Seven Months Old like Medusae

Seven months old! Every month I’ve stolen a stage in the jellyfish life cycle to name our monthly issues, and now we’ve reached the fully mature adult jellyfish. The medusa. So where do we go from here?

There is, of course, the example of the Immortal Jellyfish, which reverts back to sexual immaturity when scared and could, therefore, theoretically live forever. Once upon a time we planned on doing that. But it might be repetitetitetitetive.

One other plan is to start naming issues after the many different jellyfish there are, which would be fun for me. And with hundreds of thousands of jellyfish, discovered and not-yet-known, that should keep us going for a while.

But if you have a better idea – please let us know! Send in thoughts to the regular email address or let us know on Facebook or Twitter.

While you’re thinking, here’s something for you to read. I’ve loved this month’s stories. They were a mix of established writers and new, but recent issues have raised the bar on how good a story has to be to make it into Jellyfish Review, and these little beauties didn’t disappoint.

Where Here Is by Poonam Srivastava – a beautiful, genre-blurring way to segue from last month’s Celebrity Issue back into regular submissions. Plus, Poonam is insane! Which we love.

Waiting Our Turn by Paul Negri – oh-my-goodness, this story is so good. A lot of writers make dialogue-heavy stories, but few know how to do it as well as this. Plus, Paul even sent us a picture to use for the story’s artwork, which makes him our first all-rounder.

Listen by Thomas Kearnes – when I’m not editing the world’s greatest flash-fiction magazine named after jellyfish I have been known to teach. So this story felt both real and chilling. The way Thomas describes the game unfolding is frighteningly good.

How It Begins by C. C. Russell – we published three stories in a row which dealt with different aspects of life. That wasn’t deliberate, just a beautiful coincidence. But C. C.’s story of growing old was the first of the triumvirate, and it’s a doozy.

Six Months Pregnant by Valerie Maloof – and then we had birth. Valerie’s story is funny but also thoughtful, which is a guaranteed winner at Jellyfish Review.

Anniversary by Mitchell Krockmalnik Grabois – and finally marriage. Mitch’s story is poetic.It comes in three sections, and my favourite is the first part. “It’s not good to meditate without a teacher. The mind can stop in a dangerous place.” Yes!

Proportionate by GJ Hart – GJ worked really hard with us to take this from a good story to a great story. It’s Gogolian, it’s funny, it’s dark, and it has a perfect ending. Fantastic work.

The Hug by Kevin Tosca – Kevin’s story came fully-formed and wonderful. Poetic, sentimental without being cynical or mawkish, and with its own dark edge. But what’s even better is that this story is part of Kevin’s upcoming collection from Cervena Barva Press, and he came back to us a week before publication with a few tiny thoughts on making the story EVEN better. God, I love writers like Kevin!

Dental Floss Debate: Good vs. Not So Good by Paul Beckman – Paul’s on fire at the moment, with a book out (PEEK) and a place in the Queen’s Ferry Press Best Small Fictions 2016 on the way. So accepting his story was a bit of a no-brainer. Funny on the surface, with something to say underneath. Go Paul!

And next month the goodness continues. I can’t wait! I hope you’ll read along with us.

Special “Bad Sex” Call for Submissions PLUS regular old Call for Submissions

Our last special call for submissions brought in some of the best stories we’ve ever had, and so we absolutely needed to do it again. On May 1st we announced the special “Bad Sex” call for submissions. Details are available here. We’ve already accepted stories by Mark Budman, Len Kuntz, Susan Tepper, Lucinda Kempe, Nathaniel Tower, Catfish McDaris and Honore de Balzac (sort of! More on this later). Which means I would like to accept at least two more stories for inclusion in the issue.

Bad Sex will run between the middle of July and middle of August. We are also running regular submissions, and because the bar is set higher now than ever before, we need you to PLEASE send us something. Something amazing. The email address is and we’re very, very keen to read your work. Responses tend to be within a few days, and always personalised.

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(Picture from here)

Jellyfish Fact

Not a fact, this time, but an invitation to watch a video of a newly-discovered deep-sea jellyfish. As the video says, this looks like it came from outer space.