Retro Spec: Tales of Fantasy and Nostalgia

Retro Spec: Tales of Fantasy and Nostalgia uses the prisms of science fiction, fantasy, and horror to examine the culture, society, and politics of our recent past, the 1920s to the 1980s, in the United States and Europe. Twenty-six authors have contributed short stories and poetry to the anthology, twining history with speculation to find out what happens when suffragettes construct robots, insects spread cultural movements, women carry out the first "manned" space flights, or hair metal bands make deals with the devil. Along the way, Retro Spec hits many of the notches on the 20th century timeline, including World War II, the 60s counterculture, Chernobyl, and the fall of the Berlin wall, testing their limits with genre elements such as alien invasion, ghosts, alternate history, and time travel. Retro Spec is published in trade paperback by Raven Electrick Ink, publisher of Cinema Spec: Tales of Hollywood and Fantasy and Sporty Spec: Games of the Fantastic.

Below is the table of contents, with brief annotations noting form/genre/era/theme.
  • Jude-Marie Green, "Hula Hoop," fiction/fantasy/1950s/hula hoop fad.
  • Robert Borski, "Invasion, 1955," poem/sf/1950s/hula hoop fad.
  • Neil Coghlan, "Storm on Fifth Avenue," fiction/dark fantasy/1930s/Empire State Building.
  • K.M. Praschak, "Rain Goddess: The Dust Bowl, 1930s," poem/fantasy/1930s/Dust Bowl.
  • Lyn C. A. Gardner, "The Mustache," fiction/dark fantasy/early 1970s/counterculture.
  • Bruce Boston, "beat people," poem/speculative/1950s/Beat culture.
  • Leonard Richardson, "The Day Alan Turing Came Out," fiction/sf/1980s/computers; gay rights.
  • Brian Rosenberger, "These United States of Frankenstein: Meltdown," poem/horror/1980s/Chernobyl disaster.
  • Jennifer Rachel Baumer, "New and Improved," fiction/sf/1950s/housewives-"feminine mystique."
  • Amanda C. Davis, "Sparks between Our Teeth," poem/sf/1950s/cigarette-smoking.
  • K. Curran Mayer, "Chalk Circles," fiction/fantasy/1930s-1940s/Olympics; World War II.
  • Cliff Winnig, "R101 Is Burning," fiction/sf/1930s/airship disaster; Nazis.
  • Todd Wheeler, "Dreams like Snowflakes," fiction/dark fantasy/1970s/Blizzard of '78.
  • Karen A. Romanko, "Zeb," fiction/sf/1970s/discos.
  • Cat Rambo, "Ticktock Girl," fiction/sf/early 1900s/suffragettes.
  • Lon Prater, "All That Remains Is the Middle," fiction/sf-fantasy/1920s/investors.
  • Don D'Ammassa, "Slipstream Fiction," fiction/slipstream/1920s-1940s/novelists.
  • G. O. Clark, "Putting off the Past," poem/sf/1960s/poets.
  • Marge Simon, "The Fix," fiction/fantasy/1940s/inventors.
  • Nancy Ellis Taylor, "The Last Time I Was in Vienna," poem/dark fantasy/1940s/post-WWII Europe.
  • C.D. Covington, "U8: Alexanderplatz (1989)," fiction/fantasy/1980s/Berlin Wall.
  • Dayle A. Dermatis, "The Devil Went down to the Sunset Strip," fiction/dark fantasy/1980s/hair metal bands.
  • Paul Abbamondi, "Art Deco and the Infestation of New America," fiction/sf-fantasy/1930s/Art Deco style.
  • Ann K. Schwader, "The Darkness Whispers," poem/speculative/1930s/discovery of Pluto.
  • Brenta Blevins, "Mercury 13--And Beyond," poem/sf/1960s/space flight.
  • David D. Levine, "Nucleon," fiction/sf-fantasy/20th century/junkyards-mementos.