Captain's Blog

Ahoy, Critterfolk!
New entry Dec 13

Critter Notices

Network speeding up

I'm switching the connection over to a new, shiny 10X faster network because of all the load. There might be bits of downtime as your boxes learn new addresses and things. Should be brief. Let me know of any prolonged outages you see.

Preditors & Editors Changeover

With the very sad passing of Dave Kuzminski, who ran P&E, I've taken over the P&E duties. Lots of what I hope are improvements; check it out at

Critters Server is Dying has been Replaced

See important details here in my blog. Let me know if you find anything that isn't working right. (Manuscripts are now available for this week, FYI.)

Book Recommendation

THE SIGIL TRILOGY: The universe is dying from within... "Great stuff... Really enjoyed it." — SFWA Grandmaster Michael Moorcock

Announcing ReAnimus Press

If you need help making ebooks from manuscripts or print copies—or finding great stuff to read—look no further! An ebook publisher started by your very own Critter Captain. (And with a 12% Affiliate program.) [More]









ReAnimus Acquires Advent!

ReAnimus Press is pleased to announce the acquisition of the legendary Advent Publishers! Advent is now a subsidiary of ReAnimus Press, and we will continue to publish Advent's titles under the Advent name. Advent was founded in 1956 by Earl Kemp and others, and has published the likes of James Blish, Hal Clement, Robert Heinlein, Damon Knight, E.E. "Doc" Smith, and many others. Advent's high quality titles have won and been finalists for several Hugo Awards, such as The Encyclopedia of Science Fiction and Fantasy and Heinlein's Children. Watch this space for ebook and print editions of all of Advent's current titles!

Free Web Sites

Free web sites for authors (and others) are available at

The Sigil Trilogy

If you're looking for an amazing, WOW! science fiction story, check out THE SIGIL TRILOGY. This is — literally — one of the best science fiction novels I've ever read.

New Book from a Critter Member

**NOW IN PRINT EDITION TOO!** Awesome new book, HOW TO IMPROVE YOUR SPECULATIVE FICTION OPENINGS, from a Critter member whose unearthed a shard of The Secret to becoming a pro writer. Really good piece of work. "...if you're at all concerned about story openings, you'd be nuts not to read what Qualkinbush has to say." —Wil McCarthy, author of BLOOM and THE COLLAPSIUM

Free Ad for a Fellow Workshop Member:

The Critters Queue

Submission files themselves are here.

Queue of manuscripts out or to be sent (dates are estimated,
depending on number of mss. sent out, which depends on number of
members; probabalistically, the end of the queue is usually about
a month away):

     Title                      	Author
Week of 25-Mar-2015 (Crits due 1-Apr-2015):
 SF  Party Performance Optimization Using Numerical Methods revised  [mpc] Robert Harpold -#24669
 SF  Monster                            [mpc] Jon Hurwitz -#24670
 F   Spear: Fire and Brimstone          [mpc] Kristopher Horton -#24671
 F   Small Feathers                     [mpc] Mari Mitchell -#24672
 SF  Slipping Away                      Fred Obermeyer -#24673
 SF  Peace, And Rumors Of Peace         [@] Mary Catelli -#24674
 SF  Polar Choices                      DJ Cockburn -#24675
 F   Defender: Return of the Harkers    Eric J. Juneau -#24676
 SF  Out of Sync                        Chris Kenworthy -#24677
 SF  Lieutenant Chan                    Christian Roberts -#24678
 SF  I Heard a Voice Cry Sleep No More  John Barefield -#24679
 F   Maryam That Was                    Alexander Leger-Small -#24680
 H   Bad Brunch in the Big Easy         Matthew Weber -#24681
 F   The Goose, the Goddess, and the Lost Golden Coin  Lance Burri -#24682
 F   The Alchemist's Box Ch 1-4         Alex Avrio -#24683
 SF  The Chain of Forests, Chapters 1 to 3  Ilias Stroulias -#24684
 H   My Soul, For Mommy's               Justin C. Key -#24685
 SF  Stormtroopers                      Christoph Weber -#24686
 SF  The Baby Snatchers, Prologue       Vidal Cid -#24687
 SF  Subdued Chapter 4                  [@] Mindy Peterman -#24688
 F   Henry and the Ghost, Chapters 1-2  Stefanie Kirschbaum -#24689
 SF  Necessary Illusions                [@] Tom Greene -#24690
 F   The Emergency Situation            Joel Kirk -#24691
 F   The Neighborhood, Chapters 1-2     Holly Godbey -#24692
 SF  Pixel Heart                        Will Milner -#24693
 SF  White King, Chapter 1, Johan       Gustaf Schneiner -#24694
 SF  Electric Raspberries               Josh Harlan -#24695
 SF  The Satellite Office               Jamie Simo -#24696

Week of 1-Apr-2015 (Crits due 8-Apr-2015):
 SF  Subdued, Chapter 5                 [@] Mindy Peterman
 SF  Martian Still                      Kelsey Sweatt
 SF  The Hopeful Romantic               Jeff Cates
 F   Waste Places Chapters 1-4          Judith Pratt
 SF  It's Always Summer In Our Memory   Amanda Niehaus-Hard
 F   The Sharklings of Anchor Valley    Kurt Hunt
 SF  Wind Riderz Part I Chapter 1       Christopher Cragwick
 F   Phoebus Chapter One                Bas Geelen
 F   Devil's Blood: Chapter 1           Sarah Hodge
 F   The Beginning of the End           Traci Loudin
 F   The Retrievers Chapter 6           Mark A Dawson
 SF  Blood on the Horizon               Derrick Boden
 F   City of Cats                       Jacob Rennick
 H   The Bus                            M.B.Vujacic
 SF  Apocalyptic Hangover               Chris DeSantis
 SF  They Come. Run.                    Michael Reid
 H   GSD                                Chester Lee
 H   Tomatoes                           Ryan Anderson
 F   The Man Who Married a Fairy, Chapters 1-2  Andrew Richardson
 SF  The Hamsa, Chapter 1               Patrick Sanders
 F   Shadowbound, Chapters 1-29         Lisa Stout
 SF  The Moonship                       Charles Hand
 H   Off the Leash                      Ed Kratz
 F   Devil's Day Challenge              Robert Vicens
 F   Never moon a werewolf or poke a Pooka Chapter one Falling  Dabney

Week of 8-Apr-2015 (Crits due 15-Apr-2015):
 SF  Trade Route, Chapters 0-1, revised  Curtis Manges
 SF  City of Circles, Chapter 1         James L. Graetz
 F   Pawn of the Gods                   Andrea Franco-Cook
 SF  The Destiny Engine                 Jonathan Byrne
 SF  Fibonacci                          Eleanor R. Wood
 F   The Skies of Edinburgh             Anna Salonen
 SF  The Promethean Possession          Christopher Ross
 SF  Nicotine Dreams                    Evelyn Aschenbrenner
 SF  Initiation                         Charles T, Walbridge
 F   Tree Ghost                         Margaret Moller
 H   Old 237                            Dirck de Lint
 SF  Secession Campaign Prologue and Chapter 1  Mike Mullen
 F   The Vampire Laura - Primal Skies #5  Kim Smeltzer
 SF  Worthless Gold Part 2              Ronald Hurst
 F   The Bluehaven Manifesto, Chapter 1, pt. of Chap.  Trevor J Wallace
 F   Fire and Water                     Douglas E Ryan
 SF  Tales of Midbar: Religious Intolerance, Chapter 2  Richard Pearman
 F   The Hag                            Ethan Fode
 SF  Wandering                          Jasmine K. Demir
 SF  On a Mission                       David Erickson

Week of 15-Apr-2015 (Crits due 22-Apr-2015):
 SF  The Way Home                       Al Williams
 F   A Measure of Sin                   Sian Chapman
 F   Twenty Mattresses                  Mike Alix
 F   The Lion at the End of the World   Alex Bradshaw
 SF  Last Janitor of the Divine         Eric Schwitzgebel
 SF  The Trials                         Katherine Fairbanks
 H   Nine Rings of Silver, One of Bronze  Rayne Hall
 F   Viraetes Island Part 2             Miah Goodreau
 SF  Messin' With Slavers               C. John Griffin
 F   War of the Wizards                 Christopher J. Piatti
 SF  Too Much to Dream                  Richard Zwicker
 F   God's Gumshoe Draft 2 Chapters 13-15  Russell Adams
 SF  Stone Age Vacation                 Michael Andre-Driussi
 SF  The Seahorse Fathers               Learned Foote
 F   The Black Queen Chapter 1          Chad Willson
 SF  Match of the Day                   Iain Ishbel
 F   Crown of the Halakith, Chapter 1 - Caleros  Joel E. Roosa
 SF  The Guests                         Dart Omran
 F   Zeltis chapters 1-5                Shanna C. Larsen
 F   Child of the House                 Kaitlyn Whipple
 SF  A God Among Men                    Eitan Moses
 F   The Half-hidden Face               Dale W. Glaser
 F   Assassin's Mistake, Prologue-Chapter 0  Katherine Howard
 F   The Timeless                       James Robertson
 SF  Upon the All-Walker                Jeffrey Hall
 F   The Man in the Mirror              Joanna Hoyt
 SF  Hard Loving A Hermaphrodite        Rud Merriam
 SF  Philanthro-Flu                     D.J. Diehl
 SF  The Duchess' Chocolate             John Nickerson
 F   Guardians of the Dream, chapter 1  Amit M. Halberthal
 F   A Short Introduction to Court Life  Melanie Hopkins
 SF  Ship of Cards _1 to 9_             Malcolm Dent
      (Note, if the last week above looks abnormally large, it probably
      needs me to add a new week, a task I do manually when I get around
      to it.  Future critique dates are approximate and subject to change.)


[@] - Pro [SFWA/HWA] author
[*] - Extra week(s) for holidays/aburt-out-of-town.
[mpc] - Most Product Critter Award winner
[!] - Special non-Wednesday dates because Critter Captain will be out of town
[ERROR!] - This means there is a problem and your manuscript will NOT be
     sent out - Contact the Critter Captain ASAP if you see this by your name.

Waiting to enter Queue (Will enter at end of queue on "[date]"):
 YA  Enchanter RFDR                     E. B. Pike [?]
 M   The Shot                           Zimbalist L. Odhams [?]
 M   The Shot                           Zimbalist L. Odhams [?]
 L   The Six Samurai Chapters 1-3       John Endris [?]
 F   Our Father, Chapter 1              Brandon Byes [?]
 SF  Terra Prime: Fall of a Federation [?]
 SF  Rats in Space [?]
 F   Dollhouse of the He, Chart [?]
 L   Violin Playing Robot               Chrissie Wranja [?]
 H   Virgins Of The Sea                 Justin C. Key [1-Apr-2015]
 F   The Vampire's Daughter             Kim Smeltzer [15-Apr-2015]
 F   Viraetes Island Part 4             Miah Goodreau [22-Apr-2015]
 F   Wizard's of the Watchtower         Christopher J. Piatti [22-Apr-2015]
 SF  God of Memory, Lords of Iron       [?]
 SF  King Me                            David Erickson [15-Apr-2015]
 F   The Vampire's Madman               Kim Smeltzer [?]
 SF  No SLAM Maps for these Territories, 2nd Draft  Will Milner [1-Apr-2015]
 F   The Retrievers, Chapter 7          A.K. Karam [8-Apr-2015]
 F   The Fireman                        Christoph Weber [1-Apr-2015]
 SF  Two Easy Pieces                    Charles Hand [8-Apr-2015]
 SF  Apocalyptic Hangover Chapter 2     Chris DeSantis [8-Apr-2015]
 H   Daddy's on the Way                 Matthew Weber [1-Apr-2015]
 F   The Vampire Helen pt 1 - Primal Skies #7  Kim Smeltzer [?]
 SF  Secession Campaign Chapter 2 and 3  Mike Mullen [15-Apr-2015]
 F   All That Glitters                  Margaret Moller [15-Apr-2015]
 SF  The Hamsa, Chapter 2               Patrick Sanders [8-Apr-2015]

Held until participation ratio improves (then out that week):
 SF  Circus at Twilight                 Daniel C. Haracz [25-Feb-2015]
 F   The Eternal, Chapter 1             Faisal Shamas [25-Feb-2015]
 SF  Melon Chapter one                  Tom Grayhorse [11-Mar-2015]
 H   Wolf Moon                          Del Bailey [11-Mar-2015]
 H   179 Degrees                        Bob Barwell [18-Mar-2015]
 F   Free Radicals , Chapters 1 - 4     Amanda Acton [25-Mar-2015]
 SF  The Road to Babel                  Yaroslav Barsukov [25-Mar-2015]
 SF  Dragon Tears                       Robin L. Martinez [25-Mar-2015]
 SF  Animal Problems In The Gators Loving Hands  Luke Hally [25-Mar-2015]

>> Note 1:  Held manuscripts are removed after four weeks on hold and
>> must be resubmitted.

>> Note 2:  It is the *author's* responsibility to notify Aburt when
>> they have brought up their critique count and want their ms. sent out.

[Click here to see the queue including archival data from 1995.]