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On Stories With Gay Lovers Dying

As some of you may or may not be aware, there is a trend in fiction that stories with same sex couples often end with one or both partners dead, more often than is the case with straight couples. In my slush pile, I mostly see this in stories about gay men, and very rarely see it about lesbians. (Stories with lesbians dying may exist elsewhere -- we just don't see it often.)

As author Chimamanda Adichie cautious in her famous TED Talk, we must beware of the danger of a single story. We must reflect on the "single stories" of others we ourselves carry, and we must take steps to create, and promote, other narratives, especially of marginalized people and experiences.

So we absolutely need more stories about same sex partners (any kind of queer partners, actually) that don't end in tragic death. LGBTQ youth need to see stories about people like them, which have happy endings (or at least where everyone's not dead!!).

No really, we need happy endings too.

But that is not the same thing as saying that there is no place for queer stories which do end in the death of one or both partners.

I have a hunch that perhaps we see so many of these stories today because of the legacy of the HIV/AIDS epidemic, and the many personal and community traumas endured by the gay community on account of that. Perhaps many straight people grew up only hearing about gay people in this context, and so in their minds, the "single story" can only end with tragedy and death. Or perhaps they've lost friends or loved ones due to AIDS themselves. Perhaps also for many gay people, writing stories which end in tragic death is a conscious or unconscious way of processing this trauma, even part of the psychic healing process -- a way to deal with these personal and communal wounds.

On top of this I would like to add that not all LGBTQ people can safely come out, so please be cautious before judging people who write such stories. If you don't know them closely and personally, you don't know what they have endured and survived.

tl;dr: We need more diversity of narratives, so we can create MORE SPACE for narratives, not shut out narratives that wrestle with dark and uncomfortable subjects.
Hi everyone!

Expanded Horizons Issue 42 has arrived at last! In this issue, we bring you tales of ancient beasts, jungle spirits, and mysterious life forms from deep space! We also feature a faity-tale inspired poem and post-colonial steampunk art. Please enjoy our issue, and help support our efforts by making a small contribution if you can.

Thank you!
Dash
Hi everyone!

Expanded Horizons Issue 41 has arrived at last! We have two stories, two poems, and some original artwork! I hope you enjoy the issue, and please remember to donate if you can -- every little bit helps us to pay our contributors, and continue publish engaging, diverse speculative fiction.

Thank you!
Dash

Native Spanish Speaker Needed

Hi everyone,

I have a submission I'd like to go over with a native speaker, to make sure the Spanish is accurate. If you can help out, please let me know.

Thanks!

Speculative Fiction Demographics Poll

Hey everyone!

Mary Robinette Kowal has put up a poll to gauge fandom demographics. https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/readingsf

Please take a moment to take the survey and let your presence in fandom be noted! The poll asks several different types of demographics questions, as well as several questions about the types and formats of spec fic that you consume.

Sadly, the poll doesn't include any demographics questions about religion, or about disability (except if one is unable to work), but it does include thoughtful questions about several other demographics, and is especially conscious about gender identity and sexual orientation. Also, the poll doesn't list online spec fic magazines (pro and semi-pro) in the spec fic format options, so if you read Expanded Horizons and/or other short fiction magazines, please write that in (the format, not the specific magazines)!

Thank you and please pass along!
Hi Readers,

Expanded Horizons Issue 40 is out!

These tales take us across the world, from Nigeria to Southeast Asia to the United States. We hope you enjoy these three stories and a poem, all by authors of color.

Please take a moment to donate and support our work!

Thanks,
Dash

Brit Mandelo Reviews Expanded Horizons!

Brit Mandelo reviews the stories in the latest issue of Expanded Horizons, for the Science Fiction Spotlight of Tor.com!

The full review can be found here.
Hi Readers,

Expanded Horizons Issue 39 is out!

After a long wait, our April issue is online, and topics run the gamut from an African succubus to the Filipino Bayawak! This time, all four of our contributors are authors of color – two of them are from the Philippines, one is African-American and one is a Yoruba man living in the UK. Furthermore, three of the authors we published this month are women.

Read and enjoy!

Stay tuned for some upcoming changes at Expanded Horizons. We're planning on moving to a quarterly schedule, increasing our pay rates and accepting longer works.

Dash

Heiresses of Russ 2013

Congratulations to Expanded Horizons' contributor, Benjanun Sriduangkaew, whose story, Chang'e Dashes from the Moon, originally published at Expanded Horizons (August 2012), has been selected for inclusion in the Heiresses of Russ 2013 anthology of the year's best lesbian science fiction! (Link is to author's page.)

The anthology also contains work by Expanded Horizons contributors Megan Arkenberg, Alex Dally MacFarlane, Brit Mandelo, and Nisi Shawl, as well as a story by Julia Rios, with whom I was was on three panels this past Arisia 2013: 1) Trans* and Gender Variant SF, 2) Beyond Binary: Exploring Gender Via SF/Fantasy, and 3) Asexuality and Asexual Characters in SF.

Congratulations to everyone!

Heiresses of Russ 2013 will be out in August this year from Lethe Press, and can be pre-ordered from Amazon.com.
At last, everyone, Issue 38 is out! This issue features Chinese, Jewish and Mexican folklore, and a woman who can make animals grow from the ground.

Read and enjoy!

Also, please consider donating to Expanded Horizons this holiday season. Expanded Horizons runs entirely on donations and my out of pocket expenditures, and 100% of the money goes to paying contributors and paying for the domain/hosting. If you can contribute this holiday season, it will help us continue to publish quality, diverse fiction, poetry and artwork.

Please consider making a donation through the PayPal link on our site -- and if you give us $30 or more, we will (with your permission) thank you in the next issue!

Dash