Interview with Arlan Andrews, author of ‘Riders on the Storm’

Arlan AndrewsArlan Andrews is another writer who has written previously for Alt Hist, his ‘Lament for Lost Atlanta’ appeared in Issue 1, and his new story ‘Riders on the Storm’ has recently appeared in Issue 3.

In ‘Riders on the Storm’ several of the characters use slang from a future language. How did you go about creating the language they use?

I let my mind go “out of gear” and try to feel what might pass for slang/language in about 50 years. Look at today’s converstions versus those of 50 year ago — half of what we say would make no sense: “tweet”, “OMG”, online, email, stimulus, neo-con, jihadi, 9/11, UAV, stealth, Mbit, VR, Facebook, apple, iPad/Pod, and many more. I just try to slide into a natural progression of things. (Actually, I have no idea where any of it comes from — it’s just there when I need it.)

What’s your favourite time-travel story and why?

Guns of the South by Harry Turtledove; because he is the master of the genre, and easily makes one believe in the story as it unfolds. As a Southerner, one always has a slight tinge of wishful thinking that perhaps Things May Have Been Otherwise.

Tell us a bit more about SIGMA.

When I worked in the White House Science Office 1992-1993, I was appalled at the lack of imagination when government bureaucrats tried their hand at forecasting. I wrote a manifesto — “The Future is too important to be left to Futurists!” — and asked some fellow science fiction authors, mostly Ph.D.s (to avoid the Washington, D. C., “giggle factor” to join me in providing the government and others with our own brand of science-fiction-based futurism. Our website,, has the background details, list of membrers, their bios, and some news clips. In January 2012 some of us will be appearing in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, as guest panelists at the Global Competitiveness Forum 2012.

How did you get into writing?

My father read to me before I could read, and family members made up stories. I also wrote. I began submitting science fiction stories after I met some writers and began to read stories I thought I could have written better. My first publication was a poem, “Rime of the Ancient Engineer,” in Asimov’s Magazine, in 1980, followed by stories in Analog. I’ve done about 500 pieces, fact and fiction, in 100 venues, most lately with fiction in, Analog and Kindle e-books. My factual pieces appear in Atlantis Rising Magazine, and a regular column in UFO Magazine.

What do you do when you’re not writing?

I have a real job as an environmental engineering supervisor, coordinate SIGMA activities, travel to ancient sites, and otherwise enjoy a real life with wife, children and grandchildren.

Are you working on any other short stories or novels at the moment and if so can you tell us a bit more about them?

My e-novel, Valley of the Shaman, will be available on in January 2012. I usually do short stories or articles at the drop of a hat, typically on a weekend, and they are most often not planned ahead of time.

What are your ambitions as a writer?

To join the Kindle Million Sellers Club.

Union or Confederacy?

Heart – Confederacy; intellect/patriotism – Union; with a time machine I would probably go back and assassinate both John Brown and John Wilkes Booth ca 1850.

Don’t  forget to take a look at Arlan’s website at, and also his story ‘Riders on the Storm’.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Print Edition of Alt Hist Issue 3 Now Available

The print edition of Alt Hist Issue 3 is now available for purchase!

You can buy either from or If you’re in the US you might want to choose Amazon, if you’re in the UK then Lulu will be the better option.

Just a reminder of what’s in Alt Hist Issue 3:

The third issue of Alt Hist includes two stories about the American Civil War, one about the great Tesla, a tale of post-war revenge set in Dublin, and a compelling story about the early years of the space race.

Full list of stories and authors:

Praise for Alt Hist:

‘The second issue of Alt Hist magazine builds on the solid basis of the first issue, bringing a collection of historical fiction and alternate histories from a broad cross-section of history. There are some wonderful stories among them.’

‘engaging and well-written short stories with a historical setting that portray actual events or events that could have happened’
Fantasy Book Review,

Enhanced by Zemanta

Review of Alt Hist Issue 2 at Fantasy Book Review

Alt Hist Issue 2 just received a very good write-up at the website Fantasy Book Review. Alt Hist is described as containing “engaging and well-written short stories with a historical setting that portray actual events or events that could have happened”.

I particularly liked the last paragraph of the review:

In music there is nothing better than finding and liking a band that is as-of-yet pretty much unheard off, only for them to go on and become a world-renowned name. I believe that this is why readers may also enjoy Alt Hist – the authors mentioned above will likely be new to 99% of readers but we may be catching them right at the beginning of their career and find that we can embark on a great journey with them.

You can read the whole review of Alt Hist Issue 2 at Fantasy Book Review.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Previews of Alt Hist Issue 2 Stories Now Available

You can now read free previews of each fiction piece in Alt Hist Issue 2 on the Current Issue page. I have included the biography of the author and about a quarter or so of the story in each case.

Hope it whets your appetite for more!

Enhanced by Zemanta

Provisional Table of Contents for Issue 2 of Alt Hist

As work progresses on putting together issue 2 – typesetting, proof-reading etc – I thought you might want to have a quick glimpse of what will be coming up, so here’s a list of the stories that will be appearing (in no particular order!):

  • The Apollo Mission by David Wiggin
  • In Cappadoccia by AshleyRose Sullivan
  • Son of Flanders by William Knight
  • The Orchid Hunters by Priya Sharma
  • The Scarab of Thutmose by Suzanne Sykora
  • The Watch-Maker of Filigree Street by Natasha Pulley
  • Long Nights in Languedoc by Andrew Knighton
  • Death in Theatre by Jessica Wilson
Enhanced by Zemanta

Alt Hist Issue 1 Print edition available via Amazon

I am pleased to announce that the print edition of Alt Hist Issue 1 is now available via Amazon.

Please visit if you want to order it.

Just as a reminder the first issue of Alt Hist contains the following stories:

  • “The Silent Judge” by David W. Landrum
  • “Easter Parade, 1930” by Rob McClure Smith
  • “Holy Water” by Andrew Knighton
  • “Lament for Lost Atlanta” by Arlan Andrews
  • “The Bitterness of Apples” by Priya Sharma
  • “Travelling by Air” by Ian Sales

Gareth Jones at SF Crowsnest reviewed the first issue and pronounced it “an interesting selection of stories and a successful debut issue”.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Publication Date of the Second Issue of Alt Hist

When will the second issue of Alt Hist be published?

Well for the next issue I’m aiming for between 7 and 8 stories altogether and so far I have accepted 4. I do have some to review that looked quite good, so I’m fairly confident that I should have enough stories accepted by the end of this month. There will then be a round of proofs and typsetting to do in February/March, which means that with a fair wind you can expect the second issue of Alt Hist to be coming in March or April.

I’ll keep you posted!

Enhanced by Zemanta

50% Off Alt Hist Issue 1 Until End of December 2010

I have now made available a 50% discount off the first issue of Alt Hist. This discount is available as follows:

Print copies via Lulu at £3.50/copy or equivalent US pricing

Ebooks in various formats available via Smashwords use the coupon code XE57C to buy at the discounted rate of $3.50

Kinde ebook available from Amazon for $3.49 (may take a couple of days to see on the Amazon site).

Please enjoy Alt Hist Issue 1 responsibly during the holiday season.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Alt Hist Preparing Print and Ebook versions of first issue

With all the proofs processed, additional non-fiction content added and a cover design created, I am getting close to being able to announce the publication of the first issue of Alt Hist. At this stage a number of complications arise regarding timing. Ideally I’d like to announce publication of the print and ebook versions at the same time, but because certain retailers take a bit of time to get ebooks onto their platforms there maybe some delay. I anticipate though that Alt Hist will be available in some sort of ebook format within a week. When this happens I will announce it on this site, but we may well go for a more full scale announcement once all the distribution channels have got the “book”.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Alt Hist – First Issue PDF Proofs Despatched

The PDF proofs of the first issue  of Alt Hist are now with authors, so I think we should still be on track for publication towards the end of October.

I have to sort out one of the non-fiction pieces and also write an editorial and design a cover. But then everything should be ready for publication. I’m very excited to be reaching the finishing stages of this inaugural issue. Having read through all the stories again during the proof-reading stage, I felt very proud of the quality of contributions – there’s some great story-telling to look forward.

Enhanced by Zemanta
%d bloggers like this: