Letter From The Editor - Issue 54 - December 2016
IT'S A CHRISTMAS MIRACLE!
This special edition of Orson Scott Card's Intergalactic Medicine Show rolls out a bit earlier than
normal thanks to our dedicated elves, dwarves, Scandanavian troll-gods, Turkish saints, and
sundry ancient deities. It's our first themed issue, and the theme, fittingly, is "Festivals at the
Front." Back in the summer, I solicited a group of writers for stories about holiday celebrations
during war-time. Military fiction is something I never see enough of; I hope you enjoy these as
much as I did.
Starting the festivities with a whisper is Laurie Tom's "Poison Maiden." The presence of the
Harpy Squad means death. An all-female squad of survivors of a factory accident, they are one
of the Allies' best kept secrets, and most powerful weapons, in the trenches. But the secrets kept
from the Harpy Squad may be more damning than their own poison.
Magicians and mountain men keep the secrets of their arts as close to their hearts as a prized
locket. Jeremy M. Gottwig's weird western, "A Heart in the Hand" is about magicians, mountain
men, and a prized locket that holds the power to keep a soldier living even after he's been
scalped and left for dead. Or it might just be about the blessing of not getting what you want for
In Frances Silversmith's "Yuletide Warrior," Bertlinde wants to save the world for Jul. With her
warrior sisters, she fights to prevent the Turst from breaching our world and attacking the
innocent and vulnerable. And you thought the holidays were about peace, love, and goodwill to
men . . . . Bertlinde and her line of thirteen fight a bloody, devastating war so you can enjoy a
peaceful evening sipping mulled cider by the light of the yul log.
There's no peace in Ethiopia in 1935 (nor yul logs, nor cider). There's sand and tanks and
soldiers, though, and the threat of an impending battle. And at least two Christmases. Jonathan
Edelstein's "The Emperor's Gift" is an alternate history story that finds a diverse army of British,
Greek, and Americans fighting alongside Ethiopians to battle Mussolini's forces in pre-WWII
Our audio offering this issue is a short story about Islam, Christmas, space exploration, and
weaponized wormholes. "A Special Extra Christmas" was penned by one of our favorite
authors, Eric James Stone, and is read by Emily Rankin.
Also in this issue, Lawrence Schoen interviews Chuck Gannon!
Crom bless us, every one!
Scott M. Roberts
Orson Scott Card's Intergalactic Medicine Show