Issue 2 Editorial

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A couple, feeling the spark has fled, dresses up for an evening in. The QB and the cheerleader, doctor and nurse, strict schoolteacher and naughty pupil… it’s a classic go-to for a cheap laugh in romantic comedies. But the truth is, sexuality allows us to step outside ourselves for a bit. Funny or serious, a scenario like the ones listed above or a baroque D/s encounter, a stark S&M scene or just narrowing our focus by focusing on pleasure, sexual encounters can offer more than just physical release. They can give provide us with mental relief as well.

I hadn’t intended to do theme issues when I began Congress, but when this issue started taking shape, I realized our three stories this month share something in common—each features a protagonist who uses sexuality as a means of escape from the everyday. Mr. Andrew S. Fuller’s science-fictional near-future Portland hipster romance stars a librarian who finds herself by losing herself in virtual sex. In our reprint, Mr. Jesse Bullington’s “Porn Enough at Last,” his opaque narrator is called upon to step outside the “ordinary” and “everday” of living in a secure bunker… but for good reason, and to good result. And finally, Circlet Press founder Ms. Cecilia Tan treats us to “Crowdthink Consensus Thresholds: A Study.” It’s a rather dry title, but the story, about virtual sex and real love, is certainly steamy.

Congress Magazine is also proud to present our first interview, with Hugo Award-nominated erotica author Dr. Chuck Tingle. Dr. Tingle’s story “Space Raptor Butt Invasion” was somewhat controversially nominated for a Hugo Award this year, and we’ll find out the results this very month at WorldCon in Kansas City. Dr. Tingle graciously agreed to speak with us about his nomination, plus topics such as current events, wrestling, dinosaur personalities, as well as the importance of stepping outside of one’s self to find true love.

We’re already reading for Congress Magazine #3, and while it’s August out there and your humble editrix doesn’t have air conditioning, feel free to send a pitch for your hottest stories to molly@clockpunkstudios.com. Meanwhile, we hope you enjoy this issue, and if you’ll be at WorldCon, cheering Chuck Tingle or any of the other Hugo Award nominees, feel free to come up and say hello. We’ll be there!

About the Author

The Editrix

Molly Tanzer is the editrix of Congress Magazine. She’s also the author of the forthcoming novel Creatures of Will and Temper, steampunk weird western Vermilion, the historical crime novel The Pleasure Merchant, and and the British Fantasy and Wonderland Book Award-nominated sort-of collection, sort-of mosaic novel A Pretty Mouth. Her short fiction has appeared in Nightmare Magazine, the Lovecraft eZine, the forthcoming Transcendent: The Year’s Best Transgender and Genderqueer Speculative Fiction, as well as many other locations. Her other editorial projects include Swords v Cthulhu (with Jesse Bullington) and the forthcoming Mixed Up! (with Nick Mamatas). She lives in Boulder, CO.

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