Thursday, June 6, 2013

Short Story: By the Stars You Will Know Her

The 6th issue of Plasma Frequency is out, and along with it, my dark fantasy story "By the Stars You Will Know Her"--and to be honest, I'm not a fan of the title, I wrote it when I was on my Lovecraft kick.

El excerpt:
She strode across star-filled waters that knew no distinction from the sky above. Shadows clung to her form, made her enigma.

But he could make out her eyes.

She had the eyes of an ancient: mists and lightning swirling into a maelstrom galaxy, a kind of chaos that would pull you in if you gazed too long.

And yet he stared.

Do I have anything to say about this story?


I had submitted this story to Crowded before Plasma Frequency, where other submitters and the editors could leave comments on your story. I did take some of the advice about cutting the less-than-interesting stuff. However, two of the comments (and sadly, I no longer have them) didn't like the ending, which was funny, because I loved it.

It's the kind of ending I like to see in horrors and dark fiction; that sharp cut off, leaving the reader to fill in the emotions. Obviously not the sort of ending for everyone--but hey, worked for the good folks of Plasma Frequency.

By the way, Plasma Frequency is celebrating their one year anniversary, which is a pretty big accomplishment for a small publisher; the majority of publishers tend to crap out within six months or less.

So to celebrate, they're holding a contest with goody prizes such as $50 Amazon gift cards and paperback anthology. Oh, and another cool thing: you get to vote for your favorite story in each issue, and the winners get to be part of Plasma Frequency's Year One anthology. So you know, if you have a certain favorite story in issue 6... *wink wink*

All of Plasma Frequency's issues are free to download in various formats, including Kindle, Nook and PDF. Check them out! I'd recommend them; they're one of the few publishers who still recognizes that things should happen in a story.   


  1. Congrats - I really enjoyed 'By the Stars You Will Know Her', including the ending!

    I agree about the sharp cut-off for horror/dark fiction shorts - it can be very effective. The reader's imagination is more powerful than extra words. Even in non-dark fiction, sometimes extra words can ruin an ending. I think knowing where to leave it is a real art.

  2. Downloading my copy -- looking forward to reading your tale. Personally, I'm a fan of endings where the story can live on in readers' minds, and where they can fill in what they think happens next. Big fan of Plasma Frequency too!

    1. Very nice work, Siobhan. When he first hears the crack, I was expecting a birth/emergence of some kind, so the hammer was a nice surprise. Loved the ending.

    2. Thank you! Glad you enjoyed the ending. :)

  3. Congratulations on the sale :) Your excerpt is very evocative and it's my intention to go from here, to Plasma Frequency to download a copy :)

  4. Well done.

    Different people want different things from endings, so if only two out of a number didn't like then I wouldn't worry too much. You can't please everybody all the time.

    1. It was 2/5 comments that mentioned the ending (and who I strongly suspect were the editors of the zine). Other comments mentioned that the story wasn't horror (I say semi-horror or dark fantasy, but meh) and that some scenes dragged. But hey, that's feedback for ya!