The October issue of Worlds of Possibility has gone out to paid subscribers, who can get their copy here: https://www.juliarios.com/the-october-2023-issue-of-worlds-of-possibility.
If you would like to buy an individual copy of this issue instead of subscribing, you can do that here: https://www.patreon.com/juliarios/shop/worlds-of-possibility-october-2023-43805
This issue contains five stories, four poems, and original illustrations by three artists. As always, if you see art that isn’t credited, it’s because I personally curated stock art.
Table of contents:
- "Ghosty Dries Flowers" (featured artwork) by Veronica W
- "A Good Soul, Really, When You Know Them" (poem) by Elizabeth R. McClellan
- "Man's Best Fiend" (story) by Caias Ward
- "Inherited Shadows" (story) by Wen Wen Yang with an illustration by Julia Kim (Cover Artist)
- "Night Mare" (story) by Susan Taitel
- "Garage Ghost" (story) by Julia LaFond
- "Please Mind the Poltergeist" (story) by Tehnuka
- Tithe" (poem) by Héctor González
- "After Loss" (poem) by Jonathan Chibuike Ukah
- "Just a Girl and Her Stuffed Animals" (poem) by Beth Cato with illustrations by Miyusa Ashibara
October is officially Spooky Season where I live. It’s the time for ghosts and eerie shadows. It’s also a time for remembering loved ones who have passed, and meditating on grief and on our ancestors, a time to examine who we are and where we come from. This issue goes into some darker places than some of our other issues, but it still holds onto the essential qualities that Worlds of Possibility stands for: wonder, hope, and comfort.
We start with a featured artist, Veronica W, who is 9! I saw her art on my social media feeds and thought it was perfect for this issue. A lonely ghost who just wants friends!
From there we move onto a poem by Elizabeth R McClellan that explores one of the essential questions in this issue: if something looks scary, is it? We follow that with “Man’s Best Fiend” by Caias Ward, a story about a man and his puppy, who is a very good boy. Perhaps the way that engages with our theme is evident from the title.
“Inherited Shadows” by Wen Wen Yang and “Night Mare” by Susan Taitel both look at mother-daughter relationships, and the ways that magic and the supernatural affect them. I put these smack in the middle of everything because they also carry a burst of whimsy and color. The cover for this issue is an illustration of Wen Wen Yang’s story by Worlds of Possibility favorite, Julia Kim, and I think it neatly encapsulates the push and pull of dark shadows and light whimsy that runs throughout this issue.
From peak whimsy, we go into a trio of increasingly meditative pieces about ghosts. First we have a classic halloween story. Garage Ghost by Julia LaFond is about people putting on a haunted house event. Next is Tehnuka’s “Please Mind the Poltergeist” about a person with a chronic illness who has to find a way to co-exist with a poltergeist. And finally, “Tithe” by Héctor González is a poem about grief and the loss of a child.
I wanted to take some time to look at some of the harder aspects of grief and ghosts, but I didn’t want to end things there, so we end on two poems that move us back into the realms of hope and whimsy, even if it does have a little bit of a dark edge. First, “After Loss” by Jonathan Chibuike Ukah explores the ways we can be resilient. And finally, “Just a Girl and Her Stuffed Animals” by Beth Cato shows us a girl facing scary stuff and finding her way forward with the help of her toys. That one is illustrated by Miyusa Ashibara.