International Writer’s Conference Storyteller Award. Find Kristene on Twitter at @KristenePerron and at warpworld.ca.

Short Fiction from Craig Russell

SF Canada member Craig Russell’s most recent short story appears in the Parallel Prairies anthology which is published under the Enfield & Wizenty imprint of Great Plains Publications Ltd. (edited by Darren Ridgley and Adam Petrash).

The Canadian prairie teems with life – not all of it of this world. The nineteen stories in Parallel Prairies allow the reader to get acquainted with baby dragons, killer insects, faery kings, infernal entities and more.

During the launch in October at the Brandon University library, Craig Russell spoke with a Brandon Sun reporter, commenting: “I think the landscape really does influence how you think about your writing.” His story is about a woman who grew up in Brandon, but goes to the University of Manitoba to complete the degree she started as a young woman. She encounters a mysterious document in the University of Manitoba library. “It leads her on an unexpected adventure into the Northern Canadian shield where her courage and her sanity is tested by something from another world,” Russell said.

Praise for Parallel Prairies:

“…a kaleidoscope of style and subject matter. Echoes of iconic storylines pulled from the annals of cult sci-fi, fantasy and suspense ring through Manitoba’s landscape.” — The Uniter

“So much fun! I’m loving this book … the stories take place in Manitoba, but they transcend.” — Joanne Kelly, CBC Manitoba

Craig Russell’s first novel, Black Bottle Man, won the 2011 American Moonbeam Award gold medal for Young Adult Fantasy. It was a finalist for the Prix Aurora Award for Best English Science Fiction or Fantasy Novel, as well as for two Manitoba Book Awards in the same year. His second novel, Fragment, was published by Thistledown Press in Oct. 2016. He’s a lawyer, supervising the land titles system in southwestern Manitoba. He lives in Brandon with his wife, where they’re restoring their 1906 Victorian heritage home.

Parallel Prairies can be purchased through Great Plains, McNally Robinson, Chapters, and Amazon.

Fiction and Poetry from Lisa Timpf

SF Canada member Lisa Timpf  has been busy lately!

Her story, “A Cat’s Confession”, about a ship’s cat serving aboard the Galactic Space Ship Meech Lake plus two poems inspired by her cat, Smokey, recently appeared in the anthology From A Cat’s View. This unique anthology offers fascinating insights into the relationship between humans and their feline owners. Pick up a copy at Post to Print Publishers — it’s the purrrfect gift for cat lovers everywhere.

Her short story, “The Caller”, appears in the Future Days anthology issued by Castrum Press.

New Myths has published a story and a poem by Lisa. “Gone” is about an AI-enhanced dog looking for a missing master and “What Really Happened” is a different take on the Gingham Dog and Calico Cat. Read both for free at New Myths.

Her poem entitled “With Two Left Feet” appears in the Tesseracts anthology Nevertheless. In connection with that book’s promotion, Lisa contributed to their “Bright Spots” blog with a piece entitled “Step By Step” that draws on her recovery from knee surgery.

A sci-fi short story entitled “What Lies Beneath” was included in Nomadic Delirium’s November 2018 edition of Environmental Holocaust. The story follows the efforts of a Hamilton-based researcher to combat the spread of a virus.

A sci-fi poem entitled “History Waits to be Written” was published in Polar Borealis #7.

And her sci-fi poem “Ghost Stories” was included in the Sounds of the Night anthology from Alban Lake Publishing.

Lisa’s writing has appeared in a variety of other venues, including Star*Line, Eye to the Telescope, Thema, and Third Flatiron. Find her at http://lisatimpf.blogspot.com/.

Uncanny’s Disabled People Destroy Science Fiction issue!

SF Canada member Dominik Parisien serves as fiction co-editor for this very special edition of Uncanny magazine.

Why destroy science fiction? Because disabled people have been discarded from the narrative, cured, rejected, villainized. We’ve been given few options for our imaginations to run wild within the parameters of an endless sky.

This issue destroys those narratives and more.

As with the previous Destroy projects (Women, Queers, People of Colour), Disabled People Destroy Science Fiction takes the rallying cry of We are here and Our stories matter and looks to the future. The other projects all began by “destroying” science fiction, and this one is no different. By turning our attention to the future, we are able to explore concerns and realities in the present and amplify them, correct them, highlight the ways they might become better or worse if allowed to continue on their present course. Through science fiction, marginalized people are able to say, We are here, now, and we will be there later, too.

But it is not just enough to talk about disability. It is not enough to just say that we are here, that we will be there later. We need to remember that we are people, too. The disabled artists in this issue are not just disabled people, as so many would boil disability down to a single trait. These are fully actualized individuals, living at the intersections and axes of identities. Queer, nonbinary, Jewish, black, PoC, Christian, straight. We are all of these things and we are disabled. Disability itself means different things to different people. We are not a monolith.

Throughout the stories, nonfiction, and poetry in Disabled People Destroy Science Fiction, you will encounter narratives and experiences that may be familiar, or not. Perhaps some disabled readers or writers will encounter an experience they recognize, but handled slightly differently than their own. No one experience of disability is the disability experience. Many of the themes dealt with by our authors could, and likely would, be handled in radically different ways by other disabled authors. And that’s the point. The Destroy projects are important to the field because they amplify the work of a specific demographic at a specific point in time, but they are only a small part of what needs to be an ongoing conversation. We need more of those narratives, with a broad range of experiences.

Now available from Uncanny as .pdf, .epub, or .mobi.