Dear Reader:

As well as presenting walking corpses, hard-boiled private detectives, hard-edged policemen, soft-souled Lovecraftian protagonists, Baker Street denizens, foul-mouthed rabble-rousers and the occasional, outright, vulgarly-funny piece of writing, we can also be accused of showing our sweeter nature on those occasions when our veneer slips to allow a glimpse of our human side.

This may go down in the annals as one of those occasions.

Writer's Cramp has gradually become known as a "genre magazine." This is not a bad thing in any sense. In fact, in a world that prefers niches and pigeonholes to keep constantly intruding information at bay until categorized, it can be seen as a benefit to any publication (electronic or hard copy) looking for establishment in the crowded and feral arena of wordsmithing.

But sometimes quality work is overlooked at the altar of "making it fit." Or interesting and unusual work is simply passed over because there's no room in the carton for that extra nugget of entertaining goofiness that, for whatever reason, seems to make us smile in spite of the turmoil around us.

Some magazines have a section called "Guilty Pleasures" which is used as a catch-all for anything the editor really likes but knows won't fly in his publication; something he thinks his accumulated readership would hold him in disregard for printing.

As it turns out, Writer's Cramp is entirely a catch-all for things that hook this editor's eye and whatever guilty pleasures he indulges in seem to make it into these pages at one time or another. This is not at the expense of the reader in any connotation of the idea. It seems, instead, that what appears within these pages does so to the benefit of all involved in this interactive endeavor.

We are excited to feature three new contributors to our pages, Billy Dean, who says, "Poetry has been a faithful friend since early childhood. Until recently, however, it took a back seat to writing technical manuals and teaching electronics." You'd think his poetry alone would satisfy, but we're urging him to send along as much of his short fiction as we can get away with extorting.

And speaking of extortion, Marlie Fabert-Warren has been strong-armed into letting us have our way with her sweet, simple, slice of life, "Surprises." But neither you nor she will be disappointed. Marlie is one of those writers who shelved her passion in favor of raising and nurturing a family of six children in the wilds of Utah. This is a piece that taunts the reader with possibilities of eventual outcome. We are, after all, urbane and smug in our knowledge of every twist ever written. Aren't we?

Then there's a name that rings a bell somewhere down the corridors of memory. Morgan Liberty left something lying around in plain sight one day and one of our literary carnivores pounced on it like a dizzy dog at the mere hope of a cat. (Actually, because of this and other similar finds over the months Writer's Cramp will be adding a section for young writers by the end of the summer.)

We also welcome back Ian Little and Gary Sloan, two of our favorite writers and somebody named RG Liberty has dirtied our doorway with something that still makes us laugh out loud. See if you can spot the jerk, er, joke.

Enjoy our newest contributor's splendid work and revisit past authors who have submitted new pieces to enchant and entertain. The Biography section has been updated to give you a taste of who's who and what makes them tick.

As always, Enjoy . . .