When there have been pandemics in the past that necessitated quarantines — voluntary or otherwise — loneliness and boredom were probably much more of a problem. Let us be grateful for the resources that we have, whether online friends, online movies and videos, or online things to read.
Since the coronavirus hit American shores, or whatever country you happen to be in while reading this — it’s worldwide — we have been asked to stay home from places that are not absolutely essential. Avoid gatherings of more than 10 people. Avoid getting closer than 6 feet to anyone else. Stop going to school. To church. To work.
But in our digital lives we’ve had a refuge. And I’m pleased to see that many online resources have stepped up to the plate (a baseball metaphor for those of you outside of the USA meaning that they got to work) by providing either extremely low-cost or free things for people to do the on their phones or computers or tablets. The Great Courses, Curiosity Stream, Netflix, and Disney all have free or discounted content, or steep discounts.
We not only have the telephone to stay in touch with others, but texting, Twitter, Facebook Skype, or other video chat software. We have videos on Vimeo, YouTube, TikTok and online movies and television shows to keep us company.
Although conventions have been canceled I have been able to attend a virtual science fiction and fantasy convention, Consellation 2020, via a Facebook group https://www.facebook.com/groups/concellation/ It is still ongoing and I recommend it; it’s great fun.
Abyss & Apex’s small part in all of this is to offer you seventeen years of free online science fiction and fantasy short stories, poetry and book reviews. This edition adds to a lot of free content, and we hope you’ll be kind enough to let our authors know that you enjoyed their stories in the comments.
We may be wearing masks, but I think I can see you smiling at the prospect.
— Wendy S. Delmater, Editor
Abyss & Apex Magazine