Hiraeth Publishing’s March 2020 Newsletter


The Road Not Taken


It is with great pleasure that David Blalock and I present this first monthly newsletter of Hiraeth Publishing. Briefly, we publish science fiction, fantasy, and horror, plus associated subgenres, such as paranormal and steampunk. We publish magazines/digests, novels, novellas, short stories, collections, poetry, themed and unthemed anthologies, and coloring books. We publish material for experienced readers and for younger readers.


A word about our material for younger readers: it is kid-safe. No cussin’, for one thing. Drat is as strong a word as you’ll find in it, and I may be the only person I know who uses it. For another, there are no “adult” themes. We publish adventures for the younger audience—ages about 9 to 90. Our primary publication for younger readers is Spaceports & Spidersilk. You’ll find the current issue in our store.


The horror we publish is spooky. It should be read with all the lights on, and with the reader looking over her/his shoulder while turning the page. We eschew gore. There is a market for it, but it ain’t us. That’s not to say you won’t find a drop of blood here and there. But you won’t find gallon jugs, barrels, bathtubs, or hogsheads of it. We’d rather make your hair stand on end.


So: why Hiraeth?


Of Welsh origin, the word has no precise translation. Rather, it reflects a condition of longing for some place, or for some point in time, or for someone, especially for one or more of these which no longer exist or never existed. In addition, it can reflect a longing for a place or time where you have never been. In some ways, this is the Irish Tír na nÓg, or what Dana Scallon sang of in her lyrics of “The Far-Off Place.”


Isn’t that what science fiction and fantasy and certain kinds of horror convey? Worlds that might be or have been, though we may never reach them. Societies and peoples and entities that exist only in our minds, but brought to life by our words. From Asimov’s Foundation to Lovecraft’s Arkham, from Blalock’s Thran to Campbell’s Annae, from Inkheart to Tattooine, from unicorns to centaurs to the Old Ones…these are our worlds.


Welcome to Hiraeth.


Hiraeth Publishing began life as the successor to the late Jim Baker’s ProMart Publishing. From 2002 through 2012 we were Sam’s Dot. We underwent an iteration to Alban Lake. Part of the Alban Lake crew wanted to focus on digital publication; the rest of us wanted to emphasize print. And here (drumroll, please) we are!


BTW, it’s pronounced “hear-eth.”


We’re still adding a few things here and there, such as more listings in our store. The items there are print books; eventually we’ll carry some digitals for purchase and download. If you scroll down on the Home page, you’ll find a few other options, such as this newsletter, and the guidelines for a drabble contest. Submission guidelines for our publications can be found in the upper toolbar under the “More” option. These include guidelines for our periodic publications, as well as for novels, novellas, collections, anthologies, and so on.


As you may already know, we publish Scifaikuest, a print poetry digest dedicated to minimalist poetry forms such as scifaiku, haibun, fibonacci, cherita, and so on. We also publish a version of Scifaikuest online—different from the print version, and it is free to read. The November 2019 and February 2020 online editions are or will very soon be posted. Enjoy! And avail yourself of a print copy from our store!


Often in our newsletter we will bestow upon you some writing tips, advice, admonitions, and thoughts. For this first newsletter, here we go:


I came across the following in a submission:


“Do you know where she is?” My friend asked me.


What happened here is that the computer processes interpreted the “?” as the end of a sentence, and therefore it capitalized the first word in what it perceived as the next sentence, thus: My. But “My friend asked me.” is a dialogue tag! There is no need to capitalize the first word! This does not happen with commas, only with ? and ! So be aware of it. You can disable the automatic function, of course, or issue silent but deadly epithets toward Microsoft. But awareness is your best defense.


Also often in our newsletter we might regale you with our thoughts about current events as they related to the genres and subgenres we publish. For now, however, let’s not add to the cacophony. 😊


Without further ado, then: browse, read, buy, enjoy. If you have any questions or comments, send them to us at sdpshowcase at yahoo dot com.


See you next month.


Tyree Campbell

Writer and Managing Editor


David Blalock

Webmaster, Writer and Lead Editor


Robert J. Krog

Writer and Editor


Terrie Leigh Relf

Writer and Drabble Contest Editor

Boortean Ambassador


Teri Santitoro aka sakyu

Writer and Scifaikuest Editor


Marcie Lynn Tentchoff

Writer and Spaceports & Spidersilk Editor