I’ve been really psyched for Jersey Devil Press‘s special novella issue since we editors first agreed to tackle a novella contest. Then we got a look at the top stories and, blown away, I’ve been even MORE psyched to get this issue into print. How Jody Giardina manages to make such a gross-out story about the disgusting dietary habits of invading aliens so endearing and deeply emotional, I really can’t get my head around. Read the novella — if you can figure out how he pulled off this balance of sick and heart-warming, fill us in. All I know is that I love it. And then, because the story was so good we just couldn’t help but run it, too, Nick Kimbro’s harrowing horror story about divers desperate to survive in homicidal water appears as a follow-up that will haunt you.
So yeah. The issue was shaping up to be one of our best ever. And then we got word that artist Casey Weldon would let us use his brilliant painting “Lazy Daze” as our cover art. I’ve been a fan of Weldon’s for several months now, and if you love the cover as much as I do, you should definitely check out his website, where you can buy prints of his work — including the painting on our cover — for amazing prices. Seriously. Do your Christmas shopping early.
And then read the issue. It’ll take you a little time to get through, but I dare you to put down the issue before you finish the first novella. It’s just not going to happen — the thing is gripping. Then, okay, you can grab a sandwich, browse some of Casey Weldon’s art, and then settle in again for the second novella — which, again, you will absolutely finish in a single sitting. Because folks, this is just about as good as good gets.