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Yarmouth author to launch collection of sci-fi, fantasy stories

Yarmouth author Julian Mortimer Smith will launch his prize-winning book, The World of Dew and Other Stories, on Aug. 26.

The launch event will take place at Jacob's Loft (upstairs from Sweeney's Funeral Home) in Yarmouth at 7 p.m.

The event will feature a reading, signing, live music and refreshments. It will also be streamed online via Zoom. A Facebook event page includes details. Admission will be free, but attendance may be limited due to gathering restrictions.

The World of Dew and Other Stories was chosen by Michelle Pretorius as the winner of the 2020 Blue Light Books Prize and was published by Indiana University Press. The collection invites readers into 18 different universes that have unexpected resonances with our own modern life. While these tales are unabashedly sci-fi and fantasy, Smith approaches each at a curious angle. Ghosts are cataloged using a Pokémon Go–like app, a soldier has to get enough upvotes on social media before he is allowed to take a shot, and a golden age of cooperation begins as societies around the world prepare for a looming pandemic of blindness.

Stories featured in this collection have appeared in some of the world's top speculative fiction magazines and anthologies. The book also includes five new stories published for the first time.

Although some of the stories are set on distant planets or in alternate realities, readers will catch glimpses of Yarmouth throughout the collection.

“Several of these stories are set in otherworldly versions of Yarmouth,” says Smith, who has lived in the area for more than a decade.

“When I first moved here, I worried that small town life would be dull and uninspiring, but as soon as I began to scratch the surface I realized that this part of the world is home to a whole universe of compelling stories and fascinating mysteries and largerthan-life characters,” he says. “But also, Yarmouth is a real hotbed of creativity. There are so many creative, passionate people here and the arts community is incredibly kind and welcoming.”

The book was published in April, but COVID prevented Smith from having a proper launch event at that time. “Now that restrictions are loosening, I wanted to celebrate the publication of the book with the community here in Yarmouth,” he says.

Copies of The World of Dew and Other Stories will be available at the launch. The book is also available for puchase at Yarmouth Creatives, the Mast Head Gift Shop at the Yarmouth County Museum & Archives, Coles in the Yarmouth Mall, or from any online bookseller.





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