"A group of 5 messagebirds drops onto the far platform of my desk, their last communicative chirps to each other fading as they stow their wings carefully, flush with their ovoid bodies. I notice immediately from the yellow chevrons on the middle bird's wings that it has come from the Department of Public Perceptions, and will be, in their eyes at least, of the highest priority." There's a new Upsideclone up today, by Simon Batistoni, and it's one I've been impatient to publish since it landed in the submissions queue a few weeks ago -- read: Message Centre. (And if you liked that, there's more of his writing out there.)

For anyone who doesn't know: Upsideclown and Upsideclone are two writing sites. 'Clown is a group of six (used to be seven), myself and five friends. We've been going two years, knocking them out at twice a week, have printed a book which is likely to be reprinted (and has been read in the desert). 'Clone is the year-old sister 'site with an open submissions policy (you can find submissions details at the bottom of Message Centre) with some regulars and some not-so regulars, and it's all good and unusual stuff. Both 'sites also publish by email, subscription info is at the bottom of each front page. We do it cos it's fun to write, not for an audience and not because we have to. It's silly, serious, mostly fiction but sometimes not, experimental, or just a story. All of that is why I love it. And occasionally, like today's Upsideclone, it's just really really good.