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ANNOUNCEMENT/GIVEAWAY: A Fall in Autumn, by Michael G. Williams

COVER - A Fall in Autumn - Michael G. Williams

QSFer Michael G. Williams has a new queer sci fi book out: A Fall in Autumn. WELCOME TO THE LAST OF THE GREAT FLYING CITIES It’s 9172, YE (Year of the Empire), and the future has forgotten its past. Soaring miles over the Earth, Autumn, the sole surviving flying city, is filled to the brim with the manifold forms of humankind: from Human Plus “floor models” to the oppressed and disfranchised underclasses doing their dirty work and every imaginable variation between. Valerius Bakhoum is a washed-up private eye and street hustler scraping by in Autumn. Late on his rent, fetishized … Read more

FOR WRITERS & READERS: Religion in Queer Spec Fic

FOR WRITERS/READERS Today’s writer topic comes from QSFer Brad Townsend: I think it would be cool to have a discussion about religion in fantasy and sci-fi. In my circle of LBGT friends, religion, especially Christianity, is a no no topic. I pull heavily from it in my own book and I know it costs me readers – even though it’s got a strong dose of Norse Mythology mixed it and bears no resemblance to reality lol. In fantasy worlds, fantasy religions are often common and magical (like AD&D and other FRP games) and seem safe because (usually) they aren’t based … Read more

Exorcisms Can Now Be Done Over Cell Phones

Bible Cell Phone - Pixabay

This might make your head spin — officials of the Roman Catholic Church are offering a week-long course in exorcism, and dozens of Catholic priests have flocked to Rome to partake of the Holy See’s demon-banishing tips and strategies. Titled Exorcism and Prayer of Liberation, the course is now in its 13th year, and is presented at The Pontifical Athenaeum Regina Apostolorum, a Catholic educational institution in Rome, in collaboration with the Group for Socio-religious Research and Information (GRIS), according to the course’s website. An estimated 200 people — lay Catholics as well as priests — attended, Reuters reported. From … Read more

ANNOUNCEMENT/GIVEAWAY: The Burning of Arbor, by J.L. Brown

The Burning of Arbor

J.L. Brown has a new Bi paranormal/urban fantasy book out: Evangeline Clarion is a fiery artist and elemental witch. She dreams of opening a gallery in her small town of Arbor, but Eva’s embrace of her own power and sexuality offends the pious sensibilities of the devout Arbor citizenry. A gaggle Eva referred to as “Arbor’s Most Moral” sets out on a witch hunt to ruin her and drive her out of town. They attack her in the pews, in the press, and in person. But instead of weakening her, the relentless barrage fuels the fire within her. As her … Read more

Announcement/Deleted Scene: Ardulum: First Don, by J.S. Fields

Ardulum: First Don

J.S. Fields has a new FF sci fi romance out: Ardulum. The planet that vanishes. The planet that sleeps. Neek makes a living piloting the dilapidated tramp transport, Mercy’s Pledge, and smuggling questionable goods across systems blessed with peace and prosperity. She gets by—but only just. In her dreams, she is still haunted by thoughts of Ardulum, the traveling planet that, long ago, visited her homeworld. The Ardulans brought with them agriculture, art, interstellar technology…and then disappeared without a trace, leaving Neek’s people to worship them as gods. Neek does not believe—and has paid dearly for it with an exile … Read more

Worldbuilding Week Day Six: Religion

Worldbuilding Week

Welcome to the second annual Worldbuilding Week at QSF. We’ll talk about all aspects of building a world for your story, including languages; alien/magical races; history and timelines; culture and politics; sex, marriage and reproduction; tools and techniques; and religion. It should be a lot of fun. For our final day, we’re talking about religion, and Jenna Hale will be our moderator. Her take: How many religions exist in the history of the world? Likely you’ll think of Christianity, Judaism, and Islam–the Abrahamic trio–or Buddhism and Hinduism. You might be familiar with Shinto, the varying flavors of paganism and Wicca, … Read more

For Writers: The Future of Religion

A bit of a hot topic today – is there religion in your future? Sci fi has a long and sketchy history of dealing with religion. In many stories of the future, religion fades away in the face of reason. In others, it becomes a driving force. And yes, sometimes Sci Fi writers even create their own religions. And we all know how that ends. So my questions today: As a writer, do you include religion in your sci fi, and if so, what’s it like in the future? Will our current religions continue to predominate, will they fade away, … Read more

Building Your Own Religion

There’s an old story that goes something like this (via StackExchange): It is widely believed that L. Ron Hubbard and Robert A. Heinlein made a bet in a bar one night either than L. Ron could not create a religion, or to see who could create a religion first. (In the second case, Stranger in a Strange Land is often cited as Heinlein’s effort.) The story has been widely debunked, but it is a fact that sci fi author L. Ron Hubbard came up with Scientology. I often struggle with the role of religion in my sci fi stories – … Read more