𝗜𝗻𝘁𝗿𝗼: 𝗪𝗲 𝗚𝗶𝘃𝗲 𝗬𝗼𝘂… 𝗪𝗮𝗿𝗺 𝗖𝗼𝗰𝗸𝗹𝗲𝘀!
Introduction to the Summer, 2022 Special Issue by Ralph Greco, Jr.
A pair of robots working out how best to fit their lubed, mechanical parts into one another, a suburban peep show where voyeurism is mixed with regret, a rumination about what truly is obscene (mmm, is it getting hot in here, or is it me?)—speculative erotica is a ripe and rich field. And in this Granfalloon, we give you a collection of some of the most fantastically smokin’ hot stuff you’re likely to find!
Having been published as much in the world of mainstream writing as adult, I have scribbled lots of what’s considered ‘cross-genre’ stuff, smushing together kink and western, a homosexual space pirate liaison, maybe a comely witch getting her pert and perfect backside swatted by adult trick or treaters (you know, the usual Halloween fun). And having dropped a few of my more ribald sci-fi yarns into this particular magazine’s maw in the past, the all-knowing, all-seeing powers-that-be here (obviously full of good taste) thought I might just be the ‘bloke’ to ‘stoke’ an issue where one might want to read as much as ‘stroke.’ In all seriousness, I have been ever humbled by their faith in me and working with them to make this issue a reality was one of the most recent true pleasures of my life, as was getting to read the wonderful stuff you will find in the following pages!
The intersection of the speculative and the salacious has happened so often in history, across TV shows, in literature, and in movies that we could literally spend hours, write entire books, and probably even develop a few college courses on the subject. But for now, take this as our offering of some of the best naughty short stories, ribald poetry, hot illustrations, and even an essay by some of the most gifted speculative creators you are likely to find. We even managed to squeeze in a story from sci-fi’s bygone era into the mix, something I am especially tickled by—and yes, I’m in the issue too, beyond my guest editing.
I was especially thrilled to get my good buddy, partner-in-crime (ok, no real crime, I’m kidding), a friend from way-back-when, illustrator Joe Swarctz to contribute the fantastic front and back cover of this issue, and two illustrations inside for my two stories (Joe also helped me revise and cement the idea for our The Smarquim Seduction piece). Joe and I met in high school, way before electricity was invented, played in bands (he drumming, me singing and playing guitar), hung out, ran with the hubris of youth as legends-in-our-own-minds, then lost touch for a good 25 years. Reconnecting four years ago, Joe and I as much settled back into a deep friendship as we began to develop a children’s book series (yes, far and away from the erotica we got into in this issue), from Joe’s initial creation of characters and settings, he had been working on for decades. We have self-published 14 books of our Echo City Capers (Echo City Capers) since.
I couldn’t be happier to have my friendship back with Joe and to have worked with him here.
With all that’s thrown in our direction at the blistering pace of modern dissemination, I feel it’s ever so important to take the time, sit down, crack open a book and put one’s nose, eyes, and mainly imagination into a story. Surely, we are hoping to tickle and tease you, warm your cockles, maybe even make you think a bit in ways you might typically find with speculative fiction or your everyday reading material. But what’s life without some warm cockles?
Best of times and health to your cockles, to you and your loved ones, from all of us at Granfalloon. Enjoy the read!
–Ralph Greco, Jr., in the wilds of suburban N.J., USA
Cover art by Joe Swarctz ©2022