This issue is overdue. Not only am I a lifelong Gothic geek, but the Gothic is an unquestionably popular fascination. I almost feel I must hang my head in apology for waiting until the 17th issue to put out this call. As always, Lackington’s submitters provided unconventional takes on the theme and much evidence of their own deep familiarity with the genre, not to mention their passion for it.
Something a bit different this time: this issue contains a story commissioned from five past contributors: Mike Allen, Vajra Chandrasekera, Amal El-Mohtar, Natalia Theodoridou, and JY Yang. The Gothics issue is just the place to include an “exquisite corpse” tale, and these five talents have voices that melded harmoniously as they crafted, in sequence, a Gothic tale, building unseen on the last authors’ content. That said, “A Game of Lost and Found” contains subtle clues about which author wrote which section. If you feel you have their styles pegged, please tweet us your guess for the chance to win our entire back catalogue and—more importantly—bragging rights. The catch: the story is only available in the eBook, which you can purchase here.
This issue also includes a reprint by Arkady Martine. “Nothing Must Be Wasted” first appeared in Ideomancer in 2014. It seemed important to include at least one grand SFnal tale in this collection, so I welcome the chance to feature Arkady’s subtle, space- opera nod to one of Gothic’s most vibrant children, Frankenstein—although there’s a great deal more going on in this tale that is pure Martine, for those familiar with Arkady’s approach to generation ships and humans in the void.
Lastly, be sure to read our online interviews with the Issue 17 authors, who have penetrating things to say about the Gothic genre and their stories. The interviews will be posted on the Lackington’s website over the course of summer 2018, and we had so much fun collecting them, we may just do it again for future issues.