Today is a landmark in my series of reviews of literary journals and genre magazines — I’ve now reviewed every journal and magazine to which I’ve submittted at least one story. But I’m not stopping this series, as I’ve identified several more publications for future submissions…
The Society of Misfit Stories is a publication of Bards and Sages Publishing, and prints three online and print editions a year.
What They Say About Themselves: “The Society of Misfit Stories is a home for those wonderful stories that are too long for most magazines but too short for stand-alone print books. Whether you call them short stories, novelettes, or novellas, these stories are all of a length that often struggles to find publication traditionally. Each issue offers a substantial volume of amazing speculative fiction for readers who enjoy spending time with a good tale.”
Issue Reviewed: Volume III, Issue II (June 2021)
Genre: Speculative fiction
One Story I’ll Remember Not to Forget: “Black Leather Gloves,” by Alex Woolf. Travis Enderby owns a second-hand bookstore outside of London which specializes in science fiction and horror. When an enigmatic woman arrives in his shop, Travis becomes obsessed with her and the black leather gloves she wears at all times. A gripping tale of obsession and repressed guilt that also contains insightful observations on both literary fiction and speculative fiction.
Exploding Helicopters: Four Explosions. I like stories that combine page-turning action — in other words, narratives in which something actually happens — that also contain some insight — in other words, tales which make me think. The stories in this collection combined those characteristics well. The stories are indeed long, but weren’t tiresome.
Profanometer: Sonuvabitch. Two of the six stories contained a gratuitous amount of profanity, while the others (including the one I commented on for this review) contained none at all. I like that balance.