There’s a story behind Oscar Windsor-Smith’s Issue 7 story. In Oscar’s own words:
‘Wings of Nemesis’ is a short story about the rehabilitation of a military drone pilot suffering posttraumatic mental breakdown. The story began life as an entry for a multi-round international literary competition, where it achieved joint first place in its round. But there’s a sting in tail, which led me into the most surreal situation of my writing life thus far.
A writer friend, who also happens to be a scientist, suggested he knew of a suitable home for ‘Wings of Nemesis’ in what he described as an anthology. This led to my submitting the story to a scientist friend of his at a well-known UK university. I duly received an email telling me that ‘Wings of Nemesis’ had “been accepted for development into a full paper submission for…” [A scientific journal concerned with technological forecasting]. The email went on: “…from a very competitive field you have been selected… This is a very commendable achievement and we acknowledge your talents and skills in this newly emerging research area.” So far, so bizarre, but it got even stranger.
I received detailed instructions as to how, when and in what form my “paper” should be submitted, under the overall title: “Creative science prototyping [truncated title]…” My story was further elevated to the status, variously, of an “extended abstract”, a “creative prototype” and a “vignette”, none of which made the slightest sense to me. What did become clear was: in order to bring my humble, under 3000 word, story up to these lofty standards, I was expected to write at very least another 7500 words, at most 17,500.
Research into the T&Cs of the scientific journal’s publisher revealed that, if published, I would lose my copyright and I would receive no payment, although the journal and articles it contained would be exorbitantly priced. I declined this opportunity of unpaid scientific glory.
Which is why ‘Wings of Nemesis’ was available to take up its present happy home in Issue 7 of Pulp Literature, complemented by superb illustrations and surrounded by other excellent stories.
My experience of publication in Pulp Literature was very positive. They’re a friendly and cooperative team to work with. Oh, and they do pay – promptly.
Sounds surreal, eh? Don’t forget to pick up your own copy of Pulp Literature Issue 7, to read ‘Wings of Nemesis’ for yourself! For more from Oscar see Nighthawks a Fable of New York, in The View from Here, Trumpet Volunteer, in Flash Fiction Online and No Alligators in Virginia, in Everyday Fiction. Or visit his blog at http://oscarwindsor-smith.blogspot.co.uk/