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Otherverse Magazine: June Newsletter

Voted #1 Magazine on the planet Vogsphere!*

*results determined by the votes of 14,037 Vogons

Dear reader,

Welcome to the first Otherverse Magazine Newsletter! If you are receiving this by email, thank you for subscribing to receive email updates from us. These newsletters are intended to bring a little science-fiction and fantasy to your inbox, and to present to you the writings of our resident, elusive agony aunt, Ms Majolica Wynter. Read on to find out who has written to her this month, and discover her creative solutions to otherworldly dilemmas…

Issue 2 of Otherverse Magazine was released last month, and is available to read online for free right here! If you’re looking for some brilliant, inventive and rousing tales of magic, aliens and angels, then take a look through the stories featured in this latest issue.

Are you a writer or artist looking for platform to showcase your work? Why not submit to the third issue of Otherverse Magazine by clicking here – the deadline for submissions is 14th August and we would love to consider your work.

We at Otherverse are working hard and have exciting plans for the future of our publication, which we hope to share with you soon. The interest and support we have received over the past year are invaluable to us, and we hope we will be able to intrigue and surprise you with every issue we produce.

Now, dear reader, we would like you to turn your thoughts to a little cottage located deep in a void between dimensions, named the ‘Inbetween’. In the front garden of this charming stone and thatch home lies a red postbox where, through some twist of fate, magic or an unknown force, curious letters appear as if of their own accord. Penned by many desperate hands, these notes to Ms Majolica Wynter urgently seek her assisance in the most important and flummoxing of matters. It is one such letter that we share with you now, alongside Ms Wynter’s ever-wise response.

If you, or someone you know, is experiencing trouble getting along with a pixie housemate, communicating with the stubborn AI in charge of your spacecraft, or the aftermath of an itchy run-in with an everscratch potion, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us at otherversemagazine@gmail.com. We will make sure Ms Wynter receives your letter – it may even feature in one of our newsletters!

Dear Ms Majolica Wynter,

Would I be a bad mother for forcing my daughter to spend the full moon with her family instead of at her new boyfriend’s house?

Ever since the children went through the change, my husband and I have taken them to the forest each month to celebrate the full moon for the protection of the local townspeople. This has been our family tradition for many years and is something I really look forward to as it’s the one chance I get to let my hair down and just be with the kids, no blessed phones or iPads or WiFi, just good old fashioned family fun!

The problem; my youngest daughter has recently got herself a boyfriend. I’ve met him, he’s a lovely young man and I was very happy for her until she came out with the news that she’s planning on spending the next full moon with him and his family to celebrate her new beau’s birthday. Her boyfriend and his family are fully aware of her condition and are very supportive, but I can’t help but worry that it’s all going to go wrong, if you know what I mean. I can’t bear to think of the heartbreak my girl could experience! I sat her down and told her firmly but gently that she wasn’t allowed to go. It did not go well. The RSPCA were called and if it wasn’t for my husband’s quick thinking both of us would be in the doghouse right now.

My daughter is refusing to speak to me, saying I’m a killjoy and don’t trust her. My husband is on her side, saying that the cubs can’t be expected to stay within the pack their whole adult lives. What should I do?  Should I put my foot down or am I being a heartless killjoy?

Yours,

A Concerned Mother

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To A Concerned Mother,

You’re a protective matriarch of the pack who values family over everything else, I can sense this much from your letter. While your youngest daughter’s request may at first seem harmless, I am inclined to agree with your decision of not allowing her to spend the full moon at her new beau’s.

At her age, budding romances and finding a suitable mate may feel most important in life, but I urge you to teach your daughter to balance the pursuit of a partner with family traditions. No matter how supportive the new beau’s family is to your family situation, the events of a full moon can be a great shock to those unfamiliar with the transformation. Instead of allowing this risky rendezvous to take place away from your territory, I suggest inviting your daughter’s beau to take part in the celebrations next month. This will allow you to oversee the situation on your terms as a matriarch, where you can observe his reaction and protect him from harm should anything get out of hand.

In addition, you may want to suggest that your daughter surprises her beau the day after his birthday. She could bake him a birthday cake, gift him with a token from the celebrations, and personally extend the invitation to join the family on the next full moon. You can even assist her in the baking process, where you’ll gain some much-needed mum-daughter time, and help her make it something special. And though this means your daughter will miss her beau’s birthday, she now has your blessing to invite him to take one step closer to joining the pack. If he truly is as supportive as your daughter claims, then he will recognise the significance of the invitation and accept the gesture in stride.

Of course, this resolution is only fair if I am grasping the full context of your pack dynamic. Have your daughter’s older siblings ever been allowed to miss the full moon festival in favor of a romantic interest? If there is a precedent for this kind of thing happening in the past and being denied only in her case, then I can understand why your daughter and husband feel the way they do.

If I am understanding correctly, then I think. Your heart, and howl, are in the right place. Just be sure to throw a bone to your daughter and replace the missed opportunity for a future special occasion with her beau. Should you navigate this situation with a delicate understanding of her feelings, I’m sure your daughter and yourself will again be playing fetch on the full moon together in no time.

Yours, 

Madame O. Wynter

Lady of the Inbetween

Ms Majolica Wynter is an ageless (and some say immortal) figure, who resides with her pet iguana, ‘Tiggy’. In her past career, Ms Wynter worked as Head Operative for the Office of Unusual Matters (OUM) in the IU (Interdimensional Union). As Head Operative, she was dispatched to various dimensions through time and space to solve curious and unusual problems for the citizens of the Otherverse. Before joining the Office of Unusual Matters, Wynter served in both the 3rd, 7th and 22nd Time Wars (which are actually all the same conflict), where she was first noticed by the OUM. Wynter worked as Head Operative for 10 years, until she took on a case which ultimately trapped her and her home in the Inbetween. Despite her internment, Wynter still uses her expertise on SFF-related problems to advise people throughout the Otherverse.

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The Issue 2 Submission Window is Now OPEN!

Dear reader,

Thank you so much for your support of Otherverse Magazine. Our first issue was launched with great success, and we are thrilled with all the positive messages we have received. Otherverse is a project fuelled by passion and dedication, and to see the first issue come to life has been a true joy.

On the back of this success, we are so excited to look ahead to the release of Issue 2 next year. Otherverse Magazine cannot exist without brilliant writing. We have been so fortunate to read through many excellent submissions this year, and we hope that issue 2 will feature plenty of exciting new stories.

So, whether you’re a published author or new to the game, get your submissions in to us by 11:59pm on Monday 14th February 2022! This date may seem a long way off, but it will catch up to us quickly! Make sure to check out our submission guidelines before you send in your writing.

There is a £1 reading fee for each submission you send us, which helps to keep this magazine running. There is no limit on how many stories you can submit. Authors selected for publication receive a flat fee of £30.

Good luck, and happy writing!

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Issue 1 of Otherverse is Out Now!

We are so excited to bring you this update: Issue 1 of Otherverse is now available to read on our website in all its glory. It is entirely free to read, and features 9 amazing stories.

Disappear into the magnificent Home Tree, lose yourself in the virtual reality of The Sims or pick through a cyberpunk junkyard in these immersive and intriguing tales. We hope you will enjoy reading them as much as we have. Please comment on the stories and let us know what you think. You’re also welcome to engage with us over on social media. So what are you waiting for? Go ahead and dive into Otherverse Issue 1 now!

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Meet James

To all who enter, welcome! My name is James and I’m a co-founder of the exciting new literary magazine, Otherverse. We aim to explore tales and mysteries in both science-fiction and fantasy, so be sure to look out for some dragons with jetpacks in our October issue debut!

Though I was never exactly a devout reader growing up, I’ve been a fan of sci-fi ever since I could walk. For me, it was about the “fiction” as well as the “science”. Whether watching Doctor Who on the small screen or Star Wars on the big screen, my excitement was for the feast of surreal imagery that came from each story—wonders which we couldn’t possibly encounter in our everyday. But as I grew up, I realised that literature allows us to share experiences that the screen simply cannot, from the infinite Library of Babel, to Milton’s war in heaven, to the imaginary colours of Tormance:

‘The sense impressions caused in Maskull by these two additional primary colours can only be vaguely hinted at by analogy. Just as blue is delicate and mysterious, yellow clear and unsubtle, and red sanguine and passionate, so he felt ulfire to be wild and painful, and jale dreamlike, feverish and voluptuous.’

 – David Lindsay, A Voyage to Arcturus

I’ll have to write a review of Lindsay’s novel at some point. Where was I?

The point is, literature can goes beyond what our senses can believe. You’ll never see a painting with ulfire and jale in it, but I bet you’re trying to imagining the colours right now in your head. That’s what written stories can do, and it’s why I love reading science-fiction and fantasy. They are the reigning genres in which this aspect of literature shines brightest—inventing places, philosophies, creatures and people that defy reality. The freedom of speculative fiction is even something that has followed me into my own writing, so stay tuned!

The harder a writer pushes against the boundaries of what’s possible in literature, the more fascinated and enthralled I am as a reader. My favourite stories have been ones that either blur the lines of sci-fi and fantasy, or have reinvented the genres entirely. If you’re looking for some recommendations, they are Dune by Frank Herbert, Lord of Light by Roger Zelazny, and Michael Moorcock’s Dancers at the End of Time trilogy.

What strange and logic-defying worlds have you encountered while reading? Did they blow your mind? I and everyone else at Otherverse would love to know.

If you’re interested in writing for our magazine, be sure to sure to submit your work for our October launch! Our guidelines can be found here: https://otherversemagazine.com/submissions/

You can also donate to use here: https://otherversemagazine.com/support-us-2/ so you too can help keep the worlds of the Otherverse free and alive.

This has been James. Hope to see you soon!

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Meet Alex

Well met travellers, my name is Alex and I’m one of the editorial team for Otherverse Magazine! 

Since I was quite young I’ve been an avid devourer of all things fantasy. I blame my parents for showing me “Lord of the Rings” at the ripe old age of six! As a kid I loved reading books about ancient myths and monsters of legend. I keenly remember one of the best Christmas presents I ever got was The Mythical Creatures Bible by Brenda Rosen, which I used to carry around with me wherever I went, challenging my friends to name a country so I could tell them what magical creatures they might find there. (That’s true and explains much about my childhood now that I think about it).

The Mythical
Creatures Bible

The Mythical Creatures Bible By Brenda Rosen

Later I moved on to other works. Classics like Tolkien and Lewis are always worth going back to, but the biggest influence on my work today will always be Terry Pratchett. I discovered Discworld when I was fourteen and meticulously read and then re-read all forty one books over the years. His wit and satire live rent free in my head constantly and if anyone hasn’t read Pratchett I simply cannot recommend them enough. They are simply wonderful and nothing I can say will do them justice. 

So that’s me, you can expect plenty of dragons, monsters and myths in most things I write, though my utter favourite will always be the Kraken. If you have a favourite myth or monster, please do say in the comments below! It’d be great to hear from you. I look forward to talking to you all again soon.

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Hi,

I’m Jess – I’m an editor with Otherverse. I’m one of the lucky people that gets first peek at the work sent in for the upcoming October edition. 

Submissions are still open! If you’re working on your submission, good luck and I hope it’s going well for you. I speak for us all when I say we are SO excited to read your work. 

If you’re planning on submitting a sci-fi short, I am particularly excited to read your stuff. I’m a big sci-fi fan, and a big short story fan. There’s something so excellent about the vastness of space and time, the mystery of strange happenings, compacted into miniature form. I often get left with the addictive emotional cocktail of wanderlust and genuine fear. 

If I could recommend two sci-fi shorts, it’d have to be Octavia E. Butler’s ‘Bloodchild’ (so creepy) and Julia Armfield’s ‘The Great Awake’ (so cool) which you can read for free here: https://www.thewhitereview.org/fiction/the-great-awake/It won the White Review short story prize 2018, and you can also find it in her ‘Saltslow’ collection. 

If you are stuck at the moment on a project, I’d suggest giving these two a read ^. I always find zoning into a good short story gives my brain a chance to fix the issue by the time I resurface into the world again 🙂

If you’re interested in supporting the future of the magazine here’s a link for donations: https://otherversemagazine.com/support-us-2/ Every little helps! 

Cheers, 

Jess xox

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Meet Jess

Meet Jess – a member of our editorial team!

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Meet Nina

Hey there. 

My name is Nina, and I am on the editorial team for Otherverse, and I am also the web designer. Let’s get into it! 

Visiting Upstate New York

Science fiction is my jam. I have always admired fantasy but can’t seem to write it; I love to write literary fiction and very character-based work. Personally, the genres of science fiction and fantasy didn’t come to me until much later in my reading life. Early on, I really dove into heavy pieces from the likes of James Baldwin, Joyce, and Maya Angelou. Like I mentioned before, it wasn’t until later in my reading and writing life and career—much later, as a matter of fact, it wasn’t until I was in my junior year of college (third year of university) back in the United States—when my contemporary fiction professor introduced me to Jeff Vandermeer’s Annihilation.Do you think the movie adaptation is as good as the book? Leave your thoughts below. 

As I was saying, after reading that novel, I was catapulted into the speculative genres. I began watching endless science fiction films, beginning with the original Star Trek (1979).
I may have delved into the fantastical world, albeit cringey, of Stephanie Meyers’ TheTwilight Saga. Team Edward, anyone? 

In a future post, I’ll tackle speculative and commercial fiction! But, for now, I want to properly introduce myself as the writer who loves science fiction and fantasy yet can’t quite write it—as the writer who is looking forward to reading all of your work, and as a reader who has just begun the legendary Frank Herbert’s Dune, per James Geddis’ (one of our co-founder’s recommendation) ahead of the new film release. You can watch the trailer below. 

I look forward to shedding light on the reader’s entrance into science fiction and fantasy. 

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Meet Chandler

Hello! 

Chandler here. I am a founding editor of this nifty literary corner on the internet known as Otherverse Magazine.

My earliest obsession with all things fantastic began when I was a kid growing up in New Jersey. I was enthralled with all things fairies—specifically, the Complete Book of Flower Fairies by Cicely Mary Barker—and used to spend summer afternoons building ‘fairy houses’ (a pile of twigs and leaves stacked into huts) in the wood behind my house.


From fairies, my interest in fantasy naturally grew through reading. Early favorites were Inkheart by Cornelia Funke, Sabriel by Garth Nix, and who could forget the greatest genre-crossover series of all time (and I will fight anyone on this), Vampirates by Justin Somper. Most of the time, though, I could be found in my local library browsing the collections of ghost stories and fairytales.

Nowadays I read widely across the speculative genre. Huge influences are the Earthsea series by Ursula K. LeGuin, Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke, Dune by Frank Herbert, Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, and too many more to mention here.

The question I leave you with is this: if you were stranded on a deserted island and only had 3 books for entertainment, which would you choose? Mine are the following:

  • A book on surviving in the wilderness, as I’d like to have a good shout of staying alive
  • The Earthsea Quartet by Ursula K. LeGuin, because it seems fitting for island life
  • Circe by Madeline Miller, so I always have a companion in another woman who is in island exile

I’m curious to hear your 3 books and why you picked them. Feel free to share your island library below!

Our first ever issue of new SFF writing is coming in October, so stay tuned to hear exciting updates from Otherverse! The dream is to eventually produce print editions of every new issue of the magazine. So, if you believe in the power of science fiction and fantasy writing, please consider donating a quid to our future fund: https://otherversemagazine.com/support-us-2/. Every little donation brings us closer to achieving this goal!

See you again soon. Chandler out.

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Meet Yasmin

Hello!

My name’s Yasmin and I am a co-founder of Otherverse Magazine (https://otherversemagazine.com/) a new sci-fi and fantasy publication coming out this October. We are currently open for submissions from both artists and authors and pay a flat fee of £30 to every writer we publish, and would love to receive your work!

We are very grateful for any support as we continue our journey to producing the first issue of Otherverse. If you would like to donate to ensure future issues of our magazine, you can do so here: https://otherversemagazine.com/support-us-2/

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I’ve always loved reading, and some of my best childhood memories are waking up on a Saturday morning and pulling a tome out from under my pillow to read until my stomach started growling. As such, I am always on the lookout for exciting new releases and July is a packed month for SFF novels. 

You can find a comprehensive list of some of the most anticipated novels of the month here: https://gizmodo.com/51-new-sci-fi-and-fantasy-books-to-add-to-your-reading-1847149169.

The ones I will be looking out for on my next book shopping trip include:

‘Breeder’ by Honni van Rijswijk

Will Meadows is a seemingly average fifteen-year-old Westie, who lives and works in Zone F, the run-down outermost ring of the Corporation […] Every day in Zone F is a struggle, especially for Will who is fighting against time for access to an illegal medical drug, Crystal 8.

With a 4.6 Goodreads rating ‘Breeder’ is proving a hit, and personally I’m drawn to Rijswijk’s bleak dystopian worldbuilding. I am a huge fan of YA fiction, and find that a gritty setting can complement the characteristic angst of YA protagonists very well.

‘Capture the Crown’ by Jennifer Estep

Gemma Ripley has a reputation for being a pampered princess who is more interested in pretty gowns, sparkling jewelry, and other frivolous things than learning how to rule the kingdom of Andvari. But her carefully crafted persona is just an act to hide the fact that Gemma is a powerful mind magier—and a spy. 

Following the huge success of her Crown of Shards series, this new trilogy is sure to receive a lot of attention and draw readers back into a fantasy world they love. The combination of danger, mystery, and potential romance is often proves for a gripping read, and I am excited to see the development of Estep’s world. 

Which new releases are you on the lookout for? Are you excited to see a favourite author’s latest work, or has a dazzling debut caught your eye? 

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