Delve into myth and legend, where the Fates force post-modern man into a world of the unknown—a world long since dismissed as ignorant superstition.
The Brother-Sister Fable by Alyson Grauer: a young boy disappears into a realm where only his sister can follow.
Faelad by Sarah Hunter Hyatt: Claire Whitaker didn’t even know she was Irish, let alone The Morrigan, the goddess of war.
By Skyfall by Emma Michaels: a mer-couple from Atlantis find themselves in the middle of a human murder investigation.
Charon’s Obol by. R. M. Ridley: Jonathan Alvey didn’t believe in gods, until he helps a lost child find her all-powerful parents.
Peradventure by Sarah E. Seeley: a jinni must choose between the woman he loves and destroying the city that persecuted her.
Natural Order by Lance Schonberg: when Carlos Vasquez is kidnapped, he discovers powers within himself to change the world.
Two Spoons by Danielle E. Shipley: A little girl’s soul meets its match in the family diner’s most mysterious patron.
Grail Days by A. F. Stewart: Living forever has its drawbacks, especially when you spend it clearing away the messes of other immortals.
Downward Mobility by M. K. Wiseman: they say love conquers all, but can it save a Valkyrie when she breaks all the rules?
Alyson Grauer is a storyteller in multiple mediums, her two primary canvases being the stage and the page. On stage, she is often seen in the Chicago area, primarily at Piccolo Theatre, Plan 9 Burlesque, and the Bristol Renaissance Faire. Her non-fiction work has been published in the “Journal for Perinatal Education” for Lamaze International. Her short fiction can be found in Tales from the Archives (Volume 2) for the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences and in two anthologies from Xchyler Publishing, Mechanized Masterpieces: A Steampunk Anthology, and Legends and Lore: an Anthology of Mythic Prorportions. Alyson is a proud graduate of Loyola University of Chicago and hails originally from Milwaukee, WI.
Sarah Hunter Hyatt
Sarah grew up in a large family, being number four of ten children. To escape the chaos, she would retreat into her own mind, writing stories to share with her younger sisters at bedtime. After years of prodding by family and friends, she joined a writer’s group, giving her the courage and knowledge to go after her dream as a writer. Sarah lives in Olympia, Washington with her husband, three kids and two lovable parakeets.
Emma Michaels is a cover artist, blogger, and author of the Society of Feathers series. Her love of blogging started when she created a book blog in 2009 which gave her the courage to finally submit her own novels to publishers. Emma Michaels’ publications now include Owlet and Eyrie (Tribute Books), Holiday Magick Anthology (Spencer Hill Press), and Cirque d’Obscure Anthology and Cogs in Time Anthology (Crushing Hearts Black Butterfly).
R.M. Ridley lives with his wife on a small homestead in Canada, raising chickens and sheep. He has been writing stories, both long and short, for three decades, the themes of which range from the gruesome to the fantastical.
As an individual who suffers from severe bipolar disorder, Ridley is a strong believer in being open about mental health issues and uses his writing to escape when his thoughts become too wild.
Sarah E. Seeley
Through two wonderful mentored research experiences, Sarah E. Seeley had the opportunity to work with dead sauropods and ancient odonates while acquiring her undergraduate degree in geology from Brigham Young University. She hopes to study more dead things in the future and contribute to scientific discussions about what makes life on Earth so amazing. In the meantime, she explores the bright side of being human by writing dark fiction. Sarah’s independently published works include Maladaptive Bind and Blood Oath: An Orc Love Story. Another short story, “Driveless,” appears in “Leading Edge Magazine” Issue #66. You can learn more about Sarah on her writing blog at www.SlithersOfThought.com.
In the middle of lecturing one of his children on the importance of following dreams, Lance began to wonder why and when he’d stopped following his. Gathering up a few salvageable shreds of unfinished stories, he began his first novel. He’s written several novels and many shorter works in the years since, and has had twenty or so stories see publication. At any given moment Lance is working on a novel and at least one short story—probably more—most of which fall into the broad buckets of Science Fiction or Fantasy.
Danielle E. Shipley
Danielle E. Shipley’s first novelettes told the everyday misadventures of wacky kids like herself. . . . Or so she thought. Unbeknownst to them all, half of her characters were actually closeted elves, dwarves, fairies, or some combination thereof. When it all came to light, Danielle did the sensible thing: packed up and moved to Fantasy Land, where daily rent is the low, low price of her heart, soul, blood, sweat, tears, firstborn child, sanity, and words; lots of them. She’s also been known to spend short bursts of time in the real-life Chicago area with the parents who home schooled her and the two little sisters who keep her humble.
A. F. Stewart
A. F. Stewart was born and raised in Nova Scotia, Canada, and still calls it home. The youngest in a family of seven children, she has always had an overly creative mind and an active imagination. She is fond of good books (especially science fiction/fantasy), action movies, sword collecting, and oil painting. Ms. Stewart is an indie author with several published novellas and story collections in the dark fantasy and horror genres, with a few side trips into poetry and non-fiction. She has a great interest in history and mythology, often working those themes into her books and stories.
M. K. Wiseman
A Wisconsin gal with a Southwest soul, M. K. Wiseman can generally be found wandering happily amongst the pages of the largest book she can get her hands on. She came upon writing rather accidentally, finding that, sometimes, there are stories that simply must be told. A techie with a penchant for typewriters, she is a magnet for misadventure, though her own story has yet to unfold. Harboring such dreams as someday possessing a library complete with hidden bookcase doors, piloting a hot air balloon, and running away in a sailboat.
Writers from around the world participate in the short story competitions at The X. As editors, we feel that British writers telling stories involving their own country should not have “American” spelling imposed upon them. We allow them the respect of their British English. Likewise, we do not impose American English on our Canadian authors.
As an end result, our anthologies often times (as in this case) contain what may seem to be spelling inconsistencies. While admittedly unorthodox, we assure you, this is intentional. We also have faith in the intellect of our readers. Certainly, they can deal with the occasional variations between BE, CE, and AE. Vive la différence.