This is the Journal of Unlikely Entomology Archaeological Site.
Issue 6, published August 2013, is available at our new site: http://www.unlikely-story.com
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a bug?
There's really three answers to that, depending on what you mean when you ask that question:
1. What do entomologists call a bug? There is a category of insects known as "True Bugs"; these are the insects in Order Hemiptera, and include aphids, planthoppers, pondskaters, bedbugs, stink bugs, and scale.
2. What do most people call a bug? Pretty much anything with more that 4 legs that is smaller than a Chihuahua. This includes insects, spiders, centipedes, millipedes, scorpions, and so on. For some (not us), it also includes Chihuahuas.
3. What do the editors of the JoUE call a bug, for purposes of submissions? Anything in Phylum Arthropoda. This includes all the stuff that you'd get in the first two answers, plus a bit more, like lobsters, prawn, crabs, trilobites, and so on. We'd also consider things like worms in their various forms. Also, alien life forms that substantially resemble what we're calling "bugs."
What is NOT a bug?
Bacteria and viruses. Eggs. Fetuses. Your neighbor's annoying Golden Retriever, even if he digs up your flower bed. Aliens that don't substantially resemble what we're calling "bugs." Computer viruses (unless they substantially resemble what we're calling "bugs"). Fungi. Snails, slugs, bivalves, and other cephalopods. One-eyed, one-horned, flying, purple people-eaters.
Are there really enough stories about bugs out there to sustain a magazine?
What kind of bugs do you see most often in the slush pile?
Cockroaches. Lots and lots of cockroaches. Ants and spiders tie for second place. Butterflies, flies, and bees are moderately popular as well. At some point we'll put together a page of statistics.
What kinds of bugs would you like to see more of?
Well, that's tough to answer. People tend to gravitate toward commonly seen bugs, and toward bugs that have entered the common lexicon of metaphorical language (bees and ants for hive behavior, butterflies for beauty, cockroaches for filth, etc.) We'd like to see more stories that explore some of the less commonly considered bugs, or present fresh views of the more common ones. We have yet to receive a trilobite story, or one about hellgrammites or ant lions. Cicadas, assassin bugs, and wax tail hoppers are also good candidates. Feel free to follow us on our blog, and on twitter (@grumpsjournal) and facebook (GrumpsJournal) to see what insects have currently caught our attention, and for general buggy inspiration.
What other story elements would you like to see more of?
Non-western settings. Historical settings. Secondary worlds. Horror and erotica (not necessarily at the same time, but we’re fine with that, too). Mainstream, slipstream, and literary fiction. Genre-mashing. Stories that play with language. Stories that incorporate the bug element in unexpected ways.
There's really something called a hellgrammite?
Yes, there really is. And it is horrifying. Check out this video if you don't believe us.