Category Archives: journal of unlikely entomology


The Journal of Unlikely Entomology is evolving, or undergoing a metamorphoses, if you will. (See what I did there?) What exactly does a bugzine evolve into, you might well ask. Good question! It evolves in a vast, sprawling empire of Unlikely Stories! Okay, maybe it’s not vast or sprawling yet, but we are growing, and world domination can’t be far behind! (Did I say that last part out loud? Sorry. Nothing to see here. Just a bit giddy.)

As I was saying, the Journal of Unlikely Entomology is evolving into Unlikely Story. You can read the full announcement for yourself of course, but here are the highlights:

Starting with Issue # 6, we’re increasing our pay rates to 5cents/word! Issue #6 is currently open to submissions, and the updated guidelines can be found here.

Next up, we’re launching The Journal of Unlikely Cryptography, which will open to submissions starting July 1, 2013.

There will be other changes as time goes on, including a shiny new website, new themed issues, and the aforementioned world domination, so stay tuned! If you have any questions, feel free to drop me an email, or ask away in the comments. In the meantime, spread the word and keep those stories coming for Issue #6!



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The Journal of Unlikely Architecture

I’m thrilled to announce the Table of Contents for the first non-buggy venture of the Journal of Unlikely Entomology – The Journal of Unlikely Architecture. The issue will be published in August, but feel free to start looking forward to these unlikely architectural tales now.

The Three Adventures of Simon the Elder by Daniel Ausema

Go Through by Alma Alexander

The Painted Bones by Kelly Simmons

The Latest Incarnation of Secondhand Johnny by Mark Rigney

The Dross Record by Matthew Timmins

The Tower by Kelly Lagor

Geddarien by Rose Lemberg

While you eagerly await the new issue, why not catch up on the fantastic and buggy stories in Issue #5, which we published in May? And while we’ll be hard at work putting together the new issue, we remain open to submissions for our next regular issue, Issue #6, which will be published in November 2013. Keep those buggy stories coming our way, and stay tuned for announcements about exciting upcoming changes at the Journal soon!


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Across the Universe

I feel like I’ve been neglecting this poor little blog over here, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been blogging. I’ve been scattering bits of wisdom (or not) in various places across the web. For instance, I recently wrote a guest post about bugs and speculative fiction for SF Signal, based on a presentation my Journal of Unlikely Entomology co-editor, Bernie Mojzes, and I recently gave at Balticon.

Also at SF Signal, I picked up where I left off on this blog with a new Women to Read post, recommending women whose work I think you should read and where I think you should start. I’m hoping to make this a semi-regular guest post series.

Over at Apex, I have a guest post about pre-Romero zombies and the Haitian/West African zombie tradition. This follows my post last month about the H.P. Lovecraft Society’s brilliant, low-budget, silent Call of Cthulhu movie.

And there’s more to come! Later this summer, I’ll be guest blogging for Shimmer about warriors and gender and other things in relation to my story How Bunny Came to Be in Shimmmer #17. I’ll even be posting things on this blog right here (believe it or not) as E. Catherine Tobler has graciously agreed to let me interview her in relation to her forthcoming novel Gold & Glass. Spoiler alert: I’ll probably ask her about cupcakes. Stay tuned!


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Journal of Unlikely Entomology Issue #5

I’m delighted to announce Issue #5 of the Journal of Unlikely Entomology! This is our fifth full-length issue, but including our mini issues, it’s our seventh issue overall. We’re moving into our third year of publication now, and it’s almost starting to feel like we know what we’re doing. Whether or not that’s true, we’re having a heck of a lot of fun doing it!

Issue #5 features fiction by Nicole Cipri, Cat Rambo, Lew Andrada, Pam L. Wallace, Jesse William Olson, Michelle Ann King, and Nicola Belta, accompanied by art from Justin Aerni, AkuraPare, Rasa Dilyte, Sarah Emerson, Brigitte Fredensborg, Linda Saboe, and Athina Saloniti.

I’m incredibly proud to be a part of this wonderful publication. I hope you enjoy our art and stories, and I’d love to hear what you think of them this time around!

Up next we have the Journal of Unlikely Architecture, our first one-off, non-buggy, special theme issue, which we aim to publish in August 2013. The issue isn’t finalized yet, but we have a fantastic line-up of authors and stories thus far, which we can’t wait to share with you. Following that we’ll publish Issue #6 in November 2013, and we’re currently open for submissions for that issue and beyond. After that? Well…stay tuned for further announcements, because we have exciting plans up our collective sleeve. (Yes, we share one sleeve. What of it?)

In the meantime, go read Issue #5. I may be biased, but I promise you it’s brilliant, and you won’t be sorry!

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Announcing Unlikely Issue #5

I’m delighted to announce the ToC (order subject to change) for Issue #5 of the Journal of Unlikely Entomology! The issue will be out in May, and feature:

Ecdysis by Nicole Cipri
Spiders, Centipedes, and Holes by Cat Rambo
The Space Between by Lew Andrada
Silent Drops of Crimson and Gold Rain by Pam Wallace
The Lonely Barricade at Dawn by Jesse William Olson
Jeanette’s Feast by Michelle Ann King
B by Nicola Belte

Thank you to all our contributors, and thank you to everyone who submitted work for consideration. We’re currently reading for Issue #6, which is due out in November, so keep those stories coming!

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Bring Us Your Bugs

Not literally, please. I’m sure they’re lovely and all, but I’d much rather appreciate bugs from a distance, say through the lens of a camera, or through the medium of fiction, than getting up close and personal. Speaking of insect-related fiction brings me to the purpose of this post. There’s just under a month left to send your stories to the Journal of Unlikely Entomology for consideration for Issue #5, which will be published in May. After April 1, we’ll start reading for Issue #6, which is due out in November. Or, if bugs aren’t your thing, we’re still looking for a few more stories for our special one-off Architecture Issue, which we hope to publish in August.

Want to know the secret, surefire way to get us to publish you? Well, there isn’t one. But I can tell you some things I’d personally love to see more of in our slush pile:

Stories from international writers, and stories with non-Western perspectives. We only publish work in English, but we’re more than happy to consider translated pieces.

Stories with a historical setting and stories with a secondary world setting. We don’t get as many of those.

Stories written by and featuring traditionally under-represented individuals, POC, QUILTBAG, neuro-atypical, etc. We want to represent the full spectrum of human experience as it intersects with the insect world.

And while we’re on the subject of diversity, I’d love to see more diversity in the arthropods and insects people write about. We get a lot of stories about bees, ants, spiders, cockroaches, and flies. Send us stories about seventeen year cicadas. Send us stories about treehoppers. Any kind of treehoppers. Brazalian treehoppers. Waxtail hoppers. Seriously, those things are weird looking. See?
Waxtail treehopper
Left: Waxtail Hopper by flickr user ggallice, whose photostream is full of lovely insect photos and well worth checking out. Right: Treehopper Nymph by flickr user cotinis whose photostream is also full of lovely insect photos and is also worth your time.

Send us a story about a caddisfly jeweler. Send us a story about a secret society of giant earthworms in Australia. Let your imaginations run wild!

There are probably other things I would love to see in the slush pile that I haven’t thought of yet, so write it, send it, and make me realize what I’m missing. Send us your best, send us something well-written, send us something we can’t refuse.

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An Unlikely Update

So…The Journal of Unlikely Entomology. We’ve been doing things. Perhaps some of them have been quiet, but stuff has been happening. Fer instance:

Issue # 4 has been reviewed by SFRevu, and Locus Online even had nice things to say about us in their year end recap.

We have conveniently assembled a list of all our award-eligible stories for 2012, if you happen to be the sort who nominates things for awards such the Nebulas, the Hugos, the Stoker, and other relevant awards.

We have also accepted our first stories for our special, one-off Architecture Issue. Details will be forthcoming, and we look forward to announcing them soon. In the meantime, we remain open to submissions for the architecture issue, as well as submissions for our regular issues. Please send us your best work!


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Journal of Unlikely Entomology Issue 4

The Journal of Unlikely Entomology’s fourth issue went live this weekend. Head on over, check it out, and let us know what you think! The table of contents for the issue is as follows:

The Famous Fabre Fly Caper by M. Bennardo, Illustrated by Linda Saboe
The Candy Aisle by Joanne Merriam, Illustrated by Dag Jorgensen
In Your Own Backyard by Michael D. Winkle, Illustrated by Bryan Prindiville
Invasives by Sunny Morraine, Illustrated by Katie Rose Pipkin
Deep, Dark by Jonathan Maberry, Illustrated by A.L. Sirois

While you’re enjoying our current issue, keep in mind we remain open to regular submissions for our next issue, and submissions for our special one-off architecture issue. We look forward to reading your work!

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The Grump Report

We’ve been busy over at the Journal of Unlikely Entomology. First off, we’ve wrapped up our selections for Issue #4, and we were delighted to officially unveil the ToC. Come November, we’ll present the following buggy tales for your reading pleasure:

The Famous Fabre Fly Caper by Matthew Bennardo
Deep Dark by Jonathan Maberry
The Candy Aisle by Joanne Merriam
Invasives by Sunny Morraine
In Your Own Backyard by Michael D. Winkle

If you’ve been paying attention, you’ll know what comes before 4 is 3.5, and if you haven’t read our third-and-a-half issue, you really should. It recently picked up a nice review at Locus Online, but to paraphrase Levar Burton, you don’t have to take their word for it. Go check it out for yourself! (And if you’re so inclined, let us know what you think.)

In case you missed our various announcements, we’re currently reading for our special one-off architecture issue. We’re looking for tales of odd buildings, unlikely cities, strange towers, and weird tunnels. Basically, if you build it, they will come. (I don’t know who they are, but I’m all about the quoting and paraphrasing tonight.) Which is to say, if you have an architectural story, please send it our way. While we’re reading for the architecture issue, we, of course, remain open to regular submissions, and we’re looking for art submissions for all our issues, too.

Finally, I have it on good authority that sometime in the near(ish) future, we’ll have fabulous entomologically-themed merchandise for sale! Including, but not limited to, products featuring the gorgeous cover art from our ‘hello, world’ mini issue. Stay tuned! But for now, that’s all the grumpish news that’s fit to print.

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Hello, World

I’m delighted to announce that the ‘hello, world’ mini issue of the Journal of Unlikely Entomology is now live! This flash issue celebrates the 40th anniversary of the ‘hello, world’ computer program, and, of course, bugs. We challenged authors to send us stories featuring something new coming into the world and changing everything, and they did not disappoint. The issue features tales by Luna Lindsey, Brent Knowles, and Karen Heuler, accompanied by gorgeous artwork from Linda Saboe. You can find the issue here. Head on over, and give it a read. You won’t be sorry. I promise!

And speaking of the Journal of Unlikely Entomology, the deadline for submissions for Issue 4 is fast approaching. If you have a story you’d like considered for the November 2012 issue, send it our way by September 1st! After September 1st, your story will automatically be considered for Issue 5. Our full guidelines are available here. We’re also currently reading for our special one-off architecture issue. The guidelines for that one can be found here, and we’ll remain open to subs until it’s full. We’re always looking for art, too, so if you are an artist, or know one, check out our art submission guidelines on the subs page. Questions? Leave a comment, or drop me an email.

Happy reading, and please, just this once, let the bedbugs bite!

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