The back cover of the book instructs: "One sitting, one read." I did not finish the book in one sitting but I did finish it in one day.

This is definitely an anthology to keep. All 40 stories in the book are well-written. That does not mean I liked all stories. For one reader to like each and every story in an anthology is unheard of. There are some themes that I just cannot sink my teeth into, no matter how well-written - themes like zombies and were-beasts. That said, most of the stories were enjoyable and out of the enjoyable stories there were some that I really liked. Here they are, in the order of their appearance in the book.

- Elaine Cunningham's "Plot Problems" is a story of a writer who manages to act as an exorcist and in the process gives new meaning to the term "ghost writer".

- Michael Haynes's "Twenty Seven Rules for Coping" is interesting look into the mind of an extraordinary woman. Interesting woman, interesting rules. This story mentions just about half a dozen rules for coping. I wouldn't mind finding out what the other rules are.

- Ian Creasy's clever "Night Shift on the Support Line" presents a tech support service for magic users.

- Alex Shvartsman's "A Gnomish Gift" is a sensitive tale that twists the tale of Rumpelstiltskin in a thoroughly interesting way.

- Wendy Nikel's "The Girl in the Windmill" is the story of a girl who lives in a windmill with a shape-shifting relative and resembles the most beautiful statue ever crafted.

- S.B. Divya's "Gaps of Joy, and a Knot for Love" is the story of a poor family, comprising of Prakash, his sick wife Devi, and their hard-working and caring daughter, Khushi. Prakash has the power - though quite limited - of bestowing happiness on people.

- Somewhere between "Plot Problems" and "Twenty Seven Rules for Coping" snuggles my story, "Book of Pain". Of course, I like my story else I wouldn't have written it.

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2018 - from a Writer's Perspective


As far as my writing is concerned, this has been a productive year, as follows:

* 4 stories of mine were published this year:
- "The Crystals of the Ebony Tower" at ANOTHEREALM -
- "The Catalyst" in CAT TAILS
- "Traveler from an Antique Land" in ODD TALES OF WONDER #10
- "The Book of Pain" in FANTASY FOR THE THRONE

* 4 stories accepted and scheduled to be published in 2019:
- "Aerodynamics" in ANOTHEREALM
- "Harry, Harry, Quite Contrary" in POLAR BOREALIS
- "A Mynah for the King" at WAGONBRIDGE PUBLISHING
- "T. GIPS and the Time Flies" in STARTLING STORIES

* I have started, and am half way through my very first novel.

* 54 pieces of writing (fiction and non-fiction) are in circulation, awaiting responses.