A question for Thomas Ouphe

Q: What book or books inspired you as a child?

A: I very much lived in books as a child and there are almost too many to pick from. So I’ll go with a series that doesn’t get nearly enough love — Tim and the Hidden People by Sheila K McCullagh. I did love the easy-reader books of the series, but I am talking about the folk-magic laden fantasy of the four novellas: full of ley lines, amulets, and witchcraft. There are a lot of parallels with Susan Cooper’s Dark is Rising series (which I also loved). Sadly, I had to borrow school copies and it’s a struggle to get hold of them so they will have to stay a golden childhood memory.

Thomas Ouphe’s story “The Diary of Thisne Ome
in Metaphorosis Friday, 25 February 2022.
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About R.E. Dukalsky

R.E. Dukalsky writes speculative fiction about conflict and what happens afterward. She has been told that she has School House Rock charm and that she would make an excellent rebel leader, among other dubious accolades. She lives in the Pacific Northwest in a house that perpetually needs more bookshelves.


R.E. Dukalsky’s story “Hope on the Vine
in Metaphorosis Friday, 4 March 2022.
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It came from L.J. Wetherby

L.J. Wetherby’s story “A Wizard Comes to Shorehaven” was published in Metaphorosis on Friday, 6 August 2021. The prime mover for this story was a dear friend of mine who has enjoyed a lifelong fascination with wizards. This friend organises regular storytelling events among our acquaintance, and since I began attending those events, I’ve always had it in the back of my mind that stories about wizards are likely to be especially welcome. This knowledge …

A question for Connor Mellegers

Q: Have you ever consciously written a ‘message’ story? Was it easier or harder than usual? A: I’ve never set out to consciously write a message story but I find that one often appears as I’m writing. It might be tied up in a character or the world I’m building, but there is always some identifiable point of view or idea that comes through and connects the work. If some message or viewpoint doesn’t begin …

About Thomas Ouphe

When Nathaniel Hawthorne was the US consulate, he visited a small village churchyard and scraped the moss off an old stone to reveal the inscription:

Poorly lived and poorly died
Poorly buried and no-one cried

Thomas Ouphe lives very close to the churchyard and regularly goes looking for the stone when he’s walking his dog. He’s never found it but is romantically attracted to the graveyard because it also contains a lamppost that is said to have inspired the Narnia lamppost and the grave of the first author he ever read — Roger Lancelyn Green (Robin Hood and his Merry Men – in case that’s going to nag at you).

He’s the sort of person who likes to read and sit quietly. A homebody and bore, were he not so in love with an American woman he might never go out at all; except to walk the dog of course — he’s not a monster.

He and his wife have three wonderful children and in addition to a mad Staffordshire Terrier, they also have a sombre and sophisticated cat.

When he’s not writing (which to be honest is way more than he’d prefer), he teaches English at a college of further education.


Thomas Ouphe’s story “The Diary of Thisne Ome
in Metaphorosis Friday, 25 February 2022.
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A question for Brian Hugenbruch

Q: Have you ever wondered whether ideas are thought waves directed at you by an AI supercomputer located in the distant future?

A: I did briefly, but then the supercomputer told me that these weren’t the droids I was looking for.

More seriously, I find that my thoughts are less about well-ordered words and structured notions as they are (to borrow from T.S. Eliot) a heap of broken images. Not that AI doesn’t have the capacity to deal with unstructured data— and there are enough modern supercomputers and well-meaning clouds that work on just this sort of thing today — but given the current state of natural language processing (a core component of current AI tech), I have a hard time believing that that future supercomputer will be ready to beam disorganized thoughts into my head. It would require a significant enough entropy source to generate coherent and yet distinctly unsequenced imagery that I suspect it’s not likely to happen.

(One wonders why it would bother, for that matter; perhaps I’m inadvertently responsible for a divide-by-zero error that takes out a K8S cluster in a thousand years.)

Also, I have to imagine that temporal network latency is a killer. Though that would explain why I’m so groggy in the mornings?

Brian Hugenbruch’s story “Heartbeat of the Seasons
in Metaphorosis Friday, 11 February 2022.
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