Profile of Vaughan Stanger

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This profile moderated by Vaughan Stanger.


I'm a British writer of science fiction, fantasy and slipstream stories, mostly published in British magazines to date. I hound those bigger American markets like a tenacious underdog. One day they'll submit. Until then, I will.

My stories typically obsess about astronauts, pubs and diners, dreams, the Moon, rock music, life after death, plants, virtual reality, beer and unrequited love. But not necessarily in that order.

I started out on this lark in 1997. It took me five years to get anywhere at all, when I sold a story to Scheherazade. I always was a slow learner. Career highpoint to date was probably seeing my name in Interzone #189 in 2003. For why? Well, I've subscribed to that magazine since issue 1, way back in 1982. At the time I thought "Wouldn't it be cool if...?"

(I got there in the end.)

Since then, three sales to Postscripts have broadened the grin some more, as did seeing a story of mine translated into Polish, which is a splendidly science-fictional looking (and sounding) language.

None of these successes would have happened without my friends in the One Step Beyond writers group, also the LiveJournal community.

Onwards and upwards!


Extra Time, Hub (issue TBA) *** Forthcoming ***

The Eye Patch Protocol, Aeon Speculative Fiction (issue TBA) *** Forthcoming ***

Stars in Her Eyes, Postscripts (issue 17) *** Forthcoming ***

The Last Botnet, Futures in Nature Physics (Sept 2008)

Moon Flu (reprint in Hebrew), Mercury (April 2008)

Family Tree, Helix #7(January 2008)

The English Dead, Hub #36 (December 2007)

TLP, Hub #2 (March 2007)

The Peace Criminal, Postscripts #9 (December 2006)   [HMSF06]

Survival Strategies (reprint), The Best of Neo-opsis, Bundoran Press (October 2006)

Touching Distance, Postscripts #7 (August 2006) [HMFH06]

Moon Flu, Oceans of the Mind XX (June 2006)   [HMSF06]

Survival Strategies (reprint in Polish), Nowa Fantastyka (June 2006)

Sons of the Earth, Scheherazade #28 (November 2005)

Survival Strategies, Neo-opsis #6 (May 2005)

A Walk in the Woods, Interzone #189 (May 2003)

Slices of Life, 3SF #2 (December 2002)

In Deep With Janine, Stillwaters Journal (June 2002)

[HMSF06] Honorable Mention in  'Year's Best Science Fiction, Vol. 24' (2006), edited by Gardner Dozois.

[HMFH06] Honorable Mention in  'Year's Best Fantasy and Horror' (2006), edited by Ellen Datlow et al.


Tangent Online
on "Moon Flu"

This is truly what I call an alternate history piece, where a future different from our own is revealed based on a pivotal change in history, in this case the moon flu that Apollo 12 brought back with them. This is a quaint little tale (barely over 2,000 words) of a conversation over burgers and fries and, yes, one of the Apollo astronauts makes a cameo. Ill leave it to the reader to read this fun tale to discover which astronaut it is and the true nature of this moon flu. Its not what you think. (Marshall Payne, 19 June 2006)

Locus Magazine
on "A Walk in the Woods"

An innovative yet profoundly sad evocation of the transition from the vitality of Nature to the anaemia of virtual reality. (Nick Gevers, Sept 2003).

Tangent Online

The story works well at its flash or almost-flash length; the Astronauts introspection doesnt feel rushed, but the story doesnt weigh itself down with too much verbiage. In fact, that brevity serves to accent the short amount of time the Astronaut is sure he has left, giving an extra edge to the indecision over his belief. (Danny Adams, 22 May 2007)

Tangent Online
on "Survival Strategies"

Stanger's characters are sympathetic, and the central concept is intriguing. (James Palmer, 16 June 2005)

Infinity Plus
on "Sons of the Earth"

Although barely filling a page, succeeds in creating some real characters and is intriguing and poignant despite its brevity. (Nick Jackson, 14 August 2006)

The Fix
on "The English Dead"

Vaughan Stangers The English Dead takes a very different kind of myth as its cue. This is the mythology of Everest, of the men who climbed it, and of the secrets of dead men. A climber named Ben wants to discover the secrets of George Mallory and Andrew Irvine, who may or may not have reached Everests summit in 1924. Advanced techniques are used to produce a clone of Mallory, and Ben adopts the body and role of his companion, Irvine. Together, they set out to reproduce the events of 1924 and to provide an answer to the secret, once and for all. The English Dead is an excellent story and fundamentally good SF; the central conceit, cloning historical figures, is not new, but its application is fresh. The climbing lingo reads authentically to a layman like myself. The obsessions of the tales central characters are well-portrayed, informing their decisions and actions as they move towards a convincing conclusion.